Off The Yoga Mat, Onto The SUP Board!
During one of ACE’s SUP yoga classes, we were flanked by mountains and shaded with a dense canopy of temperate rain forests. The sun was gleaming off each ripple in the New River, until eclipsed by a big, white, fluffy cloud. It was truly a beautiful day. After brief introductions and instructions, we hit the water. We paddled out until we were surrounded by water. There we began our SUP Yoga class, which is executed much like a studio yoga class, except with the additional challenge of the instability of the board. We began with Pranayama commonly known as breath work accompanied by meditation, followed by warm –ups, sun salutations, and vinyasa. Through vinyasa we can cultivate a meditative state in a relaxed setting away from distractions, while developing a continuity of awareness of breath and become familiar with how it feels to be focused, confident, fluid and continuous from one movement to the next. The added value of the board is enormous! Yoga is to be performed in a slow fluid manner, thus transitions between poses must be slow and the instability of the board stimulates a deeper sense of concentration and mindfulness to the practice.
I have the added pleasure of teaching the paddle board yoga classes. Yoga is one of my many passions. While I am used to teaching yoga in gyms and studios, paddle board yoga presents a new environment that’s conducive to the peaceful mindset that many yogis attempt to acquire. There’s really nothing like reaching up towards the blue sky and executing Mountain Pose while encircled by mountains. SUP Yoga offers a much better view of scenery and a new internalizing experience with the vastness of nature and the feeling of complete oneness with the outdoors. The only thing that rivals the class its self is the intense joy, contagious smile, and the complete willingness to let go of every worry after a SUP Yoga session. My Advice? Head to the nearest large body of still water and do some SUP Yoga.