If you're looking for an easy way to get out on the water and experience the great outdoors, then paddle boarding is just the thing for you. Offering various benefits, both for mental and physical health, as well as being a fun and sociable sport, paddle boarding is popular across the world.
In this beginners guide to paddle boarding we'll cover everything you need to know to get started with this exciting water sport. Whether you're looking to ride the waves, explore serene lakes, or simply get a full-body workout, paddle boarding is a fun and accessible water sport. So grab your board, paddle, and a sense of adventure, and let's dive into the world of paddle boarding!
Getting Started with Paddle Boarding
Before you hit the water, there are a few things to keep in mind when getting started with paddle boarding. From choosing the right paddle board and nailing your technique, to ensuring your safety whilst out paddling, we’ll cover it all.
Choosing the right paddle board
When it comes to choosing a paddle board it’s important to select one that’s right for your skill level and the type of paddling you’ll be doing. For beginners, a wider and longer board will provide more stability and make it easier to balance, reducing the likelihood of you falling into the water. Next, make sure you have the proper gear, including a leash to keep you tethered to your board and a personal flotation device (PFD) for safety. When you're ready to hit the water, start in calm and shallow waters until you get the hang of it.
Getting on and off the board can also be slightly tricky for beginners. We’ve pulled together a few of our top tips to help make it as easy as possible.
Start in shallow water
Position the board
Kneel on the board
Stand up slowly
To get off the board, simply reverse the process
Remember, practice makes perfect
Basic Paddle Boarding Techniques
The first technique to learn is proper stance and balance. Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart and centred on the board, with your knees slightly bent and your core engaged, will help you maintain stability on the board. Next, it's important to learn how to properly use your paddle to propel yourself through the water. This involves using a simple stroke technique, starting with the paddle blade in the water at the front of the board and pulling it back towards your ankle. As you become more confident, turn the board with ease, sweeping the paddle on one side or using a back-paddle technique.
Finally, learning how to turn the board is another key technique to master, which can be done by either sweeping the paddle on one side of the board or by using a back-paddle technique. By practising and perfecting these basic paddle boarding techniques, beginners can feel confident and comfortable on the water.
Safety Is Key
When it comes to paddle boarding, safety should always be a top priority. Before heading out on the water with your paddle board it’s essential that you have the necessary safety gear. A buoyancy aid should be worn at all times whilst out on the water, this will keep you afloat if you fall into the water. Similarly, it’s also essential to wear an ankle leash whilst out on your SUP, this will ensure the board doesn’t float away if things don’t go to plan.
Paddle Boarding Tips for Beginners
There are a few tips that can help you get the most out of your experience. First and foremost, be sure to maintain proper posture and stance while standing on the board. Keep your feet parallel and shoulder-width apart, and distribute your weight evenly. When paddling, use your core muscles to rotate your body rather than just your arms. This will help you paddle more efficiently and with less fatigue. Also, pay attention to the weather and water conditions before you go out.
Wind and currents can greatly affect your paddle boarding experience, so make sure you're prepared for the conditions you'll encounter. Lastly, don't be afraid to start small and work your way up to longer, more challenging paddles as your skills improve. With these tips in mind, you'll be well on your way to becoming a confident and capable paddle boarder.
Ready to begin your journey?
At Wave we have a range of beginner-friendly paddle boards. So if you’re ready to get out on the water make sure to check them out! We also have a range of paddle boarding safety equipment and accessories including buoyancy aids, electric pumps, and more.