Stretch it out, and then get back in the lineup! Photo: Fiona Peters Photography.

Stretch it out, and then get back in the lineup! Photo: Fiona Peters Photography.


The Inertia

Editor’s Note: Check out our new course with Surf Style Training founder Elise Carver for a sure-fire way to increase your wave count. It’s available to The Inertia readers at a steep discount for a limited time only. Check out the course page to learn more.


Whether it’s winter or summer, flat or heaving, we all have moments out in the ocean where we think: “I just have NOTHING left!”

“DAMN! I’m gonna miss so many good waves!”

Insert sad face, shake of the head, FOMO expression here.

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But as the saying goes, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” So in moments like these, I say it’s time to outsmart your exhaustion. Below, I’ve listed five ways, which are guaranteed to get just that little more out of you every time!

1. Go to bed early, fool.

Yes, you! The body requires roughly seven to nine hours of restful sleep to properly recover, and without proper recovery, your chances of being in optimum shape to get as many waves as possible are severely cut down. Unless you’re like super freak Kelly Slater, who has been known to survive on four hours a night, I recommend you get your pj’s on pronto.

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2. Drink water.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Staying hydrated is key for the body to get as much oxygen as it can. So don’t go out surfing feeling like a shriveled up prune! Guzzle a good 500 – 1000mL of water first. If you can, jump out and have another dose mid-sesh before you carry on with the fun.

3. Long waits equal stretch time.

Bobbing around in the water waiting for the next set? Take the opportunity to release your rotator cuffs, triceps, traps, and lats. These babies get super tight during a solid session, resulting in neck and shoulder pain if left unmanaged. Release the tension and the toxins mid surf for a new lease on life! If you’re not sure how jump over to my Surf Style Training website to view one of six Active Stretch videos.

4. No fuel, no fun.

I know sometimes it’s easier to head out the door with an empty tummy and beat the morning crowd. If you really want to beat the crowd, you’ll make the effort to put adequate fuel (food not petrol) in the tank, so you paddle rings around them instead! Same goes for post-surf snacks. Refueling is just as important, especially if you intend on surfing for more than four hours. I recommend a piece of fruit and a handful of nuts pre-surf. (Sugars and proteins bind together to make a long lasting slow burning energy source.) Then, I recommend natural coconut water to rehydrate plus a high protein/high fiber (veggies, not bread!) meal for post-surf.

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5. Release and unwind.

Take time after a surf to zone out and unwind. All you need is a good ten – 20 minutes at the end of the day where you can be completely in your own space. Whether it’s to meditate, stretch, self-massage, or something else. This gives you the perfect opportunity to reflect on your time in the water, reconnect the mind with the body and prepare yourself for that restful sleep you need. My usual routine goes like this: shower, active stretch (15-minute minimum), self-massage with tennis ball + roller, and try to lie in silence for five minutes before I actually go to bed. I say try because lying in silence without falling asleep ain’t easy!

Editor’s Note: Check out our new course with Surf Style Training founder Elise Carver for a sure-fire way to increase your wave count. It’s available to The Inertia readers at a steep discount for a limited time only. Check out the course page to learn more.

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