Finding Your Core With Stand Up Paddleboard Yoga
NBC Boston, June 18, 2017
Fox 25 News, Aug 19, 2016
June 11, 2016
If just paddling around the city isn’t enough, try a stand-up paddleboard yoga lesson at Sup Yo! (multiple locations near Boston; 978-361-5394), where you’ll incorporate even more balance and patience (watch out for waves!) into your oms.
Stand Up Journal Magazine
Published by Clay Fleeter
SUP YO was founded by Registered Yoga Teacher, Jana Olenio. Born and raised in New Hampshire and currently residing on Boston’s North Shore, Jana leads SUP Yoga classes on the water throughout the Boston area and the New Hampshire seacoast.
“I had been teaching yoga for a few years when my brother brought home his first Paddleboard in 2011. When I got onboard for the first time I was very comfortable; it felt very natural to me. It was my brother who suggested I try yoga on it. And the rest is history…
I began practicing on my own, and sometimes with yoga friends. I loved the challenge that being on the board offered while connecting with nature at the same time. It was the perfect combination. Later that year while road-tripping through California I was stoked to discover that yoga teachers were leading SUP Yoga classes up and down the west coast. I took one class and knew instantly this was something I wanted to do, something I wanted to bring back to New England. I received my SUP Yoga certification and began my business, SUP YO, in the spring of 2012.
I began teaching classes in Beverly Harbor on Boston’s North Shore. I had no idea it was going to take off like it did, so the following season I expanded into Boston’s South Shore as well as the NH Seacoast offering additional classes in Hingham, MA and Rye & Seabrook NH. After another successful season, I expanded my fleet, growing the size of my classes from six to ten students in the summer of 2014.”
This Summer SUP YO is excited to bring three new instructors on board and expand SUP YO into three beautiful new locations including Boston Harbor, Newbury and Amesbury MA, totaling 7 locations throughout MA & NH.
“Being out in nature allows for a deeper connection with the earth. Practicing on a paddleboard provides an added challenge to your regular yoga practice, increasing focus, concentration, balance & core strength. The peacefulness and tranquility of floating on the water combines nicely with the meditative nature of yoga.
I am passionate about the outdoors and yoga and I truly LOVE what I do. Every time I sit and watch my students enjoying a floating savasana, I can’t help but look up at the sky and say THANK YOU.”
Stand-up paddleboarding (SUP) is one of the country’s fastest-growing summer sports—and with water all around, Boston offers multiple ways to hit the deck.
One of these 4 options is Yoga: The extra balance required to do yoga on a board helps build concentration and core strength, and being on the water can be very meditative. For stability, SUP-Yo’s boards are secured with one-and-a-half-pound anchors. The Beverly and Hingham classes are led by owner and yoga instructor Jana Olenio.
$35, 978-361-5394, sup-yo.com.
June 24, 2013
By Alexa Pozniak, Boston.com
Typically set inside the quiet confines of a dimly lit studio, yoga is not something that immediately comes to mind when searching for a fun, outdoor activity to do. That is, until now. SUP Yoga adds a new, exciting twist to an age-old practice. For starters, a stand up paddle board takes the place of a traditional yoga mat. And a body of water acts as your yoga studio.
A single thought dominated my mind as we prepared to enter Beverly Harbor for a SUP Yoga class: “There’s no way I am NOT falling in.” So much for the power of positive thinking. But our instructor, owner of SUP Yo, assured me that only happens to about 10 percent of her students. I tucked that affirmation into the back of my head and off we went.
If you’re like me and have never been on a stand up paddle board before, it takes a few minutes to acclimate yourself to the stance and balance required to maintain it. We did a little warm-up lap around the harbor and then settled closer to shore to begin our practice. In order to avoid being swept away by the current, each board is equipped with a small anchor that securely nestles itself into the sand after being dropped into the water.
The hour-long class included an assortment of traditional yoga poses like sun salutations, downward dogs, and rejuvenating twists. As the poses became more complex, balance became more of an issue. Even the smallest of waves, or simply the current, makes your placement feel unsteady. In order to stabilize yourself, you are constantly engaging your core, along with smaller subsets of muscles throughout your body. Ten minutes into class and I knew I would be sore the next day.
The thing that surprised me the most about SUP Yoga is the fact that it’s as much a physical workout as it is an exercise in mental focus. I admittedly lose focus quite a bit throughout the course of my regular yoga classes. But the paddle board has a way of penalizing you for letting your mind wander. At one point during the class, my focus shifted from the pose we were instructed to wind ourselves into, to three baby crabs frolicking along the ocean floor. Seconds later, I lost my balance and ended up joining those tiny crustaceans in the chilly water. I was officially part of the 10 percent. Moments later I was back on my board. My body was drenched but my mind was more awakened.
Enough can’t be said about the sensory adventure SUP Yoga offers. Our immediate surroundings , with the sounds of seagulls, soft ocean breeze, and smell of salt water, added a whole other dimension to the experience. It’s soothing, yet energizing at the same time. Kind of like ice cream, but with a much more favorable calorie ratio.
SUP Yo, www.sup-yo.com, single class $35, rate includes board and paddle rental; classes held in Swampscott, MA, Rye Harbor, NH, Seabrook, NH.