As the founder of Betty Surf and Yoga, I am constantly being asked- What exactly is the connection between surfing and yoga? Something which seems so intrinsic to me, obviously calls for a little explanation, so here is a simple first lesson.
[B]The “paddle out” and baby cobra.[/B]
Lets begin with the cues for the yoga position:
- Chest is lifted, heart is raised
- Weight comes off the hands
- Shoulders drop away from the ears and slide down the back
- Engage the core
- Hips remain in contact with the floor or board in this case, pull your pelvis to the floor
- Legs are engaged as you lift off the mat
During the paddle out, engaging the core and following the cues listed relieves the pressure being placed on the shoulder joints and lower back, which may be absorbing the full weight and counter force associated with each stroke. Creating good form in the simple process of paddling out alleviates fatigue associated stress to joints, allows you to get more power from each stroke and avoids repetitive motion injury.
Remember how your gym coach used to say “lift with your knees…”? This is the same idea. Creating proper body alignment and fully engaging the entire body, being present mentally with what you are doing and remembering your cues, are the basics you re-learn every time you hit your yoga class.
How do you see the correlation between Surfing and Yoga? Are you a climber, kayaker or runner? Where does your yoga come into play?