Tips for Beginner Paddleboarders
The perfect outdoor adventure
In recent years, paddleboarding has grown rapidly in popularity. Many people are adopting this fun water activity, and the fitness and adventure it provides. Paddleboarding is a budget-friendly activity – and you don’t even have to invest in a board! Many state parks offer paddleboard rentals. If you do choose to invest in a paddleboard, consider getting an inflatable board. These boards will take up far less space in your RV as you travel.
Paddleboarding is a great activity for a wide range of ages and skills. You don’t have to stand up on a paddleboard! You can choose to sit, kneel, stand or even do yoga based on your own balance.
Paddleboard Safety Tips
There are a few safety tips to keep in mind before you head out on a paddleboard.
- Know the water and dress appropriately. In some places, such as the Puget Sound or Salish Sea, the water can be quite cold. You will want to wear neoprene socks, SCUBA socks, and perhaps even a waterproof jacket. If you fall in the water you can get too cold very quick. Regardless of water temperature, you should always wear a life jacket.
- Either carry or wear water shoes. You may end up in a part of the river where you want to jump off the board – but the riverbed has sharp rocks. Water shoes will allow you to get off the board without worrying about hurting your feet.
- If you choose to take your phone with you (don’t want to miss a photo up!), put it in a waterproof lanyard around your neck. This way, if you fall off your phone won’t end up on the bottom of whatever body of water you’re paddleboarding on.
- Make sure to bring water along with you. Dehydration can happen quicker than you think!
- Before going too far from shore, be sure to practice getting on your board in deeper water (deeper than what you can stand in).
Where to paddleboard
There are many great places to paddleboard. Some of the best locations are at state parks. If you’re a beginner at paddleboarding, you will want to look for areas of water that are relatively calm without too strong of a current. Below are a couple of great choices.
- Lincoln Rock – this is a great choice with calm water close to home.
- Millersylvania – only electric boats are allowed on this scenic lake, which keeps the water calmer.
- Ike Kinswa – a great lake with a waterfall that can be visited by paddleboard.
- Sequim Bay – a great place to see wildlife. Tip – go out against the current and come back with it.