If your summer bucketlist has “Finally try stand-up paddleboarding (SUP)” on it, here’s some good news.
You can get on the water with Hamptons SUP guru Gina Bradley (AKA Paddle Diva) and Well+Good readers at our Surfside Salutations events on June 20, July 11, and August 22 at Montauk’s Surf Lodge, where SUP sessions will include tutorials for beginners, plus plenty of paddle time (and vitamin D), and tips to improve if you’re already a fan.
Prime yourself for time on the board now with these five simple tips every SUP-er must know from Paddle Diva herself:
1. Before you get on the water, practice going from a kneel to stand on dry land. Start kneeling, then go to all fours (like a yoga table-top position) then step onto two feet.
2. Always stand in the middle of the board—that’s where the balance is.
3. Wear a leash that attaches you to the board. If the wind picks up and you’re separated from your board in a fall, you could be stuck swimming home as your board drifts downwind (which may be a great workout, but probably isn’t ideal).
4. Plant your paddle strongly in the water. Good paddle strokes ensure you’re able to make it through waves or calm, in any wind direction. Paddle with extended arms (see Gina, above) and use your core to pull the paddle along the rail of the board, taking it out of the water at your feet. Pulling the paddle all the way to the tail of the board may feel like a big stroke, but it will actually slow you down.
5. Look up. Quit staring at your feet to make sure you’re doing it right. The best way to keep your balance is to look at the horizon. This will help you keep paddling straight and gives you the best perspective.
For more information or to get a ticket, check out Surfside Salutations
(Photo: Paddle Diva)