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Pranayama ayama: What?!

Yoga-terms explained

No matter if your a newbie or experienced SUP-yogi: you’ll find out yoga teachers have a language of their own and will throw with phrases like find your center, root yourself, become present, listen to your breath and set your intention. Most of us will never pop the question what all these vague words actually mean while they’re hanging in a upward facing two-foot staff.

We explain the 5 most wide-spread phrases for you.

1. Find your center.

‘Find your center within yourself…’ whispers your yoga teacher. Finding your center means to connect with your spirit: finding your core. In normal language: focus on your core and being aware of your body. Ask yourself the question: How do I feel today?

2. Root yourself.

This is the first chakra, located at the base of the spine, is open, one attains an emotional and physical state that is supported by the positive energies. The word Muladhara is a combination of two Sanskrit words.: “Mula,” which means “root” and “Adhara,” which means “support” or “base.” Literally means: to connect. A few recommend yoga poses for balancing the Muladhara include, Tadasana (Mountain Pose), Virabhadrasana 1 (Warrior One), and Setu Bhandasana (Bridge Pose).

3. Become present.

Be present, and stay present! When your mind starts to wander, so does your sense of balance.

So keep your focus, draw inward, connect with your core, listen to your breath and be there. When you are floating on your SUP, you physically can’t be anywhere else so it’s all about focusing the mind.

4. Listen to your breath.

The breath is the link and the best tool we have for finding our center. Breathe in, breathe out, as smooth as possible. For SUP classes, my motto is “calm the breath, calm the body, calm the board.” When the breath is calm, it’s much easier to stabilize yourself so you can actually experience what you are doing.

Listen to your breath, your body, and your intuition. Being present in the moment is simple, but it is not easy. With time and practice, one can learn to be present in all moments, allowing for mindfulness and consciousness in every situation.

5. Set your intention.

Ask yourself the question: How do I feel and how do I want to feel? Setting intention before your practice literally means: what will you focus be on your SUP? One class your intention might be to focus on strength, breathing, flexibility, or to try a new pose. Another day my intention might be to take care of yourself.

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