There are many similarities between yoga and surfing. They both tap into a natural flow with you, your body and nature. Yoga gets you in touch with your breathing and your body, while surfing gets you in sync with the rhythm of the waves. In both disciplines you quickly learn that you cannot force a certain pose or force a wave to come.
You can use yoga in many different ways for optimizing your surfing performance. It is great for improving your strength, balance and flexibility and it is perfect to stretch your body out after a surf session, helping to avoid neck, shoulder and back stiffness.
Here are 10 benefits of yoga for surfers:
1 BETTER BALANCE
There are many different poses to improve your balance with yoga. The Tree pose or the Half moon pose f.e. will help strengthen our muscles and build your coordination and balance. It will also improve the way you stand, walk and surf.
2 STRENGTHENING BODY
Yoga is great for strengthening the body and mind. It is possible to build strength in your arms, core and legs and increase muscle tone and definition with yoga. Check out your local power yoga classes.
3 BREATHING TECHNIQUE
With yoga you will learn how to breathe properly through your nose. You can take this to your next surf session and practice in between sets. It will relax your mind & body and tighten your focus for the next wave.
4 STRONGER CORE
A strong core is a strong body and yoga is the perfect way to give you strong core muscles. When you neglect to work your core muscles, you will increase the risk of injury, most predominantly in the lower back.
5 INCREASED FLEXIBILITY
Yoga is one of the best ways to develop flexibility. Our sedentary lifestyle can have strong negative effects on our flexibility. Surfing requires much twisting and turning of your body and without regular stretching poor postural habits and incorrect movements start to appear. Maintain and improve the flexibility in your hips and you will feel the results immediately.
6 RELIEVING ACHE AND PAINS
Yoga can help with injuries, illness, insomnia, digestive issues and other stressful life events. It can relieve you from knee pain, back pain and more. Always talk to your doctor first before starting an exercise program.
7 MENTAL FOCUS
In modern life our ability to concentrate for a long time is not one of our strongest points. Yoga is a great way to improve your concentration, focus and avoid negative self-talk. Surfing includes a lot of waiting for that one special moment and you will want to be completely focused and concentrated when that beautiful set rolls in.
8 REVITALIZED ENERGY
A yoga session after your surf will make you feel peaceful, alleviate potential soreness and will make you feel balanced in body and mind. You will feel refreshed and revitalized.
9 IMPROVE ENDURANCE
Yoga can help improve your endurance because it can increase stamina on several different levels: physical, physiological, and mental, depending on your specific needs. For example, one of the keys to endurance is to better utilize your oxygen intake, which is great for surfers.
In yoga, relaxation refers to the loosening of bodily and mental tension. You can try different relaxation techniques after work or surf or use yoga for relaxation before you go to sleep. One of the simplest, but most difficult techniques is the corpse posture, dead pose. A highly effective exercise in mind over matter.
Featured image by Katchooo