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Kayak Fitness Training

To Enjoy Your Kayak Adventure, Be Sure to Prepare!

Living here in beautiful British Columbia, we are spoiled with the ability to enjoy many different water based activities like stand up paddle boarding and of course kayaking. Kayaking allows us to paddle through our pristine ocean and observe the aquatic wildlife as well as the beautiful landscape.  In order to enjoy your kayaking adventure, be sure to prepare yourself fully by doing some kayak fitness training prep work in the gym with your certified personal trainer.

kayak fitness trainingEven the most casual kayaking adventure can challenge you aerobically, so to improve your cardiovascular endurance, you need to train aerobically a minimum of 3-5 times per week for 30-60 minutes per session. Ensure you elite trainer has taken specialized fitness courses that allows them to prescribed the appropriate cardiovascular program. You want to be training aerobically and not anaerobically, your heart rate in a range should be somewhere between 65-80% maximal heart rate. Having your personal trainer keep you in this zone should guarantee your ability to breathe easy!

Due to the nature of the sport, kayaking can test the muscular strength of your upper body and the muscular endurance of your core. Building strength in your arms and upper body with a weight training, kayaking alone will not be enough to improve your performance. Single arm exercises that provide the ability to train the core are always a great idea. Your program should include dumbbell chest press, seated cable row, cable rear deltoid row, bicep curls and triceps press downs.

Exercises Your Personal Trainer Should Include in Your Kayak Fitness Training

Resistance training should involve all the major muscles in the upper body including the shoulders, arms and back.  Your certified personal trainer should also develop an appropriate core program that includes the obliques, rectus abdominis, transverse abs, erector spinae. Exercises your trainer should include would be back extensions, cable wood chops, stability ball plank, mountain climbers.

Most people assume that kayaking only uses your upper body, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, the legs and hips provide the stability while paddling. Don’t forget to include exercises for the large muscles in the legs and hips in your resistance training program. Sample exercises that could be included into your workout on non kayaking days include the leg press, squats and dead lifts.

For those new to kayaking, it is important for you to learn the basics of the sport, and it is highly suggested you take lessons for kayaking to avoid running into trouble out on the water. Once you learn the basics, it’s time to practice those new skills. Take a few minutes and practice some of the skills in shallow water until you feel more comfortable when you head out. Don’t forget when you are planning your day trip, map out your route, and check the weather in advance. Bring a map especially if you are unfamiliar with the area where you will be paddling. Always travel in groups when new to kayaking, this is always a great activity to do with experienced companions

(Ask your personal trainer if they want to go!) . Your elite certified personal trainer can get you ready for a fun and safe new sport that you can do with friends and family!  Vancouver is beautiful so enjoy your time on the water.

Sources:

http://www.theactivetimes.com/6-expert-tips-beginner-sea-kayakers

http://www.roy-stevenson.com/conditioning-for-kayakers.html

Lisa Gervais – BCRPA, ACE, Certified Personal Trainer

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