The Stand Up Paddle Board offers a whole new category of water sports to the outdoor enthusiast. Kind of a mixture of canoeing and surfing, a paddle board allows the boater to explore waters without getting wet or swimming around.
To properly use the SUP, you stand aboard the watercraft keeping your centre of balance while propelling yourself with a long paddle. This is a lot easier than you might think. The paddle board is a sturdy watercraft and even a suitable platform for fishing –– if you get the right type that is. Furthermore, SUP Boarding is a great way to get in shape and offers a low impact exercise routine for those lucky enough to live by a body of water.
Following are some of the most important beginner’s tips to help you make the most of your SUP Boarding experience.
1. Use the Leash
Your SUP will come complete with a special leash that can be attached around the calf or ankle to keep you connected to your board, and this is more important than many people think. It is easy to forget the depths below as you glide around on your paddleboard, but safety should be your number one priority. It is fairly common to fall off the board, and when this happens, you could find yourself very far from shore. In addition to wearing proper floatation gear, it is essential to keep your paddle board strapped to your person at all times. This will ensure that you are never stranded far from shore or missing your beloved inflatable stand up paddle board.
2. Choose the Right Gear
You will find that there are paddleboards to suit any water activity you hope to accomplish. There are basic types that are fun for playing around on, specially balanced SUP boards for fishing trips, longer boards for racing and many others built for specific situations and purposes. It will be a good idea to consider the use you will be getting from your board before going out to the market. A thicker and wider SUP board will give you better balance and makes a good place to begin. Touring SUP boards are also popular for beginners, while not as balanced and sturdy these are easy to get used and are built for travelling longer distances at greater speeds. Making sure you have a SUP board suitable to your style and skill level will ultimately bring the best results.
3. Practice Proper Technique
One of the biggest mistakes many beginner’s make when starting out with their inflatable paddle board is not using the paddle properly or engaging their body properly from the beginning. Your hands should be positioned on your paddle at an even distance. Gripping your paddle with two hands, hold it horizontally across the top of your head. Your elbows should make perfect 90° angles in this position.
Finally, as you propel yourself forward, don’t let your arms and shoulders do all the work. You must engage your core with each stroke to maximize your speed and balance.
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