Paddling is one of the most fun activities you could engage in. Once you graduate from a beginner to a master paddler, there’s no stopping your paddling abilities on the water. If you don’t know what surfing is already, it is an activity that involves using a board but is not related to surfing. As you paddle, you’ll be standing on a board while using something like a canoe paddle to propel yourself in any way you want to. Like all sports, it requires skill, experience, and a bit of free time to become adept. For those who are trying out paddling for the very first time, these few tips first to help you make the most of this fun activity.
Use a Leash
Water activities are fun, but they can turn out to be dangerous if you’re not careful. Ensuring safety is important, especially for beginners. One of the best ways to ensure safety while paddling is via using a leash. When you’re paddling, make sure that you’re tethering yourself to the board with a leash, as it will become a detrimental factor for your safety whenever you’re tired or if you ever get lost. It is also going to help you get back to safety if you ever find yourself in stormy conditions. You can either choose a straight leash or a coiled one. You can also choose from different attachment points (either ankle or calf).
Another thing to consider when you’re out on the water is the wind direction. When you’re paddling, your body acts like a sail. Therefore, if there is strong wind, you’ll find yourself steered in different directions, which will make it harder to paddle or propel yourself in a certain direction. Thus, before you use your paddling gear and take your board to the water, make sure that you check the wind and weather conditions first. A beginner’s goal would be to maintain stability and learn the basics, which can only be achieved if there is no inclement weather, stormy winds, or high waves.
Any sport requires a specific set of gear to ensure the best experience. Without getting the right gear, though, you may have trouble upgrading your skills. If you’re a beginner, you might want to start with the safest option: an all-around SUP is perfect for maintaining balance at any given moment and is the best beginner-friendly option on the market. There are, of course, the surf stand-up paddleboards, which are shorter and narrower but provide much more maneuverability. However, they are slower. If you’re not sure which one to buy yet, you can always rent a stand up paddle board at a reasonable price every time you go paddling until you find the type of paddle board that will suit your needs. Race paddlers, on the other hand, are a better option for expert paddlers, as they will be more challenging to maneuver.
Work on Your Paddling Technique
One of the main reasons why you might find yourself failing to maneuver your paddling board is the incorrect way with which you’re holding it. One common mistake that beginners make is using paddles so that the bent part of the board is facing them. This is, as you may already know, is wrong. The bent part will cause unwanted splashing at the front, which will tip off your balance and make paddling much more difficult for you. So, make sure that you’re using a paddle that the bent part is directed the other way, away from your face. Another thing to consider how to place your hands. If your hands are too close, you’ll be limiting the power of your strokes and will exert much more effort without going any further. So, be sure to place your hands further apart.
Paddle with Your Core
The main rule that you should learn before you’re anywhere near a paddling board is that you are engaging your core (not your arms) for paddling. Sure, your arms are an essential part of the activity as well, but if you think about it, you will find that your arms aren’t really providing as much power as your core will. In fact, your arms can easily tire. However, using the full force of your core muscles will prove more effective.
Taking these steps into mind, you’ll surely be on your way to becoming a master paddler. There are a lot of things that can go wrong without following simple safety tips, so make sure that you adhere to them for the optimum experience. Also, be sure to find sources and materials on the internet to know to learn the correct way of using a paddleboard.