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Studio / juli 2017
Danielle Rines, Global Newsroom

5 Beginner Moves for Paddleboard Yogis

Yoga is a calming and peaceful workout, it can be done in a studio or on the beach. But have you ever tried it on the water?

It’s all of the difficulty of a yoga class kicked into high gear by balancing on a board in the middle of the ocean.

We wanted to learn more about what it takes to kick ass in your first paddleboard yoga class, so we spoke to Yoga Aqua instructor Sarah Tiefenthaler to learn the ropes before we dove in. 

“This whole concept originated with the desire to spend more time outdoors,” says Tiefenthaler. “Secondly, if you fall, it feels wonderful! And last but not least, it’s so fun!”

You’ve worked all summer keeping those arms, core and legs toned. Tiefenthaler says doing yoga on the water adds an extra challenge to help keep your muscles working hard.  

Having to focus on balancing on the board adds an extra level of difficulty that allows you to get the most out of the workout.

“The instability of a floating surface has you engaging more muscles than you would practicing the poses on land,” she says.

“On land, these poses are strengthening as it is, but if you add just water, the benefits of the yoga practice only intensify and provide quicker results.”

And that’s not the only thing that sets paddleboard yoga apart from other types of yoga and workout classes.

“We begin each session with an active paddle out on the water—not too many studio classes kick off with a cardio workout,” says Tiefenthaler.  

“Whether you are paddling or flowing through your asanas, you are pulling from your core the entire time to keep your balance.”

While prepping for your first class on the water, Tiefenthaler says there are a few things to keep in mind. 

“Whether you fall in or not, you will get damp so choose lightweight, quick-dry yoga clothes for class,” she says.

“You will probably be hungry so bring a snack and some water. Don’t forget the sunscreen!” 

Below Tiefenthaler breaks down how to master her five go-to beginner poses, so you can paddle away looking like a pro.

1. Warrior 2

In your first class, you will want to take a slightly wider stance than usual. Avoid heel-to-arch alignment to spread your weight out a little more along the board to keep your balance.

2. Warrior 1

Same rule as Warrior 2 apply here. An additional tip is to keep your gaze focused on something still, whether that is a building or the front of your board, keep your eyes locked there with your breath relaxed.

3. Balancing Cat

For this pose you want your wrist positioned just below your shoulder and your knee below the hip. Keep your eyes looking down to avoid straining your neck. Keep your breath relaxed and your core engaged. 

4. Chair Pose

Position both feet outside the handle, hip distance on your first class and little closer together each class after. 

5. Kneeling Crescent Pose

Keeping the knee down will ease you into this pose. The full expression of crescent pose (with the knee lifted) is quite challenging on a paddleboard, so begin this way to find your balance.

Did you take Tiefenthaler’s advice during your first paddleboard yoga class? Tweet @ReebokWomen and show us!

Studio / juli 2017
Danielle Rines, Global Newsroom
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