No doubt you’ll have heard of this celebrity favourite sport that has taken the fitness world by storm recently. Meet Stand-Up Paddle-boarding! Not only does Stand Up Paddle-boarding (SUP for short) guarantee you a super fun workout on the water, it also helps whittle your waist and tone your arms!
Since the sun has decided to finally make it’s summer 2016 debut, Nadia, our Editorial Assistant, took to the waters with Active360 to check out this fun summer sport on the River Thames! (Not quite the Maldives, a girl can dream!)
I started out easy, paddleboarding on my knees, just to get a feel of the resistance of the water and how to catch my balance. Once I had that down, the instructor encouraged the group to come to standing and we all continued up stream as the sun was setting (dreamy!). The great thing was I never felt like I had to rush to keep up and really had the chance to enjoy conversation with our knowledgeable instructor, Lou, and the other paddle boarders in the group.
I also had the chance to ask the founder of Active 360, Paul Hyman, exactly how SUP gives you the ultimate total body workout! This is definitely a sport worth trying! If not for the workout, then definitely for the laughs!
The Benefits of SUP
Core Stability and Strength
Your midsection is the number one target in this workout. Your core, especially your obliques, is challenged to keep you upright and stable as you paddle against the resistance of the water. Similarly to swimming, the faster you paddle, the harder it gets. SUP is known as one of the best cross-training sports especially if you’re a runner! Definitely worth checking out if you’re looking to switch up your current routine!
Arms and back strength
Although your core powers you through each stroke of the paddle, your arms and back still come into play when you paddle board. I was barely able to lift up my post workout smoothie afterwards! But don’t rely on your arms too much- you’ll tire easily. Paul suggests keeping your arms straight and to use your back to help propel you forward through the stroke.
If you have ever done barre, you are familiar with the earthquake shake! You can always start out on your knees (which will give your thighs an extra burn!) but once you graduate to standing, your smaller stabilizing muscles are sure to start firing! After the first 45 minutes, my legs were shaking!
Relax and have fun!
Although you may sweat and very well may be sore the next day (I definitely was), what I loved most about SUP is how much fun it is! Not only do you get to relax, it’s a completely different way of experiencing nature. And in London, that’s hard to find! So grab your bestie and get ready to paddle!
Beginners should use a slightly larger board for more stability and make sure you stretch before and after! If you have any valuables you need to bring with you but can’t afford to get them wet, just make sure you bring a dry bag with you!
Of course if you need to SUP in style, we suggest this little number from our favourite surf brand, Perfect Moment!