Stand up paddleboarding is probably one the most beginner friendly water sports out there. Not only is it easy to learn, it's also cheap or even free to try.
Last summer I had a proper introduction to SUP, and had a great chance to try different boards during a free SUP on-the-water demo day at Magnuson Park organized by Seattle REI.
This summer, while in Tampa,Florida, I attended another free SUP demo , this time organized by a local outfitter Watersports West locataed in Largo, FL
One thing that I was looking forward to the most was a chance to paddle in the Gulf of Mexico...Unfortunately, the demo took place at a local marina, thus taking a bit of fun out of paddling. What I loved about it was a chance for me to try out a couple new boards.
Specifically designed for women paddlers, Tahoe SUP’s Zephyr and Bliss were a bast to paddle, and are the most beautiful boards I have seen. The finishing, graphics, and colors make these boards stand out from the crowd.
But what really caught my attention was Pelican Flow 106 Stand - up Paddle Board
I've tried " hybrid" boards ( sit-on-top kayak/stand up paddleboard ) like Nalu or Emotion boards before, and it was a big disappointment. Heavy and slow, the boards were hard to paddle.
No doubt, they are big, stable, and very durable. But unlike other plastic SUPs, Pelican was amazingly light and fast !
One thing that all these plastic stand up paddleboards have in common is the price. I've already seen a few Nalu SUPs on Craigslist for $300-350, and brand new ones on Amazon go for $ 350-550.
So, if this summer you decide to give SUPing a try, there is no better ( and cheaper ! ) way than attending a free demo. This way you will be able to see if stand up paddleboarding is for you, and also, decide which board to buy in the future.