Since the migration of yoga to the US in the twentieth century and the physical practice of yoga, many hybrid types of yoga classes have evolved such as SUP (Stand Up Paddleboard) Yoga. I wonder what the ancient rishis would have thought about performing asanas on a board. In the water? I think that they would have been amused and excited by the prospect of practicing yoga’s essential (physical) principles on a new platform.
I started practicing SUP Yoga about seven years ago. I started playing with different poses on my board, curious to see what I could do and what I could not do. I didn’t know SUP Yoga was a thing until I told a gentleman from Hawaii about it, and he said, “oh yeah, SUP Yoga.” I was surprised to learn it had a name! I was not surprised that it was being done in Hawaii, since stand-up paddling boarding dates back to the 18th century when native Hawaiians paddled along the Pacific from island to island.
On the other hand, SUP Yoga originated in 2009.
One of the things I discovered was that there were a lot of poses that you can do-especially in a flow, which is what I love. You can work on downdog to high plank to low plank into cobra or updog. The classic chaturanga is easy enough. However, poses like warrior II and triangle are extremely challenging!
The beauty of SUP Yoga is that it takes building strength, creating flexibility, and practicing balance to a new level. It is the extra balance challenge that really helps strengthen your core and focus your mind. Because you are moving through a constant state of finding equilibrium, it forces you to focus and to be completely present in the moment, otherwise…SPLASH! You are in the water! On a hot summer day falling into the cool water is a blessing and so fun!
Practicing SUP Yoga gives you the unique opportunity to experience the delicate forces of balance and how to navigate them instinctively. It also empowers you by feeling the power of balance in your whole being. We are always talking about finding more balance in our lives, with SUP Yoga you can experience it, and as we know, everything on the mat translates off the mat into our everyday lives.
We offer a couple of SUP Yoga classes every summer. It is the highlight of our summer season. It keeps us strong, balanced and inspired. If you have an opportunity to try this wonderful yoga hybrid, we highly recommend it! And I think the rishis would approve. 😉