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Stand-Up Paddling (SUP) – leisure time in the water

Here I will introduce you to recreational sports and briefly give you a few tips and ideas for competitions with the SUP boards for the next holiday leisure on water

Whether at the beach, the local rivers and lakes or even at Schlag on the Raab (German Game Show)- Stand-up Paddling can be found at increasingly many different locations these days. Its origin, however, is Tahiti, where fishing was always done by standing in a canoe, out in the ocean. In Hawaii on the other hand, this kind of getting around was left only for the kings and a few selected noble men. Fortunately, this is no longer the case, and Stand-up Paddling is a great past time sport for the entire family.

Stand up Paddling (SUP)
Stand-up Paddling (SUP)

What's Stand up Paddling?

As the name already implies, with Stand-up Paddling, you do not sit but stand while rowing. This is one of those sports you can do in almost any weather. After all, it does not require wave or strong winds. Also, Stand-Up Paddling is learned faster than surfing and sailing, and even the beginner can get right into it. However, the technique has to be mastered and a good sense of balance has to be obtained all the time.

That’s how it is done. Take the board into the water and first, kneel on it. Next, you try to stand up while using the paddle for support. The best position is approx. In the middle of the board while getting up. Then you go back one or two steps. Then you start paddling. However, keep in mind not to change sides every stroke but only every 5 – 7 strokes. This way you will keep your board straight. In addition, in it important to make steady and flowing strokes.

Image: Stand-up Paddling (SUP): pastime leisure, or challenging competitions in the water with Stand-Up Paddleboards

What does the sport?

The sport combines numerous advantages. First, it is done out in the fresh air, and it greatly helps to release stress. Also, physical exercise has a positive effect on kid’s health. Even if you are not training for performance and endurance, because you paddle along leisurely. However, after a while, you will feel it in your arms, and this will increase your fitness. Also, there are regular competitions in which you will increase your speed because that’s what eventually counts. This is one of the reasons why Stan-Up Paddling enjoys growing popularity. It’s all in the fun and thrill of the sport.

The various boards

There are different paddleboards available, which are specially made for Stand-Up Paddling. They usually consist of PVC and have a rubberized surface for safety reasons and good footing. For transport, they can even be inflated. Therefore many boards some with pump included. In general, the board are divided for male and female as well as for the allowable weight. Boards for women are generally somewhat smaller. In addition, various shapes are on offer. Boards that are narrower are particularly suitable for races, as they glide faster. However, they are not suitable for beginners, because they tip over easily.

Moreover, the models vary according to the intended use. There are some boards available which you can also use on waves or attach a sail while others are more optimised for the use on rivers.

The cost will vary depending on quality. Beginner boards are available from about 250 Euros upwards. Good boards are priced at about 1000 Euro, with almost no limit upwards.

Stand-up Paddling (SUP)
Stand-up Paddling (SUP) | ©:

Stand-up Paddling as leisure program implemented in youth work - SUP game ideas

In a holiday camp on a lake, the sea or a quiet river offers itself for Stand-up Paddling than one program point to very good. Without any doubt, the boards can be hired somewhere close by. This makes it easy for small teams to take Stand-up Paddling tours.

If you have 2 – 3 boards available that is in most instances all that is needed to carry out competitions. The children will playfully increase their dexterity and increase their sense of balance.

  • Classic

    The objective is to paddle around a floating buoy and then pass the board on to the next player. You can either stop the individual time of the team or a group time.

  • Laying down

    In this scenario, the kids are laying on their bellies and paddle around the buoy. You can either stop the individual time of the team or a group time.

  • Slalom

    Instead of just paddling around one buoy, they have to manoeuvre through several buoys like in slalom. The closer the buoys, the harder it gets.

  • Passenger transport

    Always two people are on the board. The one person is totally chilled, laying back while the other person is standing. Again, you can stop the time, or 2 boards compete against each other.

  • Spearing fish

    Similar to jostling, two opponents stand opposite each other, each one on his own board. The objective is to use the paddle to manipulate the board of the other person in a way so that he loses balance and falls into the water. The winner receives 2 points – but only if he remains on his board. If he too falls into the water, he will score only one point.

  • SUP jump rope

    Standing on a board a candidate to jump over a rope as many times as possible within one minute.

  • SUP Obstacle Course

    Should it happen that the common SUP is too easy and boring, you can quickly spice it up by implementing a few features:

    • Slalom buoys and turn them over

    • A rod (or a rope), which is about 1 meter above the water surface; the objective is to paddle underneath without falling off the board.

    • A crossbar is attached to two upright rods; only 30 cm above the water. That is just high enough for the board to go through. However, the paddler has to jump over it and land on the board on the other side.

    • The candidate has to collect three balls and throw them at a target.

  • SUP Pontoon Bridge

    3-4 SUP boards are held together by ropes in a way so that they form a bridge. The objective is for the kids to walk over this bridge (maybe even several times or until the time runs out). The one who falls down has to return to the start and do it all over again.

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