If you want to get a few double-takes at the gym, five breaths of eagle pose balanced on a wobbly inverted bosu ball does the trick. The other day a lady asked me how many years of yoga I took before I could do that. "Oh, a few." I answered, not wanting to interupt my workout with a big explanation. The truth was two. But not two years. Two is the number of yoga classes I've taken in my entire life. That's right, just two. So then, how do you explain pretzel-man up there?
Well, it happened like this... I started working out in the gym in November once the weather turned cold. I had seen people doing leg and upper body work on the ball, and it looked like something that would apply to my water sports so I gave it a try. First I did two legged squats with weights, but I found the balance aspect less than challenging, so I started messing around with balancing on the ball with one foot. Again, pretty easy. One leg squats came next.
Later I got online and researched a few yoga balance poses to try. Tree pose came first.
Warrior III was the one I found the hardest balance-wise, and it's really strenuous on the core. Feels good. So, you're probably wondering if there's a point to all this besides showing off? Well there is. It demonstrates the amazing effects stand up paddling can have on a person. In addition to working nearly every muscle group in your body, stand up paddling improves your balance and physical self-awareness like nothing else. If you do any other activity, SUP is going to help you do it better. It is literally cross training for EVERYTHING. But don't take my word for it. Get out there and try it for yourself... the season is just around the corner!
*** Before you leave, take a second and sign up for the feedburner email subscription to Windy City Waterman... I just installed the gadget and put it right up on top. Thanks for reading and I'll see you on the water!