A 6-Move Beach Workout Routine for the Whole Family

1
Why You Should Workout in the Sand

Sand Shark 2
FLYAROO Fitness

If you live near a sandy beach or you're planning an island vacation, then you should seriously consider scheduling a beach workout routine. Multiple studies indicate that sand-based workouts, particularly those that take place on dry sand, have many performance benefits when compared to those taking place on grass or hard surfaces. For instance:

  • A 2001 study found that recreational runners burned significantly more calories when running in sand than when running on a grass surface
  • A 2007 study found that soccer players who trained in sand rather than grass were able to significantly improve jumping and sprint performance, while reducing delayed onset muscle soreness
  • A 2013 study found that exercising in sand garnered a greater physiological response (as measured through blood markers, heart rate and rating of perceived exertion), without additional muscle damage or detriment when compared to exercising on a grass surface
  • A 2014 study found that athletes who trained on a sand surface for eight weeks saw significantly improved VO2 max measurements (a way to measure aerobic capacity), as compared to those who trained on a grass surface

In other words, working out in the sand can help you burn more calories and see greater performance improvements without resulting in increased soreness or muscle damage.

But the trick isn't just knowing that sand workouts are beneficial, but knowing what to do when you're working out in the sand. Ethel Baumberg and Ashley Spicer, co-founders of FLYAROO Fitness, put together this fast, family-friendly workout routine that's perfect for your next beach workout. With fun, animal-inspired exercise names and simple movements, you'll have no trouble engaging your kids in the action.

The Beach Workout Routine

  • Perform three sets of each exercise as described
  • Rest for 30 seconds between each set

2
Surfer

Surfer
FLYAROO Fitness

Start in a plank position, then push off the sand to jump up into a squat position, as if you’re on a surfboard. Immediately hop back down into a plank. Be sure to squeeze your glutes as you jump up.

Perform three sets of 10 repetitions.

3
Sand Shark

Sand Shark
FLYAROO Fitness

Start by holding a plank, then draw one knee to the outside of your same-side elbow before switching sides.

Perform three sets of 10 repetitions. (A full repetition is counted when you've drawn each knee to the same-side elbow one time.)

4
Palm Tree

Palm Tree
FLYAROO Fitness

Stand tall, feet together, then lift your right foot and place it alongside your left calf. Bring your hands to your chest and hold for five deep breaths. If you're able to maintain your balance, try reaching your arms up over your head as you hold the position.

Perform three repetitions per side, alternating immediately from side to side without rest.

5
Flying Turtle

Flying Turtle
FLYAROO Fitness

Start with your arms crossed over your chest, your feet shoulder-width apart. Squat down slowly, keeping your weight in your heels as you press your hips back. When you're at the bottom of the squat, jump straight up in the air as high as you can, reaching your arms over your head as you do so. Land softly on the balls of your feet, knees and hips slightly bent to reduce the impact of the jump.

Perform three sets of 10 repetitions.

6
Pelican

Pelican
FLYAROO Fitness

Start standing, then lift one leg behind you at a 45-degree angle as you tilt your torso forward. Point and flex the toes on your lifted leg like a propeller. To make it more challenging, rotate your foot in a circle, mimicking a propeller. While working on balance, lean side to side with your arms out like the wings of a plane flying over the ocean.

Hold the position for as long as you can (aim for 30 seconds). Repeat on the opposite side.

Perform three sets per side.

7
Seashell

Seashell
FLYAROO Fitness

Sit in the sand and lean your torso back slightly before lifting both of your legs in front of you at a 45-degree angle. To make it more challenging, lift your arms off ground and balance. Hold the position as long as you can, aiming for 30 to 60 seconds.

Perform three sets.

 

Sources:

Binnie MJ, Dawson B, Arnot MA, Pinnington H, Landers G, Peeling P. Effect of Sand versus grass training surfaces during an 8-week pre-season conditioning programme in team sport athletes. Journal of Sports Sciences. 2014, Vol. 32, Iss. 11.

Binnie MJ, Dawson B, Pinnington H, Landers G, Peeling, P. Effect of Training Surface on Acute Physiological Responses After Interval Training​. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research. 2013, Vol. 27, Iss 4, 1047-2056. 

Impellizzeri F M, Rampinini E, Castagna C, Martino F, Fiorini S, Wisloff U. Effect of plyometric training on sand versus grass on muscle soreness and jumping and sprinting ability in soccer players. Br J Sports Med 2008;42:1 42-46 Published Online First: 25 May 2007.

Pinnington, H C et al., The energy cost of running on grass compared to soft dry beach sand. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport 2001. Volume 4, Issue 4, 416-430.

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