SUP Surfing Training Video Advanced Core Exercise
Featuring Professional Maui SUP Athlete Lara Claydon
 (training video below)


SUP Surfing Training Video Featuring Professional Maui SUP Athlete Lara Claydon: Advanced Core Exercise to Increase Your Power for Explosive SUP Surfing AND Downwind Paddleboarding Performance

The exercise in this video below will help you whether you are new to SUP or an accomplished professional. Here is a tested and proven weapon of an exercise designed to help you:

Unleash more power and control for any size wave, downwind bump
Develop more internal power to pass a competitor
Reduce upper body overuse injuries by incorporating this new power source

SUP Surfing

I’ve been a professional ocean athlete and coach since the inception of SUP, and an elite trainer for over 20 years. I’ve had the pleasure of discovering, creating, learning, paddling across channels, surfing big waves (not including JAWS), and as a downwind open ocean coach on the Maliko Run; – I know what works and what “wins” when it comes to training everything SUP.

What I continue to see in other’s training programs still today, is that there are many paddlers who rely solely on upper and lower body strength with heavy weights to power through maneuvers, catch glides or grind to the finish. That’s all cool and there is definitely a need for this type of training,  but that kind of one dimensional mentality and training can leave you injured, create too much bulk so you can’t move fluidly and worse, because you lack deeply trained core muscles, cause you to miss the best way get your life.  If you haven’t yet discovered the concept of performance functional training this is a great place to start.


Sometimes I like to test my clients when we’re doing a pre Maliko paddle session. I ask them to hand me their paddle and tell me how they would move the board forward without a paddle? Some laugh, others scratch their forehead and some get quite creative and come up with grand schemes.

The secret answer is your mind, then your own body’s deep internal inertia mechanisms. I’m not saying this is magic, but it’s your mind connection to the controls of the deepest abdominal muscles and other core muscles that create the magic. You would literally engage ALL your deep and superficial core muscles including your obliques to drive the board forward with your hips, glutes to your feet, and then pressing off. Kind of looks like you’re doing the worm dance, but it is possible. Try and send me videos!

**TRAINING NOTE #1: Before you fast forward to the video, if you cannot contract or engage your deep and superficial abdominal muscles; you may first want to explore and practice this.

To learn more about “what the core REALLY is” and how to train it to the next level in your paddling, grab my top selling book, How to Increase Your Stand Up Paddling Performance, Beginner to Elite, Chapter 2, How Not to Be An All Arm Paddler, It Begins With the Core.

The quickest and easiest way is to elicit your abdominal contraction for the first time: Take your fingers and put them on your stomach and try to contract your stomach as if you were contracting your bicep for a bicep curl. It’s kind of weird at first but you can do it. Once you’ve nailed this then you can proceed to exercise. The good news here is you don’t need a six pack or 12 pack to do so, your muscles are there you can’t control them.

EQUIPMENT: Large 55-65cm highly inflated (super firm) stability ball, 1 BOSU, 8-10lb medicine ball or dumbbell

Progression: Easy to most extreme:

Feet on floor 12 inches apart, then feet and knees together, lift one leg slight off the floor.
Atop BOSU same progression above EXCEPT lifting of the leg off the BOSU.

TRAINING NOTE #2: What you may discover that while you are bringing your feet and knees together, it’s very difficult to keep them together. This could be that your IT Band are super tight and/or adductors (inner thighs) are super weak. You’ll get there. I have ways to help you with this too.

Sets/Reps: 2-3 sets 10-15 reps.  Variables: advance to heavier weight (nothing over 10 lbs please to reduce shoulder stress)

Remember, YOU are actually the real weapon here. Once you connect your mind to your core, you’ve discovered your deepest and most powerful athletic potential. And yes this is also where your mind wins first. #themindwinsfirst

Hope you enjoyed this article and video and found it helpful. Please share with your friends and be sure to sign up for my newsletter here to be the first to get more tips like this.

Special shout out to Lara Claydon for being the huge inspiration and talent in this video. Please follow her Instagram here @lalaclaydon

Share this video and article with friends and family. Everyone can benefit from a strong core.

If you’d like to train via SKYPE with me it’s really fun, easy and VERY effective. All you need is a strong wi-fi  connection on your lap top and not a huge amount of gear. I can help you get your home gym ready to go.  Learn more by contacting me through this website.

For SO much more, follow me on Instagram:

Also be sure to check out my other website with lots of cool Maliko Run® downwind gear, articles, photos and clothing at


Aloha, Suzie Cooney


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Suzie Cooney The Mind Wins First

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