In this Daily: Paddle Board Yoga in Las Catalinas
Paddle board yoga is an activity that combines two sports that happen often into one.
Paddle boarding and yoga are both disciplines with ancient roots. Yoga started more than 5000 years ago in India, while paddle boarding has its roots in ancient hawaiian culture. However, the combination of these two practices is relatively young, happening some time after the worldwide paddle boarding boom in 2005.
The two sports are a natural fit. Paddle boarding has a strong overlap with surf culture, which values a sense of peace when on the waves. Yoga is a practice traditionally confined to the mat, which often emphasizes peace with the natural world. Replace mat for a large paddle board, and studio for the open water, and you have SUP Yoga.
When practicing SUP yoga, there are four elements to consider: location, time, equipment, and practice.
Conditions offshore of Las Catalinas are ideal for SUP Yoga for many reasons. Thanks to the shelter of the bay and the Islotes Pitahayas, the waters off of Playa Danta are sheltered from large swells, and tend to have steady, gentle wave action. Air temperatures throughout the year are warm, and weather is usually welcoming for a trip out onto the water, which is also warm for the whole year.
Another benefit of Playa Danta is the ease of access. Pura Vida Ride is just a short walk from anywhere in Las Catalinas, and has rentals available right on the beachfront. Setting out from home, it can be as little as minutes before you’re out on the water moving through your poses.
Each time of day in Las Catalinas brings a different experience. At dawn, the calm waves and soft light from behind the mountains foster a natural sense of peace. During the morning or the afternoon, the slightly sportier wave conditions make for a more active yoga experience. Finally, at sunset, the vibrant shades of the Guanacaste sky and the evening breeze provide a lively and colorful atmosphere.
Depending on your skill level and comfort on a board, there are a number of options from which SUP to choose. Larger, wider boards tend to be better for beginners, while a more slender and active board provides a bit more challenge and a closer connection to the movement of the waves.
To get a sense for each, on site outfitter Pura Vida Ride has a wide selection of paddle boards available for rent. If you find one that you like, they also have paddle boards available for sale.
Almost any form of mat-based practice can be done on a stand up paddle board, from a traditional yoga routine to other forms of stretches and even to physical fitness like some versions of HIIT. If you can remember the routine (or have a water proof phone), you can do it on the waves.
To get started in actual SUP yoga setting, here are two sets of poses by the Yoga Journal tailor made for the paddle board. The first is comprised of easier poses for beginners, while the second tackles some more creative and challenging SUP yoga poses.
To get started with paddle board yoga in town, you can reach out to the team at Pura Vida Ride, who can organize a rental, store your board while you’re in town, and even arrange for a SUP yoga lesson with an experienced instructor. Just let them know you’re looking for SUP Yoga, and they can have a properly sized board and a yoga class out in the bay both ready when you arrive.
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