How Paddle Boarding Can Help Manage Stress
Beyond just being a fun outdoor activity, paddle boarding can also be a powerful tool for improving mental health and reducing stress. In this blog, we’ll put forward why paddle boarding is the next biggest wellness activity (part wishful thinking on our part, but hear us out).
Connect with nature
One of the biggest benefits of paddleboarding is that it allows individuals to connect with nature. Being on the water and surrounded by natural beauty can’t fail to have a calming effect on the mind, reducing feelings of stress and anxiety.
When you’re out there, trying to stay afloat and of course, you have to focus on the present moment, which can help to clear the mind and reduce feelings of worry or stress.
Release some endorphins
We shouldn’t forget that paddleboarding is a form of exercise. And exercise releases endorphins which help to reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Paddleboarding is a full-body workout that engages the core, legs, arms,and back. It’s hard work but it’s low-impact exercise that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and fitness levels.
Practise some mindfulness
The great thing about paddleboarding is it can be anything you want it to be. It can be a full-on workout or an opportunity to practise mindfulness and meditation.
One of the simplest ways to engage in some mindfulness is to focus on your breath. As you paddle, try to breathe deeply and fully, paying attention to the sensation of the air moving in and out of your body.
The gentle rocking of the board can have a meditative effect, helping to reduce stress and promote relaxation.
Share a social experience
On the other hand, paddle boarding can also be a social activity. Being around other people can help to reduce feelings of loneliness and isolation, which are known to negatively impact mental health.
Whether you’re challenging one another or having a catch up as you paddle, you'll have a shared experience that you can talk about and reminisce over later. This can be a great way to bond and create lasting memories.
Ok, enough of the cutesy stuff!
Find your purpose
In order to use paddle boarding as a tool for stress relief and mental health, it's important to approach it with a sense of intention. Rather than just going out for a paddle, take the time to set out the purpose of your paddle.
This could be something as simple as wanting to feel more relaxed or focused. Setting an intention can help you to stay present and focused during your paddle, which can increase the stress-relieving benefits.
Take care of yourself
However you choose to spend your time on your SUP, it’s important to remember to take care of yourself both before and after your paddle. Make sure to eat well and stay hydrated, and don't forget to stretch to avoid any injury.
After each paddle, take time to reflect on your experience and note how you are feeling. A moment of reflection can help you to integrate the benefits of your paddle into your daily life.
Whether you’re a wellness advocate or a bit of sceptic to the whole mindfulness movement, we urge you to try paddleboarding for size and make your own mind up on its stress-relieving benefits.
Stay safe & happy paddling!