A Short History of the Stand Up Paddle Board

16 Aug

” I have given a very warm welcome to this sport activity into my life, it adds perfectly to any lifestyle and it doesn't have to go away with age “

Macker

 

Stand Up Paddle Boarding (or SUP for short) is an aquatic activity that involves using an oversized surfboard in combination with a long paddle for propulsion. This is a relatively new sport, with beginnings in the U.S. back in the 60′s, and further back to the Polynesian islanders who used it to navigate while on the water.

The current edition can be pinpointed to the year 2002 on the island of Hawaii when locals discovered this new wave to ride the waves when the surface of the ocean was fairly flat due to lack of winds on that particular day. This soon was more than just a passing fad, as not only did this water sport give a great workout, but it was also a lot of fun to do as well. They soon found out that the larger sized boards meant different movements could be done on the waves. When combined with paddles, the perfect wave didn’t need to be caught and more intricate maneuvers could be done using the paddle to steer.

While there was initially a small core group of aficionados that enjoyed this activity, it soon spread to all of the neighboring islands. When well known practitioners such as Jimmy Lewis began to manufacture their own units, a wide buying audience was found. After this, the major windsurfing companies also began to take notice, and large scale production of these larger boards was initiated. Thus was born the now burgeoning global popularity of this aquatic activity.

The first major push was directly aimed at windsurfers who were already familiar with this vertical positioning on the board, but didn’t want to be on the water when the wind died down. This is one of the reasons that many of them thought it would be a passing fad. However, once they actually got on a board, they were convinced of its popularity.

The sport is officially only 9 years in the U.S., but in other countries around the world, it is still in infancy with only 3 to 4 years of participation. However, this pace is growing rapidly as far as the number of participants and the amount of boards being sold. This is one sport that has a lot of appeal to water enthusiasts everywhere. Surfers, windsurfers, swimmers and paddlers all can find some enjoyment while paddle surfing. Not only is this a great new activity, but it gives one of the best core workouts ever seen on the water.

Stand Up Paddle Surfing

This story first appeared here

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