Stand up surf boarding SUP

View from Motehoe Point Devon
View from Motehoe Point Devon

Against my better judgement I agreed to have a go at SUP (stand up surfing), which is basicslly standing on an over sized surf board with a a paddle. I imagined that I would spend a considerable amount of time climbing back on to the board then, attempting to stand up followed by falling off the baord and starting the whole process again.

The lesson was booked for 10:30 which was arounf high tide which was very convenient as the seas would be closer to the top of the beach and therefore less of a walk with a large surfboard to get to the water. They booked us in and got us to sign our lives away using the insurance indemnity form, issued us with a wetsuit of roughly the right size. Getting the wetsuit on was a bit of a struggle as I am not a regular user but despite it being damp and clod I managed to get the thing stretched over my body.

Next was the obligatory briefing where they explained that we were about to stand on a surfboard and use a paddle to move about, and that the sea was a dangerous place and should be respected, in fact it was like a mill pond. We carried the boards down to the sea which take quite and effort there is a handle at the center of gravity of the board, so basically you can only use one arm to carry it. I had to stop a few times to rest my arm.

Style on footpath above Croyde Devon
Style on footpath above Croyde Devon

Once at the waters edge we had a another brief this time on the techniques, i.e. how to get on the board (we knew how to get off) how to use the paddle how to steer etc, eventually we were allowed into the water. It was not long before we were stood up on the board which turned out to be not that difficult, but it was also not long before we learnt how to climb back on the board when we were out of standing depth. The wind was blowing off shore and because our technique was poor meant we were soon quite a way from the shore. Andy out instructor encouraged us to practice the turning technique he had show us and head a bit closer into to the bay.

We spent some time paddling, falling, standing up and I was soon glad they the lesson was only for one hour, as towards the end it was becoming a bit of an effort climbing back onto the board, as the falling in became quite frequent as I was attempting to use the small breaking waves to “surf” towards the shore, but mainly failed to do. Luckily we only had to carry one of the boards back to the surf school building as there was one guy on the next lesson.

Back at the hut we had a coffee and a sandwich then Helen and I headed across the bay to do sme ook pooling and panorama photo’s. John was on cooking duties and we had giant stuffed butternut squash, veggie sausages and green beans which was very tasty.

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