Get Stronger, Leaner and Shredded at the Beach

Use sand-based workouts for a fitter beach body this summer.

How to Come Back from Vacation with a Fitter, Stronger Body

Is there a beach vacation on your calendar? If you’re lucky enough to have time near the sand and surf this season, you’ll have a unique opportunity to boost your fitness performance. It turns out that sand is a fantastic athletic tool.

SEE ALSO: 3 Workouts for a Better Bikini Butt

Beach Workout Benefits

Experts are finding that sand-based training provides unique challenges that can help you improve core strength, functional balance, cardiovascular endurance and strength. A study published in International Journal of Sports and Physical Therapy found that plyometric training on sand can improve your ability to perform power moves and may even help reduce post-workout muscle soreness. And another study published in the The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found that training on an unstable surface, like sand, can help to boost core strength.

But the best thing about training on the beach is “the gorgeousness of being outside,” says Gerry Haeger. “When you’re on vacation, you don’t want to be inside…you just don’t.” Haeger and Bruce Camp are top group fitness trainers at Life Time Athletic. Each year they run the HAEGERBeachBootCAMP, a week-long, sand-based boot camp at surfside destinations like Puerto Vallarta, Isla Mujeres or Puerto Morelos. They say that training in the sand can be humbling because you can’t prepare for it.

“People think that they’re fit when they’re in their own gym at home, says Camp. “But this workout really tests your athleticism. You have to overcome heat, wind, soft sand, hard sand, water and waves.” And Haeger. adds that a beach workout pushes you to develop strong balance skills. “Working out on the sand is like doing every single exercise on a Bosu ball.”