Kim and Chris were the instructors this particular Friday, teaching in tandem. I introduced myself to them both, filled out and signed a waiver and then paid the $5 fee for the class. Typically the cost of the class is $10, which includes a board rental, however if you bring your own board its only a $5! Super affordable either way.
Its a good idea to come dressed and prepared to get wet, just in case you lose your balance and fall in. A bathing suit is definitely a smart choice. Or at least wear clothing that you don't mind getting wet.
The class started with all of us getting onto our boards and gently floating out just beyond the dock. Kim led us through a brief heart centered meditation and then led us through some simple poses such as child's pose, warming our bodies up, working slowly toward the more challenging poses.
During the class boards drifted a bit out of the group, or ended up in the docks, but we all just gently paddled back out to a more open space. We were literally going with the flow and letting the water guide the practice. When boards bumped each other we just gently created space between them or let them rest upon the other joining each other's practice briefly, literally feeling the vibrations of the other paddlers energy through the contact of the boards. One moment you were practicing next to someone and the next moment they were gone and someone else was in there place. I loved the fluidity of it, so different than the structure of a studio class.
I also loved how Kim would teach a portion of the class and then her male counterpart Chris began to speak and guide us through a practice all his own, with his own unique words and imagery. I love experiencing different instructors and their varied techniques and language, its always such a treat to see their unique spin. I truly enjoyed the instruction provided by both Kim and Chris, similar in concept yet different in delivery.
I was also so inspired by all the amazing hearts that were practicing in unison, sending love and light and positivity out into the world, all at the same time, while hovering angelically above the water. People were not timid or standoffish, as can sometimes be the case in a studio setting, but instead were introducing themselves and chatting it up. Being outside makes everyone nicer and more relaxed, even already kind, sweet yogis get that extra love boost from mother nature and just want to spread it even further.
You leave your ego on the dock for this class. You need to focus on your breath and balance so you stay up on your board, which really clears and focused your mind. And if you lose your balance and fall in, so what, its bound to happen to all of us from time to time and is a good reminder for life...you fall off, you get back on. What I noticed and loved about those that did fall off is that they laughed! They could laugh at themselves, there was no need to be embarrassed, and it probably felt great to get a refreshing dip after practicing in the hot sun!
After the peak of the class was reached, with the standing balance poses, we came back to a few relaxing asanas and ended the class with another standing, balanced meditation led by Kim. We all balanced on our boards in unison, letting the warmth of the sun spread across our smiling, sweat speckled faces. It was a perfect end to a fantastically fun & challenging class.
After the formal class ended folks stuck around for a bit and were playing around on the boards working on postures of their choosing, falling in, getting back up, doing it again. It was great to see people enjoying themselves on the water.
If you've never tried a SUP Yoga class I encourage you to do so. Surrender to the experience and you are bound to enjoy yourself, meet some great people and get a little exercise and some mental clarity in the process.*
Channel 5 news was also there this day. If would like to see the newscast check out Kim's interview here!
You can also contact Blue Line Paddle Surf for a schedule of YOW classes and updates on other SUP clinics.