With summer fast approaching and the looming bikini season, the next few months become a time of silly fast fad diets and calorie burning panic.
The thought of bearing all on a crowded beach after your winter hibernation seems a little terrifying but before you begin a crusade of self-torture why not check out the growing hype that is yoga, it might just be a discovery that will entice you to get fit and back into the water.
The prospect of taking up yoga can be extremely daunting. You immediately imagine legs over shoulders and bodies balancing on heads, which seems slightly problematic especially when you can’t remember the last time you touched your toes. Yoga has had growing success all over the world as more and more people are discovering the physical and mental benefits that come with practicing.
If you were under the impression that yoga is simply a series of stretches then you’d be mistaken. The real purpose is about creating a balance, which you will do through developing your strength and flexibility. It’s benefits to surfers has not gone unnoticed as surf camps are now combining into yoga retreats as the practice will provide you with great posture and balancing techniques that will notably improve your riding.
The movement techniques taught through yoga are essential to improve your core strength as well as your concentration. All the big surf names are on board (excuse the pun) even the champion himself, Kelly Slater, who practices regular yoga routines to keep energized and in top shape. The craze has spread like wildfire through the A-list celebrity circle with the likes of Madonna, Jennifer Aniston and the flawless Brazilian model Gisele Bundchen claiming it to be the recipe behind their toned torsos. Even the Herculean physique of Matthew McConaughey has been caught doing the downward dog on the beach daily!
Although this is not an aerobic based exercise, the stretching will definitely test those muscles but with steady intervals of meditation and relaxation giving you time to clear your mind and listen to your body. You will be pleasantly surprised at what your muscles are capable of after just a few sessions, you’ll finish feeling exhilarated not exhausted.
If that’s not enough its also got the backing of science being said to help with problems like diabetes, high blood pressure, arthritis, chronic fatigue, asthma, varicose veins and heart conditions (to name a few) and is also believed to slow down the process of aging. Yes you read it right; the relaxing of the mind and body will relieve stress and tension and keep those lines off your face and stay feeling fresh and youthful. So whether you’re looking to improve your balance, get rid of the stress or tone up to hit the beach, then yoga offers a perfect balance of exercise and meditation to get you in the right frame of mind. Plus, with its growing popularity there will be no shortage of classes in your area that will offer a chilled out space for practice. Or if you want to bask in the sun then jet off to yoga retreats that will be found in all the top surfing destinations as a pre-surf warm up or to wind down after the waves.
So brush off the cobwebs and get your inner sun goddess ready for a summer of headstands and incredible core strength. You’ll be feeling energized and inspired in no time, Namaste!