What is SUP yoga? It is stand-up paddleboard (SUP) yoga, and was first practiced in 2008 in Sausalito, California. A combination of traditional yoga poses, while using a paddleboard as your mat, those that practice this new form of yoga, absolutely love it! This challenging practice is quickly growing in coastal areas and looks to be a new fitness regimen that is here to stay.
While many look at those practicing this unique form of yoga as crazy – feeling that it is hard enough to just paddleboard or hard enough just to do the yoga poses – it has proven to have a host of health benefits. And, those that are practicing SUP yoga, say it is not as hard as it looks….
So, if you are on the fence about trying, maybe these 10 reasons you should try stand-up paddleboard yoga will convince you:
1. Yoga has always provided a “be in the moment” philosophy, and SUP yoga is no different. You will remain in the present, as you have no choice but to remain present while practicing yoga on your floating mat.
2. This type of yoga will allow you to develop mindfulness. You will learn to pay attention to every movement, every breath, each body part placement, in order to keep your balance.
3. You do not need to be an advanced student of yoga in order to reap the benefits. Less is more when doing yoga on a paddleboard. Simple poses will help you develop body awareness.
4. For those advanced yoga students, SUP yoga is a whole new challenge. Learning to master your most advanced poses while on the paddleboard will enlighten you with a whole new feeling of self.
5. You will learn to slow down while practicing yoga on a paddleboard. Yoga is meant to calm and slow down, but often times many even fly through yoga poses, so to move on to the next thing in our busy life.
6. This practice forces you to slow down and pay attention. Focus and really feel the quality of your breath and the force within your body.
7. Paddleboard yoga will challenge your muscles in a different way. Concentration of your core muscles will help steady you on the board. You will learn new skills and challenge your muscles like never before.
8. Similar to hot yoga, SUP yoga will have you sweating during your workout, however, you will have the fresh air and the water beneath you to cool you down. Enjoying the sun and the fresh air, bring a new fervor to yoga practices.
9. You will experience something new every time you practice SUP yoga. No two practices will ever be the same.
10. What better way to bring inner peace and tranquility, than to practice in the beauty of the outdoors. The calmness of the water, the brilliant colors of sun hitting the water, will transcend you into another dimension.
SUP yoga is fun! Ask anyone that has tried it, and they will tell you it is the best experience they have ever had.
All Photos by: Ali Kaukas