On our family vacation last week my hubby and I took our first Stand Up Paddle Boarding (SUP) yoga class while visiting Lake Tahoe. Neither of us had paddle boarded before, so we were a little nervous to try it out because we didn’t know what to expect. It was hard to decide what to wear that would be comfortable and warm enough for an early morning class in the mountains.
I did a web search before we went and didn’t find much guidance on what to wear from any websites. I couldn’t find even find information from the SUP yoga providers themselves.
However, through my searches I did learn that most people said not to worry about falling off the paddle board. Of course, that’s easy to say after you have successfully navigated through your first class…
Still I wondered about the possibility of entering the c-o-l-d waters of Lake Tahoe. I wanted to make sure that whatever I wore would easily dry off if I did fall in between poses. I definitely didn’t want to feel like a drowned rat while sitting in savasana at the end of class.
In warmer waters simply wearing a swim suit would be very appropriate. This was obvious as I did my quick Google search before our class. Most online tips cautioned floating yogis to examine the level of coverage your suit provides in various yoga postures ahead of time to make sure you feel comfortable. And you never know, a wardrobe malfunction on the board could just throw you off balance so its best to check ahead. 🙂
But what about in colder waters like Tahoe and the San Francisco Bay?
As I tend to run cold to begin with, I definitely would not wear a bikini in Tahoe. Based on our weather conditions, I decided to wear a one piece swim suit and some capri pants in technical fabric. My hubby wore running shorts and a t-shirt. We each wore light windbreakers to the beach.
It was a very windy day so our instructor told us to wear our windbreakers on the water. Lucky for us, the wind died down when we began to walk down to the lake, and we were able to leave our jackets on the beach. After wading into ankle deep water we were tethered to our boards, so wearing capri pants worked well <phew!>. And we went barefoot, which I would definitely recommend. I was able to dangle my hands and feet in the water during the final relaxation and feel the warmth of the summer sunshine on my body contrasted against the cold water on my feet and hands. Perfection.
What should I wear to SUP yoga?
Based on my first SUP yoga experience (yep, I’m hardly an expert), here are my tips on what to wear:
Definitely wear sunscreen.
Avoid wearing cotton or other natural fibers that will weigh you down if you happen to fall in.
In warm waters:
- swim suit with enough coverage based on your modesty levels
In cold waters:
- technical fabrics dry quickly
- swim suits
- shorts, capris (if you have to wear long pants, roll ’em up)
- tank tops, t-shirts
Optional items that may be helpful:
- Sports sandals depending on where you are paddling and your level of comfort with bare feet
- hair ties to wear your hair back if needed to keep it out of your face
And most importantly, have fun!