Some of you may know I have some loves, and one of my other loves is surfing. Yoga keeps me flexible and healthy, it soothes my spirit and focuses my attention. In short it makes me happier and more patient. Yoga is feet on a steady sticky mat, in the warmth where movements are free but controlled. Surfing is different, everything is moving, its bitterly cold in scotland and you have to be very spontaneous.
Waves come, waves go, breath comes in, breath goes out. Some waves and breaths are deep some are short. Emotions feel settled and get rangy. For me there is a place they meet: alert attention, body awareness, feeling joy and being challenged. Awareness of the feet and the movement of the hips is as important in surfing as yoga. Finding your edge whilst keeping your body safe.
Surfing takes me out of my comfort zone and back to being a beginner, it also takes into the freezing cold grey sea! This October was the first time Id surfed in Scotland as Im not keen on getting cold, however with the help of a nice 5mm wetsuit and socks it really was excellent.
When Im standing in the water and a big wave comes and I don’t know whether to duck and escape or meet it I use my yoga. I feel my body’s reaction to the wave whether its tension or tummy excitement and I hear the chatter of my mind or the stillness. My yoga practice has helped me develop a philosophy of waiting, being patient, then seizing the moment. It has helped me enjoy the moment and kept my trying new things.
Yoga is a helpful tool in mastering a new sport or refining your skills. The even steady way of working means you will get an all round body workout whilst some sports are high impact on a few joints and muscles. Yoga will train your breathing so that you can breathe more freely under challenging circumstances. How could yoga help you develop further? Or surfing? What do you fancy, but don’t try because its too this or too that? What would get you just on the edge of your comfort zone just now? What could bring you to feeling your body in a new way? What could make you feel thoroughly alive?