Healthy Beginnings

Stand Up Paddling

Photo: PeterSpain.com

Stand Up Paddling is new to some, but it’s actually an ancient way of travel. Centuries ago, native Hawaiians, Indians and Europeans used this form of paddling to cross various types of water ways. The boards were carved out of wood, weighing in at about 80 pounds. Some findings show that Native Americans built boards out of Tully weeds that were tied to each other, to form a stand up paddle board/boat. They used a long pole, with a blade at the end, as their paddle.

Five years ago, this ancient way of travel became a sport! It was first introduced to the modern day crowd in Waikiki, by the Waikiki boys. These five young friends had a surf business, taking photos of people learning how to surf.

They decided they needed a way to take more photos of their clients while standing on their surf boards. So, they started making longer paddles by taping broom sticks to their outrigger paddles; and they also built large wide custom boards to accommodate their needs. Since then, the sport started growing at warp speed.

For those who are new to this fun, easy-to-do sport, it should be known that anyone can do it. For instance, Jaden Tessier, who has a congenital heart defect (he only lives off of one ventricle, instead of the two) is able to use a Stand Up Paddleboard. He is not able to do what most other active kids can do, such as football, baseball, basketball, etc., but he is able to paddle and get a great cardio workout, while still enjoying the outdoors; which he really loves to do!

The top six health benefits to Stand Up Paddling are:

1) Strengthens the Core

2) Builds Endurance

3) Builds Balance

4) Peace of Mind

5) New perspective on Life

6) Five Minute Learning Curve

Stand Up Paddle boarding can be done anywhere, in any type of water. You can paddle on lakes, rivers, oceans and canals; basically, anywhere there’s a good source of water, year round.

Equipment:

1) Board

2) Paddle

3) Water

4) Sun Screen

With sports such as Kayaking, Windsurfing and Kiteboarding, you have a lot of extra stuff dragging you down! Not with Stand Up Paddleboarding. It seems that many people get bored with sports; you try a new sport and then a year or later that “bug” tapers off. Most likely it’s the lack of interest, or because there’s too much stuff to drag around; too heavy to lift back and fourth, or fill’s up the entire garage after a year of collecting all the gadgets that go along with that particular sport. Why go through all that hassle? Stand Up Paddling is like getting into your car, driving to a destination, putting on a pair of shoes and then going on a trail run.

It seems that here in northern Nevada people are not as keen to the waters as those who live on the coast. However, this sport is more unique than any other sport because you can go to almost any body of water, put your board in and start paddling. Don’t worry, you will not fall in; it’s not top heavy like a kayak, it’s actually really easy to stand on; especially on the Lakeshore Paddleboard Company resort boards, which primarily caters to the beginner/novice paddler.

Plus, there is only a five minute learning curve, as you need only a paddle to help move swiftly though the open water.

It’s hard to believe, but 30 minutes of paddleboarding is equal to six miles of running. Before you knock it, try it. During your first time with the board, you’ll feel a complete body workout, from your head to your toes. This sport works the entire body because you have to stabilize yourself on a 12’6” x 33” board through wind, chop, or better yet paddling on water as smooth as glass, which is what truly makes this sport so fun! Picture Lake Tahoe on a hot summer’s day; you can see directly beneath you, the visibility is amazing, as fish swim right under your board.

Weight loss is yet another benefit of paddleboarding. One paddleboarder began his journey with this sport 15 pounds overweight and from an extreme sport background, breaking almost every bone in his body throughout his life. He was looking to shed some pounds and do so while having fun, with his family and friends; and to find a sport that he could enjoy as he got older. He said that paddleboarding changed his life as he can still compete, get fit and have fun while doing it.

Lakeshore Paddleboard Company, a local Reno company, has been involved with this new sport since its inception. “We are so stoked to be on the forefront of this sport,” a representative said. The New York Times cites it as the fastest growing sport in the world, as after only four years in the true making of this sport, the Olympic committee is looking to debut Stand Up Paddleboarding in the 2012 Summer Olympics in England. The Lakeshore Paddleboard Company rep said “we are hoping that our new 2011 Stealth race boards could be the one chosen in the 12’ 6” or 14’ ELITE classes.”

This summer, go out and try the fastest growing sport in the world! It will leave you wondering why water sports enthusiasts are just now Standing Up.

References:

1. http://www.supsurfmag.com/health-for-stand-up-paddlers/health-and-fitness/

For more info, contact: Lakeshore Paddleboard Company at (775) 852-9100 or visit online at www.lpc-sup.com.