Extreme Sports: Train Like a Wakeboarder

Extreme Sports: Train Like a Wakeboarder

We asked Reflex Nutrition athlete & competitive wakeboarder, James Mott, about his unique training style and what it takes to stay at the top of the game in this gruelling sport


Before I start, for those not very familiar with wakeboarding: It is an extreme sports that consists of techniques adopted from surfing, water skiing and snowboarding, as well as many other water sports such as kitesurfing and windsurfing. Typically, a boat tows the rider in its wake, hence the sports name. However now cable riding is becoming more and more popular both for beginners and regular riders.

Having a full-time job that involves me working abroad which last year meant spending 6 months in China. When I’m not working it’s a case of juggling training both on and off the water in between competitions. As you could imagine this can become incredibly difficult, especially not knowing what fitness related facilities you will have at your disposal. With all this in mind I have what I would consider my essentials whether I’m travelling or training.


  • Trigger Point Foam Roller
  • Resistance Bands
  • Lacrosse Ball
  • Wireless Headphones
  • Yoga

Demands of the Extreme Sports

Wakeboarding can put tremendous demands on your body. An issue that nearly every wakeboarder will be able to relate to is knee pain, whether they have suffered themselves or know someone who has. The knee is subjected to the highest forces during wakeboarding. The human body has an immense capacity to heal itself. Clearly torn ACL’s don’t magically reattach, and herniated lumbar disks are slow to heal, but the human body will take a tonne of abuse for a really long time before it finally gives up the fight. This is the problem; our bodies will put up with our silly movement and lifestyle choices because they have an astonishing amount of functional tolerance built in. We shouldn’t, however, make the classic error of confusing this miraculous genetic inheritance as a justification for eating, sleeping, or moving however we please.

Training Types

In wakeboarding, an optimal focus for my training is focused on strength and power but I take care to remember my flexibility, agility, balance and coordination.  Mobility, something that not a lot people think about or are actively aware of. Range of motion (ROM) is king, and moving into it with strength, control, stability is a must. The most efficient way of developing mobility and range of motion is to work a mixture of disciplines into a small routine that you can work through before training either in the gym or before you hit the water. Myofascial, soft tissue release mixed with stretching and some yoga inspired poses can be really beneficial. This is great when I’m travelling and don’t always have access to a gym or haven’t been on the water for a while. I can fit my essentials easily into a travel bag or suitcase. Most hotel rooms will have enough space to spend 20/30 minutes working on a small routine using; foam rolling techniques, resistance band work on nearly all major muscle groups.

Staying Flexible

Another essential for me which is easy for anyone to do whilst traveling is yoga-based stretching- this can help to counteract many of the muscular imbalances that arise from spending time on the water, gym and travelling. Yoga can be a great way to train for the season and couldn’t be simpler with apps like ‘Yoga Studio’ free to download and easy to use. The physical poses, called “asanas,” can help improve your body’s overall flexibility and balance, you’ll also be able to recuperate faster from tough days.

Wakeboarding can challenge muscles you didn’t even know you had. A well-rounded yoga practice will utilise every muscle in your body, making it an essential element of cross-training! In addition, yoga offers many other benefits that can help improve my performance wakeboarding, overall fitness levels and wellbeing, including:

  • Stronger leg, back, and core muscles
  • Improved spinal, neck, and hip flexibility
  • Improved balance
  • A calm mind and clear focus
  • Improved stamina and energy

Although I have written this from my prospective juggling a full-time job, training, wakeboarding and competitions- I would encourage anyone to try and spend a short period of time each week to start with using a foam roller, resistance bands and yoga based stretching. Once it becomes part of your everyday routine you really will notice the benefits.

Tell us your gym excuses to win! Prize worth over £160

Gym Excuses Competition

Whether we’re willing to admit it or not, at one time or another we’ve all been guilty of coming up with an excuse for not going to the gym, or at the very least have heard one…

And if there was ever a time to admit any embarrassing excuses, or to stitch a training partner up, it’s now – because the best, most cringe and laugh-inducing excuse will win a Reflex bundle worth over £160 RRP! A bundle that will give you absolutely no excuse to miss your next workout, throwing in everything from gym gear, to R-Bars and supplements.

Whether you’re a personal trainer with a client who cancelled because their ‘dog ate their gym shorts’, or you yourself didn’t go because your clothes got ‘locked in a machine at the laundrette’, we want to hear about it. Just remember to get your excuses in by midnight on Tuesday 9th February. May the best excuse win!

Terms and Conditions:

Participation open from 00:00hrs Thursday 28/01/2016 until 23:59hrs Tuesday 09/02/2016, to UK residents only.

The “Best Excuse” from Twitter, Instagram and Facebook will be selected to WIN the following prize on Wednesday 10/02/2016:

  • 1 Instant Whey Pro 900g
  • 1 Nexgen Pro
  • 1 R-Bar Protein box (12 bars)
  • 1 R-Bar Flapjack box (12 bars)
  • 1 Reflex Gym Bag (medium)
  • 1 Reflex T-Shirt
  • 1 Reflex Shaker
  • 1 Reflex Water Bottle

Protein flavours and t-shirt size to be selected by the winner.

Offer will be sent to the winner’s selected address at no cost.


Simply tweet us @ReflexNutrition the following image along with the worst #GymExcuses you have ever heard or given.



Comment on this Instagram post with your excuse using the #GymExcuses hashtag.


Comment on this post with the worst gym excuse you have ever given or heard.

Deadline for all entrants across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram is 23:59hrs Tuesday 09/02/2016. Open to UK residents only.