When you picture the perfect spring day, what comes to mind? A tranquil walk in the woods? A picnic in the park? With warmer days just around the corner, ideas of sun-drenched outdoor experiences energize our minds and bodies. Among the many highly anticipated activities, with a recent surge in popularity, stand-up paddleboarding has become one of the most sought-after sports for springtime. Though relatively new to the water sports scene, stand-up paddleboarding, also known as SUP, has received a substantial amount of attention in recent years as it offers a fun way to get out on the water while simultaneously providing a low impact, full-body workout. Between its accessibility, level of enjoyment, and health benefits, stand-up paddleboarding is quickly becoming a springtime favorite for outdoor recreation
What is SUP?
Over the last several years, stand-up paddleboarding has taken the water sports world by storm, swiftly becoming one of the most popular forms of fitness. The sport's current popularity explosion has turned it into a modern-day phenomenon that attracts individuals of all ages and abilities. However, the origins of stand-up paddleboarding date back to ancient cultures from Africa to South America where canoes and various other watercraft would use long sticks for the purpose of transportation, fishing, or riding waves. It wasn’t until the modern style of SUP came to life in the 1900s, thanks to a group of surfers who utilized the concept to teach surfing to visiting tourists. As the sport continued to evolve, it began to diversify from a variation of surfing to racing, touring, yoga, and whitewater. However, the most approachable form of SUP involves either a hard or inflatable board, paddle, and whichever body of water you are eager to enjoy. Not only does it provide you with a low-impact, full-body workout, but it provides direct access to miles of shoreline, fresh air, and an easy way to get out on the water.
Hard vs Inflatable Paddleboard
There are two main types of paddleboards, hard and inflatable. Inflatable paddleboards feature PVC exteriors with drop-stitch construction that creates an air core. While they tend to be less firm, when fully inflated, they offer exceptional stiffness and provide an accessible, convenient option. They come with a pump for inflating the board and a storage bag for convenient storing purposes. When fully inflated, they reach 12-15 pounds per square inch and are extremely rigid and stable. Many people today are drawn to the qualities of an inflatable paddle board due to the fact that they are easily portable, durable, and can be conveniently stored away. If you enjoy paddleboarding in different locations and have limited storage space, you will love the ease of an inflatable paddleboard. Hard paddle boards are constructed with composite materials and tend to be more rigid and have a higher overall volume. The biggest advantage to a hard paddleboard is they don’t rely on air for rigidity, offering higher performance. Though they are more responsive and rigid, they are less convenient to transport and store. Though there are benefits to each style of SUP, inflatable paddle boards have become the more popular choice for recreational paddlers. Between the approachability, convenience, and portability, they prove to be the easiest, most versatile style of SUP.
Not only does SUP provide you with easy access to nature, but it also benefits your physical and mental health significantly. Combining balance, strength, and endurance, the act of paddleboarding targets your entire body while utilizing your core, back, arms, and leg muscles. What is most appealing about the sport is regardless of your age or skill level, SUP is easy to learn and provides accessibility to a full-body workout while simultaneously reaping the benefits of the all-natural healing remedy of water. Whether you are looking to ease the mind by doing a solo paddle or spending time socializing with others, the mental benefits that are achievable through SUP are equally as noticeable. Both a cardio and endurance workout, SUP greatly enhances your stamina while also burning calories. Balance is also particularly important for you to successfully paddleboard. In order to stand upright on the board while floating on water, your body is required to use a significant amount of core and leg strength. This not only benefits your focus on various other tasks in your life, but it also acts as a form of cross-training for other sports. All in all, not only does your body benefit from SUP but your mind and emotions do too.
When to SUP
For those lucky enough to live in warm climates, SUP is a fun and excellent way to enjoy the outdoors all year round. However, many paddleboarders anxiously await the arrival of spring for the chance to get out on the water. While summer presents the perfect opportunity for water sports, SUP enthusiasts are feeling the pull of springtime and the beauty that encompasses this season. With signs of winter fading and nature blossoming with life, there is so much to take in all around you. What better way to experience this transformation than on a stand-up paddleboard. After being cooped up all winter long, spring is the most beautiful time to get back outside and take advantage. Surrounded by the beauty of the open landscape, you have the opportunity to take in the blooming trees, fresh flowers, and encompassing wildlife from a different perspective. Unlike what you would experience via boat or on land, SUP provides you with exclusive access to hidden or difficult-to-access areas along the shoreline. Spring is the ideal season for SUP because the natural world is waking up from a long winter’s nap and you have direct access to a whole new, serene vantage point.
Stand-up paddleboarding is an excellent way to enjoy the natural beauty of springtime. Offering an easy and enjoyable to achieve a full-body workout while spending time outdoors, SUP is becoming an increasingly popular option for outdoor recreation. Whether you’re seeking a tranquil experience for yourself or looking to share a day out on the water with friends, SUP allows for a rich and immersive experience while enhancing your physical fitness and mental well-being