I grew up in a small California community that had access to a beautiful lake that I always enjoyed spending time in. My parents owned a little cabin on the lake and there we had access to canoes, kayaks and other equipment to be used in the water. I would always have friends over in the summertime to stay for weekends or even weeks to play out on the water, exploring every cove of the lake and just having a really great time. Back then, I had never even heard of Paddle Boarding but now it is one of the fastest growing sports in North America.
The reason for its success I think is because it is such a great exercise option for those looking to get out on the water and enjoy the sunshine. It is also very social which is also a big draw for people who are looking to participate in an activity which is both physically demanding and fun. I spent an afternoon with a group of young adults from a local community group and we hit the beach to try out paddle boarding and although I had done it many times before, it was amazing how much fun it was for everyone including first timers.
Often times when a sport or activity is challenging from the get-go it leaves a lot of people out who feel too intimidated to participate. An example of this would be tennis which has a very steep learning curve from the beginning which makes it hard for people to connect with the sport right away. Paddle boarding however is quite simple in concept which allows people to try the sport who might never have looked at water sports as an option.
The other thing I really like about paddle boarding in particular is how great of an abdominal workout it is. When you’re standing on the board, you are forced to activate your core and as you paddle, maintaining a strong core becomes increasingly more of a challenge especially as a beginner. If you begin to lose control, you’re probably going to lose balance and might end up in the lake! The best part about ending up in the lake is that it’s probably the most refreshing thing on a hot day that often times, paddle boarders will jump off of their boards just for fun.
Paddle boarding is one of my favorite activities nowadays and one that I hope you will explore to as it’s allowed me to stay fit!