How to Paddle Board for Beginners
How to paddle board
One of the most enjoyable ways to get outside, get on the water, and potentially get a workout in is by paddle boarding. Stand-up paddle boarding, also known as SUP, is an excellent activity that just about anyone can partake in.
Today, we will give some tips and tricks for how to paddle board. Without any prior knowledge, it can be a little difficult to get started. So, let’s dive into how to paddle board!
Get the appropriate gear
It is impossible to paddle board without the necessary gear. Some of the gear you need include:
- The paddle board
- The paddle
- A life jacket
- A whistle (optional)
These aspects are pretty necessary for getting into the activity.
Find a spot to start
After you have the necessary gear to SUP, you need a place to try it out. Ideally, you should target waterways that are clean, still, and easy to maneuver. For your first time especially, don’t pick a place that has a strong current or big waves. This will make the process much more difficult.
Target lakes, bays, and areas that do not have much resistance.
Try to stand up
The hardest part for beginners when trying to SUP is getting onto the board and standing up without falling over. This is the first part to master in order to SUP successfully. Here are some steps for standing up.
- Go to water that is about knee deep and stand next to the board.
- Hold each side of the board, and slowly climb on top with your knees.
- Balance yourself with your knees and hands on each side of the board. Practice paddling on your knees to gain some confidence.
- One leg by one, stand up while keeping your balance as much as possible.
This is going to take some practice, but the end results are well worth it. Always try in water shallow enough for ease to get on, but not too shallow that you will get hurt when you fall, because you will fall. Eventually, you get more comfortable and branch out into deeper waters.
These same rules apply for inflatable stand up paddle boards, also known as iSUPs. These have a slightly different design, but the idea is the same.
Once you can stand up, the next step is to paddle around and fully enjoy the experience. There are three main strokes to know when paddling.
- Sweep stroke - The sweep stroke is basically the forward stroke that is swept outward to turn the board.
- Reverse stroke - Sometimes you need to go backward which is where the reverse stroke comes into play. It is quite literally the opposite of the forward stroke.
- Forward stroke - This is the most basic stroke as it is necessary to paddle forward. Dig the paddle into the water on your side and push down and back.
That is the gist of how to paddle board! Using these tips will help you successfully SUP and find a new hobby to engage in. Good luck, and happy boarding!