What is your favorite activity on a SUP? Here is a list of some of the most popular activities on a SUP.
I want to thank all the paddlers on SUP Chat who helped contribute to my poll on what SUP activities they enjoy. If you are passionate about SUP join our SUP Chat group on Facebook.
As with any of these activities, always be safe and have FUN!
Enjoy stand up paddle boarding on flat water by yourself, or with friends, and family. Many local SUP shops offer lessons, and social events to get you started. At Blue Paddle SUP we have Halloween Paddles, Full Moon Paddles, Food Drive Paddles, & etc. Best time to go SUP is when the weather and water are warm, but you can paddle through the winter months with proper equipment.
Check your local shop for rentals, lessons, and events, and get out on the water!
Do your yoga practice or your fitness routine on a stand up paddle board. This can be done outside on flatwater or at your local indoor/outdoor pool. It's a great way to elevate your breathing, stretching, balance, and core.
Stand Up Paddle Board Racing on water is a blast! There are all kinds of SUP races throughout the world that you can enter. Find a small local community SUP race to enter for your first race. Start off with a one mile or a 5K race. Don't worry about your pace, just go meet the paddle community and have fun! Equipment gets a little more expensive once you have to purchase a race board. But many races still have a "sup surf" division (less than 12'6" size board) that you can participate in.
Super fun way to experience SUP! You paddle with a high wind at your back. Winds can be anywhere from 15-30mph. When first starting off go with an experienced friend or take a lesson. A great place to do downwinding for the first time is The Columbia River Gorge in Oregon. At the Columbia River Gorge, the winds travel East and the current travels West creating swells in the water that you surf. It's similar to surfing, but you are travelling in a straight line, pushing you down the river!
Another fun way to enjoy SUP! I admit I love sup surfing. I had never surfed until I sup surfed at 50 yrs. old! All I can say is try it, you will love it! There are so many wonderful things about it that I could write a separate article on it! Anyway it's one of the hardest, and funnest ways to SUP! You can SUP Surf a short board, a long board, a race board, or even a Mega inflatable board! Going in and out of the surf, catching a wave, riding a wave, getting safely out of the wave. Always progressing, always laughing!
This is on my list to do! Stand Up Paddle Boarding in water rapids! Whitewater SUP requires a lot of skill and focus. Watch Mike Tavares shredding on the river https://www.supthemag.com/videos/mike-tavares-shredding-on-the-river/. White water parks are showing up on rivers everywhere there is a paddle community to support them.
This is one of the latest trends for SUP! I'm not sure if it's something I will ever try, but you just never know. It's similar to SUP Surfing, but people who do it say you "fly"! SUP Foiling has a huge foil fin on the bottom of a short, wide board. It does not require waves at all. In fact you can learn to SUP foil by being pulled from the back of a motorboat.
SUP with your DOG, CAT, or other PET
Stand Up Paddleboarding with your dog! This is very new for me. I just got a dog about 4 months ago. Check out my blog I have a couple of articles on SUPing with your pup. There are a couple of people that SUP with their cats too, and most recently a pig, a goat, and a hedgehog!
Escape and discover new destinations by SUP. Whether you are traveling to Mexico, Asia, or Europe, you can organize a SUP adventure through local guides or companies. Some of my favorite adventures are right here in Southern California on the Pacific ocean. This past summer I went with a group down the Colorado River. We paddled, camped, & explored!
SUP for a CAUSE
This is a great way to do some good and get to know your paddle community! In the 6 yrs. that I have been paddling, this community is amazing! A few paddles I have participated in are the StandUp for the Cure, and Monster and Sea 24 Hour Paddle, Paddle Purpose. There is Paddle Imua in Hawaii a multiple discipline paddle race that celebrates the lives of special needs children by embracing our connection to the ocean. Or you can paddle 25 miles around Manhattan in New York at the SEApaddleNYC, and raise money for autism and the environment. There are so many opportunities to paddle for a cause: clean water, environment, mental health, empowering women, & etc. "Get “onboard” to do something good for someone else, and revitalize your love for SUP once again. The is a whole new passion for paddling when your paddling for a purpose!" Jodelle Fitzwater/StandUP Journal
These are usually a long and well planned out adventure or journey. Some people like to set off and navigate whole islands. For instance, Sian Sykes of Psyched Paddleboarding recently stand up paddle boarded around Wales while raising money for Surfers Against Sewage, The North Wales Wildlife Trust and The RNLI. If you really want to challenge yourself than sign up for the YuKon River Quest. The world's longest annual paddling race-715km/444 miles from Whitehorse to Dawson City, Yukon.
Check out these links for more about expeditions:
This is also pretty trendy right now. I've got the gear, and just haven't done it yet! You can get a paddle board equipped with scotty mounts to attach rod holders, bait trays, down riggers, fish finders and whatever else your heart desires. Here's a little video to get you going: https://www.supthemag.com/features/skills/beginner-video-tutorial-for-building-a-basic-standup-paddle-fishing-setup/.