While you already have a basic idea of some gear that one uses while stand up paddle boarding, now that you’ve begun we have a few more detailed items that we’d suggest you equip yourself with! After starting with those basic items (like a personal flotation device), you can now branch out a bit and think about bringing other items to enhance your SUP experience.
- Water: It will not feel good if you’re dehydrated, with the sun beating down on you, surrounded by water you can’t drink. So don’t forget to pack yourself a bottle or two, and one for your puppy if you bring him along!.
There are some water bottle backpacks that are very convenient, or suction cup attachments that let you easily stick a bottle on your board. Also, hydrate before you go as well.
- Earbuds: The sound of the ocean is very relaxing, but sometimes you’ll want a little extra music for your SUP adventures. If that’s the case, pick a playlist and bring some water proof earbuds with you! It’d be nice to get a sporty type that also won’t tangle or fall out as you’re paddling — even if the earbuds are waterproof, chasing them after they fall into the water would not be very fun!
- Sunscreen: When I was little, I always thought that if I was in the water, I didn’t really need sunscreen because the heat of the sun couldn’t get to me anyways. Unfortunately, I was very wrong 😦 Water actually reflects the rays of the sun, so the UV rays can still get to you — this is particularly true because even “waterproof” sunscreen doesn’t stay on very long. All that to say, when you’re SUP’ing, be sure to apply sunscreen before you go out onto the water, and consider carrying a little sunscreen stick for quick swipes of reapplication too!
- Snacks: If you’ve ever enjoyed a small snack at the top of a mountain after completing a hike, you’ll know how lovely it feels to munch on that treat in the aftermath of your exercise. Same applies with stand up paddle boarding! While not necessary, it’s nice to bring a little something that you can eat as you sit on the water. We’d suggest something not too heavy (weight-wise and greasy-wise) such as a piece of fruit, healthy granola bar, or nut butter to-go.
- Shoes: You don’t necessarily need shoes to stand up paddle board (barefoot is okay!), but sometimes it helps to have a better grip on the board or to protect your feet as you’re walking across the beach. In that case, a grippy shoe would be helpful, especially one that dries quickly (in case your foot gets in the water, you don’t want a soggy foot all day!)
If you haven’t already, we’d also recommend that you try SUP’ing with a friend or two! It’s a lovely activity to do while catching up and enjoying the seas. Group classes can also be a lot of fun and a great way to meet others.