At MyContainerGym, most of our team are kayakers! Those if us that live in Houston can actually kayak year round, so it makes for a great activity and chance to do something a little different than the average outdoor workouts of running and cycling.
Between exploring the many bayous, heading down to Galveston bay and Galveston Beach. We have many opportunities - you just have to watch out for gaters!! I personally am scared of them and left my partner behind once. I guess when that fight or flight mode kicks in, I am a flight person and every man for himself, lol! In all seriousness though, kayaking is a great sport and outdoor activity and below you will find some great tips on how to comfortably and strongly spend a day of kayaking.
As you have seen with our previous outdoor posts, core is priority. Flexibility as well. That strong core to help you sit up right and hamstring flexibility to be able to sit with legs extended.
So what else are some critical components of kayaking? Balance! Just like in snowboarding, balance is key. The more balance you have the easier it is to deal with any unexpected swells and to navigate rapids effectively and efficiently.
What are some balancing exercises that also focus on core?
Kneeling wood chop. One foot on the ground with knee up while knelling on the other. This works core as you twist and balance to keep you from falling over. You can do high to low and low to high to gain maximum benefit.
Endurance in the back in shoulders make for a much more enjoyable day. Using cables you can go from a face pull immediately into rows. This not only works back and rear belts, but also forces you to use your core more, because you are standing.
For hamstring flexibility and strength, you can do a single leg deadlift with one arm pulling a cable. that helps you to work on balance as well. the resistance for the hamstrings that is not only body weight, but the resistance of the band as well.
For more endurance, core stability, lat and shoulder strength all at once, try out some farmers carries. This will also improve grip strength that is needed for the long hours of holding your paddle. You can use dumbbells or kettle bells. Go has heavy as you can to maintain at least 1 full minute of farmers carry and progress from there.
Last, but not least, cardio vascular endurance is needed! Pick whatever form you enjoy, rowing (ideal choice!), running, cycling, etc. Pick one that you can sustain for 30-45 minutes with no rest. Better yet, mix it up!
While 5 exercises may not seem like much, you are working your whole body and and with most of them one side of the body at a time. So for a total body kayak workout:
10 minutes of warm up
Stretch and then get to it.
4 rounds, 15-20 reps of each exercise:
- Kneeling woodchop
- Standing Cable row
- Single leg cable deadlift
- Farmers carry
Lastly, spend some time stretching!
Do the above workout 2-3 times per week and steady state cardio 2-3 times per week.a
Stay tuned for our next Outdoor Adventure: Mountain Biking!