Best Stand Up Paddle Board (SUP) Yoga Poses for the Beginners

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SUP yoga poses are taught during the SUP yoga teacher training. But, it is not a cakewalk for the beginners. Balancing on water is a very hard nut to crack.

Here, we have got the best SUP yoga poses that are easy to excel. Take a look at the best stand up paddle board (SUP) yoga poses for the beginners.

1.  Child’s Pose (Balasana)

It is one of the easiest poses. Lower the hip to the heels, keep the knees apart and lower the torso towards the board. It is a relaxing pose. Perform it in the middle of difficult poses for a pause.

2.  Chair Pose (Utkatasana)

The chair pose on stand up paddle board is very difficult to achieve. On land, the pose is performed by pressing the back against the wall to get support. Keep your hip raised in the beginning and with regular practice, you will be able to get the chair pose deeper. You can further deepen the pose with increased endurance and strength.

3.  Downward-Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)

It is an easy pose for the beginner. Begin in the table pose. Move the knees away from the board and push the heels on the floor. You will feel a stretch in the claves and hamstrings.

4.  Plank (Adho Mukha Dandasana)

It helps to tone the abs. It also strengthens the arms. Once you hone the skill of simple plank on the SUP yoga board, you can graduate to side plank.

5.  Lunges

There are several types of lunges to do on the stand up paddle board like low lunge, high lunge as well as crescent lunge. On the SUP yoga board, it becomes a challenge to make proper pose.

6.  Boat Pose (Paripurna Navasana)

Keeping the head and feet raised is not an easy task. It requires balance as well as core strength and hence, it is very difficult for the beginners especially on the stand up paddle board.

7.  Camel Pose (Ustrasana)

Arching backwards evenly sans offering any pressure on a leg than the other is very difficult. The pose is considered one of the trickiest during the SUP yoga teacher training. It is a true challenge to balance, control and align on the board.

8. Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana)

Cobra pose is also called as the upward-facing dog. Lay flat on the front of the SUP board. Keep the hands pressed between the shoulders and the board. Press the palms in the board, raise the head, chest and shoulder up. Keep the legs flat.

9.  Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)

It is simple, but on an inflatable SUP board, you will get a softer surface to press the neck and shoulders. It is very relaxing pose.

10.  Corpse Pose (Savasana)

The most relaxing pose is actually the corpse pose. Lie flat on the back, stare the blue sky and relax. The pose helps you to unwind and relax.

11. Warrior II (Virabhadrasana II)

It is one of the most difficult poses as it involves wide stance and twisting. Balancing on the board is a big challenge. Keep your foot firm and control the hip movements to attain finesse.

 

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Fundamentals of SUP Yoga

from the JP team on the  board in Maui, Hawaii (USA). Photo: thorstenindra.com

Doing yoga on a Stand up Paddle Board or SUP is the freshest concept and the same is gaining a lot of popularity these days. Likewise, SUP Yoga teacher training too is gaining a lot of popularity. Let us see what exactly this concept is all about and understand its fundamentals.

What is SUP Yoga?

You are merely required to grab your favorite SUP and to head out to a flat water body in order to try some of the most amazing yoga poses on the board that you have carried. The practice mostly commonly carried out is Vinyasa which refers to nothing but a series of flows which are designed to increase the endurance, strength and flexibility of all your muscles.

Why is SUP Yoga different from a land-based Yoga?

The difference in between SUP and land based Yoga is the amount of extra balance that you require on the water. While putting an extra effort in balancing, the micro muscles of your body get engaged in supporting the big muscles. Thus, when you are out on the water, these micro muscles become active. The entire workout becomes very impressive.

At the same time, SUP Yoga requires a little more focus than the regular yoga in order to keep the act of the balance constant. The focus so made helps to clear your mind by the way of forcing you to become present with the task that you have in your hand.

Basic SUV Yoga poses:

Following are considered to be the basic SUV Yoga poses under which you can also start your SUP Yoga teacher training in:

Downward facing dog:

You can stretch your spin perfectly by the way of this pose. It also helps to stretch your shoulders and legs. You are merely required to take a table position and lift your hips. Now, send your tailbone back to the sky. Melt down your shoulders and align them with your head. This pose is also very good for your core.

One-legged king pigeon:

Start with a table position and try to bring one leg forward such that you rest your knee in between your hands. Extend the other leg back and take the position of a seat. Now, push your chest forward. This pose is all set to stretch your muscles.

Chair pose:

This pose tests you on balance. You are required to start from a standing position. Come back as if you are taking a seat. Raise your arms above parallel to the elbow and in line with your head. Take a small twist and form a prayer position by the way of turning right to left.

Tree pose:

This pose is all about balancing on one leg. You are required to bring your foot to your knee, shin or thigh. Keep your hands in a prayer position. Now, try to balance out by the way of gazing up in between your hands. This pose could be a little difficult to try for the first time, however if you succeed you will have fun in the other chances.

SUP Yoga is like a bout of fresh air in the yoga practice and a number of people are keen on learning the same. Excited much? Learn it today!

 

5 Prep Poses to Feel Strong and Stable on a SUP

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Standup paddle boarding (SUP) is a fantastic full body workout which integrates all the important muscle groups. However, before you begin with it, you can improve your balance, strength and flexibility by learning a few yoga poses. The following are the 5 poses which you can use, as a warm-up to the SUP to feel efficient, powerful and confident.

1)   Side Plank Pose: This pose helps develop the strength and stability in the whole body. To begin with, start with the plank pose keeping the feet together. Rotate to the right foot’s outer edge while shifting the weight onto the right arm. Then, place the left hand on the left hip and focus on lifting this left hip. When steady and stable, the left arm needs to be raised into the sky and one should gaze at the left thumb. This process needs to be repeated on the other side. To simplify this challenge, the right knee & the shin can be rested on the mat. To get released from the pose, one needs to return the gaze to the ground, and release the left hand while bringing it back to the plank pose.

2)   Dolphin Pose: For proper paddling, integration of glutes, abdominals, thighs, arms, shoulders and arms is required. With dolphin, one can build great strength in the upper back and the shoulders, while working in parallel on the lower legs. To begin with, lower the forearms on the floor, and keep the elbows underneath the shoulders while extending the fingertips. Tuck the toes, lift the knees and press the pelvis in the upward direction. While the knees stay bent, one needs to broaden the blades of the shoulder and then straighten the legs. The neck should be kept long for 5-10 breaths. To get released from the pose, knees need to be brought together to the ground and then be rested in the child’s pose

3)   Warrior III Pose: This pose improves the balance and stability and integrates the muscles in the legs, arms and core. To begin with this, one needs to start with the mountain pose. Firstly, both the arms need to be stretched to the sky. Then the right leg should be lifted, such that the thigh goes parallel to the earth. The biceps while being kept in-line with the ears, forward leaning should be done and the right leg needs to be stretched in the opposite direction. One needs to hold on for 5-10 breaths in this pose and then release and attempt it on the other side.

4)   Eagle Pose: This pose stretches the upper back and the shoulders and strengthens the ankles, hips, thighs and calves. In order to begin with this pose, one needs to start with the mountain pose. Then while bending the knee, the right leg needs to cross the left one. The right toes can either lightly rest on the ground or can rest on the left calf. Later, the arms need to be expanded and the right bicep needs to cross the left, from beneath. One needs to bend the elbows and wrap the forearms in such a way that the right palm goes behind the left forearm, while the left and the right palms touch each other. The elbows need to be lifted till the shoulder height and the fingertips should point the sky. One needs to hold on to this position for 5-10 breaths and later repeat the same on the other side.

5)   Cow Face Pose: This pose helps the body with the stretching of shoulders, hips, thighs, ankles, triceps, armpits and chest. To begin with, one needs to make the staff pose, with the legs extended in front while being seated. Then, both the knees need to be bent and the sole of the foot be placed on the floor. The left foot needs to come from underneath the right knee and it needs to slide to the outer side of the right hip. The right knee should be stacked on the left one while bringing the right foot towards the outer side of the left hip. The weight needs to be adjusted for even distribution. Later on, one needs to stretch the left arm into the sky and bend it at the elbow. The right arms needs to be extended from the side with a bent elbow such that the right and the left palms hold each other. One needs to hold on to this position for 5-10 minutes and then switch the sides.

In order to learn these techniques properly, one can take help of a teacher who would have undergone the SUP Yoga Teacher Training. Due to the SUP Yoga Teacher Training, the teacher can understand the different difficulties of different people and can guide accordingly.

 

Getting started with SUP Yoga!

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Even though it sounds like an odd combo but Stand Up Paddle Boards and Yoga are a perfect match! SUP Yoga Teacher Training is one of the hottest(!) fitness trends this decade, even more so when paddle boards are used for yoga!

Anytime you are on the water, a sense of relaxation and tranquility surrounds you. That sense of calmness comes from the gently lapping waves and the fact that you are surrounded by nature’s calming elements.

SUP Yoga brings a wide variety of benefits to the body and mind that include increased stability, mental focus, strength and a sense of calm. It’s high time you tried it out to see if it suits you. Setting aside its relaxing nature, here are a few other benefits to SUP Yoga.

For starters it is best to try out a paddle board first. You won’t get to be an SUP Yogi till you get the feel of actually being onboard! Simply rent an all-purpose paddle board to try out. Start out on a relatively calm day – wavy conditions usually lead to a visit into the drink for first timers! Once you feel ready, you can go out, buy a board or join SUP Yoga Teacher Training to perfect your skill with an experienced teacher.

As you might well imagine, performing yoga on water is completely different from doing so on the ground. A simple Savasana can turn a totally different experience when you perform SUP Yoga. In order to get a proper grasp on the benefits, start with the following yoga poses:

Savasana

Probably the easiest pose to perform in Yoga, more so when you do it on your board. Simply lie down on your back in a spread eagled position and let your hands hang off the board and above water. Close your eyes and let the sunshine drench you while allowing your fingers to gently trail on the water is as relaxing and calming as anything can get!

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Child’s Pose

A pose with many benefits including your digestive system, that which relaxes your muscles by stretching your lower back while opening up your hips. Exhale as you kneel down in the middle of the board, lay your torso between your thighs and rest your forehead on the floor. Next, rest your palms and forearms on the board while deeply inhaling and release.

Downward Facing Dog

One of the more well known of yoga poses, the Downward Dog can be much more challenging on a board. Get onto the board on your hands and knees, with your knees below your hips and your hands just above your shoulders. Draw your thighs back with your knees straightened, lift your hips above engaging your quadriceps.

SUP Yoga works your body, developing the muscles that help aid stability. SUP Yoga Teacher Training keeps pace with you. Your comfort on the paddle board determines the comfort of the poses you attempt. The balance that you practice on your paddle board will translate into your yoga postures allowing you to benefit even more! You get more mindful of the poses and if you rush through, you may well end up in the drink! That’s an extra bonus if it is a hot day.

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What You Need To Know About SUP Yoga

Yoga Lessons can be very rewarding once you find your rhythm, and the ease just starts to flow into you with every new asana. However, the calm and quiet is more enhanced after the adrenaline rush you get from succeeding at the most difficult of postures. As the universal community of Yoga Enthusiasts would have it, new, more challenging forms thus, keep developing.

SUP Yoga teacher Training

SUP YOGA!

Stand-Up Paddleboard Yoga is effectively just another form of yoga, but with the challenge of having to do it on a paddleboard in the water. It’s quite obvious that new learners tend to find this form unimaginable but truly it will start to make more sense once you’ve found your balance, and that is one of the key exercises of doing Yoga even on land!

So, before you begin to write off SUP Yoga with predispositions lets chart out the uncharted territory for you. A week or two in the hot summer months will surely get you hooked on more so, it will continue to be enjoyable at just about any time of the year. So, before trying out SUP Yoga, here are some necessities you should know about.

  • Leave your Fears Behind:

SUP Yoga needn’t always be a constant challenge that the rushing waters on a sea-beach shall provide. Classes are said to be just as enjoyable in lakes, ponds or even your backyard swimming pool.

  • Don’t just Leave it to the Experts:

Like for most ‘Yoga-first-timers’, SUP Yoga also needs expert guidance. But placing your faith in the right expert will require some background research. Make sure your instructor is a certified one, with adequate training in life-saving techniques and First-Aid. Also, they must have a lifeguard or equivalent training.

  • Do your part, be safe:

If you aren’t a swimmer, it is strongly advisable to inform the same to your trainer, however shallow the water-body you practise in. Not knowing how to swim needn’t mean you can’t do SUP Yoga at all, it will just be a little more challenging to do it in a life-jacket.

  • No need to get wet if you do it right:

Even though special paddleboards(e.g. Boga Yoga Boards) are designed to comfortable dimensions like 11 feet in length and 30 inches in width, which are obviously more than your average Yoga Mat, you may not believe in the possibility of coming out dry from such a session. To alleviate your discomfort the Yoga boards are made of much greater thickness than surfboards and the likelihood of water collecting on top of it is greatly reduced. The thickness also allows its design to be comfortably cushioned like your mats.

  • Dressing and grooming yourself for SUP Yoga:

It is advisable to wear synthetic clothing or swimsuits to avoid the unfortunate and an adequate application of non-oil-based sunscreen to make it less slippery.

And Lastly, along with an adequate supply of water to keep you hydrated on a sunny day don’t forget to bring along your enthusiasm and some good sense of humour. Often, the first person to fall into the water breaks the ice for the entire class, making the session much less worrisome. So, don’t fall back, join the SUP Yoga revolution and enjoy the benefits of the soothing water with those of Yoga.

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