Why Surfing Makes You Feel Great

A GREAT READ FOUND ON MAGICSEAWEED.COM

THALASSO THERAPY: WHY SURFING MAKES YOU FEEL GREAT

By on 8th May 2017

You are getting a lot more out surfing than just a rush because frolicking in the sea has been proven to possess measurable health benefits.

And it certainly shows if you compare surfers to other athletes. Surfers in their prime invariably have clean white teeth, wide shoulders, slim hips, toned muscles, low body fat, great power to weight ratio, flexibility and very few skin ailments. And unlike our football and rugby playing brothers, horrors like athlete’s feet and crotch rot are nonexistent.

Surfing makes you feel better and has many health benefits. Though we don’t need science to back this up, it’s at least good to have that all confirmed.

Surfing has scientifically and medically also been proven to have remarkable healing and longevity properties. Historically, doctors have always recommended their patients go to the seaside to heal almost all ills. They would actually issue prescriptions detailing exactly how long, how often and under what conditions their patients were to be in the ocean. It was called Taking in the waters and was an actual accepted medical solution for everything from allergies to syphilis to nervous breakdowns. Using seawater for medical purposes even has a name: Thalassotherapy.

In 1769, a British doctor Richard Russell published a dissertation arguing for using seawater against scurvy, jaundice, leprosy and glandular cancer. Globally, today’s healing and spa resorts-by-the-sea abound. Places where people can not only let go of their troubles but even take a shot at curing their arthritis. But does the evidence actually stack up? Is seawater an actual cure? The answer is a definite yes.

Ocean water differs from river water in that it has significantly higher amounts of minerals, including sodium, chloride, sulphate, magnesium and calcium. This is why it’s highly useful for skin conditions such as psoriasis, acne, even sunburn. Bathing in natural mineral-rich water is called balneotherapy and has long been used to treat psoriasis. Patients suffering from all manner of things have always reported feeling better after swimming in the ocean.

Of course this may also have to do with sun exposure, which has been found to improve about every bad symptom on earth. Also magnesium-rich seawater improves moisture retention in the skin, making it stronger and more rigid. Which might explain part of our obsession with bikinis.

Also, because it is rich in other mineral salts such as sodium and iodine, clean ocean water is considered an antiseptic, meaning that is also has wound-healing properties. Nasal irrigation, or flushing of the nasal cavity, with salty solutions is used as therapy by people suffering from hay fever, respiratory ailments as well as inflammation and infection of the sinuses. (Which is why duck diving all those bombing close-outs is actually good for you. And we’re not exactly sure, but it probably builds character too).

It is also undisputed in the medical world that people who live by, and swim and surf in the sea have far healthier respiratory systems. This is because seawater is cleansing and it mimics the body’s own fluids in the lining of the airways, refreshing them without irritating them. (Unless, of course, you are one of those cigarette smoking hipsters. That would probably cancel that last one out). And don’t forget the exercise and meditation aspects.

Exercising in natural environments has been shown to have greater benefits for mental health than exercising anywhere else. This is because it combines the benefits of exercise with the restorative effects of being in nature. Surfing in the ocean being the ultimate case.

In his 2014 book Blue Mind, marine biologist Wallace J. Nichols found out why people find themselves in a meditative and relaxed state when they are in, on or under water. One reason is the breathing patterns used during swimming and diving. These stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system. The system that controls organ function and quietens the brain and has effects on brain waves and hormones that influence the brain positively.

The weightlessness of water can also have a calming effect on the mind, even changing or slowing down brain waves, helping to provide a distraction from life, giving a sense of mindfulness, which is a state in which one is aware of one’s surroundings in a meditative fashion. Hydrotherapy, or water therapy and swimming have also been shown to decrease symptoms of depression and anxiety. One study showed the effects of balneotherapy and thalassotherapy were comparable to a commonly used anti-depressant drug called paroxetine.

 

Now for our cold water surfing brothers there is even more good news. Because cold water swimming activates temperature receptors under the skin that release hormones such as endorphins, adrenalin and cortisol. These have therapeutic benefits for musculoskeletal conditions, muscular strength and bone rigidity. Recurrent cold water also leads to enhanced function of the parasympathetic nervous system (the rest and digest system), which helps with organ function, including the potency of one’s testicles. (Which probably explains the rampant misogyny present in our sport).

This has been linked to an increase in the release of dopamine and serotonin. Cold water surfing is also great for weight loss because surfing in colder waters burns up more calories when trying to keep the body warm. And finally, frequent exposure to cold water also increases the strength of the body’s immune system.

Which is all to say that the well-being we get from surfing goes far beyond just the joy of riding a wave. So kids, explain all this to your parents the next time they do not allow you to go surfing. And grown-ups? Keep surfing as hard as you can and enjoy a long healthy life. Because it no longer matters that most of the world considers our sport a goofy pastime. Because we are right. And they are wrong. And we have known it all along.

Psychological and Emotional Benefits of Rock Climbing

three-locations-climbing-rock-indoor-for-twoPsychological/emotional benefits of rock climbing

This is a great article found on http://www.transcendyourlimits.com/awesome-benefits-rock-climbing/

Climbing is a full body workout, meaning your head as well.

It doesn’t just keep your muscles fit, but it also stimulates and improves your cognitive ability, problem solving, confidence etc. Let’s look at the mental benefits of rock climbing.

  1. Goal setting. To climb rocks you must set goals and move towards them. We’ve already talked about why that’s important in life.
  2. Being aware of yourself. It requires you to be more aware of the space around you, and how you’re moving your body through it.
  3. Relieve Stress. When you’re climbing, nothing else matters. It’s much the same effect that skydiving has on you, because you’re so focused on the moment and what you’re doing right now, you don’t have time to worry about things like work or bills. It’s an antistress device!
  4. Confidence. If you can climb up a mountain, you can do anything. Things that seemed like a big deal before, (public speaking, confrontation, job interviews) now don’t seem hardly as daunting.
  5. Perseverance. When you’re climbing you always want to get to the top, and you’ll keep trying to get there. That’s what makes it such a good sport because it teaches you life skills as well as giving you a workout.

There are a whole lot more benefits to rock climbing, but I’m just covering a few here. It’s sort of an introduction to the sport if you didn’t know about the benefits, and I’ll probably do a few more posts about the sport when I get back into it in the coming weeks. Oh, I almost forgot.

This is probably my favorite part about rock climbing (Apart from getting thick, strong forearms!)..

The very important reason! – It’s YOU vs YOURSELF

Just like in other areas of life, often it’s just you vs yourself.

You’re the one who normally holds you back in most things, and learning that through rock climbing will show you that in other aspects of life, you can often remove limitations by just stepping outside of them.

I know that sounds like a weird idea, but stick around on the blog for long enough and you’ll understand what I’m trying to say here. The point is, rock climbing is about you challenging and pushing yourself, so it makes you stop thinking about competing and getting approval for others (Unless of course, you’re actually competing in a rock climbing competition!).

It pushes you and makes you want to achieve more, and that’s a skill that’s useful not only on the climbing wall, but in every aspect of your life.

Ocean Therapy

This is a great article that was found on http://www.livestrong.com/article/552369-what-are-the-benefits-of-being-a-surfer/  I thought it was worth sharing. 

What Are the Benefits of Being a Surfer?

by VANESSA ARELLANO DOCTOR Last Updated: Aug 26, 2015

What Are the Benefits of Being a Surfer?
A young man and woman with surfboards heading to the water. Photo CreditPlustwentyseven/DigitalVision/Getty Images

When the “kids” shouted “Let’s go surfing” in those beach movies from long ago, they were mostly talking about soaking in some sun and riding the waves. As it turns out, they were taking part in an exercise that is aerobic and anaerobic at the same time. It can also help ease stress and keep a body toned and fit.

Fitness/Physical Benefits

According to the Better Health Channel, you can get a lot of physical exercise from surfing that will ultimately lead to weight loss and a toned body. Surfing strengthens the core and legs. It’s called “ocean therapy” because you develop your body through the constantly changing movement and height of the waves. Based on an activity calculator on Health Status, a 180-pound person surfing for 30 to 60 minutes can burn as many as 130 to 260 calories.

Psychological Benefits

Surfing can improve your mood and prevent depression and stress. 

A 2010 study by the California State University looked at how surfing can improve a person’s mood and prevent depression and stress. The study determined people described as depressed, angry or stressed become more calm, relaxed and happy after going through a surfing program for a few weeks. According to the Jimmy Miller Foundation, a program that helps individuals cope with mental and physical illness, surfers are more relaxed and effectively get rid of stress by staying close to nature and feeling free. People who engage in surfing, according to the University of California study, feel a deeper sense of tranquility, which boosts psychological balance as a whole

Welcome

cropped-str.jpgWhat We Do :

 

We provide surf therapy and other experiential therapeutic services for treatment centers as an independent contractor(s) to help reach clients and engage them through a holistic approach. All of our services are a hands on clinical experience that implement appropriate interventions for people in substance abuse recovery. These groups are facilitated by experienced, skilled, and certified addiction counselors. We weave aspects of different treatment modalities and evidence based approaches into our services such as but not limited to:

  • cognitive behavioral therapy
  • motivational interviewing
  • dialectical behavioral therapy (mindfulness and emotional regulation)
  • relapse prevention
  • assertiveness training

Other activities we provide are:

  • Hiking
  • Slack-lining
  • Indoor Rock Climbing

How it works

          We provide surf lessons, gear (we can accommodate any skill level), and a process group. How it works will vary depending on the specific treatment center we are working with and how to best address the needs of each individual client. A detailed group itinerary will be created to meet the specific needs of the treatment center we will be working with. Clinical documentation will be provided by us. We encourage the treatment team to inform us of any specific client challenges, risk factors, and /or barriers that may need to be therapeutically addressed. Please contact us for further details about our services.   James@serenewatersrecovery.com

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