Great Beach Workouts That Don't Feel Like Work at All, Experts Say
Glorious, warm, rejuvenating summer vacations are truly the best. They're a time for soaking up some sun, relaxing in the sand with a fruity beverage in hand, and making new memories with friends and family. The only issue these getaways present is breaking out of your normal fitness regimen. After all, if your routine is to hit up the gym in the morning, you may want to sleep in a bit while off from work. Fear not, because it's great to switch things up. We've come up with some awesome beach workouts that don't feel like work at all.
With a little creativity while you're away, you can burn lots of calories and give yourself serious exercise while having a blast. We spoke with Tim Liu, CSCS, an online fitness and nutrition coach, and Anthony J. Yeung, CSCS, founder of GroomBuilder about these summertime workouts that don't feel like work. So, pack up your beach gear, and get ready to have some very fit fun. And next up, don't miss The 6 Best Exercises for Strong and Toned Arms in 2022, Trainer Says.
Plan a fierce game of beach volleyball
When thinking about summertime workouts that don't feel like "work," of course beach volleyball comes to mind. A competitive game of beach volleyball will keep you extremely active, because you're always moving to get into the right position on the court. This sport will enable you to jump, torch calories, and build and tone muscle, all while improving your coordination. According to Yeung, "Beach volleyball improves your conditioning as well as your agility, quickness, and lower body power due to the added resistance from the sand." What's better than that? Plus, it's a fun way to get social with others who are on vacation!
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Kayaking is an active—yet super fun—plan that involves low-impact exercise, which Liu notes is great for your upper body endurance, especially in your lats and arms. Who needs to be home for a strength training sesh when you have a kayak and sparkling water nearby? You can up your level of aerobic fitness while increasing your strength and flexibility, getting a great upper body workout, and soaking up rowing benefits for your shoulders, chest, legs, and abs (via Kayak Base).
And that's not all. Kayaking is also so therapeutic. It will ease your mind and release any stress you're holding onto.
Run on the beach
An invigorating run on the beach can strengthen your endurance and lower your chance of getting injured. "Running on the beach is a great way to improve your endurance and cardiovascular health," Yeung says, adding, "The sand increases the difficulty, but it's actually easier on your joints."
Liu tells us this activity is also a major mood booster. "I would kick this up by starting with short distance jogs, alternated with brisk walks to build up your conditioning," he suggests.
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Grab a surfboard, and catch some waves
Catching waves will be an extraordinary total-body workout, and it's exactly what you should be doing at the beach. "When you swim out in the ocean against the current and waves, you target all of your upper and lower body muscles. Then, riding a wave requires a ton of balance, core stability, and coordination," Yeung explains. Not only is this exercise a great way to release tension, but you'll also have a total blast while doing it. Consider stand-up paddle-boarding, too, for a little extra variety in your summer workout.
If waterskiing's your jam, or you've been wanting to try it, get ready for a solid workout. This physical activity enhances your grip strength, your core, and your legs while you're cruising through the water, Liu points out. Yeung adds, "Grabbing a rope while a boat pulls you at fast speeds builds a lot of strength, endurance, and balance in your entire body."
Go fly a kite
Yes—you read that right! Flying a kite is great for your overall health and fitness. Not only will your shoulder and neck muscles get a good stretch in—helping you reverse some of the side effects of sitting at a desk—but this activity will also provide great eye stimulus. Plus, flying a kite will be such a relaxing exercise that'll help you kick any stress to the curb.