Whether you’re on vacation, live at the beach or just love to work out in the sand, these beach-based exercises will challenge your entire body. Working out on the beach tests your stability, agility, fitness levels and mental toughness due to the unstable surface and outdoor environment.
Before starting the exercises, measure your starting and ending points by pacing 20 steps and increasing the distance each round. Also, make sure to properly warm up and cool down, focusing particularly on the calves, ankles and feet, which serve as the smaller stabilizer muscles when exercising in the sand. Warm up by going through each of the exercise motions in a slow, controlled manner or incorporate dynamic movements to get your muscles warm and heart rate up.
For the workout, complete each exercise in order—this is one round. Aim to complete three to four rounds, with appropriate time in between each round for water breaks. It’s crucial to stay hydrated before, during and after outdoor workouts, so be sure to drink 500-600 mL (17-20oz) two hours prior to exercise, 200-300mL (7-10oz) every 10-20 minutes during exercise or more depending on sweat loss, and 450-675mL (16-24oz per pound) for every 0.5 kg of body weight lost.
Begin at one end in plank position and lower your body toward the sand. Simultaneously reach forward and laterally with your left hand as you draw your right knee toward your right hand. Keep the hips low and your abdominals braced. Repeat with the opposite hand/knee and continue alternating to cover the marked-off distance and back.
Begin in an upright plank, with the hands wider than shoulder-width distance apart. Lower into a push-up and return to plank position. Next, raise the hips and lower the chin to keep your gaze at your feet. Lower the crown of the head toward the sand, all while keeping the legs and torso ridged. Push back up through the shoulders until the arms are almost completely straight. Complete 10 repetitions before moving on to Ice Skaters.
Begin with the knees bent and the torso upright. With the right foot, take the first step at a 45-degree angle forward; try not to let the back leg touch the sand. Keep weight in the hip, position the knee behind the toe and push off onto the other foot at a 45-degree angle. The left arm follows forward with the right leg to propel the body forward. The right arm will do the same with the left leg as the weight shifts off the right hip. “Skate” 20 steps forward and return back to the starting point before moving on to Cross-under Planks.
Begin in an upright plank position with the hands under the shoulders, the legs straight and the core braced. Bring the right leg under the body toward the left hand by twisting the core, again keeping the leg straight and foot flexed. Perform 10 repetitions before moving on to Frog Jumps.
Begin in a low-squat position. Draw both arms backward and explode forward by swinging the arms and jumping forward. Land softly to catch your balance and repeat. Continue to frog jump from one end of your marked distance to the other and back before moving on to Runner’s Abs.
Balance on the sit bones (just above the tailbone) and flex the torso, knees and arms into 90-degree angles. Straighten the right leg while reaching the right arm forward to mimic a running gait. Use the core to keep the torso upright as you balance and draw in each leg. Complete 30 runner’s abs before moving on to the Crab Walk.
Begin seated facing the starting point. Keep both knees bent and place the hands on the sand under the shoulders. Lift the hips off the ground as high as possible. Flexing at the ankle, begin pulling through the hamstrings and pushing with the upper body. Take small, quick steps to avoid injury to the wrists. Crab walk the entire length of the marked-off distance and back to the starting point.