Nov 3, 2017
Stand-Up Paddle Yoga with Joan Christine
SUP Provider: SUP Tours Philippines
Yoga Teacher: Joan Christine
Class Description: guided yoga class on an SUP along the Loboc River. You'll be drifting with the current to be picked-up downstream (or paddle upstream)
SUP Tours Website: suptoursphilippines.com
Location: SUP Tours Philippines, Loboc (municipality), Bohol (province), Philippines
Picture Credits: Frederic Soupart and Xavier "El Magico"
Yoga & Fitness Website: YOGA by Gigit
SUP Yoga on a Drift
I've played around with SUP yoga on a static pool and attended an SUP Yoga class in Plantation Bay, but here in Loboc, SUP yoga is offered by SUP Tours Philippines along the Loboc River as you drift downstream on the current. Conducting this class was Joan Christine, a registered Sivananda yoga teacher and ASI supyoga instructor.
Before we even got on the SUP, Joan gave us an orientation on how to manage ourselves on the SUP - where to position ourselves, paddle length, how to paddle, how to fall, how to get back on the SUP, etc. That alone gave us increased confidence.
We were 5 students altogether with our own SUPs all tied-up together in a petal-formation to keep it from drifting away from each other. Before Joan started the class, we were already drifting which added to the excitement. Following heavy rains, the water level was high and it was also high tide which accounted for a stronger current. If that wasn't cool enough, it even rained! Woohoo! The entire session was gentle yoga with easy poses for easier balancing. Most of the time, we were either seated, kneeling or flat on our backs or tummies. Standing poses, which increases center of gravity, were few and far in-between. Towards the tail-end of our drift, we got into our own inversions. It wasn't about perfection but about trying our best and having fun.
There were a few minor challenges. Sometimes, the current would take us close to the river bank where leaves would already brush on our shoulders. As sweeper in mountaineering climbs, it was second nature for me to take the paddle and clear us from the trees and leaves as the yogis continued with their poses (aka, cleaning the ash trays while they party). When we got rained-on, it got cold. Whatever body heat we were mustering dissipated into thin air. But the rain was fun too!
I don't think SUP Yoga can substitute for a serious and deepening yoga practice on a mat, but it's certainly fun and a novelty. After doing SUP Yoga on a river drift, I don't think I can still enjoy doing the same thing on a swimming pool. Even if you're a hardcore yoga purist, I would still suggest you lighten up and take up SUP Yoga on a river drift - it'll be a refreshing diversion from the usual. You'll be glad you did!
Thank you Frederic and Joan for the memorable experience!
Next stop: Return to Hinagdanan Cave
Loboc, Bohol, Philippines
Bohol FYI / Tips
- the tourist area where most of the hotels, restaurants, ticket offices, tour operators are, is located within the Alona Beach area
- the tourist attractions in Bohol are far apart and spread-out. It would be difficult to visit them all using public mass transit. Better hire a van (P3500/day) if in a big group, or rent a motorcycle (P400/day + gas)
- Bohol relies on its tourism for revenue. As expected, everything they can capitalize on from tourism is extensively used and developed
Tagbilaran Port to PanglaoYou can charter any tricycle from the port all the way to Panglao (~P300), but if you want to do it on the cheap,
- don't take the tricycles lined-up inside the port. Walk past the port gate and immediately outside, you'll see many tricycles. Take one to the bus terminal in Dao (~P15)
- in Dao, take the jeep that plies the Panglao route (~P20)
Tagbilaran (Bohol) to Cebu City by boat** schedules and rates keep changing, call for latest schedule
- Weesam Express - departs 6:15 AM, 11:30 AM, 4:00 PM
one way: Economy (aircon) P500.00, Economy (non-aircon) P400.00, First Class P600.00
round trip promo (at least 2 days advance booking): Economy (aircon) P600, Economy(non-aircon) P500, First Class P1200
round trip promo (1 day or on the day booking): Economy (aircon) P800, Economy (non-aircon) P700, First Class P1200
- Ocean Jet - departs 6-7:05-8:20-9:20-11:40AM, 1-2-3:30-4:20-5:30-6:30PM, 2 hours, arrives Pier 1 in Cebu
Open Air / Tourist Class P800, Business Class P1000
+63(32)255 7560 / +63 (32) 255 0115 / 0917 638 0000
- SuperCat (2GO) - departs 5:50-11AM, 3:45-5:25-8:15PM, arrives Pier 1 in Cebu
+63 32 233 7000
Things to do, Places to go in Bohol
- Chocolate Hills - this is a clustering of more than 1200 hills within a 50km2 area. They range in height from 30-50 meters. What's unusual is their near-perfect conical shape resembling an individual chocolate chip. No one knows how they were formed. Entrance is P50/pax.
- Tarsier Conservation Area - located Upper Bonbon, Loboc. The tarsiers are no longer being played at by tourists as circus props, but instead, visitors now view them in cordoned-off areas in their natural 6ha habitat. As they are territorial and nocturnal, they are predictable on where they can be viewed. P50/pax.
- Alona Beach (Panglao) - Alona Beach is the tourist hub of Bohol. It has 1.5 kms of white sand beach lined-up by bars, hotels and restos. Alona is also the jump-off point for Balicasag Island, a world class dive destination.
- Danao Adventure Park - located in Barangay Magtangtang, 72 kms (2 hours ride) from Tagbilaran. Adventure activities include river trekking, tyrolean traverse, rappelling, bouldering, rock climbing and ziplining.
Carlos P. Garcia Island
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