By Jenna Andserson
Thanks to a beautiful summer and hopefully a long fall, there is plenty of time to enjoy the end-of-summer water season in the Flathead Valley. An afternoon on the lake or river is the perfect way to unwind, relax, and soak up the beauty of Montana.

However, relaxing doesn’t mean you have to skip your workout or force it in early in the day or late in the evening, because if you’re a standup paddleboard fan, I have the solution for you. Paddleboards create their own unique challenges as it is – add in a wave or two from a passing boat and you’ve got quite the balance workout.

This fall, I’m going to challenge you to take it one step further and actually plan your workout on your paddleboard. The best part is that when you’re hot and sweaty afterward, you get to go for a dip in the water and cool off.

Incorporate this 20-minute circuit, ending with a long, fast paddle for at least 400 meters, and you’ll have a full-body workout that will leave you ready to soak up some sun for the rest of the afternoon.

Now, keep in mind, most of these exercises are pretty familiar exercises, but when you combine them with the instability of a paddleboard, they can become a lot harder. Be mindful of the board’s movement, and make sure you have the proper level of safety such as a lifejacket. Try to do each exercise for 8-10 reps to challenge yourself, and start your count over if you fall off the board. Repeat 3-4 times for a solid full-body workout.

When you’re doing these, make sure you don’t cheat and let your shoulders come back behind your wrists. Keep them stacked over your wrists and drive from the glute. Ears right between the triceps, really push into the board to lift your shoulders and round through your back.

JACK PUSH-UPS No cheating to knees here! If you can’t do a push-up, just do a negative, where you lower to the board and then drop your knees to push up, making sure to keep your wrists back behind your shoulders. When you lift up, your hands shouldn’t be out in front of you. Keeping the joints stacked (elbow, wrist and shoulder) will help prevent injury, but also help with stabilization. As you lower, try to jump your feet out to the side of the board (don’t fall off), do a push-up, and then jump them back together.

BOARD TOUCH LUNGES Get into a lunge position, making sure each foot has its own railroad track for stability. Then as you lower straight down (don’t let the front knee shoot out over the toes), touch your fingertips to the board and lift up.

BIRD DOG WITH REACH Come to hands and knees, engage your core to create a neutral spine, and, while keeping your core engaged, lift the right arm and left leg. Hold for 10 seconds and then sweep both arm and leg perpendicular to the body. You should be reaching and kicking over the water now. Hold for another 10 seconds and come back to bird dog, then to all fours. That’s one rep.

CATERPILLAR PUSH-UPS TO SQUAT Get ready for a little movement. Try to find balance in a plank position. Then do a push-up. Coming back to plank, walk your hands back to your feet and set into a narrow squat, arms straight out in front. Do 10 squats and put your hands back on the board, walking back to your push-up. That’s one rep. On your next one, walk your feet forward to your hands and do your squats wide on the front of the board.

WAVE RIDER Stand shoulder width apart, get into a partial squat, and then shift your weight really quickly side to side, causing the board to rock and roll. See how fast you can go. Aim for 100 tips in rapid succession. When you’re finished, grab your paddle and keep your heartrate up by paddling off into the sunset as fast as you can for at least 400 meters.

Jenna is a trainer and competitive physique athlete with a passion for yoga. She also offers personal training. Contact her at