History and origin of Stand up Paddle SUP surfing

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Stand up Paddling can be interpreted in many ways as there have been recordings of people stand up on a floating device moving forward with a paddle, dating way back… Let’s check them out chronically

tub History of Stand up Paddle

3000 BC Apparently the Peruvian fisherman paddled on their knee and stood up when they caught a wave (archaeologically evidenced from pottery shards). Board made from reed and were called TUP (pretty close to SUP!)

 egypt History of Stand up Paddle

1275 BC Egyptian pharaoh’s daughter Queen Bithia
The Bible and Midrash assert that she was the foster mother of Moses, having drawn him from the Nile and bestowed upon him his name (Exodus 2:10). Apparently she was standing up so she had a better view to spot the baby prophet and future Savior of the Jews.

hawaii History of Stand up Paddle

400-900 AD Polynesians develop stand-up surfing as a recreational/ cultural practice. Apparently only the king was allowed to ride the expensive long boards (the olo) on which it was possible to stand up! Common Hawaiians rode cheaper shorter boards, described around 1850


500 AD China river drifting. Apperently first time sigthing of a Monk on a reed crossing the river, later on followed by what is now a cultural sport in China single bamboo drifting. 13ft bamboo poles.

arab History of Stand up Paddle

800 AD -1300 AD Hasake. this is a board-boat hybrid of the Stand-up Paddle (SUP) Board family, with alleged Israeli and Arabic roots, possibly dating back to as far as the 8th century A.D. The Hasake was used primarily for fishing. At 10’x42’’x5’’ this thing comes pretty close to a now-a.days SUP

one-leg History of Stand up Paddle

1200 Burma, Inle Lake one-legged paddling fishermen. Stand up on one leg and paddle with your leg around your paddle. A must try for summer 2017?

History of Stand up Paddle afrika

1712 Report from the Gold Coast of West Africa by Frenchman Jean Barbot describing recreational playing in the waves amongst other with boats with paddles.

hawaii2 History of Stand up Paddle
1769 Matavai Bay, Tahiti recreational surf riding described by Joseph Banks (member of James Cook’s first Pacific expedition). Mark Twain writes about recreational surfing in Polynesia in 1860.

venice History of Stand up Paddle

1869 Mark Twain writes about gondolas in venice

surfski History of Stand up Paddle

1912 Australia BREAKTHROUGH – instead of all these open canoes a closed hull is made that doesn’t catch water and to be stand on. It’s called the surfski and is made and first rode in Australia.

duke History of Stand up Paddle

1939 The SURFSKI gets most known after it has been brought to Hawaii where Duke Kahanamoku rides it, as can be seen in the movie Blue horizon. Wearing a leash to his two-bladed paddle, stand up paddling waves. Watch him on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPnM4ymNj3o


1945 John Zapozocky picks up Stand Up paddling from the Duke and uses single-bladed paddles. Together with Pops AhChoy they continue paddling in the 50’ 60’ and 70’ties.

1995 Laird Hamilton starts experimenting with long 12’ surfboards to ride with his child together and in small surf. Together with Dave Kalama they start using paddles. A renaissance of the DUKE’s stand up paddling.

blimp History of Stand up Paddle

2001 US brand ULLI uses dropstich-material to create inflatable surfboards. The material was developed by the US Army in cooperation with Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company to create the the Goodyear Inflatoplane. The US military abandoned the inflatable plane project (nobody wanted to fly an aircraft that could be brought down with a bow and arrow). In 2008 inflatable stand up paddleboards become more and more common.

laird History of Stand up Paddle

2002 Laird Hamilton rides a six-foot south swell at Malibu with an American flag on a specifically designed board and paddle (with US flag) for stand up paddling after experimenting and developing the SUP sport since 1996.

Everything that has happened in what is now known as SUP has happened since that day… If you want to read more, we recommend the book from Ben Marcus (Art of Stand up Paddling).

Best length paddle for SUP Stand Up Paddling ?

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best paddle length for supping


best paddle length for supping

What is the best paddle length for you?

Stand up paddling is such a relaxed way to enjoy your time on the water.

Stand up paddle boarding is becoming more popular each year. So much people have begun to enjoy stand-up paddling having fun on the water, spend time with family and friends. While doing this you can also improve your fitness level.

Perhaps you have found your board and your paddle. You can basically start.

Before you get into the water with your board, it is best that you put your paddle in the correct length.

Step 1

Stretch your left or right arm above your head.


Step 2

Enlarge your paddle to the same hight of the arm that is stretched above your head.


Step 3

The stretched arm rests relaxed on handle of the paddle. This is the correct lenght.


5 tips for stand up paddling in winter

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The summer is over but you still want to keep stand-up paddling in winter?

Well you are so right. Why stop? But you also do not want to freeze your butt of in the cold or come into unsafe situations.

Here are 5 tips to help you along.


Tip 1 – What to wear, when stand up paddling in the winter?

Before you step out of the door. Check if you are wearing the correct clothing.


The wetsuit

The wetsuit has been the winter choice for a lot of  stand up paddlers. Check out the world wide web for all the different choices, designs and prices. There is a huge choice of wetsuits available from 7mm full on winter suits with built in hoods to 2mm summer suits. It all depends where, when and how long you want to paddle. Just during a bit chilly weather or during deep cold winter days?


The thicker the suit the warmer it is but with a trade off in flexibility, and each paddler will find their preferred combination of warmth and flexibility.


Wetsuits can be relatively inexpensive, it’s very easy to find one that fits perfectly and they are pretty robust and will last for years with a little care.


Dry suit

A new development brought to the paddling world is the dry suit. Filling the space between wetsuits and more traditional dry suits these are designed specifically for Stand Up Paddlers who do not need the protection and bulk of a surface immersion suit, for faster paddling and limited time in the water.

Like the more common dry suit there is no insulation in the SUP dry suit so a base layer will need to be worn underneath, top and bottom. Marketed at those who want to paddle fast the semi-dry suit is also a great solution for many more leisurely paddlers.


Do not want to buy a wetsuit nor a dry suit?

Well you can wear a pair of warm longjohns /ski underwear under your rain trousers as an option.

For your upper body, you can wear a warm midlayer, but try to avoid cotton, this soaks in the water and that will keep you longer cold. Over your midlayer a waterproof jacket is fine.


Tip3: What to wear for head and feet?

A fleece or neoprene tuque is great for the head. A fleece beanie or anything warm you prefer to wear is also good.

For your feet a pair neoprene shoes are great.


You will need some waterproof gloves or neoprene gloves for your hands. Do not want to invest? Then just your wintergloves. Preferable not the thin knitted gloves. These do not protect from the wind.


Tip 4: What to take with you during a tour in winter?

  • Keep it safe, use a leash
  • When it is getting darker a waterproof white light attached to your board or body is good for visibility and others can see you.
  • Dry bag
  • Thermos with something warm to drink
  • Water
  • Snack of own choise
  • Towel
  • Waterproof bag for cell phone.
  • Extra pair of clothes


Tip 5: Going to paddle in dark cold weathers?

Let somebody know where you will be paddling and for how long you are planning to do so.

When the weather changes a lot that day. Just recheck the weather forecast, so you will not be in the middle of heavy wind or a rain storm.