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Give mom a brand new paddleboard. The best Mothers Day SUP promos!

Give mom a brand new paddleboard. The best Mothers Day SUP promos!

This Mother’s Day, please don’t give mom anymore pajamas, perfume or flowers for Mother’s Day. Instead go bold with either clothers,  gear or give her a chance to try a brand new sport. SUP is ideal for all ages and active levels. Mom will have […]

Day 3 is paid for! The body is conditioning to paddle boarding

Day 3 is paid for! The body is conditioning to paddle boarding

Got home from work around 6:15pm, ate dinner as I was quite hungry, got my water pouch ready and out I went. I was debating if I should eat and try exercising ‘fasting’ for better results. It wasn’t this time yet. I had lunch right […]

Racing paddleboarding: my start and the first five sessions

Racing paddleboarding: my start and the first five sessions

I have bought a racing paddle board and you know about that from my last post here. By the way, it has been a while. I was supposed to write about it but ended up getting busy with work, life and other projects. Yes, I got other projects. I even said I was going to build a rack for my boards but found out that there are too many roots where I have my boards that I ended up just leaving them there and using the inflatables as support for the racing sup. Anyhow… should write about that soon.

I have decided to take the racing paddling serious now (OOOOHHHH) and see how far I can go on this. I need to get active again, find a hobby and close to 40 years old a healthy hobby such as paddleboarding is a great idea. Constant cardio, fun on the water and a bunch of like minded friends. It’s my 5 or 6th time with the racing paddle board and between work and finding time to paddle I realized that the occasional paddle is not gonna cut it. I need to hit the water more constantly.

I realized that by simply paddling. The first time on the racing board feels weird. It’s wobbly and not as stable as the inflatable. It’s not that wide so… It goes faster but that doesn’t mean that it’s easier to paddle. It’s still hard, you need to apply the same power to make the board move forward. It does probably displace faster but you don’t feel that. Specially if you paddle with someone that is faster than you. You still be left behind even if you apply more force.

Strava didn't properly track Day #1.
Strava didn’t properly track Day #1.

Paddling with an experienced paddler makes you realized how slow you are. If you do it by yourself, you can take your time. But having someone next to you makes you want to keep up and one of their strokes means you have to do two or three and still you always behind. I have hit the water for the first time with the race sup with Tim Myers, a paddler from the 954 Paddle Crew in Fort Lauderdale. Tim has experience having completed some large races and is a leader with this local paddlers group. He is really humble and will give you tips about techniques and will keep them coming as long as you keep asking. It’s easy like that to learn from him.

The two times I have paddle with him were close to home after work at around 6pm. I was not tired but I had just worked in the office all day. My performance was not great. After 10 minutes I had to sit down on the board and we weren’t even going fast or steady. We were cruising on racing boards. My legs and feet felt heavy and he explained that that is normal and would go away with time. He also said that it gets easier every time. The more you paddle you get more resistant and stronger. It’s natural. Practice makes your body adapt to the activity you are trying to perform.

I have been reading and consuming a lot of information on paddling, racing, stroke, positioning, turning, etc… watching videos and trying to incorporate the lessons into my paddle. It’s hard in the beginning but I can now bend lower and reach further. As the lessons taught. I don’t do that as easily. Specially when tired I still tend to post and keep the body straight like a cruiser paddler. Not great. My board still goes all ways. If i paddle on the left, it goes to the right. If I paddle on the right, it goes to the left. That is technique I have read about but still haven’t mastered. My paddling on the first 5 seconds without warming up is weak and I sometimes touch the water when reaching forward. Mistake #2. You have to take every move and make it as effective as possible. I’m still a long way to go. And that’s fine.

To make sure I follow a proper routine, I decided to try to paddle every day and see how my ramp up goes. My reference will be every wednesday practicing with the 954 team. My first time with them I ate dust and couldn’t complete the full course. Paddling fast, changing sides and keeping steady is still quite hard. I also decided to hit the gym every day and increase my cardio from fast walking to running. I need serious cardio work.

Day #1: Close to home by myself

First day launched from this creek into the main river on the downtown area of Fort Lauderdale.
First day launched from this creek into the main river on the downtown area of Fort Lauderdale.

Saturday, April 20, 2019 was considered Day 1 of my 30 days routine. I did 1.5 miles according to Strava. Probably a bit more since I left the money on energy saving and Strava tracked the course straight like if going through people’s yards and not on the water. So weird. I learned now that in order for Strava to track your ride correctly, you need to remove the energy saving feature.

The tide was low and coming back in so I took the New River in Fort Lauderdale going up making my start easier. Passed under Broward Boulevard, all the way till 95. Because the tide was so low, I got grounded and several times could feel the fin lightly hover over the bottom of the river.

An island forms on the middle of the New River when the tide is this low.
An island forms on the middle of the New River when the tide is this low.
Board got grounded here.
Board got grounded here.

Started bending forward and reaching out. It feels good. You can feel the board moving. Also started reaching out across the board to the other side keeping the paddle straight and reaching down further into the water. You can only do that so much at first. It’s the proper technique but the arms feel sore soon. Will keep trying.

Not so heavy feet anymore. At least not in the beggining. Felt it a bit towards the end of the 39 minute paddle.

Underneath I-95 in Fort Lauderdale. Feels weird going underneath that.
Underneath I-95 in Fort Lauderdale. Feels weird going underneath that.

Day #2: George English Park on Easter Sunday

Easter Sunday Paddle on Strava. It's working properly now.
Easter Sunday Paddle on Strava. It’s working properly now.

Easter Sunday, April 21, 2019 was Day #2 leaving early from George English Park and heading north with the tide that was almost full. Do not my feet too much anymore. First five seconds the paddle felt heavy. Hit the water the paddle a few times reaching forward. No warm up, that’s what you get. After 5 minutes paddling up you start feeling it. The body is warmer and you feel great. It’s easy to paddle and reaching forward, towards the other side, keeping the paddle straight feels easy and I can do it steadily. I’m not going fast. Just trying to keep steady.

Beautiful day on the water in Fort Lauderdale. Easter sunday.
Beautiful day on the water in Fort Lauderdale. Easter sunday.

At this point I try to move faster. It’s still ok to move the body, try some moves on the board. A bit forward, a little wider stance, a bit back, etc… I have finally found the ideal paddle height for me, I think. I need to keep it at 195cm. Make sure to remember this. I break it down to fit it on the car. So every new session means putting it at a different spot. 195cm tall is what my paddle needs to be.

Glassy conditions on George English Park. See my shadow?
Glassy conditions on George English Park. See my shadow?

It took me 35 minutes to reach Sunrise Paddleboards. Sat down on their dock to rest, drank water and headed back. By the way, this is the first time drinking water. Should probably do it more often now with the water pouch backpack. Can’t forget about that.

The weather is not too hot this easter sunday in south florida but I’m sweating but not a lot. It’s sunny and beautiful out. Passed a father and his kid cruising around. Passed only one single boat this whole ride. It’s flat and glassy and not windy. Perfect conditions. Should have probably reported that on the beginning of this paragraph.

Drank all the 2 liters pouch.
Drank almost all the 2 liters pouch on Day #2.

Going back was against the tide that still seemed to be coming in. It felt harder but was still keeping steady. Looking forward to where I need to go feels like you want to be there. I look down just to the nose of my board. That is enough to keep me centered. Been trying to breath through the nose. I have a serious case of allergies that block my nose quite well. Today it’s pretty good. I tend to breath through my mouth a lot but could keep breathing through the nose quite a bit. The heart is racing more. I can feel it. I slow down but still stead. ONE TWO, ONE TWO. ONE TWO THREE. ONE TWO THREE. Started drinking more water.

After  59 minutes I’m back at George English and still have energy. Got the board out of the water easily and put it on the car still with the body warm. Getting it out of the car at home was a mess. I do not have a lot of space in my drive way. Between the plants and the car is tight. Banged the board a bit. That doesn’t feel good. I should probably check the board and the car for scratches. Might trim the trees a bit…

The storage arrangement for the new racing SUP

The storage arrangement for the new racing SUP

I haven’t told you about my recent upgrade from inflatable paddleboards to a proper racing sup board. Yes, that finally happened. I bought a second hand JP Australia board from a paddler in Fort Lauderdale. He is about to upgrade to a new board and […]

Dolphin hits paddleboarder and video goes totally viral

Dolphin hits paddleboarder and video goes totally viral

So here it comes; a perfect wave! All of us are going to ride this wave! Then, just as the wave crests I see this asshole standing on some shit and he’s right in front. So dolphin one leaps out, lowers his snout, and takes […]

Cloudy to sunny SUP Yoga classes in Fort Lauderdale with Kathy and Natasha

Cloudy to sunny SUP Yoga classes in Fort Lauderdale with Kathy and Natasha

On an overcast saturday morning in Fort Lauderdale, I met with two ladies that are making things happen on the water. And what started as a rainy day turned out to become a sunny and beautiful February day in South Florida perfect for paddle board yoga. Natasha at SUP Pup FTL and Kathy from Tiny Warrior Wellness met a few years ago at an entrepreneurial group and decided to join forces to give paddle board tours and yoga classes in Fort Lauderdale.

Natasha, originally from Jacksonville has been paddling for a while as she was born and raised close to the water in Jacksonville beach. And Kathy is a certified yoga instruction from DC. Both have been in Fort Lauderdale for five years now and provide to travellers and locals alike, a calming yoga class on paddleboards. The classes happen in Victoria Park, on a quiet park on the east side of town.

When I met them, it seemed like it was not going to happen but after a quick shower and a few minutes, the clouds were all gone and a group of four people joined Kathy on the water for some yoga practice. See doing yoga is easy depending on how you look at it, and doing it on paddle boards takes it up a notch. But Kathy, the instructor, tells us that its very rare that someone will fall on the water. The boards provided by SUPPUP FTL and Connelly SUP are actually quite wide and stable, and are perfect for floating and doing intricate movements on the water surface.

The surroundings to your exercises on the water were awesome. It was really quiet and close to a bunch of trees and plants, and all you could hear were birds that were overseeing our Downward Facing Dog, Planks and Up Dog. This class of young yoginis were down to attempting more challenging balancing postures, as Kathy guided them through core strength for Beginners or Advanced students that had movements adapted to their skill level. Yoga on a Paddle Board is just like regular yoga, but a rather more exciting experience that burns calories and doesn’t really fell like exercising.

Here are five great reasons to try paddle yoga in Fort Lauderdale with SUP Pup FTL:

1) All abilities levels are welcome for physical and mental conditioning.

2) Taking your familiar yoga moves out of regular settings and trying them out on a new territory.

3) Exercising outside surround by beautiful Nature and not a shelter over your head.

4) Adaptation and improvisation to avoid falling in the water on those not so perfect stances are ok.

5) Exercising the strength of your core and your balance.

 

Click here for a full list of SUP Yoga practitioners and providers.

 

Choosing a SUP Race Board: customize your racing paddleboard with the Flying Fish 3D board builder

Choosing a SUP Race Board: customize your racing paddleboard with the Flying Fish 3D board builder

The word “Slick” according to Google Translate is the definition of an impressive and efficient action or thing. That might also just be the definition of the new Flying Fish boards 3D custom board builder. The thing is impressive and can cause you to spend hours in […]

Paddle board fitness classes with Jenna in Fort Lauderdale

Paddle board fitness classes with Jenna in Fort Lauderdale

Paddleboard Fitness Instructor, Jenna is a Certified Personal Trainer that adapts regular workouts to anyone’s fitness levels on the water. Exercising on a paddleboard allows her to combine all elements of SUP to maximize your gains. Paddleboard fitness is great for the entire body and a class can […]

How about paddling and working in the fjords of Norway? This might just be your opportunity

How about paddling and working in the fjords of Norway? This might just be your opportunity

Fjords are those deep valleys, usually narrow and steepsided that extend below sea level and are naturally filled with seawater. Fjords are found in locations where current or past glaciation extended below current sea level and there’s nowhere more iconic for them than Norway. The countries countless fjords are figurative of the country and  have been pictured in movies produced there like Norsemen – that showed how old people practiced the Attestupa, the mythical practice of senicide during Nordic prehistoric times by jumping from the top of the cliffs – and The Wave, that tells the story of a geologist that predicts that a piece of the cliff will fall into the water and cause a wave that engulfs a nearby town on the fjords. The Wave (originally Bolgen) is available on Netflix.

Now imagine yourself  paddling silently through this amazing scenery with a bunch of lovely people and knowledgeable local guide. You can experience that by taking part in one SupNorway’s  expeditions through the fjords of the Sognefjord – the longest & deepest navigable fjord in the world and one of it’s arms, Nærøyfjord – in Western Norway. Steep mountains and snow-covered peaks that stand 1700 meters above sea level, with picturesque villages and literally hundreds of waterfalls are the scenery of the 2019 season that starts end of May till End of August when sunlight lasts up to 20 hours a day.

SupNorway expeditions are getting famous (is Norway becoming the next Iceland, social media’s darling?) so it’s important to pre book in advance on their website. Titus, the owner and lead guide at SUPNorway has prepared a route that includes:

  • Long days with waterfalls sounding like distant surf through your tent.
  • Relaxed pace: Gliding under towering cliffs and pausing often as opportunities present to film, photograph or just take in the magnificence of mother nature.
  • Intimate: Group numbers are kept small to provide an intimate feeling to the expedition and to minimise our environmental footprint.
  • Food: Three healthy meals a day are provided with the use of the best quality Norwegian food and freshly made by the guide each day.

SUPNOrway is very friendly, small company who love SUP and nature and want to share this amazing location and experience with you as the TripAdvisor reviews will attest:

SUP bliss for the outdoor enthusiastI enjoyed a fantastic 5-day trip with SUP Norway: Titus puts his heart and soul into the planning and execution to ensure great results. The gear, itinerary, communications are all top notch, and the scenery is unparalleled. One thing that makes the SUP Norway experience unique is that the outing is all self-supported, so if you are the type who prefers easy luxury, this is not the trip for you: you will set up your own tent, you will help gather firewood, you will make your own morning coffee. I had an absolute blast and hope to be back next summer!
Titus Kodzoman, founder of SUPNorway. Credits: SUPNorway.com
Titus Kodzoman, founder of SUPNorway. Credits: SUPNorway.com

The best job of your life?

SUP Norway is looking to expand their operations to new areas and are looking for an experienced and talented expedition leader/host to head the expeditions in our existing area of operations in the UNESCO protected Nærøyfjord/Aurlandsfjord branches of Sognefjord in the West of Norway. This is an incredibly rewarding and exciting opportunity for the right candidate that will be awesomely rewarded according to their website. Read the job description below and see if you qualify:
  • You are experienced and confident in leading paddling groups in the wild and are uncompromising in your professionalism and safety routines. Your paddling endurance and strength are excellent and you are capable of towing a casualty for several km.
  • Your crisis management skills are proven and you are able to anticipate, identify and mitigate risk for a group on open water.
  • You have good camp craft and you can light fires with your laser-vision enjoy imparting your skills to others.
  • You have an inspirational personality and conduct yourself to the highest standards.
  • You are empathic and have an understanding of group dynamics.

Working conditions:

  • Position is from mid May to 31 Aug 2019.
  • 2 tours in May as assistant guide under training from chief guide (paid).
  • 5 & 2 day tours with 1½-2 rest days (paid) between + 1 week free in July (paid).
  • Accommodation (shared) and all food provided.
  • You will have an assistant guide and a max group size of 12 guests.
  • You will be responsible for logistics and all aspects of each expedition.
  • You will be required to organise and prepare some meals for each group.
Now go apply at SupNorways website before they pick someone else! Or contact SUPNorway on our website to book one of the their trips.
Boards and camping tents at the shores of Norways fjords. Credits: SUPNorway.com
Boards and camping tents at the shores of Norways fjords. Credits: SUPNorway.com

FJORDS NORWAY – Stegastein Viewpoint from FJORDS on Vimeo.

Do you also pick up trash while paddling?

Do you also pick up trash while paddling?

Ever felt obliged to pick up trash while on your leisure paddle? It turns out, it’s not an uncommon thing. A sense of duty takes hold of us paddleboarders as we enter the water and encounter a pile of plastic or trash and compels us […]