“Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
I think the first time I saw someone paddleboarding was on my trip to Tahiti in 2009. How in the heck can someone have such great balance in the middle of the ocean?! And slowly I’ve seen more and more aquatic centers offer Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) rentals here in the states.
So last year… (LOL! If you follow my blog, you know by now that ‘last year’ has been quite the year for me) I finally decided to give SUPing a try, and I’ve been a fan ever since! Check out some photos from my latest paddleboarding session with some of my girl friends.
My favorite place to paddleboard is Lake Union because of the great city views. I love paddling along the boat houses and Gas Works Parks. There is always so much to see! On a really sunny day, though, the boat traffic is insane and can get a little crowed.
On this particular SUP session, however, we went out to Juanita Beach in Kirkland. This was my first time paddleboarding there but had such a great time with the girls, and an equal amount of fun!
If you’ve ever been SUPing, you know how much fun everyone else is missing out on! But if you haven’t…
And if you’ve seen anyone paddle boarding before and are anything like my friends, you have probably thought about trying it sometime and just haven’t made it happen.
Well wait no longer! Try something new and exciting this summer, and make it happen! A few things to keep in mind that may help you out:
- It’s really hard to tip the boards over. Let the guys at the rentals know that it’s your first time SUPing. They normally suggest a bigger, more stable board. I do not swim. So if you don’t swim either, don’t let that hold you back, and wear your live jacket of course (at least until you are really comfortable). I am YET to tip over. Can I get a HOORAH?!
- You will get wet. Well, your feet will. And so will your things sitting on the board. Understand that a SUP is not like a canoe, and water will wash onto your board. So be smart in what you pack. Most boards will also have a stretchy strap to tie some things down.
- Be aware of the body of water you’ll be SUPing in. If you live in the PNW you know our ocean is cold year long. So I prefer SUPing in the lakes instead of the Puget Sound. Remember water will be washing onto your board and onto your feet. I haven’t SUP’d in the Puget Sound (like Alki or Ballard), but I’ve heard people complain about this the most. Comment below if you don’t think there’s a difference.
- Great arm, leg, and core workout. Enough said! But if you do get tired, you can always sit down and enjoy the views while you rest.
- You don’t need to take a class. Unless you absolutely want to take a class, save yourself the money! I went out not knowing how to swim and not ever trying anything similar to SUPing, and I did just fine. The rental guys will have you start on your knees and will even give you your first push into the water if you ask. Get a feel for the water movement and slowly make your way up onto your feet.
- Be outdoor-smart! In other words, bring a water bottle, sunscreen, sunglasses, and maybe even a hat. Dehydration and skin cancer are real! Protect yourself.
- The rental price can add up. At least around the Seattle area, the average rental price is as high as $20/hour. However, prices will vary, and some places charge less on weekdays, so do your research!
- Check for deals online like Groupon and LivingSocial. Just be aware that a lot of people will also be purchasing those and will require reservations, so be ready for long waits on the phone and availabilities. However, some places will even have season passes for under $30, whaaat??? Deals! Be sure to check out each aquatic center’s website.
- Bring that water camera!!…and have lots of fun. GoPro is my gadget of choice, and my absolute favorite! Just don’t drop it and lose it.
- You can do it all year round! With the proper gear, of course. I am yet to SUP in the colder months, but don’t mind if I do… =)
Random TIPS that worked for me on my first try:
- Look into the distance. Your first instinct is to look straight down at the board, but watching the board move can make you lose your balance easier.
- Crawl off your board to submerge yourself into the water. I don’t swim, so it was important for me to get a feel for the water. Just in case I tipped over, at least the water wouldn’t cause me panic.
I wish you all a safe and amazing summer! I know I will be SUPing my life away this summer! Haha! Or as much as possible. Hopefully you can try stand up paddleboarding if you haven’t yet. And if you have, keep on rocking those waves!!
Or try something completely new, wether it’s paddle boarding or not.
Life gets boring when you stay within the limits of what you already know. So continue to strive for new and exciting things that will keep your mind awake!
There are seven days in a week, honey bunches! And someday is NOT one of them! [hahaha!]
Love and Adventure,