Before getting on the SUP to enjoy the waves, there are some things you need to be aware of. They are not serious and there is a strong chance you already are aware of most of them. But to be on the safer side, there are some tips you need to keep in mind. If you are a beginner, you need to remember these tips and follow them as you learn to stand up paddleboard.
- Wear a lifejacket
Ask yourself about your swimming skills. If you are not a confident swimmer, you should wear a personal floatation device or a lifejacket. Even if you feel pretty confident in the water, it is a good idea to wear one. This goes for all water sports activities you want to engage in.
2. Choose a safe location
Before you set out for paddleboarding, you must think of the potential rapids and currents. Choosing where to paddleboard is the first step towards a successful day of water sports. If you are close to the ocean, do not get engaged in fighting the tide. You need to ensure you are aware of the tide timing and use it to your benefit. If you are out for paddling, you need to know the waterbody you want to paddle on. Nobody wants to be thrown far away in the rocks near a river bend. Hence, choose a slow-flowing river until you get an experience.
3. Choose the right clothing
Heading out at the wrong time can put you into trouble. To make the most of your time outdoors, you need to choose the right time. Ensure that it is not very windy and the waves are constant. You do not want to ride on high waves from the first day. Wear sunscreen and carry a hat. When you are in the water, you will notice a strong reflection of the sun in the water and it can do more damage than being on land. Even if you head out on a cool day, you should wear the right clothing. Avoid wearing jewelry as it might come in the way.
4. The right length of the paddle will make a difference
You must check the length of the paddle to fit you. It can be easily done by standing next to the paddle and raising the arm straight next to your head. Notice where your fingers end, they should simply clasp on the handle with your completely extended arm. You need to adjust the paddle because it will affect the strokes. If the paddle is too short, you need to bend much more to efficiently paddle and if it is too big, you may have a tough time maintaining the flow.
5. Wear a leash
It is important to always wear a leash when you enter the water. If you fall, there are chances you will lose the board. Hence, wearing a leash will save you from going after your board or losing it in the water. Put the leash on and make sure it is on the dominant foot. If you do not know which foot is dominant, you can ask a friend to push you and try to not anticipate the push. Now the foot that you put out instantly will be the dominant foot.
6. Pick the right launching spot
When paddleboarding alone, you need to find a zone that is easy for you to launch. Pick a spot that enables you to easily get into the water. When you have a friend with you, it is easy to hold one another’s boards and help balance one another. After you have steadied yourself, aim to stand in the middle of your board. If you are a beginner, you will kneel a few times before standing up and that is okay. If you feel unsteady or wobbly, you should kneel first and then stand up.
7. Try paddling backward
Once you are on the board, you can make an attempt to gain a rhythm on the paddle stroke. Attempt paddling backward and it will turn you in the opposite direction. The stroke is much easier and quicker than constantly paddling forward.
Keep these tips in mind to become an expert in Standup Paddleboarding. Remember that you will fall and you will also get back up. You will feel a little uncertain or wobbly once you fall, so pick a stable point when you try to get back on the feet. Remember to have a good time and laugh and enjoy while you are paddleboard. Everyone falls from the board when learning this sport but do not let it ruin the fun of this activity. As long as you are wearing a lifejacket and have a leash on, there is nothing you need to worry about.
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