Introduction to stand up paddle boarding

Here is a quick introduction to stand up paddle boarding based on our experiences so far. We will update this page occasionally. Also look out for our blog posts on SUP here.

Why SUP?

There are lots of reasons to get into stand up paddle boarding. Here are a few to consider.

  • Fun
    • Recreation
    • Racing
    • Exploring
  • Exercise
    • Aerobic
    • Full Body

Buying a Board

Types of boards

There are 3 types of SUP boards:

  • Surf
  • All Around
  • Touring/Racing

Hard vs Inflatable

We like inflatable as they are easier to store and transport. They also tend to be much lighter weight and cost less.
Hard boards will be more stable and faster.

Length of SUP board

Lengths of SUP boards range from 8’ to over 14‘. Currently we are riding on 11’ boards and they are very comfortable. We get good stability and can have both of our 50 lb dogs on them. Shorter boards are more maneuverable while longer boards will track straighter and glide over the water faster.

Price

Prices of SUP boards range from $500 to multiple thousands. When you are starting out you will need a board and paddle at minimum. If you go inflatable then you need a pump and bag to carry them in, oh and a patch kit just in case. As of 2015 a good price for getting started is around $1000 for an inflatable board with all the fixings. Sure you can spend less but at some point quality of materials may become a factor.

Where to go

Rivers

Video Roger made of a race he did on the French Broad River in Asheville, NC. Be ready to fall.

Lakes

Another video Roger made of the first time we ever went out on our boards at Lake Julien near Asheville, NC.

Ocean/Sea

If you want to get into surfing on your SUP there are endless possibilities. We haven’t been out there yet but are ready, someday…

How to SUP

Videos

Werner Series of Videos

9 Steps
  1. Keep Elbows In
  2. Cover your head
  3. Climb back on from rear
  4. Get on from the front
  5. Stay centered on board and feet
  6. Keep footwear loose
  7. Keep a loose grip on paddle and stack hands
  8. Start in calm water
  9. Know PDF Laws
Turning

Some of these techniques aren’t a requirement to enjoy paddle boarding but they can help you get around a bit faster.

Forward Stroke Series
Segment 1 – Introduction

Stretch and get limber. If you have an inflatable board pumping it up is a great warm-up!

Segment 2 – Foundation
  • Stab the Duck
  • OK hold
  • Handhold Width
  • Icing the Cake
Segment 3 – Hips and Timing

Drive with the hips

Segment 4 – Driving the Duck

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BtWTUDNmSeg&ab_channel=WernerPaddles

  • Refining the Stroke
  • Top Arm Straight
  • Tilt Upper Body Forward
Surfing on a SUP

Not the best quality video and audio but good instructions.

Older video but lots of tips for handling surf on a SUP

Next Steps

Get a board and get out there!

What do you think?