Great for developing your core, SUP has become popular because it allows surfers to paddle for longer distances to get the best waves, often out past a reef to surf waves that would be normally inaccessible.
However, SUP has become a sport in its own right, alongside surfing, and has spread from Hawaii and other hard-core surfing locales to virtually anywhere where spending time out on the water is popular, from the Great Lakes to the Pacific Northwest, and, of course, our beautiful, turquoise corner of the Caribbean.
The boards have developed into a unique class all their own, and are generally longer than 9 feet (3 m), and can be longer than 12 feet (4 m), with features such as padded decks and concave hulls; they generally have one or three surfboard-style fins in the stern for tracking.
For paddles, a “shaka” length paddle 5 to 7 inches above the rider’s height is standard for SUP, and paddling itself is roughly like kayaking paddling.
SUP is considered to be a great core workout – it takes toned abdominal muscles and more in order to stay upright on an SUP. Stand up paddleboarding is also more popular with women because of their lower center of gravity, and it seems that women are often more skilled at paddleboarding than men.
If you’re a beginner and you have the patience to develop some basic SUP skills, the calmer waters of Provo’s Leeward shore provide a great place to try this emerging sport out. Practice right on the beach, in front of the Somerset Resort, or try to venture down the beach to the outskirts of the popular Coral Gardens snorkeling area. Don’t forget to bring sunscreen and a hat.
To try stand up paddle boarding (SUP) in Turks and Caicos, please contact our Concierge.