Many have taken a vinyasa flow class in a heated room or even practiced yoga outdoors at Barton Springs, but most yogis and yoginis have not had the opportunity to practice on Lady Bird Lake until recently. Needless to say, raising your hips in downward dog is vastly different while balancing on water. You may be asking yourself, “How is this even possible?” Well, by now, I’m sure you have seen the stand up paddle boards in action near the Congress Bridge. Stand up paddle is a form of surfing where you are equipped with an oar for movement. Paddle board yoga is a relatively new phenomenon that combines surfing and yoga on the water. Balance comes from a) the wide paddle board (most are 12 feet in length); and b) from your core muscles. Equally important is the much acclaimed concept of mindful awareness. Consequently, practicing yoga while balancing on water teaches you what yoga is truly about but on a higher degree. The ability to stay in the moment is being tested with every pose. Your dristhi, or focal point, is constantly moving as you float down the river, reminding you to stay centered. This form of yoga encourages you to slow down, and illustrates the importance of the breath while moving through the sequence.
What makes paddle board yoga unique is how the ambiance of nature coupled with a heightened connection to the present washes away any unwanted thoughts of the day and leaves you feeling refreshed. Your body and mind become one as a feeling of calm sets in. This form of practice is highly beneficial after a long day. Watching the sunset over the water while enjoying the sense of peace and tranquility yoga brings is a great addition to your practice.
Updated link: Yoga paddle boarding becomes new craze