I have always wanted to try paddleboard yoga….doing a warrior position while floating on the water has always sounded so tranquil to me. I have seen gorgeous images of it online and on surf shop walls, I just knew that this was going to be my new hobby. Just me, the water, and my board…. Now my paddleboard experience is limited to an hour here and there over the last three years. I do not own a board (even though I have thought about buying one often), the few times I have gone out were once where I thought I was going to have to rescue my 12 year old and her friend, and another time with my husband where he carried my board and we floated in about 2 feet of water…
So now we are in South Carolina and surrounded by gorgeous waterways so I just knew the timing was right to give paddleboard yoga a try, I signed up with our local rec department for a 7:15 am class. I barely get out of bed on day one with enough time to find a bathing suit and then some “waterproof” clothes to go over the bathing suit. After a bit of navigating on an island that is new to me I discovered a little boat ramp on a little waterway (still not sure if this is categorized as a river or creek). As I am walking up I notice a sign that says “beware of alligators”
Am I freaked? No, I am a brave warrior chick who is going to master yoga on a paddleboard…..yea right, I am scared crapless! So then the instructor shows up, he is this nice and super kind man with a runner’s body. I notice one thing about him though and its that he is missing half of one of his arms. So now I have myself totally psyched out about how his injury may have occurred, and of course the first thing that goes to my head is one of those ‘gators was sighted….
So I contemplate, do I take off running the other direction? Do I fake an injury to save face? Or do I get over my fear and go for it?
Yep, I went with the latter of the three and decided to go for it….so on the paddleboard I go (with a bit of a help from the nice instructor), after running into the side of the creek/river bank I get my bearings and start paddling. I overshoot the buoy where we are suppose to tie up to so I have to backtrack a bit. Finally I am tied up with my fellow yogis (who are all doing a very zen like job of not laughing at the new girl) and I am ready to take yoga on this floating board.
I have finally gotten my head in a better place and imagining that I look like one of the girls on the ads and I just know by the end of class they are going to ask me to be the new cover girl for their fall paddleboard yoga ad. So the instructor leads us into a very simple series starting with sitting on our boards and stretching, then we move into some light sitting twists…yea, I have got this. And then a few more “detoxifying twists”. Now I am trying really hard to stay in my zen, but then I start to wonder what I do if the “detoxification” kicks in while I am in the middle of this waterway surrounded my possible alligators. What if I have to pee? Do I pretend to fall off my board while we are in these simple sitting poses? Or worse, what if I have to poop? We have all been there before, exercises can be detoxifying, it makes things come out. It is not like I am in a yoga studio where I can quietly dismiss myself, I am in the middle of the water and it will take me at least 15 minutes to paddle ashore.
So I try and stick my bathroom alligator fears aside and I survive plank, downward dog, and side plank all without becoming ‘gator bait.
My dilemma now is do I go back next week?
I am sure I will be up to more antics soon, sign up for my newsletter to hear all about them.