6 Physical & Mental Health Benefits Of Paddle Board Yoga
Posted by Alex Clasper
Paddle board yoga (AKA practising yoga on a stand up paddle board in the water) has become increasingly popular in recent years. When you look at the many physical and mental health benefits of paddle board yoga, it’s easy to see why. Translating your yoga sessions onto a paddle board requires a greater amount of strength, balance and focus, making the rewards a whole lot more fulfilling. These are just a few of the main benefits of paddle board yoga for both your physical and mental health:
A key aspect of any type of yoga is improving and maintaining good balance. Balance is also an essential aspect of stand up paddle boarding. So you probably won’t be surprised to hear that paddle board yoga requires a huge amount of balance to keep yourself centred on the board, without toppling over into the water! If you practise paddle board yoga regularly, you’ll quickly see a vast improvement in your ability to balance well.
Paddle board yoga combines the relaxation of regular yoga with the calming effect that comes with floating on water. Paddle boarding on its own can provide a calming sense of tranquillity, and so combining this with yogic techniques is a great way to de-stress and feel more centred once again. The added benefit of being out in nature also adds to the calming effect of paddle board yoga, that you won’t get with practising yoga in a gym.
Improves Core Strength
Stand up paddle boarding requires a great amount of core strength as do yogic techniques. This means that practising yoga exercises on an inflatable paddle board will provide you with an incredible core workout. You’ll need to engage your core to stay balanced and afloat, but also to complete the yogic exercises to their full potential. Most SUP yoga exercises require core strength, however plank poses and side-plank poses are particularly effective at targeting your core.
Lots of people practice yoga to help improve their flexibility and doing paddle board yoga is the best way to enhance this. Whilst regular yoga sessions improve mobility and flexibility, paddle board yoga activates different muscle groups, providing you with a wider range of motion that works more areas of your body. This makes paddle board yoga a lot more effective at improving your overall body strength and flexibility than practising yoga on land.
The strengthening and lengthening movements combined with the focus on breathing that is required for paddle board yoga has a big impact on improving your body’s circulation. This is an important benefit of SUP yoga for your physical health, however the breathing techniques that are practised are also important for relieving stress. This demonstrates how the mental and physical benefits of paddle board yoga often overlap.
Provides A Sense Of Empowerment
There’s no reward without challenge, and paddle board yoga can certainly be described as a challenge! Balancing on a floating SUP whilst doing yoga poses is a physical and mental challenge requiring strength, balance, determination and patience. Once you begin to master paddle board yoga, you’ll feel a real sense of accomplishment that fuels you to carry on perfecting your yoga skills until you become a real pro.
Fancy giving it a go? Make sure to check out our beginner’s guide to SUP yoga for essential tips on how to get started and the equipment that you need.