This exercise provided courtesy of Billy Polson, founder and co-owner of DIAKADI Body training gym, voted best personal training gym in San Francisco by CitySearch in 2006.
If you've ever surfed, you know that just getting on the board requires serious core and leg strength. For this exercise your mimic the motion by pushing off from a plank position into a surfer's stance, and then jumping your legs back to the plank. No risk of drowning, and no sharks.
Take a push-up, or plank, position: face down on the floor, with your weight on your hands and feet and your back flat. Your hands should be directly below your shoulders, and your feet hip-width apart. Engage your center to keep your hips from drooping toward the floor or popping toward the ceiling (see Photo 1).
- From the starting position, push up and off into the air, bringing your hands off the floor and your hips up high so that your legs come under you. Land with your feet staggered, with the right foot ahead of the left, in a surfing stance. Your hands will be off the floor, but your upper body will stay low, with your legs bent; you should be in a compact crouch, not a standing position (see Photos 2 and 3).
- From the surfing stance, bring your hands back down to the floor, and then pop your legs back behind you, such that you land once again in the starting position, stabilizing through your center so as not to drop your hips below horizontal as you land (see Photos 4 to 6).
- From the plank position, push up and into the air and land in the surfing stance, just as you did before, but now with your feet reversed so that the left foot is ahead of the right. As before, both hands should be off the floor, and your position low and compact (see Photos 7 and 8).
- Continue this sequence for one minute without stopping, making sure to switch the leading foot each time you land in the surfer stance.