Standup Paddle Boarding on the Emerald Coast


Are they confused surfers? Did they lose their boat? These are just a few questions that many ponder when they first see stand-up paddleboarding, also referred to as SUP by those in the know. What are they doing paddling around on that surf board?

SUP Competition Photo by Maria McIntire

Well, to begin with it’s not actually a surf board in the traditional sense. A paddleboard, or SUP board, is wider, longer, and more stable than a standard surfboard. Paddleboarding combines a bit of surfing with paddling, allowing participants to get a real workout while having a blast. This is a sport that’s gaining in popularity just about anywhere there’s water to be found.

Beginners can rent boards or take classes through a local surf shop, some of which even sponsor SUP events where paddlers can pit their skills against other competitors. It’s becoming increasingly easy to find others interested in going out for a paddle. For those not interested in SUP racing the fishing boards might hold more appeal. Some boards are specially outfitted for fishing enthusiasts.

Stand-up paddleboarding provides great exercise for those looking for a fun way to keep fit. Steering a SUP with a long paddle allows paddlers to really work the core muscles of the torso. There are a variety of different strokes and techniques that paddlers can learn to use their board more efficiently.

Where can one go on a SUP? Catch surf at the beach or enjoy a calmer ride by exploring bays, rivers, lakes and ponds, all of which are no problem for a SUP board. Many surfers are making the switch from regular surf boards to the SUPs because the paddling aspect allows them to catch more wave sets with less effort.

Planning a trip to the beach this weekend? Why not check out what’s SUP and start a new hobby.


About Beverly Hill

Beverly is a deputy clerk with the Florida court system and is an experienced writer in her free time. Her love of adventure and the outdoors is what fuels her desire to seek out new and exciting things.
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