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To me, yoga is an active meditation discipline that uses certain positions to deepen your connection with your body.
However, over the past 20 years, a wealth of yoga classes have emerged, making it more of an exercise routine than anything else. Well, you know me, I like to test everything in the fitness world, so here we go… I’m in stunning Bora Bora, there ain’t a better landscape than this one for a Paddle Yoga session with Elisabetta, a Spanish Yogi master who truly loves what she does.
PS: men love it too 🙂 if they fall, they can blame the water for moving the board!
How it works: you’ll need a surfboard or paddle board in a swimming pool, lake or lagoon, with some weights to stabilize the board and prevent it from drifting.
Practice yoga positions standing, sitting, or lying on the board: Sun Salutation, Stork, Downward Dog, Pigeon, etc. These positions are all that much more challenging due to the movement of the board on water, which forces you to work your abdominals and thighs more than usual.
It’s fun and so dynamic that you don’t notice the time passing – you’ll even go for longer than you’d have imagined!
Muscles at work: all of them! Even muscles you didn’t know existed.
Highlight: at the end, allow yourself completely let go and float on the water (as pictured) before getting back to real “life”.
Caution: be careful with your neck. Indeed, I strongly discourage trying headstand and bridge poses that you may have seen in other photos. In fact, unless you are a yoga pro, a slight misalignment, a small loss of balance and the fall can be very painful and even dangerous.
Since this activity is not all cardio, I suggest adding 1 hour of swimming before or after to take advantage of being in the water
Where can you do this routine? It is likely available close to your home because local pools are starting to offer it, and while on vacation, in a calm lake, river, a lagoon or cove. Calm is the key word for not having to fight too much against natural elements.
Last tip: If you’re trying out paddle yoga in the sun, remember to hydrate yourself before, and apply sunscreen with the highest possible SPF as the reflection from the water intensifies the UV rays.
So, ready for some paddle yoga? If you’ve tried it before, what are your thoughts? Let me know! And if you go to the beach this summer – or you discover that your local pool is offering this activity – make a dive for it!
Your LeBootCamp Coach