A lot of people are genuinely surprised that yoga and surfing go well together. They’re two different things and you wouldn’t even think of using them in the same sentence before. If you’re a surfer, did you know that you can benefit from yoga? As a yogi, did you know that surfing can complement your practice?
Surfing is an extreme sport. Yoga is a practice that aims to improve one’s spiritual awareness towards moksha or liberation. Apple, meet orange?
The Goals are More Common than You Think
Different surfers have different goals. But generally speaking, surfers surf to relax and at the same time, challenge their body towards a healthier body. Think about that for a moment. Yogis generally have the same goals, right?
Did you know that there are destinations that offer surf and yoga retreats? Yes, that’s totally a thing, and it’s becoming more and more popular. This just shows how more and more people are recognizing how they complement each other.
How they Complement Each Other
With these goals in mind, it’s now easier to see how they complement each other. Yoga helps you create and take care of a healthy body which is what you need to conquer the powerful waves offered by Mother Nature.
On the other hand, surfing can help you with your overall body strength including your legs and core. Ever notice how a lot of yoga poses require core and leg strength?
Specific Reasons for Surfers to Take Up Yoga
In addition to what’s stated above, here are more specific reasons why surfers should take up yoga:
- There are specific yoga poses that can help strengthen specific muscles.
As a surfer, you can benefit from having strong core and hips. You wouldn’t say no to a thick lower back as well. With this in mind, you can benefit from specific yoga poses like the Squat and Eagle poses. Complement them with the Locust and Boat poses and you’re on your way to strengthening the muscles that matter out there in the surf. At the very least, you can do them for stretching purposes.
- Yoga can help you clear your mind.
Every split second matters out there in the water. Get distracted even for just a split second and you’ll wipe out. This is why you need to have a clear mind.
Yoga can help you do just that. It can help you relax and clear your mind so when you’re out there in the water when it’s just you and the waves, you can take full command of your mind.
- You can improve your discipline.
Let’s face it. A lot of surfers are in the happy-go-lucky category. Sure, this is okay if you’re just a casual surfer, but you need to have an insane amount of discipline if you want to go to the next level.
Yogis are known to be very disciplined. With the discipline that you’ll develop doing yoga, you’ll be more disciplined in taking care of your body which translates to better performance on the surfboard.
How Yogis can Benefit from Surfing
It goes both ways. Yogis can also benefit from surfing. Here are the specific benefits:
- Surfing can be an extension of your yoga practice.
You need focus when surfing which is also what you need when doing yoga. Simply put while you’re out there surfing, you’re developing your focus.
- Develop core strength.
As mentioned, yogis can benefit from improved core strength. When you’re out there on your surfboard, you need an insane amount of core strength just to stay upright.
Surfing can also help you with your overall strength. The act of pushing yourself from a face down to a standing position requires arm strength and maneuvering the board requires leg and hip strength. This translates well to the yoga mat.
- You can improve your balance.
Needless to say, you need balance to conquer waves in the same manner that you need balance to perfect the Lord of the Dance pose and eventually, do a handstand.
If you’re already surfing or doing yoga, there’s no reason for you not to try the other one. Try yoga when the surf is flat. Go with your surfer friends when there’s no yoga scheduled. You’ll be pleasantly surprised that you did.
Author Bio: Jay Recinto is the Media Content Manager for Warm Winds – a staple surf shop in Narragansett. Jay believes in trying something new every now and then, for he believes that one of the best joys in life is finding something new to love.