By Terry Sovil from the April 2012 Edition
SUP? Stand up paddle boarding (SUP)! This fast growing sport has made the scene, again, and it is gathering people wanting to try! There are some elements of Hawaiian history in the sport. It started as a type of surfing allowing an instructor to better see his class and any large waves coming in. Surfers enjoy the opportunity to catch more waves in a set. Riding them on the rivers is gaining popularity because of the skill required to move those boards down river and through rapids.
The boards tend to be long, nine feet (3 m) or more and have one or more fins or skegs on the bottom rear, like surfboards, to help maintain tracking and steering a straight course. They are longer and wider than typical surfboards which allow you to balance and propel yourself with ease. It is a fun and easy way to go play on the water. You can paddle on the open ocean, lakes and rivers. No waves required! The modern boards are light enough to carry down the beach by one person.
In addition to the fun aspect, paddle boarding provides a full body workout. It is popular with skiers who use it as a cross-training exercise as well as with snowboarders and other athletes. Since you can stand you also get great views of sea creatures, activity around you and what’s on the horizon. It is close to walking on the water! No experience is required; you can embrace the sport on your own or seek out instruction to help you get started. The new water sport!
Terry is a founding partner and scuba instructor for Aquatic Sports and Adventures (Deportes y Aventuras Acuáticas) in Manzanillo. A PADI (Professional Association of Dive Instructors) Master Instructor in his 36th year as a PADI Professional. He also holds 15 Specialty Instructor Course ratings. Terry held a US Coast Guard 50-Ton Masters (Captain's) License. In his past corporate life, he worked in computers from 1973 to 2005 from a computer operator to a project manager for companies including GE Capital Fleet Services and Target. From 2005 to 2008, he developed and oversaw delivery of training to Target's Loss Prevention (Asset Protection) employees on the West Coast, USA. He led a network of 80+ instructors, evaluated training, performed needs assessments and gathered feedback on the delivery of training, conducted training in Crisis Leadership and Non-Violent Crisis Intervention to Target executives. Independently, he has taught hundreds of hours of skills-based training in American Red Cross CPR, First Aid, SCUBA and sailing and managed a staff of Project Managers at LogicBay in the production of multi-media training and web sites in a fast-paced environment of artists, instructional designers, writers and developers, creating a variety of interactive training and support products for Fortune 1000 companies.