So you’ve bought your SUP and are a beginner at paddleboarding. How exciting! But what next? To make sure you’re not scratching your head, we’ve written our helpful tips as a checklist that’ll take you through exactly what you need to head straight to the water and get paddling from the get-go!
Get ready to take some notes or even print off this page as a ‘cheat sheet’ that you can take with you later. This way, you’ll ensure that you’ll never leave anything behind!
Paddleboard & Accessories
- Stand up paddleboard (SUP): CHECK! I mean, you couldn’t go paddling without it so let’s make sure it’s the perfect SUP for you. All of our Bluefin SUPs are inflatable and include a handy travel bag, allowing you to easily transport your SUP kit to wherever your paddling adventures take you. If you’re still working out which is the best paddleboard for you, take a look at our Which Board page.
- SUP paddle: All of our SUPs include a fibreglass paddle, and you’ll definitely need to make sure you take this with you. You won’t be able to move across the water without it.
- Pump: You’re going to have to pump up your inflatable SUP, right? So make sure you don’t forget this piece of equipment! If you’re looking to see how quick and easy it is to pump up your Bluefin board, take a look at this catchy Tiktok video.
- Fin(s) for SUP: Our boards come with 3 x thruster boards within a smart-lock system, meaning it’s super simple to clip in your fins and paddle away. It’s important to have fins to paddle smoother and with greater stability on the water. So make sure these are packed in your Bluefin backpack!
- Extra accessories: Depending on which SUP you have, if you have one of our Cruise SUPs, you’ll also have a Kayak conversion kit. So, beginner paddleboarder, remember to keep your accessories packed if you’re looking to explore your options on the water!
Clothing & Footwear
Now, this is totally dependent on the climate that you’re paddling in. The most important factor isn’t to just be prepared for the air temperature, but to also be prepared for the water temperature.
For warmer weather and water, it’s best to choose clothing that dries quickly! So we’d recommend that you look to wear:
- Lightweight T-shirt (protecting you from the sun’s rays), shorts/broad shorts,
- Swimming wear: you may want to wear this under your clothes in case you want to take a quick dip to cool off,
- Waterproof shoes, neoprene shoes or even sandals,
- A sun hat,
- Sunglasses (either a pair you don’t mind losing or perhaps invest in a strap that you can wear safely around your neck)
For cooler weather and water, it’s best to choose clothing that insulates! We suggest lightweight layers that you can easily add or remove. You never realise just how warm you can get once you start paddling!
- Neoprene top(s) and shorts/trousers,
- Wool or synthetic socks: No one likes cold toes!
- Hat & gloves,
- Any additional lightweight thermals that you’d benefit from (that don’t hinder you from paddling, of course!)
Top Tip: We’d recommend, beginner paddleboarder or not, to bring a spare set of clothing so that you’re never travelling home wet!
Safety, Safety, Safety
Paddleboarding is super fun, so let’s make sure it stays that way by ensuring that you’re ready for anything! Safety is always something that should be taken seriously, no matter how calm the water appears. So we’d recommend the following:
- SUP leash: Leashes save lives, and we have a whole blog post on this here. All of our Bluefin SUPs come with leashes to attach around one of your ankles. Use it!
- Rescue whistle,
- Personal flotation device (PFD): If you’re not the most confident swimmer, it may be worth investing in a PFD of some form,
- Headtorch or flashlight: an essential if you’re paddling before sunrise or after sunset,
- First aid kit: This can either fit into your dry bag, or you can leave it in your car.
Let’s also not forget that if you’re paddling out onto an open stretch of water that you’ll experience stronger sun rays, sharper winds etc. So perhaps consider adding the following to either your bag or cargo storage space on your SUP, so that you’re ready for everything along your journey:
- A dry bag or two to store your items, keeping them safe even if they fall into the water,
- Suncream (water-resistant + a good SPF),
- Lip balm with an SPF: Here’s you’re warning to avoid those chapped lips!
- A water bottle,
- Snacks or food to eat that will keep,
- Credit card or a small amount of cash: You never know where you could find yourself on your adventures!
- Mobile phone safely tucked away in a waterproof dry bag or case,
- An action camera: Ready to attach to your Bluefin SUPs camera mount to catch all of the action,
So there you have it, a beginner paddleboard checklist of the basics that’ll ensure you’re having the most enjoyable and safest time out on the water! Remember to keep an eye on our Bluefin SUP ‘Accessories’ page on our website to ensure that you’re the first to know about the new accessories that we are in the mix of creating!