Water-based yoga arrives in the Bay
Few people master the handstand pose during their first yoga session.
But Suraj Nanda went one better last weekend when he confidently assumed the position while on a Stand Up Paddle (SUP) Board, anchored almost 15 metres from shore, as part of Hervey Bay’s first SUP yoga session.
Mr Nanda, a medical professional from London, only moved to Hervey Bay two weeks ago.
Relishing the opportunity to try out all the water-based activities on offer, Mr Nanda and his mates were among the first participants to take part in the SUP yoga classes which are being run by Ocean Tree Yoga Studio owner Jessica Wemmerslager, in partnership with Aquavue Café and Watersports owner Larry Burch.
After strong support for Saturday’s maiden class, Ms Wemmerslager said she was excited to share the experience with others.
“It feels so natural to be on water. To have that rocking movement, it is soothing for the soul,” she said.
Prior to the class, Aquavue’s Rob Towan – a stand up paddle board and surfing professional – takes each of the boards out in to the water and arranges them in a semi-circle.
A weight is then attached to the underside of the boards to anchor them in position and ensure the boards don’t float away or move during the class.
While Ms Wemmerslager said even she was a little bit hesitant before trying water-based yoga classes for the first time, she felt being surrounded by the ocean and taking in the early morning energy from the sun, created an even greater sense of nurturing for the body and mind.
“Learning yoga helps us to connect to nature,” she said.
With 60 to 80 per cent of the human body made up of water, Ms Wemmerslager said being in-tune with the ocean only enhanced that connection.
Though early reactions to the idea of doing SUP yoga had ranged from hesitation to enthusiasm, Ms Wemmerslager said people shouldn’t let a fear of water or their lack of experience with yoga deter them from having a go.
Classes are tailored with a range of options and movements to suit all skill levels and age groups.
“It doesn’t mean you have to stand up on your board,” Ms Wemmerslager said.
“If you feel uncomfortable you can stay lower and build up that core strength and balance first and then slowly work yourself up to standing.”
SUP Yoga classes take place at Torquay Beach, out the front of Aquavue, every Saturday from 8am.
The classes cost $25 per session and includes board hire and a yoga lesson.
For more information or to book a place phone 0408 014 582 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.