Before man conquered his fear of water, he amused himself with dust sports such as pushing boulders off cliffs, wrestling tumbleweeds, and falling in the dust. Dip a toe in with this Groupon.
- $39 for three standup-paddleboard-yoga classes for one (a $80 value)
After a brief on-shore paddle lesson, students of all fitness levels glide out to anchor in the Puget Sound. Instructors then lead participants through flows that both strengthen and lengthen muscles, coupled with breathing exercises and guided meditation. Classes are typically limited to eight students so instructors can tailor lessons to each person's experience level and ability to fish-whisper. See the schedule here.
Yoga instructor Hasna Atry maintains a zen-like composure as she leads her students through series of challenging poses. The once competitive swimmer and triathlete didn't attain this serene state easily. At her first yoga class, about 14 years ago, she found nothing but frustration. She would look around the room to see droves of people more fit and limber than she was. Then she asked herself, "Why am I comparing myself to others?" With that simple question, she set forth on an inner journey that she says gradually deepened her connection to the present moment.
Today, Atry leads standup-paddleboard-yoga classes to help clients navigate their own journeys. Of course, clients who just want a workout or who have already beaten the boss in the final asana level are welcome, too. Instructors meet with students at Surf Ballard before venturing into Puget Sound, where classes, generally limited to eight participants, anchor their boards. In addition to stimulating fine stability muscles, the water's constant rippling requires that each yoga pose be executed with precision. "If you place your foot out of alignment, you're going to go swimming," she says. Besides the added presence of mind demanded by the board's wobbliness, the Puget Sound's surroundings also center students in the present moment. Bald eagles and salmon make frequent appearances, and Atry once even had a baby seal try to pull her board away from class. This unique combination of exercise and the outdoors has earned WASUP plentiful local press, including coverage in the Seattle Times. Atry and her team donate a portion of their proceeds to the Noel House and Yoga Behind Bars programs.