ENJOY SUP EVEN IN WINTER
Wear warm SUP clothing suitable for winterIf you are planning to explore the waterways in the winter months, it is essential that you must wear the right gear and clothes that are appropriate for the weather. If you stay at a place with freezing temperatures, you need to wear insulated clothes, to keep you warm and dry. Neoprene leggings are great for covering your legs along with neoprene water boots. Your hands
should be layered with thin neoprene gloves that give you a better grip on the paddle and protected from the elements. A lot of heat is lost through your head, so a beanie hat is always a good idea!
Always use a SUP leash and PFDPeople sometimes ignore using a leash when they are on flat waters. However, things can be different in the winter months. You must never forget to use the leash with a paddleboard. Not only does it keep you attached to the board in case you fall in, you can also reach the board sooner without much struggle - it will be a lifesaver.
In many places it is law to have a life jacket or personal flotation device with you when out paddle boarding so wear one in the winter months. Not only will it provide extra warmth but it could be critical to keeping you alive if you fall in the cold water.
Stay close to the shoreTry not to go to deeper water in the winter months. The water can get extremely cold as you stray further from the shore, increasing the risk of hypothermia. We suggest you keep within 15 feet off the shore. It’s much more difficult to swim longer distances in cold weather, so it's always best to keep your distance closer to the shore.
Keep a warm-up kitWhen going for a paddle board session during winter, you must always pack a warm kit with warm clothes to change into after getting off the water like a winter robe, a towel, a warm jacket, and likewise. It keeps you warm and comfy after battling the freezing waters. Packing a thermos of something warm to eat or drink after your paddle board session is also a good trick to help keep you warm and refuelled after spending time on the water.
Safety, Safety, Safety!There are 3 key things to remember here.
Check the weather forecast
For an ideal paddle boarding session, look for calm winds and precipitation-free skies in the forecast. Rain or snow can make it difficult to see when you’re on the water, making it easy to drift off course and others on the water to see you. A good rule of thumb is “when in doubt – don’t go out” and that is critical in the colder months.
Get back before dark
In the cooler months, don’t forget the sun goes down a lot earlier in the day and the temperature cools off quickly even before the sun has set. Plan to be in from the water well before the sun is below the horizon. Your local weather forecast should give you the time that the sunsets, so you can play it safe and aim to be in 30 minutes before that (earlier if you can!)
Don't paddle alone
This applies all the time but it is often overlooked during the summer. In the colder months it’s even more important to make sure you are paired up with a paddle boarding partner. If you are going to be paddling alone, be sure to tell a friend where you are going boarding and when you will be back. Don’t forget to call them as soon as you are back to let them know – you’ll save them from any unnecessary worry about how your ride went!
Hopefully, this blog was able to give you some assurance and some great ideas about enjoying paddle boarding in cold weather. So what are you waiting for? Get your paddle board and gear out and plan a weekend on the local waterways. If you need a quality board, check out our online store of Sea Lion Boards to buy sustainable and eco-friendly inflatable paddle boards as well as warm robes and hats. Hope you have a great time, and most importantly remember to stay safe!