Standup paddle boarding (SUP)

Standup paddle boarding (SUP)


Standup paddle boarding, or SUP boarding, or SUP surfing is summer water sport and outdoor activity. This is a relatively new, but it gaining in popularity. You could say it's a mixture of surfing and kayaking in lighter versions of both. The name comes from the words "to stand", "to paddle", "board" and "moving".

To ride a SUP,  you just stand on a special large flat board, take a paddle and start rowing, you don’t need any special training or special skills. Beginners need to choose a wide stable board and start training with a kneeling pose, and then gently stand on two legs and catch the balance. It may not work the first time, but the skill will appear very quickly. Then you need to learn how to hold the paddle correctly — it depends on how fast you can ride the board and how fast you get tired. SUP riding with the right technique — it’s a great full body core workout.

SUP surfing can be done anywhere: in the seas, lakes, bays and rivers. In any region and any country, you can go out on the water with a SUP board and enjoy the beauty of the outdoors.

SUP-boarding is mostly summer but almost all-season activity. In a warm wetsuit, you can do it even in cold weather — the main thing is that the surface of the water is not covered with ice.

Unlike surfing, or kayaking, on stand-up board you can do a lot of things: row and explore the surroundings, do yoga, fish or surf on small waves. In addition, you can take part in SUP races, which are held in different regions and take several hours.


Text: Natalia Kirasheva, a travel and business author and editor from Moscow, Russia. She has a Bachelor's degree from the Faculty of Geography of Lomonosov Moscow State University (MSU) with specialties in Economic Geography and Tourism, and Environmental Management. Her favorite sports are windsurfing and snowboarding. Ivan Kuznetsov contributed to this guide

Cover photo: Laura Stanley / Pexels

Learn more about surfing in the

How to surf. Brief instructions to learning this sport

The guide on surf schools for beginners, intermediate, and pro sportsmen

How to choose a surf school or surf camp

How to read a surf forecast to get the best surfing experience

The collection of article about surfing


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