The Barefoot Beach Workout
By kicking off your shoes and exercising in the sand, your workouts reap more payoffs, says Andia Winslow, a NYC-based personal trainer. "It helps reestablish natural signature of the foot, thereby strengthening the legs.” Plus, she says that sand reduces the force of impact, so those who struggle with high-impact exercises can generally do things on sand that they couldn’t do on pavement. Winslow likes teaching on sand so much that she regularly holds classes at indoor beach volleyball courts in New York City.
Barefoot Jogging: Winslow says it’s important to warm up on the sand. Start with slow jogging, then switch to some backwards jogging, which will help make sure everything is loose before getting into the meaty bits of the workout. Spend 8–15 minutes jogging both forwards and backwards.
Lateral Shuffles: With your feet shoulder-width apart, lower into a shallow squat position. Step out quickly with your left leg, then bring your right leg over to finish the movement. Do two sets of 25 yards in each direction.
High Knees: Run in place but bring your knees up as high as you can with each step. Do five sets of 30 seconds on and 30 seconds off.
Broad Jumps: Start in a squat position, then launch yourself forward, jumping as far as you possibly can. Winslow likes to have her athletes do these in quick succession, so as soon as you land from one jump you’re preparing to take off for another. Go 15 yards, then walk back to your starting point and begin another set. Do five sets total.
Bear Crawls: From plank position, leave one leg long while bringing the other up to your elbow. You want to keep your body low, so bring your leg around your torso, not under it. At the same time, move your opposite arm forward. Repeat with the other side, so you’re crawling slowly forward. Do three sets of 10 yards forward and backwards.
Plank: Winslow has her athletes switch between a traditional plank and lateral planks. Do one minute of regular planking and one minute on each side in a lateral plank. Repeat two more times.
Barefoot Jogging: Cool down with 5–8 more minutes of barefoot running in the sand.