Top 5 Essential Paddle Boarding Tips for Beginners

  • By Laura
  • 18 Nov, 2017

So, you’ve taken up the sport of paddleboarding, and you're wondering how to optimize your experience on the water with the essential gear. You're ready to hit your local lake, beach or river, but what should you bring in your paddling excursion? Now, depending on how long you intend your paddle adventure to last, you can always slip into the water with just your board, paddle and bathing suit. It's common to have less gear with you for a quick paddle session, or when sharing a board with the family on a beach day. But if you plan on being out on the water for more than twenty minutes, here are five essential tips for beginner paddleboarders to keep in mind.

#1 Stay hydrated and stretch

   before or during your paddle boarding session. It is essential to remain hydrated while exercising on the water. Whether you’re cruising the coastline or through the backwaters during an afternoon, you must have access to water or a beverage of your choice to keep your palate wet. The sport of paddle boarding takes a lot of energy out of you and with a full core workout, it doesn’t take long to sweat. Staying hydrated is easy with the proper equipment. Having a reusable water bottle is perfect for small trips, but if you’re planning a day-long paddle, a Camelback is a fantastic accessory to add to your list of gear. These backpacks have waterproof pouches that fit snugly into a wearable and lightweight pack that makes for a comfortable carry. Sip cold water through the mouth piece attached to a tube that snakes over the shoulder for easy access. This hydration option is ideal, and most Camelbacks have separate compartments for storing small item essentials. Staying hydrated is key. If you do not have access to a Camelback, carry a water bottle in a dry bag or a small cooler that you can strap to the bow or stern of your paddleboard.

#2 Wear a life vest or PFD belt

   No matter how great of a swimmer you may think you are, having a personal flotation device (PFD) is essential when paddling to and from locations. In most areas, it is the law to have a PFD on your person, or on the board while underway. There are multiple variations and plenty of fashionable styles to choose, and they range across a spectrum of affordable pricing. They’re perfect for throwing to a friend in distress or keeping your head above the water if you should have a health issue while paddling and fall off your board in a secluded area. This topic leads to the next beginner paddle tip.

#3 Sport a Leash

   because you never know when you may need it. As the traditional safety saying goes, 'It’s better to have it and not need it, than to need it, and not have it.' A leash could save your life. Especially if you plan on paddleboard surfing or riding the flow of river rapids on your SUP. Staying connected to your board will save you from a long swim. Even if you're paddling the calm backwaters on one of the best iSUP boards on today's market, having a leash attached to your ankle, calf, or belt PFD allows for quicker and easier retrieval of your board should you find yourself separated or having to chase after it. 

The leash allows paddlers to pull their board back in mere seconds, so riders can avoid walking on oysters or jagged rocks. The chances of falling off and becoming separated from your board increases when taking your paddle board experience to the extreme in the surf or rapids. Being tethered to your board is ideal, so you don’t have to tire yourself out swimming after your board. 

#4 Sunscreen is

   everyone’s best friend. No matter what color skin tone you have, our closest star, our sun, shows no mercy for any one on this planet. Sunscreen is designed to keep your skin from being scorched. If you spend anywhere from an hour paddleboarding to a half day or more, you could get scorched without the proper appliance of sunscreen. The most common sunscreen is 30 SPF to 50 SPF and come in a liquid, or solid stick form and is affordable and easy to apply.

There are small backpack-size or key chain bottle sunscreen variations that are perfect for day trips. Be sure to reapply every couple hours or so, and though having sunscreen is essential, wearing a hat, or long-sleeve shirt keeps the UV rays from hitting your skin. Skin cancer is more common than you think, and everyone who frequents the sunshine should have sunscreen on hand.

#5 A dry bag for storage

is always necessary if you don't want your food and technology to become soggy or ruined. Dry bags come in many forms and sizes, and you want to find one that floats in case it slides off your board into the water. Many paddle boards today have cross-bungee straps to secure your gear, but if you don’t have bungees on your board, sometimes things tend to float off if you’re not paying close attention. The key to picking a quality dry bag is finding one that has a reliable seal and is vibrant in color, so you can easily find if it does happen to fall into the water. There are smaller versions of the dry bag such as dry boxes or waterproof pouches. Compact and easy to fit into a Camelback or travel bag. They are large enough to hold your car keys phone, a few credit cards and a small tube of sunscreen. It is a fantastic piece of gear for your paddle board set up and keeps everything organized in one central location.

These five essential paddleboarding tips will prepare you for everything you need to maintain an optimized paddling experience. If you plan on hitting the water for the day, bring the essentials. You will remain comfortable, hydrated, and most of all, safe. All these items are more than affordable and are available in a variety of online resale websites. Find the essential paddleboard gear for your afternoon ride and share your new tips with fellow paddlers.

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By Terence C. Ashby 29 Nov, 2017
Barbados doesn’t always get the credit it deserves as one of the more diverse Caribbean islands, in terms of terrain and attractions. There are rocky and sandy coasts, small towns and resorts, and more remote areas for exploration. It’s a small island, but one that’s a real treat to visit, should you ever get the chance. Plus, as with most Caribbean islands, it’s full of excellent places to go paddling! We’ll highlight three of them below.
By Laura 18 Nov, 2017

So, you’ve taken up the sport of paddleboarding, and you're wondering how to optimize your experience on the water with the essential gear. You're ready to hit your local lake, beach or river, but what should you bring in your paddling excursion? Now, depending on how long you intend your paddle adventure to last, you can always slip into the water with just your board, paddle and bathing suit. It's common to have less gear with you for a quick paddle session, or when sharing a board with the family on a beach day. But if you plan on being out on the water for more than twenty minutes, here are five essential tips for beginner paddleboarders to keep in mind.

By Mélanie 18 Nov, 2017
Si vous envisagez de partir en voyage dans les Caraïbes , de nombreuses îles sont alors toutes aussi intéressantes les unes que les autres comme destination de vacances. Quitte à en choisir, pourquoi ne pas opter pour l'une de celles qui sont considérées parmi les plus belles d'entre elles ? Vous aurez d'ailleurs l'embarras du choix, mais voici quelques-unes des îles parmi les plus prisées des voyageurs pour leur beauté et surtout de leurs atouts indéniables en tant que destinations balnéaires.
By Ozzy 06 Aug, 2017

Pinel Island is a well known destination for snorkeling but once you get there, it's not obvious to find the best spot. Whether you get there by kayak, paddle board or ferry, you need to take that opportunity to discover and explore the underwater world..! With its flat waters and its little to no current, the bay of Cul-de-Sac is one of the most accessible place for snorkeling, even for small kids and beginners.

So here are our top 3 recommendations:

  • Our number one spot is located at Little Key, which is the island before Pinel Island. Once on the tiny deserted beach, you can either start on the left or on the right of the beach. The left side will make you follow the shallow waters before the point of the island. That spot is interesting because of its easy access and its calm waters. All you have to do is to follow the underwater reef until the point, then you can come back (or try to find the numerous sea turtles) or keep snorkeling around the island.
By Ozzy & Fanny 05 Jul, 2017

Living in Saint-Martin has many assets to offer. And one of them is that we have Islands closed by to travel to in no time, either for a day trip or for the week end. An Island Hoping paradise for everybody: the locals and the visitors! 

Anguilla is the British Island located at the North of Saint-Martin, less than 4 miles away. It is famous for its beautiful beaches and its crystal clear water. This is the perfect Island for a relaxing getaway (beach, snorkeling, water activities…) since besides the magnificent coast, there is not much to do over there. 

Saba is located at the South West of Sint-Marteen and belongs to the Dutch. It is actually the highest land of Netherland! The landscape is the opposite from Anguilla’s (which is absolutely flat) and the particularity of this island is… It is a beachless Caribbean Island. How incredible, right? But no worries, you still have a lot to do over there, mostly sportive activities! Basically, Saba is well known for its beautiful hikes in the mountain with thousands of different plants & amazing deep dives with colorful reefs. This is a great alternative from the “beach style” vacations that most of the Caribbean Islands usually offer.

And the last, but not the least: Saint-Barth . We are sure that you have already heard of it, isn’t it? ☺ Saint-Barth is located at the west of Saint-Martin, and is accessible either by ferry (30 minutes of ferry ride), by charter plane (12 minutes of flight), with a helicopter (10 minutes of flight) or by private boat. This island is a pure gem! Famous to be the destination for the famous and rich people, this French island has everything to satisfy everybody’s tastes (but still pricey)! Hilly landscapes with amazing point of views of the deep blue & turquoise Caribbean sea, white sand beaches, great shopping (!!), 5 stars resorts or charming casual ones, gastronomic restaurants, hikes on the wild side, natural pools… And of course, all the water activities you can think of!

By Ozzy 16 Jun, 2017

Are you thinking of going to Pinel Island during your stay on Saint-Martin?

First, this is definitely a great idea that should be at the top of your “to do list”. Pinel is a must see, and spend the day over there is a guarantee of an unforgettable experience. 

Second, there is nothing easier! 

In Cul de Sac ferry station, the boats are departing everyday (except if the weather condition does not allow it) and at a very frequent times: every 30 minutes.

Basically, during high season, the ferries run from Monday through Sunday, from 9h30am until 5:00pm (same opening hours as Caribbean Paddling all year long ;)). During low season, the last ferry back from Pinel Island leaves at 4:00pm and you’d better not miss it if you do not want to spend the night with our favorite iguanas!

To sum up, in low season, renting your gear through us to spend the day on Pinel gives you an extra hour in P.A.R.A.D.I.S.E.

More time to enjoy the sun, the white sand beaches, the turquoise water, some snorkelling & paddling in the bay, and why not one last homemade cocktail? ;)

You will find bellow the ferry schedule to go to Pinel Island, according to the time of the year you will be visiting our friendly island. 

By Ozzy 12 Jun, 2017
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The Caribbean are well known for the warm sun, white sand and shimmering turquoise water. When you visit Saint-Martin, the most important thing you want to do is to spend a day on one of the 37 beaches of this little paradise! … But when it is raining, getting wet on a beach a chair is not really attracting! Here are our recommendations to fully enjoy your day, despite the bad weather.
By Ozzy 25 Apr, 2017

A lot of people ask this question: how can I reach you and/or Pinel Island? For us residents of St Martin - St Maarten, this is quite simple: just follow the road! It really is simple since there is only one road on our island! But, for everyone else, it's not as easy.

There are three possible places you might be starting from...

  • a cruiseship.
  • somewhere on St Maarten.
  • somewhere on St Martin.
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