Take to a board on a sailing holiday

Stand up paddleboarding – or SUP – is a cross between kayaking and surfing and is one of the quickest-growing watersports on the planet right now. It is great fun and can also be an excellent full-body workout, making it easy to burn off a little bit of your holiday excesses.

If you have never had a go at SUP but want to make the most of the paddleboards on offer during your sailing holiday, follow these handy hints to get you started.

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Getting on

Use your paddle placed across the board as an outrigger and jump on just behind the centre. Start off by kneeling and remain on your knees for a while until you get a feel for the board. Find the balance point – this is when the tail isn’t digging in and the nose isn’t popping out. Keep the board stable by holding on to both sides.

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Standing tall

When you are ready, stand up slowly. It might be useful to get someone else to hold the board when you do this for the first time. Put your feet where your knees were. They should be parallel and around hip distance apart. Stay centred between the rails (edges) of the board. Keep your toes pointing forward, your knees bent and your back straight. Use your hips to balance rather than your upper body.

Very importantly, try not to look down. Keep your gaze on the horizon. Once you get going, paddleboarding is a bit like cycling and you will find you are much more stable when you are moving forward rather than when you are just standing still.

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