Basic SUP or Paddleboarding equipment – The Ultimate guide

The great thing about stand-up paddleboarding is actually it’s not that complicated and you don’t really need that much gear to get you on the water as long as you are safe, you are comfortable when you are paddling and you are finding it as easy as possible. That’s a good place to start. Let’s talk about paddleboarding equipment; the gear you should have and the gear that’s an optional extra.

Basic SUP or Paddleboarding equipment

When you first start paddleboarding, you want a board, that’s nice and easy to stand upon. It is nice and wide to give you a large amount of stability. The most important thing is, it’s really easy to use for your body weight. And you can progress into paddleboarding really quickly. Now, just as important as a board is a paddle, you can’t go paddleboarding without it. You can paddleboard with lots of different paddles.

Paddleboarding equipment

Wooden Sticks

Wooden sticks to high-performance carbon pieces of artwork as long as the paddle is the right length for you. Not too long and not too short, approximately six to eight inches above your head. It’s good to start when you first start paddleboarding. They come in one-piece paddles, which are fixed. Two-piece paddles, which that means, then you can adjust the length of them. Three-piece paddles are great for traveling and packing down into smaller iced-up bags.


The most important thing to look out for when you are buying a paddle isn’t actually the weight of the paddle. That’s more of a nice thing to have a lightweight paddle. If it’s too big, you load up your shoulders and you might cause yourself an injury you are better off going for a smaller blade size than the biggest blade size. But if you are a bigger taller person and have more muscles around your shoulders. You definitely can go for a bigger blade size than a smaller person.

A Fin

Something you can almost paddle without, but it’s nearly impossible is a fin very simple. But if you do forget it, you will be going around in circles. The fin is an important piece of paddleboarding equipment and is there basically to help you track or move in a straight line. It causes drag at the back of the board and it slows the back of the board down. Which then means you paddle in a straight line in simple terms.

Boards with single central fins are more for cruising and like touring and boards with three or four or five fins are for more performance baseboards. Maybe a little bit of surf or whitewater. If you do buy a board with fixed fins on it, make sure they’re super supple. So they don’t get damaged when you’re hitting the beach or rocks so finishing off with art.

So, if you do fall off, you’re no more than an arm’s reach away from your board at all times. If you do go paddleboarding without a SUP leash when you’re standing up and paddling along, it’ll make no difference at all.

But chances are if you do fall, you will be kicking the board out in front of you or if there is any amount of wind. The board will suddenly glide away. You will have to be swimming after it. If it’s a windy day sometimes it is even impossible to catch that board in time.

Point C Aid

Now some people say that if you wear a point C aid you haven’t got to wear a leash and it is a personal choice. But I personally believe if you do fall off and you have got a point C aid or a life jacket on, you still have to swim after your board because you haven’t got a leash on and then actually swimming after a board. That’s moving in maybe a bit of wind or still with a mentum that you push forward is really hard to do so.


The leash is an important paddleboarding equipment. I really recommend wearing a leash at all times unless you are in a moving water environment, where you’re taking the board out and whitewater and that’s where I recommend wearing a leash, but with a quick-release harness. So, you can easily release the leash if it gets tangled around trees or branches.

Waist Strap Inflatable Lifejackets

The waist strap inflatable lifejackets that you see a lot of people paddling with are great. They don’t hinder your paddling movement and they do offer you a large amount of support when you have them on and inflated, but remember you have got to put them on and the points say it is on all the time.


Looking at what to wear on the water? There’s a lot of different things, you could wear on the water and there’s some really good, sub-specific clothing coming out at the moment. Definitely, when you start a few from a cool climate, it’s better off starting in a wetsuit. If you’re going to be going in out of the water quite a lot, especially if you’re going into the surf and stuff.

If you do fall in for that slightly cooler day and in the hotter days you can get a very good paddle, specific t-shirts that keep you cool and wick the sweat away from you. That’s a great little thing if you weren’t paddling in warmer countries. But actually still want to keep covered up. If you can get away with it, it’s always best to go barefoot because you will get the best amount of grip and also you will reduce the chance of you getting cramp.

Flip-Flops or Wet Suit Boots

Sometimes you can wear shoes or even flip-flops. Your toes struggle to get the grip on the base of the board and you will end up getting cramp on the base of your feet. Some of you might have experienced that already.

So, if you can try and get away by just having barefoot if you can’t then obviously a good pair of wet suit boots would be better and it also keeps you nice and warm flip-flops are great to get you down to the water’s edge. And then you can stash them under the front of the board. You definitely want to stay away from it.

I don’t know what you call it in the States, but we call them wellington boots big sort of rubber boots that go around to keep you nice and warm nice and dry. It is good to take a phone on the water, a simple dry bag, there’s so many available online.

Apps Like Juice Up

Another thing as paddleboarding equipment is flipflops. You can use apps like juice up and you can put it in there and you can use the viewing window track. Your speed and your course, if you want to do that sort of thing, but if you want to get away from the tech, emails and text message and it, but it’s still a good idea to take a phone with you.

SUP is actually a very simple sport. Just always remember your board, your paddle and your leash stay safe and comfortable as possible and paddle on a board that is easy for you as possible.


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