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Why paddleboarding works for yoga, racing, and everything in between

Paddleboarding works whether you’re into yoga or spear fishing.

As paddleboarding’s popularity grows, so do the ways people use SUPs.

Activities range from spear fishing to racing. And the Wall Street Journal reports that one entrepreneur is using her SUP as a makeshift Yoga studio.

The way Lisa Curtis saw things when she started food company Kuli Kuli, she needed to find balance. Paddling was perfect for that. The Journal reports:

“Paddling is like a metaphor for life,” says Ms. Curtis, who is 29 years old. “It teaches you to find your center even amidst the waves. And the worst that happens is you fall in the water. It’s good to do something that keeps you a bit on the edge.”

The thing is, getting a startup off the ground is a consuming activity in itself, so Curtis found herself time crunched. She found the solution:

Rather than choose between yoga and stand-up paddleboarding, she combined her two fitness passions. Ms. Curtis lives a 10-minute walk from the San Francisco Bay near Oakland’s Jack London Square. “It was the perfect break from the stress of getting a startup off of the ground, and way more exciting than running,” she says. “Trying to do downward-facing dog or side plank on a board instantly erases any work thoughts.”

A contemplative activity like yoga is one thing. But SUPs work for more competitive pursuits as well.

CNN reports:

Despite its recent appearance on the recreation scene, there are now more than 300 SUP races a year in the United States alone. It’s newly popular in Australia, where surfing is the national sport, and catching on in Europe. Specialty brands manufacture equipment and sponsor races as well as some of the racers, which is largely the definition of turning pro in emerging sports.

And although there is no agreed-upon international governing body to make rules and create standards, that hasn’t stopped various organizers around the world from tracking times, ranking competitors and creating rules.

Anyone who has tried a paddleboard knows it requires balance and strength and rewards a love of the outdoors. It’s another hybrid, too: of exercise and fun.

But for all that, there wasn’t a simple, elegant way to keep an SUP in the same place until the creation of Hold Fast Anchors.

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