SAN DIEGO, California - Dashama, a Starboard ambassador, is one of the leading voices in the SUP Yoga movement and we had a chance to catch up with her. Some of her credentials include: hosting Yoga and SUP Yoga retreats around the world; having her own SUP Yoga board made by Starboard; and being a contributor to several media outlets. To help others connect with this exciting new discipline and to help them grow through it, we’ve picked Dashama’s brain for some Standup Paddle Board Yoga Tips. Here is what she had to say about what mistakes to avoid in SUP Yoga.
1. Drifting Away in the Ocean
The ocean (in fact, almost any waterway) is a mighty force. Try to avoid going into the ocean if you’re not a very strong paddler. Now if the ocean is the most convenient venue for you, go early before the winds pickup and make sure to go out with an expert, strong paddler.
Even experienced paddlers sometimes find themselves far adrift, having to deal with elements such as winds and currents stronger than expected. Dashama herself recounted the experience of going out with her sister and suddenly finding that the two of them had drifted quite far away from the shoreline. Thankfully, for them, they are strong paddlers and were able to return ashore. So, again, avoid the ocean if you’re not a very strong paddler and, if you go, go with an expert, strong paddler that can assist you in case something doesn’t go according to plan.
2. Using a Small/Narrow Board
Stability is already compromised by being on a board. So, avoid undermining the stability all the more by having a small/narrow board. Here you want to go wide, thick, and stable as possible. But keep in mind that if you go “too” big, you might end up with a board that is tough to carry and has no other use beside SUP Yoga. And especially if you buy a board, you may want to have a SUP Yoga Board, but also one that you can use recreationally for touring, fishing and such.
3. Being Aprehensive About Falling in the Water
The water is your friend. Unlike the Yoga Studio, the water is soft and will embrace you on your fall. (Of course, make sure you know how to swim and that you’re wearing the appropriate layers. If the water or weather is cold, don’t wear too many layers for fear of falling in the water. Use that as a motivator to perfect your move.)
If you’re too aprehensive of falling in the water, you’ll likely not have as much fun as you should. Think of the water as a lively, much more dynamic and superior extension of your yoga mat. It will give you a soft fall and keep you motivated to get that SUP Yoga pose you want.
Have you made any of these mistakes? Tell us about it in the comments below.