9 Reasons Why You Should Try Paddle Boarding (especially in UAE)
1. Everyone can do it.
Probably the biggest pro of paddle boarding is that it’s available to everyone. Regardless of your age, body size, shape or fitness level, it’s very quick and easy to learn. It’s recommended that you already know how to swim (or use a lifejacket and a leash), but other than that there are absolutely no previous skills required. It’s definitely one of the most accessible water sports out there. With a few tips from a qualified instructor, and a bit of practice, you’ll look like a pro in no time!
2. It’s an awesome full-body workout - especially for those abs!
Standup paddle boarding is one of the best full-body, cardio workouts out there. Paddle boarding can burn more calories than most sports because of its combination of strength, balance, core and endurance. You literally need to use every single muscle in your body to stay standing (quads, glutes and core) and to get moving (core, back and arms). Even when doing it recreationally, it will get you in shape in no time, not to mention you’ll have so much more fun than you would at the gym!
3. It’s low impact on your joints and spine.
SUP, similar to swimming, is a great form of exercise because there isn’t much impact on the knees, back and other major joints. Unlike running, HIIT training or weight lifting, there is little to no impact against gravity. You are using and working the muscles in your body without the negative wear and tear on your ligaments, tendons and joints. This makes it a great sport for anyone either trying to improve strength, but also those recovering from joint pain, back injury or advised to follow a low impact exercise routine.
4. You’ll burn calories and boost your metabolism.
Like every kind of physical activity, the more you put into it, the more you get out of it. But even a casual paddle can get you burning more than 400 calories per hour, and double that if you add a bit of speed, resistance, waves or yoga. You will also learn that the more you keep a steady speed the more stable you are, which will motivate you to keep moving and keep your heart rate up. You’ll be improving your cardiovascular health and speeding up your metabolism without even noticing it. If you start to break a sweat, no worries! Take a dip in the water to cool off!
5. It connects you to nature.
Although the physical benefits are undeniable, stand up paddle boarding is also largely about escapism. You get the chance to immerse yourself in the great outdoors, with the sun on your back, and water stretching out all around you. It’s also scientifically proven that being near water ignites a deep inner stillness and relaxation. It’s fun to paddle with a group of friends, but it’s also a great way to spend time alone, meditate, marvel at the surroundings and melt away your daily worries.
6. It will help you relax and chill out.
Not only is paddle boarding good for the body, but it’s even greater for the soul. Connecting with nature and enjoying the calming effects of the sea helps us switch off our hyperactive monkey brain and take time for ourselves. Much like a yoga practice, it allows you to check out from whatever is going on in your life and be in the present moment. I’ll let you google the benefits of mindfulness on your own time, but paddling boarding has the power to improve more areas in your life other than just your health and fitness. You’ll come off the water totally zenned-out, ready to conquer anything.
7. You get to meet new people.
Of course you can either buy or rent a sup and paddle around on your own if that’s what you’re looking for, but there’s also a lot of groups that you can join if you’re looking to meet new people. You can check on Facebook or Google if there are any paddle boarding groups in your area. Even if you do end up going on your own, there’s most likely a small supping community wherever you live and you are sure to meet the same friendly faces out on the water or on the beach. Whether you’re looking to make new friends or meet the love of your life (no one is judging!), paddling creates a perfect atmosphere to create meaningful connections. Here in Dubai and Abu Dhabi we run group paddle boarding events for all levels all-year-around. Get in touch with us for more details.
8. Your options for exploration are endless.
Once you’ve mastered your balance and feel comfortable on your SUP (which usually happens by the end of your first session), the possibilities are endless. You can join touring or adventure groups that combine paddle boarding with camping or other outdoor activities. Another great point is that you don’t need to live near or travel to the ocean, you can paddle anywhere you have water - lakes, lagoons, mangroves and rivers. You can rent a paddle board when you’re on vacation, or even get your own inflatable/compact SUP that you can travel with anywhere you go.
9. It’s a massive amount of fun.
Instead of going to the gym to get fit, a yoga class to relax and to the beach to get a tan - jump on your board and do all three! Take some time out of your busy schedule to try something new and do something that makes you happy. We are so lucky in the UAE to be surrounded by beautiful beaches and mangroves, there’s really no excuse not to try it at least once. Whether you’re giving it a try for the first time and need to some tips, or have decided to get your own board, we are here to help you out every step of the way. Feel free to reach out to us either by phone, email or WhatsApp to chat with one of our helpful instructors. Don’t be shy! Your adventure awaits.