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The Basics - A Guide to Paddleboarding: Tips, Tricks and Safety Advice

Paddleboarding has become one of the most popular activities. The sport is a great way to stay in shape, explore your surroundings and get some time in the water. Plus, it’s an activity that can be enjoyed solo or with friends and family.

However, before you hit the water make sure you know the basics of paddleboarding. This journal features the basics you need to know before going out on the water. From what you should wear to preparing for your first time out, this journal covers it. So whether you're new to paddleboarding or just want some tips to improve your game, read on for the basics you need to know about paddleboarding!

How to Get Started

First things first, make sure you have the right gear. You'll need a paddleboard (ideally one that's made specifically for you and if you need help choosing a board, check out our journal on how to choose the right paddleboard for you), a paddle, safety gear, a PFD (personal floatation device), food and water. If you aren't a beginner, a PFD is essential anyway! Also, if it's your first time using a paddleboard and you're not used to being in deeper water, try somewhere you are comfortable and close to a shore line. Once you're ready to go, head out onto the water!

What to Wear

When it comes to clothing, you’ll want to dress in layers. If the water is warm, choose a thin wetsuit or rash guard. But if it’s cold out and you plan on being in the water for a while, wear a thicker wetsuit or neoprene suit.

Layers are key. You can take layers off if you get warm, but if you are wet, it’s hard to put layers on without getting cold! Make sure your clothes are lightweight and quick drying - this will ensure that you won't lose any time when changing after your paddleboard session! Also consider what type of paddleboarding you'll be doing.

Gear to bring

  • Appropriate clothing - check out our journal on what to wear in all seasons
  • The correct leash type for the body of water (check out our leash journal) 
  • A PFD - this could save your life! Read our PFD safety journal for more information
  • A towel and/or robe, preferably one with quick drying material - like our Matiti robe! 
  • A winter robe to keep you warm on those winter evenings - Like our Maku robe
  • Drinks bottle to replenish lost fluid and food/snacks
  • Sunscreen, Sunglasses and a hat to protect against those darn invisible UV rays

Little Tips for Your First Time Out

It's important to know the basics before trying paddleboarding for the first time. These tips will help you get started.

  • Have a lesson! Don’t underestimate the water and make sure you have a lesson before venturing out on your own!
  • Always wear a PFD when out on the water.
  • Wear tight clothes that won't catch and tear easily, like stretchy shorts or leggings and a loose t shirt.
  • If possible, wear a wetsuit as it will keep you warmer in cold water if you keep falling in!
  • Always have someone take photos of your adventure!

These are just some of the basic tips, make sure to read more of our journals and have a lesson!

Safety and Warnings

If you're new or old to paddleboarding, safety is the most important consideration. Here are some rules to keep in mind before you head out on the water:

  • Always wear a PDF while paddleboarding.
  • Always wear the appropriate leash for the body of water you are on - make sure to read our Leash safety journal to know what to use!
  • Go out with an experienced paddleboarder when you first start out.
  • Take it slow and steady if you're a beginner.
  • Avoid heading out into choppy or windy conditions as it can be unsafe and not as fun for beginners. 
  • Do not head out in offshore (wind that blows away from the shore) winds. This doesn’t apply as much for rivers, lakes and canals, however do avoid paddling in winds over 10mph as a beginner. Read more in our Wind and Tide safety journal 

Conclusion

Paddleboarding is a great way to explore the waterways, but to do so safely you need to know what you’re doing. This guide will give you the basic skills and tips you need to get started. All you need is a board and some water, and you’re ready to go!