On Sunday morning, a girlfriend and I participated in our very first Floating Yoga session. Up until about a month ago, I never even knew this existed. I mean, I had seen Stand Up Paddle Board Yoga being exploited all over Instagram, but I had never seen a “floating” yoga class within a pool. I’ve done a terrible job explaining this… let me try again!
Ok, so if you are like me and hadn’t heard of Turtle Mats, they are essentially a combination of a paddle board and a floating yoga mat. They are somewhat sturdy in the water, they still wobble and move about but that actually works to you benefit! When you are on the Turtle Mat, all of your stabilizing muscles are instantly switched on and work with you to help you stay balanced. Without even knowing it, you will be targeting the same areas that most Yoga exercises target and even more, due to the use of stabilizing muscles.
The class started at 9am with Kati (the instructor) allowing us to find our balance by kneeling on our mat and allowing us to become familiar with our breathing, which is one of the main reasons to practice yoga. She asked the group if there were any muscle groups or poses in particular that we wanted to focus on so that she couldn’t tailor the class around our needs. There was something so magical and rewarding about being on the water and in the sunshine whilst partaking in a yoga session. In the past I had taken part in outdoor yoga sessions which were great, as I just love being outside, but this was something else!
I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to focus as I would be so concerned about being able to stay on the board, but Kati’s incredible skills allowed us to find our center and focus. I’m not going to lie, there were a few attendees that fell into the water throughout the class which had the potential to become distracting, but as the classes are small and intimate, we were able to stay in our own space, breath and thoughts.
The class consisted on yoga poses on the floating mat. I felt it progressed well and became more challenging as time went by. After starting with simply being able to kneel or sit on the mat, we began to trial standing and moving about on the mat with mountain and chair poses, downward facing dog and child’s pose too. By the end of the session we had advanced to poses such as Warrior 2, triangle, Chaturanga Dandasana and side planks too! Most of us were first time “floaters” so it was nice to feel comfortable and safe trying something new.
I am absolutely obsessed with this new style of exercising and meditation and would love for you to try it too. Both Chelsea (my friend who organized our session) and I left feeling accomplished and rejuvenated. I can’t wait to attend another one of Kati’s classes. I loved the floating yoga as the Turtle Mats are tied together so they didn’t move about too much, but I definitely up for the challenge of a paddle board class. Click the link below to check out the AQUA FLOW FIT website which has their classes and special events listed.
Be sure to let me know if and when you go- I’d love to hear your thoughts. I had a few people contact me via my Instagram story when I posted that I was attending, perhaps we could organize a simonemckenna.com team meet up & attend a class together? I have a friend visiting me in August from Australia, there is no doubt in my mind that she too will love it. Perhaps I will have to show her the city from the best angle, on a Stand Up Paddle Board on the Scioto Mile!