For years, Australian Mick Fanning was known as the best surfer in the world not named Slater or Irons—a huge talent whose lack of focus kept him from winning it all. But Fanning, 26, was so dominant in 2007, he secured the world title before the season was even over. What changed? He credits Corrective Holistic Exercise Kinesiology (CHEK). Conceived in the 1980s by San Diego–based holistic-health practitioner Paul Chek, CHEK looks at everything from diet to attitude to foot pronation. After evaluating clients, CHEK practitioners create individual programs focused on balance, core strength, and mental wellness. "My workouts reflect the movements in surfing—a lot of paddling, with short periods of exertion that range from crouching to twisting," says Fanning. Here he shares a few of his key exercises.*
1. FITTER PUSH: Lying prone with his hands on a Fitter (a laterally moving cross-trainer for skiers), Fanning moves from side to side in push-up position to strengthen core muscles and integrate his upper and lower body.
2. WOBBLE BOARD SQUAT ROTATION: Fanning stands and squats on a wobble board to target= the core muscles used in surfing.
3. SWISS BALL ONE-ARM PRESS: Kneeling on a Swiss ball, Fanning does single-arm overhead dumbbell presses. As the weight moves, his center of gravity changes, working balance and core muscles.
4. TORNADO BALL: Fanning stands with his back to a wall and swings a 6.6-pounds ball attached to a four-foot rope from side to side, bouncing it off the wall as quickly as posible. This develops explosive power and core strength.
*Chek cautions that because each exercise is tailored to the individual, the key to success and safety is working with a CHEK practitioner (there are 3,000 worldwide) to develop your own program. Get started at chekinstitute.com.