Yoga already brings a sense of peace and wellness to oneself, but practicing this art with the sand under your toes and the waves echoing nearby simply magnifies the experience. Many practitioners of yoga never think to move outside, but we’ve got a few reasons why you should give it a try on our beautiful LA beaches!
Sun: Los Angeles beaches get sun about four out of every five days a year! Soaking up the rays warms your muscles, improves your mood, and helps you sleep better. If that wasn’t enough, it also allows your body to produce vitamin D, an essential compound that helps in good overall health in a slew of ways: protection against cancer, for example. Just fifteen or so minutes can give you enough vitamin D for the day, but vitamin D can also be stocked up for those rainy days. Doing yoga on the beach gives you this tangible molecular health benefit! Just make sure to apply (and reapply) sunscreen to prevent burns.
Sand: Have you ever tried running on the sand — whether into the waves after a frisbee, or at a seagull on the beach? If so, you’ll know that the shifting grains of sand make it much harder to move quickly and also to keep your balance. Now, apply this to yoga, and you have a real workout challenge! In comparison to doing yoga on stable ground, beach yoga requires a lot more muscle strength and stability to hold your poses. Sand will force you to hone those balancing skills! The nature of the seashore elevates the intensity of your workout, offering additional physical health benefits and beach body — and, as a bonus, does this all in a very shock absorbent, joint-friendly environment. No more achy knees after floor work, and mat optional!
Sea: Poet E.E Cummings contemplated, “For whatever we lose (like a you or a me), It’s always our self we find in the sea.” There’s much to be said about the sense of contentment and meditation one gets at the beach – looking into the vast, blue ocean, smelling the salty ocean spray, and listening to the waves rolling onto the shore. The mental health benefits of taking time to understand the depths of oneself are greatly practiced in beach yoga. In inhaling the fresh ocean air while holding that tree pose, you can increase your inner harmony and sense of wellness. Greater intake of oxygen is also shown to increase overall energy levels.
Beach yoga helps with physical and mental health in many ways, and can be done solitary or with friends. Plus, it’s fun! Either way, beginners and yogis alike can stretch and breath and reflect on the beach. Next time you’re around the shore, consider trying beach yoga yourself!
(If you get hungry afterwards, check out our list of places to get brunch — an ideal pairing with beach yoga!)