Updated: Jun 15
Keeping safe on your SUP.
With the ever-increasing amount of stand-up paddleboards on the water, we felt we should put a few things out there to help keep everyone safe on their boards and the water.
We all enjoy getting on the water in the Summer and having great fun with family and friends, but with any sport, there are potential risks, these can be minimised however with a little knowledge. We have listed a few things below to help get you more water-smart.
Wind, now wind can affect you on any water source, but mainly on open water like the ocean, it only takes a split second with an offshore wind (wind blowing out to sea, away from the shore) to blow you out to sea and away from the shore. Trying to paddle back can drain your energy quickly and can lead you into a sticky situation fast. So, we always suggest downloading one of the 100s of free weather apps and make sure you not heading out in a gusty offshore wind. Here is an app that we suggest: https://www.windy.com/?53.566,-2.065,5,m:e7Waf5q
Make sure someone knows that you are heading out and give them a location. It can be easy to drift out to sea or along the shoreline and end up miles down the beach or even get lost or entrapped especially in remote locations where you may not be able to call for help. Take a phone with you, a VHF Radio (ensure you know how to use this first) or
make sure you have at least let someone know where you are planning on paddling.
Self-rescue, most people buy a board and think they will never fall off. Oh, how wrong they are. Thinking that it is easy to just clamber back on to your sup from the water is short sited. We suggest going for at least one lessons with a professional or practising in the shallows, there is a lot of content on youtube regarding sup safety, this will give you much more confidence on the water and keep you safe. Otherwise, it could be a cold long swim back to shore.
Rivers and waterways, in the UK a lot of rivers and waterways require a licence to paddle, you can see that here:
When you decide to paddle on a river please do your research first, find out where you can enter and exit, you don't want to be crossing private land. Check if the river has flooded recently as this can bring a whole lot more debris and other obstacles down the river. We suggest that beginner paddlers don't head out for a few days after a flood, as fallen trees, fences and other debris may have fallen in or have been picked up by the river making the river much more dangerous. STAY AWAY until it’s safe.
Understanding the ocean, rip tides, currents, winds, these are all things you should have a basic understanding for when heading out. As much as they can help you with your paddling and can be fun if you do not know how to work with them, they will get you into a world of trouble. So, there are a few things to learn about and get some basic knowledge of before heading out on the water. we don't want to scare you, but we do want to make sure you are all safe and having fun!
See you out there and have fun.
The Apex Team