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4 Ways to Recover Like a PRO! (and 4 Ways NOT to)

Updated: Jul 6, 2021

The top professionals have dialed in their recovery routine. As paddlers compete in race after race, they’re breaking their bodies down repeatedly. The top athletes in our sport need to stay in peak condition for their next race, and how they recover from the most recent race aids in that. Although, some professionals might have physical therapists, masseuses, and other expensive-looking recovery methods, the truth is many don’t… at least not in the stand up paddling world!

So what do the pros use to recover after a race? What are they doing differently that helps them bounce back, hop on that plane, and kick butt at the next big race?

How to Optimize Recovery:

1. Breathing: Learn how to activate your Parasympathetic system

How this relates to better training sessions and also better recovery

2. Mobility, Yoga, Myofascial Release 

Grab a foam roller, tennis ball, or trigger pin. Right after your race is a great time to stretch out your muscles because they’re warmed. Even better than stretching is myofascial release, which can be accomplished by “rolling out.” A foam roller or a tennis ball rolling under overused muscles after a race will help fascia that has become restricted or inflamed release or relax. This will speed recovery and improve range of motion. (One of my personal favorites is a tennis ball between my spine and shoulder blade!)

3. Nutrient timing 

Macronutrients, micronutrients, and supplements, OH MY! Pro athletes have all of their nutrition tightly dialed in. While many paddlers get their macronutrients in order, i.e. carbs and protein before and after a race, it’s the micronutrients that can really boost your recovery! Taking supplements to provide your body with vitamins and minerals will improve your performance, prevent illness, and shorten recovery times. Many protein shakes include micronutrients, but do your research to determine if you’re lacking any that you should add.