Stand-Up paddle boarding has become one of the fastest growing water sports in the world. It’s available to anyone near a lake or other body of water, it’s relatively safe and loads of fun. While being fun it is also a great way to get a good upper body workout. You can stand-up paddle board on lakes of all sizes, calm oceans, lazy rivers and local reservoirs. But as this water sport soars in popularity and more novice paddle boarders take to the water, we can’t forget that there are some safety precautions that need to be considered. The following safety tips will provide information to keep you safe and help you get the most out of your paddle boarding experience. It is also good advice to pass along to the novice paddle boarder in your life.
First off, what every paddle boarder should know that any paddle board over 10
feet long is considered a vessel meaning the paddle boarder must follow the same rules as any other boat operator when in open waters. Paddle boarders must be prepared, alert and must follow the same precautions as all other vessels. Check out these important safety tips before going on your next paddle boarding adventure.
- Wear an approved life jacket.
- Make sure you are a competent swimmer. If you’re not, stay close and in shallow waters.
- Never paddle further away from shore than what you can swim.
- Know how to get back on the paddle board if you fall off in deep water. With both hands reach over the board and pull your chest up onto it. Then swing your legs over and put yourself the rest of the way on.
- Learn how to properly paddle and maneuver your board.
- Carry a whistle that works when wet to signal for help if necessary.
- Familiarize yourself with the local waters, weather conditions, tides, currents and hazards.
- Know the local rules and regulations for safe water activities in your area.
Following these simple tips will help to insure your paddle boarding experience is safe and fun.
~ Ron Ellis