Paddle boarding has become a must-try sport for water lovers.
A great place to take a paddleboard ride is in Lover’s Key, Florida. But getting on a paddleboard can be kind of intimidating. How do you stand up without falling in the water? How are you supposed to paddle while you’re on your feet?
Take a look at this guide to learn some stand-up paddleboarding tips.
Pick the Right Sized Board
You might need to pick a wider board than you think. For a beginner, you paddle board should be at least 30 inches by 11 feet. It should feel sturdy and comfortable when you stand on it.
If the board doesn’t feel sturdy and keeps wobbling around when you try to balance, you might need a wider board. Balancing problems usually stem from the wrong sized boards.
Choosing a board that’s big enough from the beginning can make a big difference. When it comes to picking your board, always go with a bigger size, rather than a smaller one.
Prepare to Get Wet
There’s a good chance you’ll fall off your board several times as you get used to it. This isn’t a bad thing. In fact, falling during your first try can be a good thing. It gets rid of the fear of falling and allows you to focus on having fun instead.
But this does mean you should prepare to get wet. Unless you’re paddleboarding in tropical water, you might want to consider a wetsuit.
Don’t Stand like a Surfer
There’s a right and wrong way to stand on your paddle board, and standing like a surfer is the wrong one. You’ll find it challenging to balance this way.
Your feet should both be in the middle of the board, parallel with the stringer. Keep them shoulder-width apart and give your knees a gentle bend. This will help you keep your core centered, so you stay balanced as you paddle.
Know How to Hold the Paddle
Though it’s most people’s initial instinct, don’t hold the paddle like you’d hold a broom. That’ll keep your strokes small and weak, and it’ll leave all the work to your arm muscles.
Keep one hand on the top of the paddle and the other hand on the middle of the shaft. When you hold the paddle, keep it in front of you and bend your elbows. You should angle the paddle away from you as it touches the water.
Make sure the paddle is all the way under the water when you pull. These kinds of long strokes will shift the work to your back muscles.
And don’t worry about dropping the paddle. They float, so if you fall or lose your grip a few times, you won’t end up without a paddle.
How to Stand up on Your Paddle Board
Always start in calm, shallow water. But make sure it’s far enough into the water that the fin isn’t touching the bottom. Take a few strokes while sitting on your knees. Once you have your balance, stand up with one foot at a time.
Know These Stand-up Paddle Boarding Tips
Paddleboarding takes practice, so don’t get discouraged if you fall. Remember to keep your feet a shoulder-width apart and bend your knees. Always hold the paddle the right way and take long, deep strokes.
All our paddle boards come with board leashes. Wearing these will keep your board attached to you at all times, even if you fall off.
Interested in going on a paddle boarding adventure in Lover’s Key? Take a look at some of our rental options.
Lovers Key Adventures
8700 Estero Blvd,
Fort Myers Beach, FL 33931