Body Water Soul – A Source for Life Change, Health and Satisfaction
Visualize standing on top of the water on a cool, sunny summer morning in a secluded mountain lake cove. A thin veil of mist hovers eye level above the clear water surface. The only audible sounds are fluttering birds and the movement of water from the fluid strokes of your paddle and the bow wake of your stand up paddleboard. After a mile of paddling, another faint but different sound occurs. Closer yet, the sounds are produced by the chime of an unseen source.
A bit further, your leader takes you to a Laurel and Rhododendron laced bank onto a forest trail alive with all shades of green. Entering a flat area on the leaf padded forest floor your yoga instructor awaits you in a lotus pose as you take your place on a yoga mat. Following the enchanted yoga session, you paddle back to the original launch site with newfound invigoration. A short drive back to town, you settle in for a relaxing massage at Body Water Soul, bringing your dreamy day to a close.
There are many choices available at the newly conceived fusion of yoga, massage and stand up paddle in Blue Ridge, GA. Ann Smiley Kennedy– owner of Higher Ground Massage & Yoga and Chris Tilghman– owner of Surf Blue Ridge SUP realized the synergy of their services. Their goal is to provide ways for people of every shape, size and age to enhance their physical and mental health while encouraging a healthy lifestyle with low impact on the environment. From this vision, Body Water Soul came into being.
Surf Blue Ridge SUP and Higher Ground Massage & Yoga share a space in Blue Ridge. Thus providing the essence of Body Water Soul– a massage studio, a yoga center and stand up paddle sales and services– all under one synergistic roof. Visit us at our new location or call us for a customized gift certificate.
The yoga studio provides a peaceful, enveloping atmosphere for total relaxation, focus and energy. Higher Ground Massage & Yoga, established in 2009, offers modalities that include Integrative, Neuromuscular, Myofascial and Pregnancy Massage– along with body treatments, hot stone massage, couples massage and Reike. Ann Smiley Kennedy, BA, MTGA – GA 6164, CYT welcomes new clients and visitors while catering to her loyal clientele. Look for details regarding yoga classes and individual instruction in meditation, breathing (PRANAYAMA) and yoga (ASANA). Higher Ground Massage & Yoga To Go offers cabin calls for individuals and groups as well!
Enter the colorful store and find an array of paddleboards, paddles and paddling accessories to greet you. New and used equipment for sale, rentals and SUP supplies are available. Surf Blue Ridge began in June 2009 by Chris Tilghman, a native of North Myrtle Beach, SC when the sport was virtually unknown. With a BS at Clemson University in Ornamental and Turf Horticulture, he became part owner of a successful golf course constructed by him and his older brother until 1999 in which it was sold. This enabled Chris to pursue his passion for the ocean and surfing by moving to Kauai for the next five years.
It was late winter 2004 when he observed the first stand up paddler at Hanalei Bay, Laird Hamilton. After a significant life change occurred and living in the Blue Ridge area for a few years, Chris envisioned the endless possibilities for stand up paddleboarding on the lakes and rivers of Blue Ridge. With a leap of faith, Surf Blue Ridge SUP was born.
Pioneering SUP North of Atlanta, Surf Blue Ridge SUP is the hub of North Georgia SUP sales, rentals, lessons, tours, and special events for individuals or groups. These include sunset and full moon sessions and SUP yoga on beautiful Lake Blue Ridge.
For those more adventurous, a trip down the lower Toccoa River offers an easy introduction to river paddling. Mostly calm water with very small rapids, crystal clear water, animal life and a procession of wild flower blooms make for an exciting, enjoyable day. Yes, the water can be cold! An experienced guide, usually Chris, is with you at all times.
Three options for touring Lake Blue Ridge are available. First, paddle up to the source of the lake, the Toccoa River. Picnic riverside on the boulders as white water rushes past you– no telling what wildlife and flowers may appear. Second, paddle to a lakeside spot and hike about one mile round trip as Chris introduces you to the many trees, native. Third is the yoga paddle destination. All of these trips include a lesson for first time paddlers.
Lessons are recommended for all first time paddlers. Proper technique is important for the full benefits of an all-around workout and core strengthening.
There are many options available depending on your goals. Single lessons designed for individuals, semi-private or groups are available by appointment. For Surf Blue Ridge SUP schools, choose from two weekdays for two weeks or a weekend day for a month.
Also, gaining popularity is SUP fishing and white water SUP. Fishing from a paddleboard offers free movement for casting and great sightlines to fish and cover. The stealth factor is another huge benefit. You can rent a board or have a guided trip for bass or trout with all equipment provided.
The adrenaline from bouncing through a class 2 or 3 rapid is bringing many to our beautiful rivers for white water SUP. Helmets, knee/shin pads, and the right board make this a different exciting adventure. Lessons are absolutely needed to get into white water. As one of the pioneers in white water river SUP, Chris can teach you the safety and techniques to provide many thrill filled trips.
Lastly, purchasing a board and paddle can be daunting and confusing. So many choices have flooded the market and sold so many places where little knowledge of product exists. Chris has spent five years culling through the products and has chosen the best for the money. Trust him to pair you with the board and paddle most suitable for your budget, size and intended use. Once again, he wants again to provide a lifestyle, not just a board and paddle.
SUP yoga is popular worldwide and available at Body Water Soul with an experienced yoga instructor. Bring your own board or rent one. Join our Blue Ridge Yoga Facebook group to keep up with scheduled times. Sessions are typically held in the morning on a quiet still cove only minutes from town. First comments are “This has to be very difficult!” Quite the contrary! Come give it a try and feel what many describe as the purest form of yoga.
Plan a weekend vacation with Body Water Soul retreats, featuring massage, yoga and SUP at a lakeside cabin for 6-8 people. All activities begin at your cabin.
Surf Blue Ridge and Higher Ground Massage & Yoga want to introduce and perpetuate a lifestyle, not just an activity. Consider Body Water Soul as a source for life change, health and satisfaction for every BODY, shape, size and age!
Body Water Soul 3586 East First Street, Suite 303, Blue Ridge, GA 30513 www.BodyWaterSoul.com
Visit our websites for pricing and more information.
www.SurfBlueRidge-SUP.com or call 706-889-8747
www.HigherGroundMassage.com or call706-455-9760