17-04-2018 / BOARDS
Saltwater & happiness
Saltwater & happiness
The ocean is a beautiful and forever changing playground for us paddlers. While it allows us to paddle for hours, enjoy small sets rolling in on the shore or pushing ourselves to our next fitness level – it’s always awe-inspiring to see the ocean for a deeper meaning as to why we are so drawn to it.
Humanity’s long love affair with the sea has roots beyond our recreational use. Thalassotherapy, which dates back centuries with the Greeks, is the therapeutic use of seawater, marine products, seaweed, marine mud and even the marine climate to promote health wellness and beauty.
From healing joint problems and injuries to more recently using this therapy for stress relief and weight loss, it seems the ocean is more beneficial than we sometimes realise. Discovered by Rene Quinton, it was found that seawater and human plasma are similar in mineral content. Immersing your body in warm sea water allows the absorption of needed minerals – trace elements of magnesium, potassium, calcium, sodium and iodide – through our largest organ, the skin
So how can we benefit more from the ocean while enjoying time on our paddle board?
Although paddling on your own is wonderful just to have a moments peace, never underestimate the happiness that comes with catching up with others on the water. There are so many new SUP groups popping from coast-to-coast that offer enriching experiences on the water with friendly competition, fun paddles and workouts. Meet up with old friends, meet new ones, and expand your SUP circle.
Taking your SUP to the same location may be easy but is it bringing you new joy? With the ocean taking up most of our planet, you are blessed with endless options to explore. Find new SUP spots, take a guided SUP trip, try a yoga SUP retreat or go on a weekend SUP adventure.
Studies show that the ocean air can help improve your respiratory health. While out on your paddle board take the time to sit and meditate. Focus on your breathing, close your eyes and just feel the ocean beneath you. The sensation of the ocean rolling underneath you while focussing on the natural flow of your breath will help relieve stress.
Immerse yourself in the ocean – don’t forget that. Remember we spoke about how our bodies will absorb much needed minerals from the ocean. Cold water therapy in the ocean activates temperature receptors under your skin releasing hormones such as endorphins, adrenalin and cortisol. Repeated exposure to cold water can also promote an increase in the release of our feel good hormones dopamine and serotonin. Take that dip, no matter how cold it is! Your body will love you for it!
Finally, be grateful to be out on your paddle board. How lucky are we to be able to have the opportunity to use our bodies to glide across the ocean – almost like we are walking on water. We are able to breathe in that fresh salty air, soak up some vitamin D goodness and enjoy the natural beauty around us. Always remember why you started and you will never want to stop.