The sound of the waves, a scent of salty sea air, a fresh ocean breeze, evening sun´s rays on your skin, the calming colors of sky and sand.
I haven't experienced a better place to do yoga than somewhere on a beach by the sea.
Maybe it´s because I did my teacher training on the Pacific Ocean in Nicaragua on a small yoga shala next to the beach. Or I was teaching most of my yoga classes on the Atlantic coast, my second home in France during the summer season, where you have countless kilometers of sand and dunes, as far as your eyes can see.
Walking on the seaside with my blanket or mat, calms me down already, it´s like a moving meditation itself. The whole atmosphere is special, soothing, I can feel the invigorating lightness for body, mind and soul. No distractions, just the beautiful, pure beach scenery. The sand between my fingers and toes. I am in the moment,
inhaling the salty and humid sea air. You know that the air you are breathing is healthy and salty sea air free from particulates and smog, good for your lungs and airways.
Next time you spend time by the sea, you might as well fall in love with practicing and enjoy the magic of this place.
Here are my tips for your yoga practice in the sand or à la plage:
1. Use a beach towel instead of a yoga mat. It adapts perfectly to the uneven surface of a sandy beach. Of course you can practice in the sand without a beach towel, if you prefer. In the end you will have the sand all over your towel anyway :) though it´ s nice to have a peace of cloth to lay your forehead on when you are in child's pose, for example.
2. When you want to have a solid base for your hands in down-dog or plank pose, you can use two yoga blocks as small podests and slightly dig them into the sand shoulderwidth-apart. It´s a great support for your wrists and gives you stability in all kind of plank poses where you need your hands on the ground.
3. Try to avoid peak solar radiation from 10 am to 4 pm or look for a spot somewhere in the shade. Your skin will thank you for it! Sunrise and sunset are the most beautiful hours of the day to be on the beach anyway ;)
4. Take your water bottle with you and depending on the temperature make sure you stay hydrated. Use a thermos-flask, glass or other reusable bottle.
5. On your way back you might collect a few pieces of plastic & other trash.
For a "yoga by the sea" experience join me in France or Andalucia during my next yoga retreats by the ocean.