Whether you’re a competitive or recreational surfer, you want your body in tip-top shape to enjoy the ocean and what it decides to throw at you! Trust me, I know how demanding it can be. I grew up surfing every day in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. I love being in the ocean for numerous reasons; the sense of community it brings me, the mental clarity it offers me, and the physical demands on my body. They call it “ocean therapy” for a reason! Surfing is a demanding sport involving predominantly pulling movements to propel you through the water and occasional tumbles that can leave you sore and injured.
Common Injuries & Strains in Surfers?
The repetitive nature of surfing can increase your likelihood to overload, strain or aggravate your musculoskeletal systems. This is due to the prolonged positions you are required to hold such as arching the neck & lower back. Other repetitive movements such as paddling can put excessive strain on the neck, shoulders & upper back muscles.
Common injuries among surfers that I see in my clinic include:
- rotator cuff tendinopathy/tears
- shoulder bursitis
- neck stiffness, migraines, headaches
- lower back disc injuries
- lower back joint irritation
- hip pathology such as osteoarthritis, hip impingement and labral tears
Common muscle strains in surfers that I see in my clinic include:
- sub occipitals
- upper traps
- rotator cuff
- hip flexors/psoas
- low back
This list of injuries and strains can deter you from spending time improving your skills and enjoying all the benefits of water sport. Massage is used to enhance the body’s recovery and reduce the common surf injuries mentioned above.
How Can Massage Help Surf Performance & Recovery?
Sports remedial massage can increase athletic performance up to 20% by increasing circulation, improving flexibility and range of motion, enhancing concentration, and assisting the bodies recovery processes. Massage can stimulate the nervous system in a very positive way by improving mental clarity and focus, as well as energize the surf-dominant muscles! Frequent massage decreases the chance of a stubborn strain or overuse injury to develop into something more serious or chronic. Surfing is a sport that all body types, ages and abilities can enjoy therefore keeping the body mobile, strong and maintained should be a top priority!
How Often Should Competitive & Recreational Surfers Receive Massage?
Whether you’re a competitive or recreational surfer, massage will help you stay in tip-top condition so you can enjoy those gorgeous days in the water. Massage is beneficial for any ocean sport such as surf skiing, life saving, swimming, kayaking, canoeing, kite boarding, wind surfing, jet-skiing, scuba diving, & spear fishing. If you’re not sure how often you should keep up with your massage maintenance, I have outlines a helpful guideline below so you better understand how to book your treatments!
– massage is highly recommended 3-4 days prior to a competition or sporting event to release muscular adhesions (or “knots”), relax fatigued & over-worked muscles as well as promote relaxation techniques which improves focus and mindfulness
– short sports massages targeting areas of concern/stress between heats can help surfer’s recovery quickly and get ready to preform their best
Check out my other blog post on “Events / Corporate” to lock me in for your next sporting competition! I am available for local competitions on The Sunshine Coast. You can book me for domestic and international events. (Stuart, can you please create a link so they can click this and book me for events.
-the day after your event or a couple days after, it is recommended to book in for a recovery session.
-the aim is to flush lactic acid (a chemical your body produces in your muscles during strenuous activity that can result in soreness and knots)
-we want you to recovery quickly so you’re in the best shape for your next event.
-regular, schedules massages every 2-3 weeks is highly recommended as a recreation or competitive surfer for optimal performance, flexibility maintenance and muscular recovery.
-keep you enjoying the water for longer
-helps improve your surf skills
Surfing has been a huge part of my life and has led me into a profession in which I love working alongside competitive and recreational surfers, who strive to be their best in the water! Surfing is a great way to enjoy the outdoors, clear your head & connect with your community. The physical demands of the sport are obvious, therefore If you’re looking for an experiences surfer and remedial sports massage therapist, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me! I look forward to seeing you in the clinic and in the line-up!