12 Jul 2016
The Surf and Yoga Connection
Mindfulness, and a little bit of magic.
All these elements combine to create the blissful experience found in both surfing and yoga, two practices which not only serve as a form of physical exercise but as a way of life.
Both serve as a way to clear our minds, to keep us present, to escape the constant chitter chatter of our everyday, and often too busy lives.
Surfers and yogis alike are bonded in their desire to learn to let go, or better yet to let be. To appreciate the given circumstance without expectation, and to understand waves come and go, just like our ever-changing thoughts and emotions.
And it’s these many commonalities, which has inspired surfers all over the world to become committed yogis.
In essence, surfing has almost too many parallels with yoga to count, but here are a few of our favourites we experience on our retreats.
It teaches us patience, forces us to surrender to things (like that wave that came from nowhere) out of our control, it allows us to feel a sense of connection and stills our minds because we are simply embracing the present moment in all its entirety.
When we surf we listen to the ocean, like we listen to our breath during a challenging pose. We learn self-humility and persistence when we continue to fall, whether from the crest of a wave, or after a split-second in Crow.
But beyond the mind-calming benefits, combining surfing and yoga will improve your surfing ability immeasurably.It will help you pop-up quicker, respond better to unnerving situations, and recover faster.
Broken down into its components, parallels can be drawn between the physical act of standing up on a wave and a handful of yoga postures.
Chaturanga Dandasana – Plank pose
Urdha Mukha Svanansana – Upward facing dog
Anjane Asana – Low Lunge
Virabradasana II – Warrior 2
Many yoga classes will include these postures in a flowing sequence known as a Sun Salutation, or a Vinyasa Flow (breath coupled with continuous movement).
And what do you recognize in both surfers and seasoned yogis? Strong cores, legs and shoulders, coupled with full mobility and great range of motion.
Many of the best female and male surfers in the world swear by a solid yoga practice as a foundation of their lifestyle and training.
But don’t take my word for it, try coupling a yoga-based warm up, or incorporating a daily yoga practice to compliment your surfing and let the results speak for themselves.
With Love, Light & Seashells,
Your Surf Goddess Mel