Fancy some yoga floating on the ocean? Or how about the middle of a lake? SUP yoga, is the activity of yoga on a stand up paddle board in the middle of a body of water. SUP yoga has become an increasingly popular sport for both experienced yogis and experienced paddle boarders, yet is also great for beginners with no experience of either.
Ideally practiced on a yoga paddle board, the ease and accessibility of the sport has rapidly increased its popularity in recent years. Similarly, although yoga paddle boarding is a fun and challenging sport, SUP yoga also has many benefits that make the sport even more appealing to get involved with. So what are the benefits of doing yoga on paddle boards?
Benefits of SUP yoga
Unlike many other more adrenaline-filled water sports, yoga paddle boarding is very beginner friendly. Aside from the relatively low risk of injury, SUP yoga can be surprisingly easy to pick up and also can help participants who may be more reluctant to engage in water activities to gain confidence in water-based environments. Using yoga paddle boards will make the activity even easier as they are designed with the activity in mind.
2. Refining techniques
Yoga on land and yoga on a paddle board will have significant differences which will require adjusting your techniques slightly. Unlike on land where your ground surface is completely still, on water the paddle board will shift and move with the wind and current. Along with this new movement, your activity space is also restricted to the board meaning a greater focus and balance is required whilst holding and transitioning between poses. These new challenges should help to refine your technique and improve your ability on land.
3. Health benefits
Whether for athletic or leisure purposes, yoga is popular because of the relaxing nature and health benefits of this low impact sport. By combining the benefits of yoga and the benefits of paddle boarding, you will engage muscles from all over your body including core, legs and arms meaning that you can expect an improvement in your strength, flexibility and balance leading to a boost in your general fitness levels.
Taking physical activity outside has been shown to have many positive effects on both mental and physical well being. Participating in yoga paddle boarding involves being outside on a body of water, these tend to include lakes and harbours. Naturally these environments tend to have beautiful scenery and other relaxing tendencies e.g. sound of flowing water/waves. This can help to reduce feelings of stress and anxiety.
5. Minimal equipment
A key benefit of SUP yoga is that it doesn’t require the purchase of lots of equipment, all you need is a paddle and a board (and a wetsuit depending on how cold it is!). When it comes to choosing your equipment it is best to look for yoga paddle boards specifically, as these will make SUP yoga easier to get the hang of.