What’s S.U.P. Yoga

Photo by Maria Shields O’Kelly.

Photo by Maria Shields O’Kelly.

We are all familiar with the popular workout of yoga but did you know that yoga has now been taken out of cramped gym rooms and is being practised on the water? NewsFour met with Alexa Zimmermann to speak about ‘Stand Up Paddleboard Yoga’ or SUP Yoga.

“What happens if you fall in?” I fretted.

“That’s a good thing,” says Alexa, “the point of SUP Yoga is balance – the more you fall in, the more you learn how to control your balance.”

Zimmermann, pictured right, is the charismatic and energetic instructor of this innovative workout. A longtime lover of yoga, she has been practising the art for many years and is a fully qualified yoga and SUP Yoga instructor.

Originally from Germany, she discovered Yoga 18 years ago after breaking her back due to a horse riding accident. She is also a water lover and the idea of combining her two loves was too much to resist. After trying out some yoga poses on her paddleboard she thought the combination of yoga and water was novel. After a quick internet search Zimmermann discovered that SUP Yoga has quite a following in America and decided to bring it to Ireland.

It was a glorious sunny April day when NewsFour ventured down to the Grand Canal Dock and Surfdock headquarters to speak with Zimmermann. With the sun beaming and the water glistening under its rays, it was easy to see the appeal of practising yoga on the water.

“It just started with a couple of SUP Yoga classes on Sandymount beach,” recalls Zimmermann. The reaction to the classes was so positive that she was approached by Colin and Nina from Surfdock to give regular classes on the Grand Canal and a happy partnership has now been formed.

Now in its second year at Grand Canal, SUP Yoga is fast gaining steam. Zimmermann’s new term resumes in May and is expected to run until November.

Using inflatable boards, the classes are small with only five to six people in each session. No yoga experience is necessary and even people who can’t swim are welcome, as a life jacket is supplied. The classes include both men and women and are suitable for all ages from 16. For anyone who may be put off by the rainy Irish weather Zimmermann says, “well, you get wet anyway.”

SUP Yoga classes began on May 7th and are expected to run until November. For bookings or information contact www.surfdock.ie or check out the Facebook page at facebook.com/Dublin_SUP_YogaFitness

By Marguerite Reilly