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Beginner Tips For Stand-Up Paddle Boarding In Durango, Part 1


Anyone looking for a Colorado adventure that they are sure not to soon forget can benefit from renting a stand up paddle board (SUP) and hitting the open water with our outdoor adventure company. Durango Rivertrippers & Adventure Tours is proud to be your source for lessons and adventures with your stand up paddle board in Durango. While our outdoor rental adventures range from stunning train trips to off-road ATV tours, many individuals opt to try their luck at one of the fastest growing sports in America. Stand up paddle boarding is a rewarding activity that serves to get you outside in addition to being an amazing full-body workout. The overall benefits and enjoyment make this sport a fun time for all ages!

Durango Rivertrippers is happy to provide SUP lessons for beginners, but we understand that not everyone is ready for expert guidance. Today, we’ll look at a few tips for paddleboard beginners with the hopes of saving you some trouble out on the lake. Be sure to contact us afterward to learn more about our outdoor adventures!

Standing Up

Sometimes, getting started is the hardest part of any activity. For new SUP enthusiasts, this comes to standing up on the paddleboard. It’s important to be calm and methodical when standing upon your SUP, as moving too quickly can lead to a loss of balance and the subsequent mulligan.

To start, be sure to position yourself for success. New paddleboarders often do best when starting beside their SUP in knee-high water. This way, you’ll have maximum control while avoiding damaging the fins on the board. Place your hands on the edges of the board to hold it steady while you slide your way onto the board, ending in a kneeling position just behind the carry handle on your board (Hint – the handle is in the center!). Continue to keep your board steady with both hands while sliding one foot at a time to where your knees originally were. The final step is where many people fall, so be sure to line up your chest vertically. This will allow for equal weight distribution when you stand straight up, maximizing your balance retention.

Staying Up

You did it! Once in the standing position, new SUP riders will need to focus on retaining their balance to avoid splashing back into the starting point. To begin, check to ensure that you are facing the right direction. If those fins are in the front, your steering will be non-existent!

Slide your feet until they are hip-width apart, ensuring that they remain parallel. Keeping your knees bent and your back straight will help to retain balance while preparing for any movement or shifting. Be sure to remain upright, as slouching can cause leaning. Your weight shifts will come from the hips, so it pays to stay vertical while standing up. Avoid staring down at your feet to avoid balance changes!

There are many facets to stand up paddleboarding that require proper practice and guidance to master. Next time, we’ll continue on this topic by discussing the paddle and different stroke techniques. If you’re looking for a quality adventure involving you and a durable stand up paddleboard in Durango, be sure to speak to Durango Rivertrippers first. Contact us today to learn more or to reserve your paddleboard adventure!

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Join us on a raft trip down the San Miguel River in Telluride, CO. In the spring and early summer this snowmelt-fed river plunges from the high peaks of the San Juan Mountains. NOTE: This river flows typically during the end of May and stops at the end of June. The dates we have loaded are the dates we are running this river. If you are looking for rafting in July and August check out our Durango River Rafting page.