Fun in the Sun: Bike & Beach Yoga
By: Elise Hugus, June 11, 2012
ELISE HUGUS - Isel Garcia-Renart holds dancer pose by the beach off of the Shining Sea Bikeway in Falmouth. She will lead an outdoor yoga class every Wednesday morning in Woods Hole starting June 13.
Want to get toned up for the summer, but dread the thought of being stuck inside at the gym? Max and relax outdoors with a yoga class on the grass!
Whether you’re new to the practice or are a master on the mat, doing yoga in the great outdoors is a whole new way to enjoy the art of stretching, strengthening and breathing.
Just picture yourself getting up in the morning and joining a group bikeride to the beach, where you’ll warm up with sun salutations in the morning sunshine, breathing in tune with the waves.
Yoga Alquimista with Isel Garcia Renart is a great way to jump-start your workday—or your summertime relaxation regimen.
Kicking off June 13, the Wednesday morning series takes place from 8 to 9 AM through August at the Woods Hole Ball Park, located at the end of Bell Tower Lane, Woods Hole.
Bike, stretch, swim
The grassy field is convenient for those who prefer to drive to class, but Garcia-Renart encourages those who also want to get a bikeride in beforehand to meet her at 7 AM at the Old Dock Road parking lot in West Falmouth for the roughly seven mile ride to Woods Hole. Following the class, the group will go for a swim just down the road at Stony Beach.
“This class is not exclusive to bikers. Walkers, drivers, and kitesurfers are welcome,” Garcia-Renart says with a smile. “But communal biking is a good way to get to know the area and other people.”
An avid cyclist who proudly hasn’t owned a car in years, Garcia-Renart started combining bike-riding and yoga instruction while completing her yoga teacher training at South End Yoga Studio in Boston earlier this year.
Focusing on the muscle groups that cyclists tend to use, such as hamstrings, shoulders and hips, Garcia-Renart says her “slow flow” vinyasa classes help riders stay comfortable and limber on the bike.
“Biking is almost like doing downward-facing dog. I’ll be teaching biker-specific yoga so you’ll have good posture while you ride,” she said. “You’ll focus on alignment and breath at the core of your practice, but this is not an athletic class. We’re not competitive.”
Sharing the love
Yoga Alquimista classes are offered by donation to Garcia-Renart’s Falmouth Road Race fundraiser for Independence House, a West Falmouth non-profit for women in recovery from physical and substance abuse.
“It’s a fantastic cause, benefiting 4-6,000 people per year. Helping others is the biggest community vibration for me,” she says.
Participants are encouraged to wear comfortable clothes and bring water and a mat, blanket or beach towel and a bathing suit. For more information, contact Garcia-Renart at firstname.lastname@example.org.