Yoga is liberation. And what could be more liberating than striking those poses out on the water? Maybe don’t start with Advanced Tree Pose, but do put those yoga skills to use on your stand-up paddle board. When yogis talk about “being grounded,” they aren’t being literal. You don’t have to be on the ground to be grounded. To be grounded is to be present and nothing keeps your attention on the present like stand-up paddle boarding. So, next time you’re out on calm waters, try these poses:
Hands to heart. Start by aligning your feet, hips, and shoulders. Place your paddle between your ankles, parallel to your board. Find a focal point, perhaps a beautiful spot on the horizon, and bring your thumbs to the center of your chest.
Tadasana with raised arms. With your feet, hips, and shoulders aligned and a focal point in view, slowly raise your arms straight up above your head. Try to keep your arms equidistant and aligned with the rest of your body. Ta-Dah! Tadasana!
Seated pose. Cross-cross applesauce is a staple of grade school, but attention to posture and relaxed shoulders make it a yoga pose. Place your paddle across your lap and rest your wrists on the bar.
Table pose. Moving from sitting to standing on a paddle board is a common struggle. But table pose provides a great transition from yoga back to paddling! Centering yourself on your board, maintain balanced posture and move slowly onto your hands and knees. From here you can straighten your back and find that focal point. And while you’re in this position, try cat and cow pose. For cat pose, just push your belly button in toward your spine and let your back arch up. For the cow pose, push that belly button toward the board and let your back mimic a hammock.
Yoga and stand up paddle boarding are complementary practices and can certainly be enjoyed together with practice. Enjoy both at one of our Adult Retreats.