With vacations, weekend getaways, and events canceled or postponed this summer, you might be looking for a new way to relax and rejuvenate—especially after being cooped up due to COVID-19 this spring! SUP Yoga can be a great way to find your zen whether you are on a lake, a natural spring, or the ocean! Let’s check out this relaxing way to exercise…
From the vantage point of a standup paddleboard, you can enjoy the view—think blue skies, rippling water, the sound of your oar dipping into the water….if this isn’t zen, we don’t know what is! SUPing is the perfect way to decompress this summer and is an amazing way to commune with your body, breath, and nature.
If you have never been on a stand-up paddleboard before, don’t let it intimidate you! If you can do a tree pose in your living room, you can do SUP. SUP, much like yoga is a great way to calm your mind and strengthen your body, and you get the best of both worlds when you do SUP yoga!
Here are just a few reasons to take a stand-up paddleboard for a spin this summer:
Step into the Zen Factor
Very few things are more relaxing than sitting on a SUP board on the ocean or a river or floating around on a lake. SUP yoga is akin to movable meditation as you can take in nature’s beauty with all of your senses, as well as let any tensions that are nagging at you unravel in the silence and lapping of the water against your board.
Plus, interacting with bodies of water is beneficial to us, and restores our spirit – something that we need in this challenging time!
Land Vs. Water
Whether you are a practiced yogi or a beginner, it’s good to know that there are some contrasting elements between practicing yoga on land, and yoga on a SUP board. Most often, SUP yoga incorporates Hatha and Vinyasa flows which might be slightly difficult if you have only practiced yoga on land.
The difference: on land, you are always grounded, and on a SUP board you’re constantly engaging your core since you are moving with the wind and the current, and also balancing on your board. Because of this, SUP yoga requires intense focus and balance to stay balanced when holding yoga poses or transitioning between poses. You might find that your technique on land improves and you feel stronger after doing SUP yoga a few times since you are using muscles that you aren’t used to using.
Benefits of SUP Yoga
By itself, yoga has numerous health benefits, as does SUP, so you are getting some amazing health benefits when you practice SUP yoga. Paddle-boarding is a full-body workout, which means that it works every inch of your body while you paddle and balance on the water. We challenge you to paddleboard for 15 minutes and then complete a 15-minute yoga flow on your board! You’re in for an amazing workout!
Top benefits of SUP Yoga:
- Refine your on-land yoga technique.
- Strengthen and tone new muscles.
- Enjoy stress relief from the fresh air, the sound of the water, gorgeous views, etc.)
- You can improve your breathing or meditation techniques
- Enjoy increased flexibility
- Improve your balance
- Gets you outside in nature to enjoy the sunshine.
Best Beginner Poses for SUP Yoga
Here are some of our favorite 5 beginner poses for balanced yoga practice on your board! Perform a few cycles until you feel relaxed and refreshed.
- Downward Facing Dog
- Chair Pose
- Warrior 2
- Boat Pose
Best Boards for SUP Yoga
Many stand-up paddleboards are designed for SUP yoga. Generally, paddleboards that are used for yoga are wider, have more volume, and have a longer deck pad. A lot of people like to use an inflatable SUP board for yoga, as they are more stable and sit higher up on the water, and provide a larger platform for yoga poses.
SUP yoga is an amazing way to enjoy your yoga practice with the bonus that it is done outside in nature. SUP yoga not only gets you outside, but it can also enhance your on-land yoga skills as well! The best part? You can practice SUP yoga by yourself or as part of a group. Get out there on the water and strike a pose!
image courtesy of Pirate Coast Paddle.