You’ve moved inland so may as well sell the surfboard, right? Having previously been a coastal dweller, with a penchant for waves, your new inland residence is a depressing prospect. At least from a watersports prospect. You still need to exercise and yearn for regular H2O fulfillment. Tithing to your local gym every month isn’t quite cutting it. It may be because the futility of running and pushing things, in the same room 3-4 times a week, just doesn’t have the same appeal of open space and water. You are left feeling like more of a rodent than relaxed.
There is a chance that you still make it down to the beach every few weeks with the surfboard in an attempt to float around and try and remember how you once used it. As you do you are haunted by the fact that fatigue kicks in a lot sooner than it used to and you’re caught up in the chicken and egg.
But have no fear. There is a solution. England has over 2000 miles of rivers and waterways dotted around the country that are perfect for a paddle. and many of these are inland. In fact, if you happen to find yourself in cities and towns then a lot of these waterways are within easy reach. SOme much closer to your backdoor than you’d initially imagine. Some of you who are more used to wave riding may find the thought of donning the same water as a river boat a bit of a turn off, but it’s going to be as much of a challenge as you make it. And can be just as fulfilling. If you’re open to broadening your horizons.
The absence of extreme – but that’s no bad thing.
Flat water paddle boarding isn’t about being extreme and gnarly dude. Unless you gravitate towards hucking large volume white water. Which is another option. The problem with that is proper WW SUP is mainly a winter pastime. You need rain and whilst we do get that during UK summer it’s not quite enough to set those rapids off.
Paddling flat water in summer is more about the journey and adventure. The happy side effect is you getting regular exercise and remain connected to the way of life you’re used to. Also, there’s no real hanging around waiting for conditions to line up as you do with surfing. OK, there may be inclement against with you sometimes – such as wind. But it’s not quite the same as searching for groomed offshore swell and such. Simply grab your paddle board and paddle and get gone.
Ultimately stand up paddle boarding is still riding a board. You’re gliding through water and enjoying being outdoors. SUP gives you time to appreciate your surrounding a little more. And there’s a health benefit. Plenty of surfers we know use paddle boarding as a ‘tool’ when the waves aren’t playing ball. And this goes for riders who find themselves inland and away from the coast. SUP may start as your secondary activity but it may well end up being your first.