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HOME arrow FEATURES arrow I'm Learning to Stand Up Paddle. Where Do I Start?
I'm Learning to Stand Up Paddle. Where Do I Start? PDF Print E-mail
By: Stand Up Paddle Surfing Magazine   
Monday, 12 January 2009
    You’ve felt the drive to learn how to stand up paddle and you’ve just got this feeling that this sport is for you, now what? You’re not alone on this one and today there is a ton of information that will help you start off your experience right. Learning proper technique, posture, and safety measures from the very start will help you develop proper muscle memory from the very beginning and will keep you safe in the lineups when you are ready to venture out in the surf. Here are some places you can go for information and guidance.


• Stand Up Paddle Surfing Magazine’s Performance>>Tips and Technique section. You’ll find several articles on that describe foot placement, wave riding and etiquette right here on the magazine. We are constantly adding new articles and information so sign up for the newsletter and check back often.


• Surftech recently posted a great stand up paddle instructional video that reviews fitness, board construction, paddling and safety. We first saw the video playing at the Surftech display t the Action Sports Retailer show last year in San Diego, California. For a free video, this is definitely worth a watch. It’s about 35 minutes and you can even download it to your iTunes or Windows Media. 


• YouTube has numerous video clips demonstrating stand up paddle skills and techniques. Careful getting into these at work. You’ll start watching them after lunch and before you know it, the work day is over and it’s time to go home.


• The original C4 Waterman website. Before there was C4 Waterman, there was Have a visit to the tips section for some simplified tips for managing the whitewater and using your paddle correctly. Hey, in the early days, it was the only place for info so we used to read it over and over again. It’s got a special place in our heart so we had to put it on the list.


•  Another of the original stand up paddle sites is the "Kook or Kool" section of PSH has always been a huge advocate of observing proper etiquette and respecting the local crowd. Kook or Kool was the first article to give a really in your face descrition the dos and don'ts of learning to stand up paddle surf.


• Forums and discussion boards. Through forums and discussion boards like the one here at, you can connect with stand up paddlers around the world to get advice from others. The great thing is, through forums you can connect with some really great sup surfers and get solid advice.


• Personal instruction. Stand up paddle lessons and instructional schools are popping up all over the place. With a web search or some emails to those engrained in the industry in your area, you’ll be able to get some great personal instruction. You can’t learn to ride a bike by reading about it, you have to get someone to take you out and show you how it’s done. An instructor or experienced paddler can watch your stroke, posture, etc . . . and make sure you get started right. Furthermore, they’ll be able to give you some suggestions for equipment after paddling with you for an hour or two.

     There are many many more resources that you can turn to for information. Stand up paddling is an awesome sport. The search for new tips and techniques is endless but now you have a place to get started. Just a reminder to always check with the lifeguards, local surfers, or stand up paddle instructors before paddling out in a new area. Also, surf within your ability and observe proper etiquette. You are welcome to suggest other sources for information in the comments at the end of the article.

feed1 Comments
Carol Clifton
August 07, 2010

Thanks for your tips, I will check out the links. I just got back yesterday from visiting Hawaii and wanted to try SUP whilst there. Unfortunately while we were staying on Maui, the winds were too strong too learn, so I missed out. Where I live in Nth Qld, no one paddle surfs here so I have no contacts for lessons. We have ideal conditions at our local beach which usually has fairly flat water with the occasional wavelet. I want to SUP for fitness and as we are near the Great Barrier Reef, we don't actually get surf. I am very fit and a recently retired fitness instructor of 20 years. I also scuba. If you can give me any other advice regarding what board to buy, size of paddle etc., it would be great. I am 173cms and 67kg. I found one I'm bidding for on Ebay which is 10'6 with an adjustable carbon fibre paddle included. Thanks for listening, Carol

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