MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) - Have you heard of the exercise trend making its way across the country called stand-up paddling? What started as a mode of transportation in Hawaii, is quickly becoming a favorite way for people to get a full-body workout.
The boards being used out on Lake Juliette are called 'YOLO Boards'. YOLO stands for You Only Live Once. And while a stand-up paddle board can now be found in almost any sporting good store, YOLO is more than a board on these waters- it's a credo.
"It's a better way of working out really," Dana Bittenbender says as she stands on her pink YOLO Board. Bittenbender is a personal trainer who spends many of her days out on the water teaching women the simple, yet effective, maneuvers on the water.
"We just wanted a non-impact way of getting in shape."
The crew out on the water today are all women, but Bittenbender doesn't discriminate. She'll teach anyone willing to learn.
The proper technique for stand-up paddling looks like a cross between someone offering a gondola ride down the water streets of Italy, a surfer catching a wave in California, and cruising on the water in a kayak.
And it does wonders to not only whip you into shape, it's helping adventurers like Elizabeth Jones find a place to relax.
"There's no motor, it's all about you. You're in nature...it's just very soothing," Jones explains.
The best part about learning how to paddle is anybody can do it, even a reporter who has never attempted such a feat before. My first time resulted in a successful trip around the lake without falling in and getting soaked!
While you need good balance and center of gravity, Jones will tell you why she loves coming out on the water week after week;
"The biggest thing I get out of it is we're out here in God's country and it's quiet, and it centers my soul."
If stand up paddling interests you, Bittenbender offers private lessons on a weekly basis. You can contact her by emailing her at