A Beginner’s Guide to Paddle Boarding

A Beginner's Guide to Paddle Boarding

Paddle boarding is one of the latest trends as far as outside ventures go. A fun combination between surfing and rowing, paddle boarding is an activity in which you kneel or stand on a board in a (typically) still body of water and maneuver a set of paddles to get around.

It has been regarded as both gratifying and relaxing as well as enjoyably challenging and skill-based. This calming outlet has grown in popularity in recent years and has everybody asking “How can I do it, too?”

Seeking Out Lessons

As the popularity of paddle boarding has increased, so has its pool of providers. Now, because of its heightened trend, paddle board lessons can often be found at the same places that offer lessons for kayaking, surfing, and other water sports. These establishments are usually on the shores of beaches or at stores bordering any body of water.

Paddle boarding is something that can be self-taught, but, like any activity, safety is always key, and it’s good to have someone who knows what they’re doing with you when you’re first getting started.

Many spots that offer lessons for paddle boarding supply most if not all of the needed equipment themselves, but it’s always smart to check ahead of time. Be sure to call or look up the web address of the venue offering lessons before you go.

Finding the Right Equipment

It’s vital to make sure you find usable equipment that is durable and certified to do its job—the last thing anyone needs is to be in the middle of a body of water when your board goes under or your paddle breaks off. Due to the accessibility of the internet, plenty of providers have gone out of their way to document the best equipment for outdoor activities, including but not limited to https://www.beactiveoutside.com/, to assist you in finding the best gear for you.

Because you’ll be in and around the water, it’s best to don swimwear when paddle boarding. Rash guards are also suggested, as well as wetsuits for colder weather. As far as shoes go, to wear paddle board-safe shoes or go barefoot is entirely up to personal preference. Shoes can be helpful if you’re paddle boarding anywhere near rock or sharp edges, but be aware that as you’ll be in water, they should be waterproof so as not to fall apart.

It is important to be mindful that the United States Coast Guard recognizes paddle boards as “vessels,” thus putting paddle boarders under such regulations: life jackets are required for those younger than twelve years old, and paddlers are required to have a whistle for alerting nearby boats and additional water vessels as well as a flashlight for after sunset. Further information to answer any questions can be found online.

Bring a Buddy!

Everything is made more fun with company, and paddle boarding is no different. Being the relaxing sport that it is, paddle boarding can be the perfect activity on a beautiful Saturday afternoon with friends, perfectly topped with a picnic blanket, lunch, and your paddle board gear. As a water activity, it is extremely popular around the summer time, and ideal for needing to cool off.

However, if you want to simply improve your skills or have a moment to yourself, paddle boarding alone can be just as fulfilling. Once far out enough into the water, you can float and enjoy a serene, organic moment with just you and the water. Then, you have the option of meditating, or even doing yoga!

Whether alone, with friends, in spring, or in autumn, paddle boarding is a great way to get out of your head and into your body. Its increased popularity has made it much more accessible, and it requires physicality without being demanding or exhausting. Next time you need some time to yourself, grab a paddle, grab a board, and call it a day.

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