So you’re looking to take up paddle boarding, whether it’s to try a new challenging sport or you’re just looking for something you can do to have some fun in the sun. But you don’t really know how to even start.
How much strength do you really need? Should you train beforehand? Will you be able to balance, or will you end up diving face-first into the water?
Of course, you will need to develop some strength before you try to get out on the water. This not only will make it easier to ride, but more fun! Some core strength will help you balance, and overall flexibility will be beneficial, especially if you’re looking to break out your scorpion on a yoga board.
But will you be able to put yourself to the test? How hard will it be to paddle board?
Am I Going to Fall Off?
A lot of people may think that they won’t be able to stand up on their board for even a second. They immediately picture body slamming into the waves and struggling to swim back to shore, dragging their board back with them.
I’m here to ease your mind: you will be able to stand up on the board. It’ll just take some practice, preferably on some calmer waters (if you’re trying to practice on a stormy sea, you probably won’t stay up very long).
But, unfortunately, you will probably fall off at least once or twice when you’re first trying to paddle board. The most important thing is to get up and keep going. Don’t get discouraged! Even the most experienced boarders fall off.
This video will show you how to get back up onto your paddle board if you do happen to fall off, since this is something that may be difficult to do as a beginner.
When you first start off, it’s better to learn the basics of your board and understand how it feels beneath you. If you’ve never been on a board before:
- Start off by laying with your stomach on the board.
- When you’re ready, transition to your knees.
- Lay your paddle horizontal across the board.
- Place your hands onto the paddle.
- Use your grip on the paddle to push yourself up, moving your weight from onto your knees to onto your feet one leg at a time.
Reminder: Many people decide to stay in a kneeling position if conditions become more difficult, since you may lose your balance. So if you feel most comfortable staying in that position for awhile, it’s okay!
This video shows a visual of these steps and can give you further information about how to stand up on your board, along with the other basics that may be useful as a beginner.
So Will You be Able to Paddle Board?
The answer is yes! There is no age requirement or gender restriction, there are no limits to who can paddle board. Even your dog can join you on the waters. As long as you build some basic strength before you get onto your board, you definitely can paddle board.
The most important thing you could bring to your paddle boarding trip is patience (even though your life jacket is pretty important too!). You won’t become a pro overnight, but with some practice, you’ll be able to stand up and move on your board.
Now get out there and get practicing!