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Yoga on A Cruise Ship

Francesca Silva

yoga-on-ship.jpgWell, I’m back from my Mediterranean cruise – did you miss me? No, I didn’t think so….

My husband and I had a fabulous time and it was just what we needed to reconnect with each other. The ports of call were amazing and the cruise was over before we knew it. As I suspected, we ate our way through most of it but, that said, I managed to keep my weight down – thanks partly to yoga on board.

Yes, I did it. I somehow found the discipline to get up early on the first “at sea” day and attend a yoga class.

We boarded the cruise ship on a Saturday, settled ourselves, and took a tour of the ship before dinner. After the first of many multi-course dinners, we went to the jazz lounge to listen to music and relax. Since we were both tired from the long journey, we decided to have an early night – oh, for our younger days when we had energy to spare….

To my surprise, I slept soundly – it must have been the gentle rolling of the ship that rocked me to sleep – and I woke up just after 7 am, refreshed and raring to go. For a change, my “early bird” husband was still asleep so I crept out of bed, changed and was out the door, eager to participate in my first yoga class aboard a cruise ship.

Even though I was early, I was still one of the last to arrive, so I quickly grabbed a mat and settled down. Jessica, our instructor, was cheerful and enthusiastic – obviously a morning person. She started the class off by telling us that the average person puts on one pound a day on a cruise. Quick calculations all round – 11 days so that’s…horrified faces, followed by grim determination to participate in yoga and as many exercise activities as possible.

There were several regular practitioners but only one woman who’d never done yoga before. Jessica started by asking if anyone had any issues or injuries she needed to be aware of. Then she took us through some gentle warm-up exercises “to wake up the body and mind” before gradually stepping up the pace. And that’s when the fun started.

Yoga is about balance – we all know that – but have you ever tried to balance on a ship? Jessica told us that we were being blessed with an unusually calm day and most of us didn’t even notice the gentle swaying of the ship – until it was time to do a couple of balancing poses. Then all of a sudden it was – whoa! A few more poses and we all began to appreciate the challenge of balancing on a moving platform – even a gently undulating one.

Jessica was excellent, moving around the class and correcting a pose here and there while encouraging everyone to do whatever felt comfortable without over-extending ourselves.

By the end of the class, I felt great and – like many others – was starving! So I went back to the cabin for a quick shower before heading off to the breakfast buffet with my husband. As I sat at table enjoying my coffee, bacon and eggs, my husband gently teased me. “So I guess the only reason you woke up early to do your yoga thing was so you wouldn’t feel so guilty about eating everything in sight!” Caught in the act….

We spent the rest of the cruise visiting the various ports or call, so I didn’t have a chance to take another yoga class, even though there was one during our last day at sea. Okay, I’ll confess – I had all these grand intentions to attend the class but ended up sleeping in instead! I didn’t feel too bad, though, because my husband and I had done a lot of walking and some hiking at the various ports of calls, so we managed to stay reasonably fit. At least I think we did – I haven’t actually stepped on any scales to weigh myself yet…think I might defer that for a few days.

Doing yoga on board a cruise ship certainly gave me a completely new perspective on yoga and balance. And even though I’ve been back on terra firma for over a week, I can still feel the gentle rolling of the ship!

[tags]yoga class on a cruise ship, balance on a ship, yoga on board, yoga and balance[/tags]

2 Responses to “Yoga on A Cruise Ship”

  1. Tara says:

    That is awesome! I went on a cruise this past February and can’t remember if they offered yoga but I will be sure to try it on the next one. I do remember however trying to run on the treadmill, that was a task on it’s own so I can just think about trying to do a pose on the moving ship.. especially first day at sea when you don’t quite have your sea legs yet! Great post.

  2. Francesca Silva says:

    Hi Tara,

    Thanks for your response to my post. Yes, doing yoga on a cruise ship was challenging but lots of fun. When you’re on a moving platform, you get a whole different perspective of balance.

    I didn’t try the treadmill (I thought about it but that was as far as I got!) but can imagine that it would bring its own challenges.

    I hope you get to try yoga out on your next cruise. If and when you do, I’d love to hear about your experience. Thanks!

    Francesca

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