Stand Up Paddling is first and foremost about being physically active. The fact that you are outside in nature, can clear your head and let go of the stress of everyday life, are other big plus points. These are all qualities that can just as easily be attributed to yoga. For this reason, the combination of the two activities is almost obvious. Ok, with the idea of moving exercises where balance is already challenging on solid ground to an unstable surface, this combination is suddenly not so obvious after all.
But with the following 3 reasons and the adapted yoga flow, we hope to convince you that there is a connection that complements each other perfectly.
- It’ s hot, the air is stuffy, you wish to be somewhere, just not here in this yoga studio. A situation that most probably know when they attend a yoga lesson in midsummer. To really greet the sun outside in the fresh air is therefore the ideal solution. If then also the yoga mat is exchanged for the deckpad of a SUP board, the combination is perfect. Once you’re blown around by a cool breeze on the lake, you’ll never want to sweat it out in some studio again in the summer.
Bonus point: yoga in the park would also be an obvious option, of course. However, out on the lake has the added benefit of being far away from the hustle and bustle of a beautiful summer day. No screaming kids, no beach volleyballs flying around your ears, and no wry looks from passing walkers.
- It is easier than you imagine. If the thought crosses your mind that you already have enough trouble keeping your balance on solid ground, we can reassure you. With a wide all-around SUP or yoga board, keeping your balance is no problem.
Okay, maybe we’re exaggerating a bit. Of course, the unstable ground is a bit of a challenge, but that’s what balance is all about. Especially the transitions from one position to the other requires concentration and mindful slow movements. Perfect, mindfulness and slow movements sound exactly like the meaning of yoga.
- Stand up paddling is generally a very good whole body workout. The wobbly surface activates many small muscles. In combination with yoga, this effect can be further enhanced. In this way, many deeper muscles can be addressed, which are somewhat neglected in normal muscle training. For this reason, yoga on the rocking board strengthens the body structure and improves the posture.
SUP Yoga Poses For Beginners
Before you get started on the board, here are three quick tips:
- Take it slow. Make the movements half as fast as you would on land.
- Find the center. No, we don’t necessarily mean your inner centering. That too, of course, but rather the center of your SUP board as well. If the board has a handle, it will indicate where the board is balanced. Perform the exercises as close to this position as possible.
- Use the horizon. If you have trouble finding balance, point your gaze to a fixed point, such as the horizon, for more stability.
Easy Seated Pose
Sit upright on your board facing forward. Your hands rest gently on your knees. As you breathe deeply into your belly, notice how the water rocks gently beneath you.
Start kneeling on all fours with your belly button centrally over the handle of the board. Widen your knees slightly and bring your big toes into contact. Now lower your hips to your heels and rest your forehead on the board. You can stretch your arms out in front of you or place them on the side of the board where they lightly touch the water.
On all fours, slowly raise your hips upward while extending your legs. Take a deep breath and look at the horizon behind you.
From the Downward-Facing Dog, transition into the Plank. Position your shoulders above your wrists. Try to create a straight line from the top of the head to the heels. Pull the lower abdomen in slightly. You can also do the position on your knees.
For the Cobra lie on the board in the prone position. The hands are vertically under the shoulders. Take a deep breath and lift your head, shoulders and chest.
After the cobra, take your right foot forward while supporting yourself on your hands. Look to the horizon for balance before placing your hands on your knee or thigh.
Once you feel stable, you can try an arm variation, such as stretching both arms toward the sky. Don’t forget to switch feet.
Start kneeling centrally on the board and then do a gentle backbend. While supporting yourself with one hand behind, raise your hips and swing the other arm over your head. Don’t forget to switch sides.
There is something very calming about this position on the water. Relax in the pose and listen to the lapping of the waves as they crash against your board.
Start on your back with your tailbone over the handle, knees bent and the soles of your feet on the board so that your fingertips can graze your heels. Keep the feet slightly wider than hip-width apart. Then raise your hips toward the sky and cross your arms underneath you to gain more height.
Don’t forget to finish! There is nothing better than relaxing while the sun warms your face and the water gently lulls you into a blissful state.