If you are worried about your kids spending too much time indoor playing video games, it’s time to take them out and have a little fun. Paddleboarding as a new trend of outdoor activities is worth trying. It’s a great activity for families. But before you take your kids out to the water, there are a few things you should know. Below are a few things you should know before taking your kids to stand up paddle boarding.
- Give your kids time to get comfortable with the water
When stand up paddle boarding, falling is basically inevitable, especially for kids. So it’s better to make sure they are comfortable in the water. It would be great if your kids know how to swim. If they don’t, take time to teach them how to swim first and make them feel more comfortable when in the water. If your kid is less than 5 years old, you should probably ride the same SUP board with them to ensure their safety. For older kids, you can let them ride their own board but you need to pick a board that’s suitable for them, make them wear a life jacket all the time not let them out of your sight.
- Find calm waters to paddle on when taking your kids out for SUP the first time
Just like with a beginner, if you are taking your kids out for stand up paddle boarding, make sure the place you go is calm so that your kids can learn to paddle board more easily. Even if you are going to share a board with your kids, a calm lake is still better than the ocean or river with choppy water as having two people on the same board would make balancing more difficult. If you want to get your kids to like stand up paddle boarding, falling frequently during their first SUP trip might not help with that, unless they enjoy being in the water.
- Teach them necessary safety tips and paddling techniques
If they are paddling on their own board, make sure they are taught all the necessary paddling skills and safety tips. For a kid, an inflatable SUP board is always the better option compared to a hardboard since inflatables are softer, thus safer than a hardboard. Your kids are less likely to get hurt falling on an inflatable than a hardboard. But still it’s important to teach them how to avoid hurting themselves when they fall. Even though there’s not much we can do when falling off a board, you should still tell them to try falling to the sides to avoid hitting the board and getting injured.
Also, since falling is almost inevitable, you need to teach them how to get back on the board when falling off the board as fast as they can. It could be hard for kids and will probably take time to practice. But it’s an important skill so make sure they practice properly.
- Provide emotional support
When they are making progress in learning how to paddle board or keep falling off the board, don’t hesitate to encourage them. It helps to build up their confidence in the sport and themselves. And if they are not progressing in the pace you want, be patient and know that they are trying their best. Don’t get too pushy and critical when they are not doing well.
- Make paddleboarding fun for your kids
Your kids might not be as much of a SUP lover as you as they might not find as much fun. If they don’t seem to be enjoying the sport, try and make it fun for them. If you really want them to like the sport, this is probably the most important tip to keep in mind. When paddle boarding with your kids, it doesn’t just have to be about paddleboarding. If they enjoy swimming, then get off the board and swim with them together. Have a small talk with them, chat about the things they like. If you guys are sharing the same board, you can even bring some of their toys along. And if you are having fun, don’t forget to take a few pictures. Sometimes you can even consider faking a few dramatic falls to make the kids laugh.
If you stuck for an idea to entertain your kids, standup paddleboarding is a great sport to introduce to them. It’s a fun, relaxing and interactive sport suitable for not only you but also your whole family. Also, always make them wear a life jacket and the SUP leash. But some might get trapped by the leash so you’d have to make sure they won’t get out of your sight and you are able to get to them fast when they are in trouble.