Stand up to Tone up
I just love Stand Up Paddle Boarding. I first tried it on holiday and have been hooked ever since. It is one of those activities that is fun to do, probably easier than you think it is and which offers an excellent workout. These are only some of the reasons why it is rapidly becoming one of the fastest growing sports in the world. So why is it so good for you?
Strengthening and toning
SUP strengthens the upper body and core through the paddling motion and gentle twisting actions required to move the board through the water. As you are continually having to adjust your body to keep your balance while paddling, on the board, your stability with which you balance comes from your core. This targets the muscle groups in the mid-section of your body, in particularly your abs. Think Cameron Diaz. She is a regular paddle boarder.
It is also excellent for strengthening the mid and lower back, the delts, pecs and triceps.
There is a lot of debate as to how many calories you burn when paddle boarding. Some argue up to 1000 calories per hour. I am slightly more conservative in my view regarding this. While it may be possible for professionals to go at it hard in rough conditions to get that level of burn, I suspect that this would require a great deal of expertise and overall physical conditioning. I prefer the estimates that suggest it is more likely that paddle boarders use between 250 and 500 calories per hour.
For me it is more about the strengthening and the toning, as well as the tranquility that you only find on water. It is little wonder that some chose to practise yoga on SUP’s!
To try it out you will need a SUP, a paddle and some calm water. Lakes and canals are ideal for this.
As the boards are quite expensive to buy the best option is to find a shop or club that does rentals. I have mention my local rental shop in my earlier blog. Rental boards tend to be wide and ‘floaty’ which helps when starting out.
A first lesson is optional. My friends and I didn’t have lessons and found our balance quite quickly. I have subsequently watched videos to improve my posture and technique.
Other than that, you need a sense of fun.