I can exercise on land, but I can't let go of life in the way that being in the sea simply insists. Where else are you rendered so completely incapable of attending to any erroneous distractions that can so easily divert the tracks of one’s train of thought?
I have long reconciled that surfing’s effect on my wellbeing is more profound than words will ever allow, but seeing as its such a bloody beautiful Sundy arvo I'll have a crack anyway.
Of course the physical benefits of aerobics and cardiovascular fitness are well-documented and impossible to deny. But it is the mental sanctity of bobbing about in the sea that is much harder to quantify, yet for me more appealing than anything else.
Plenty of arenas for mindfulness exist, but most rely on the practitioner to wilfully resist the opportunities for their attention to be allocated elsewhere. I think for most who inhabit the built environment and have felt the value of mindfulness, this is the yoga studio, the jiu jitsu mats, a visit to a peaceful park without any electronics.
It is my experience, however, that the environments in which this headspace is most accessible to me are all beyond technology’s reach, all within true nature. Arenas offering the least room for such opportunity for distraction that distil clarity of thought the best. The mountains, the desert, places that forcibly remove the most distraction potential simply by virtue of utter wilderness.
And none are quite like the sea.