Personal Health

Pro Surfer, Steph Gilmore Reveals The Surprising Ways She Stays Fit In & Out Of The Water


Surfing is not easy, says pro surfer Stephanie Gilmore. It takes patience and resilience, we all get frustrated and we all fall off a million times over! Yep, for this six-time world champion, what happens in the water applies on shore, too. People say, What do you take out of surfing into your everyday life? and Im like, Everything – be patient, if youre getting smashed and held under a wave, you just have to go with it. You cant overpower it. Wait for things to run their course.’”


Gilmore takes this same go with the flow attitude to her fitness. Because I travel so much its hard to keep one set routine – I am the least self-disciplined athlete youve ever met! she confesses. But I like to mix it up, its good for the body and its good for the mind.


In LA, her class of choice is kickboxing. I just love having that release. Im not an aggressive person but theres something about having that high-cardio, high-intensity work that I really like, she says. Ill mix that in with stretching at home, the foam rollers are the best thing ever invented. I travel with a cricket ball and roll on it, its so painful!


Gilmore also smashes out weights in the pool. You get dumbbells and you crawl underwater with the weights. Youll go down with the weights to the bottom, squat and then come back up and then get a breath before you sink back down again. Its really good on your joints because its not as intense as if youre in the gym.

Something for all of those cute, petite waves around the world. @dhdsurf #XRS ?

A post shared by Stephanie Gilmore (@stephaniegilmore) on

Back home in Australia, Gilmore goes for a more unconventional approach with her fitness. I work with Nam Baldwin, he mixes in martial arts with circuit work, then he does spatial awareness and balance training. Turns out, Baldwins equipment of choice is a broomstick! Hell run it back and forth around you and you have to duck and move around it, so youre dancing around this stick. The whole time your legs are burning. Hell come straight at you and you have to move your body, matrix style! Hell also get you balancing on a Bosu and hell throw tennis balls at you and you have to duck and miss the tennis balls.

So how does she prep for the wipe outs? Baldwin has a solution for that, too. We do breath enhancement training in the pool, she explains. Its all about showing your body that youve actually got oxygen running through it everywhere, you dont have to rely purely on your breath all the time. For big wave surfing, this is really handy! Youll think, Wow Im going to drown, and then be like Actually, nah, Im okay, Ive still got about another 30 seconds.’”


Unsurprisingly, Gilmore doesnt stick to a regimented diet to fuel this training. Ive never been the most strict. The thing people dont do is just listen to their body, take a moment to be like, How did I feel after I ate that? Its something simple like that, which helps you really learn about what feels good for you. I love fresh seafood, salads and vegies. And coffee and cake! Its about balance.

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