Dozens of sea lions bark like dogs while jockeying for position on a dock. Boats gently bob in salty water as waves slap against a wall of boulders at the shore. In this natural setting, Rose Cutrer is floating on a 101/2-foot board, with eyes closed as she meditates.
“I like to get out and commune with nature,” says the San Luis Obispo resident. “To do yoga — which is already such a deeply personal, spiritual journey — and to take that out to nature really creates that connection with the water and the air and sunshine around you. It just takes it to another level.”
Cutrer is part of a popular trend, stand-up paddleboard yoga — or SUP yoga, as it’s often called. This form offers challenges you won’t find in a studio, and those who do it say it’s rewarding both physically and emotionally.
“I’d done Bikram, which is the hot yoga, so it was really, really sticky and sweaty,” says Lee Egan, who finds SUP yoga more refreshing. “Just the idea of being out there, as opposed to a yoga studio, was phenomenal. Sea lions and harbor seals around us — it was really cool.”
Stand-up paddleboarding involves balancing on an oversize surfboard, while using a paddle to navigate. Though the roots of this activity can be traced to Polynesia, it was re-popularized about a decade ago by Hawaiian big wave surfers who wanted to keep on training when the swell was down.
The sport has grown rapidly. People in landlocked places now practice it on lakes and rivers. And over the past five years, it has been taken in a new direction by the yoga community. Continue reading >> timesherald.com