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Advanced SUP Yoga: Eagle + Scorpion Variations & Wheel Pose

Advanced SUP Yoga: Eagle + Scorpion Variations & Wheel Pose

August 08, 2017

By: Airhead SUP Ambassador, Kelli Nicole Spraggins

Practice these poses on land, in a guided class or against a wall before attempting on a paddle board. Please also make sure to warm up the body with beginner and intermediate poses to ensure safety.

Land isn’t the only place to find our practice, nor is it the most challenging. 

Yoga on the water takes away the walls and the ground, and opens up a new experience to what is above and below.

It a gentle reminder to stay soft and centered through challenging times.

While it can be easy sometimes to push for something hard, sometimes what works even better is to surrender and soften into something greater and flow along to see what arises next. 

The element of water is truly powerful, and while everything in our environment is in a constant state of change, we must learn to float along with the tides rather than against them. 

After all, a smooth sea never made a skilled sailor. 

Headstand Eagle Variation

  • Starting in the center of your board…come into downward facing dog pose and lower your forearms into dolphin.
  • Lower your forehead to meet the board, tucking your hands around your head like a pillow. 
  • Step your feet forward until your hips are over-head.
  • Begin to lift through your core until your toes are are also above head, inviting a slight bend into the knees. 
  • Once you find your balance, twist your right leg around your left until your foot is tucked around your calf muscle. Lower your knees slightly. 
  • Twist them apart to unfold and repeat on the opposite side to balance out. 
  • To release, unravel legs and drop down onto your shins for child’s pose, take a few clearing breaths here.

Forearm Scorpion Variation

  • Coming onto your hands and knees, bring your forearms to meet the center of your board.
  • Lift your hips high and coming into dolphin pose. Begin to tip-toe your feet toward your elbows until hips are over-head.
  • Take flight by lifting your feet toward the sky, engaging through your core.
  • Breathe here and find your balance. 
  • Gazing forward toward your hands, (this is a very important because you’ll topple over without it.) lift your chest and continue looking forward, arching through the spine.
  • Bend the knees and create space (about hip width distance) and bring the toes to meet, reaching them toward your head. 
  • Once finished, cartwheel your feet back down onto the board and relax into child’s pose.
  • Keep practicing and playing with the pose with child-like curiosity and don’t worry about falling.

It took me quite a while to get this pose down on a paddle board. Its definitely a challenging pose but a fun one, and is easier than a handstand as well as a good building block for more advanced poses. 

Wheel Pose

  • Starting in Side Plank Pose, take a few breaths here and let your right arm fall back, fingers facing your ankles. 
  • Align feet under knees and wrists under elbows.
  • Open the heart and lift the hips. 
  • Take a few more breaths.
  • Once finished, begin to lower hips back onto the board, and release the hands from the board.
  • To balance out the spine bring legs into chest and hug the knees. 

Thank you for this practice, Namaste! 

PHOTO CREDIT: Ben Pryce Creative