A Beginners Guide to Standup Paddleboards

A Beginners Guide to Standup Paddleboards

Are you looking for a simple, accessible way to enjoy the outdoors whilst getting a fantastic workout? While surfing, sailing and even swimming, all require different levels of skill and ability, standup paddleboards invite people of all ages and fitness levels to experience the joy of water sports. It’s a simple pleasure - just you, a board, and a paddle - and it offers an accessible outdoor experience that promotes balance and strength, whilst also calming your mind and body. As an exercise, paddleboarding can be as invigorating or relaxed as you like, so whether you're seeking a calm escape into nature or a lively adventure, discover everything you need to get started with our beginner's guide.

Standup Paddleboards

Standup paddleboarding, also known as SUP, is a versatile water sport that is suitable for all skill levels and accessible to everyone. An inclusive and increasingly popular sport, paddleboarding welcomes all to the water, and offers a great way to explore rivers, lakes, and even the sea without exerting yourself.

As an exercise, it involves standing on a buoyant board, known as a stand-up paddleboard, and using a paddle to move across the water. This straightforward process is ideal for anyone seeking a full-body exercise that enhances core strength and balance, whilst remaining low-impact and gentle on the joints, allowing you to enjoy the physical and mental benefits without exerting yourself.

So, are you thinking about enhancing your connection with nature and supporting your physical wellbeing with your very own stand-up paddleboard? Let’s explore how you can get started with this unique water sport, from choosing the right board to mastering your first strokes.


Understanding the Basics

To put it simply, paddleboarding is for everyone. It isn’t considered a difficult sport, and it requires only a few small steps to get started. The hardest stage is learning how to stand up, but once you have found your balance it is simply a case of propelling yourself through the water with your paddle. While learning you can even stay kneeling until you’ve got enough confidence to start standing. Choosing the right board means you’ll go from keeling to standing in no time. Balancing will feel so much easier and you’ll be gliding along the water like a pro. 

For your first board, opt for an all-rounder, and make sure that you choose a board of the appropriate dimensions. A board that’s 10’6’’ in length and 32’’ wide makes the perfect platform for most people who are starting their paddleboarding journey however, those who are less confident may wish to consider a paddleboard which is a little longer and wider. 34’’ wide is plenty. As well as the size, it’s also very important to look at the recommended pressure of the board. A good board should be able to comfortably take 20psi and a higher pressure means a stiffer board, which will give the best possible stability for beginners. It also lets you know that the board is likely to be made from stronger materials which brings us onto another important thing to look out for when purchasing your first paddleboard, the warranty. A long 5-year warranty means the manufacturer is extremely confident in the quality, durability, and longevity of their paddleboard.

Here at Sandbanks Style, all of our boards are produced with double or multi-layer fusion technology to guarantee their strength and reliability. We pride ourselves on the stability and performance but also on durability of our boards, which is why we offer a 5 year warranty as standard on all of our boards, and we also pride ourselves on how well our boards accommodate the development of our customers' skills. This is why, to guarantee that you have everything you need to start using your new board.


The Right Accessories

When it comes to paddleboarding the whole experience is important, not just the time you spend out on the water. There isn’t a paddleboarder out there, enthusiast or pro that doesn’t appreciate a powerful pump to make inflating their board as easy as possible. This is why our boards come with the Bravo SUPer, one of the best SUP pumps on the market and for those looking to expend even less effort inflating their board, we also offer 20psi, 12V and rechargeable electric SUP pumps. Other accessories like a high-quality wheelie rucksack bag and light weight paddle help make the whole experience, from setting up to paddling much easier and more fun. Here’s everything we expect from a quality beginner paddleboard package.

Our packages:

  • 5 year paddleboard warranty
  • Bravo SUPer two-stage pump
  • Lightweight 3-piece fibreglass paddle;
  • Lightweight, hardwearing wheelie rucksack
  • Ankle surf leash with safety breaker;
  • Quick release belt;
  • Valve spanner and repair kit

Each piece plays an important role in keeping you safe and comfortable and all contribute to a more enjoyable outdoor experience. Our rucksack bags have enough room to pack everything inside, they also have some additional room for some spare towels or other essentials. These essentials should include a PFD (personal floatation devise) regardless of whether you are a strong swimmer or not. In colder conditions we would also recommend that you wear a wetsuit, neoprene shoes and neoprene gloves for warmth, protection, and grip.

You can call us anytime if you'd like us to talk you through setting up the board, and our team is always happy to help if you have any questions, so explore our full range of iSUPs today and find the best stand up paddleboard beginner kit for your next adventure.


Getting Started

Now that you have everything you need, you're ready to begin your first exciting adventure. Before you know it, you will be an experienced paddleboarder: but before you can take your first step onto your board, you will need to set it up.

To set up our stand up paddleboards, start by laying your board on a flat, clean surface, and attach the pump to the board's inflation valve. Make sure to check that the central pin of the valve is popped into its upper position before attaching the pump hose (you’ll see why this step is so important later). Start pumping on double action to get as much air into the board as possible, the pump gauge won’t read immediately so be patient. When pumping becomes too challenging to pump on double action, switch to single action by twisting the small black lever on the back of the pump over to the left. This will make it much easier and as a top tip we recommend keeping your arms straight at the higher pressures and bending legs, this lets your body weight do the work and helps you to achieve the recommended PSI for the best rigidity. If you remembered to pop the valves pin up before you started pumping, then the valve will immediately snap shut the second you take the hose off and no air will be lost. If you forgot this step, then all the air will rush out and you’ll have to pump up your paddleboard again. Try not to feel too bad if this happens to you (it happens to everyone at least once).

Next, attach the removable fin to the underside of the board. Side the front of the fin into the front half of the fin box and then slot the fin into the rear of the fin box using the arrows on the side of the fin and fin box as a guide. Sidling the fin towards the back of the fin box will make board track straighter through the water were as sliding the fin toward the front will make the board more manoeuvrable. All our fin boxes are universal, so a wide range of fins can be fitted to our boards as well as the one that comes with the board as standard.

You’ll want to make sure that your paddle is the appropriate length for you while you’re paddling to improve your leverage and control in the water. Helpfully, the measurements on the extendable part of our paddles let you know how much to extend your paddle for your height. If there are no measurements, then as a rough guide you can also reach your arm above your head with a slight bend in your elbow. Next, extend the paddle such that the blade rests on the floor and the handle sits comfortably in the palm of your extended arm. You might notice that the blade of the paddle has a slight angle to it. For the best control in the water, you’ll want to make sure that the blade is angled towards the front of the paddleboard not the rear. For almost all our paddles this means our sandbanks style logo will be facing towards the back of the paddleboard.

Not only do recommend that you always wear a PFD (personal floatation devise), but we also recommend that you stay attached to your inflatable paddleboard at all times using your 10’ coiled surf leash. Attach the surf leash to your board by looping its thread round the rear D-ring of your paddleboard then make sure the leash is securely fastened round your ankle. If you are ever planning to paddle in flowing water, such as on a river or in tidal conditions then it’s important to wear the quick release belt included in our package and attach the leash to the loop at the back of the belt. In an emergency you will be able to pull the buckle at the front of the belt and dethatch yourself from your board.

You may wish to pack a dry bag with some extra essential and take it out with you by tucking it under the luggage straps at the front of the board. Water, a phone and suncream are all very important items to pack especially if you know that you are going to be out on the water for some time. A towel and some snacks also make great additions.

If it’s your first time paddleboarding then you should consider going out the conditions are as calm as possible as this will make it much easier for you. Shallow, flat water is ideal. Remember to check the wind speed and the tides if you are going out on the sea, and don’t hesitate to call us or a paddleboard instructor if you unsure of anything before making your first outing.


Find The Best Stand up Paddleboard For You

If you are eager to dive into the world of paddleboarding, investing in one of our stand up paddleboards is the best way to get started. By choosing Sandbanks Style, you support a family run company that’s been dedicated to building the best value paddleboards and water sports equipment for 10 years. We make it our mission to exceed our customers expectations, putting your experience at the forefront of everything we do. We’ be happy to help you in any way we can but let us start by pointing you in the direction of our all-rounder boards so you can make a step towards getting your first board and enjoying the wonderful sport of SUP. www.sandbanksstyle.com

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