Stand-Up Paddleboarding 101

by Joseph Russell · July 1, 2008

    paddle boarding [Meeting our instructor Zack from Surf Lodge]

    Before this past friday, I'd never heard of paddleboarding in any form. Rachelle confused it with kickboarding, and assured me she was very good, until I pulled up a photo of paddleboarders. Virginity established, we headed out to Surf Lodge with Luigi Tadini for a lesson with the affable and adept Zach Bliss.

    Bliss, and the rest of the SL staff, assured us we would soon be pb converts, but when we saw how huge the boards were -similar to longboards, only with footpads, we were a little apprehensive. Thankfully the sport, or at least its stand-up version, is as easily mastered as it is enjoyable; within a minute of our on-shore lesson, we, and the delightful Luigi Tadini, were on our occasionally circular way across Fort Pond. Here's how:

    grapple with your unwieldy beast of a board until it meets the water's edge.

    laying the paddle at your side, kneel on the board.

    slowly get to your feet, and even more slowly crouch to retrieve your paddle.

    to go forwards, scoop your paddle towards you, flat side facing towards your desired destination.

    to turn around, or stop, scoop in the opposite direction

    repeat as necessary

    Apart from SL, I'm not sure where you can rent paddleboards. Here's where to buy one.  Once you have one, you can take it anywhere surfboards are allowed.

    [Weekends in the Hamptons: Welcome to the good life]