Surfers Should Avoid Heavy Weights 

Further to a recent post of mine – which provided musings on the (questionable) advice of ‘avoiding heavy weight’……..

I’ll just leave this picture of WSL and Olympic champion @italoferreira here for a second. 

Let it marinate in all it’s FORCE generating goodness.  


Despite my OCD, I’m going to let both his grip (bicep tear) and the order in which he has loaded the plates (nooooooooo!) slide…

…because the absolute LEGEND that he is, he’s emphatically proving my point.  And it’s hardly rocket science.

So just in case the irony is lost above, you absolutely SHOULD be lifting heavy if you want to improve your surfing performance, and NO it won’t turn you into Arnie.

Does it look like Italo is preparing to complete 25+ reps at what looks like a 120kg deadlift?

Almost certainly NOT (although if he is, fair play).  

He is working on FORCE development – because he needs it to perform the outrageous manoeuvres that make him Italo.

Also, nobody can hulk smash a board quite like Italo!  Think of the force required to stamp on a board and snap it clean in half.

To recap, we know that:

Max Pull Up Strength is very closely related to sprint AND endurance paddling performance

 Peak Force in the push up is closely correlated to pop up performance (and therefore wave count)

Countermovement Jump (CMJ) height is a pre-determinant of success in wave riding performance and manoeuvres.  The CMJ is ballistic exercise, and therefore has a large force component

As I’ve said before, strength endurance (high rep, low weight) work is amazing for certain aspects of surfing performance.

It’s an intervention I use a lot in my programmes, but NEVER exclusively and certainly not at the expense of developing force.

Hope this helps and as always, give me a shout if you have and questions at all.