My family and I (Alessandra) have had a long-held dream: to live on a boat for 2 years, traveling the oceans, discovering new places and peoples around the globe, and to reach our destinations only with the power of the wind.
Sailing wasn’t something new to us, with 20 years’ experience in monohulls. For a long time, we had a picture of a Lagoon 42 as the background on the family computer at home in Brazil. We always wanted to live on the sea, but I had a fear about the way of life on the water: I was afraid I would have to give up my yoga I practice every day. I knew it would be a challenge and every time we visited a boat, my first question was: Is there enough room for me to practice yoga? We were looking for a boat that combined performance and habitability, so that’s how we ended up buying a catamaran for our family adventure. We bought the boat from our screensaver, a Lagoon 42!
Our catamaran, named Biguà, was delivered in February 2018. On board, in the aft cockpit, I have enough space – and even more than enough – to lay out my yoga mat! We started sailing in some of the world’s cold waters, making it very hard, and even with the cockpit side windows closed, it was impossible to stay outside doing yoga without freezing! So, I had to decide to practice it inside the catamaran! I found a space in my cabin where my yoga mat fits perfectly on the floor. At that time, we hadn’t yet had the heater installed, and with close to freezing temperatures outside, we only had a very small electric heater to heat the whole catamaran. Gradually, as the temperatures rose, and the cockpit became my favorite playground!
Doing yoga on a boat is not easy! Sometimes new aches and pains appeared while doing certain postures because of the boat’s movements. Depending on the sea, I sometimes had to give up my daily sessions in order not to get hurt. I was beginning to miss my yoga sessions ashore. Nevertheless, I knew that I was living a dream, an extraordinary adventure and that despite everything I could not regret my life ashore.
So I had to adjust my sessions: I learned that I couldn’t perform all the postures, I had to adapt my yoga practice, take care not to hurt myself and understand the catamaran’s movements, etc. After several months, it can even be said that I have developed my own method of “Ashtanga Yoga at Sea”!
Even though our life on board requires many adjustments to my practice, I am happy with my life at sea, unstable and moving. Our travels in Europe, the Mediterranean, the Canary Islands, as well as our Atlantic crossing taught me to adapt my practice, according to the oceans crossed and the conditions encountered. I even learned to do yoga in other parts of the catamaran like on the sugarscoops!
My greatest pleasure is practicing yoga when we are at anchor, early in the morning, with a calm sea, just before sunrise. I feel the first rays of the sun on my skin, and in these moments, I am grateful to be living this incredible experience!