GETTING MORE PEOPLE ON THE WATER
Stand Up Paddle Boarding is one of the fasted growing sports in the world and it is not hard to see why. It is fun, relatively accessible and relatively inexpensive compared to most other watersports. In addition the benefits of participation are well documented and have been shown to improve mental health and wellbeing, mindfulness, productivity and creativity as well as lowering stress and anxiety. Plus it's a great form of low impact whole body exercise.
However, we know lots of people can be put off trying our amazing sport because they think they are not fit enough or strong enough, or that if they fall off they might not be able to get back on. The paddle boarding community is extremely inclusive, but like many 'leisure' sports, brands generally show images of people of a certain size or shape participating which does not always reflect reality and this is a shame as it may also put some people off giving SUP a go.
Just SUP uk is all about getting more people on the water regardless of age, gender, size or shape and we firmly believe that anyone can paddle board. Which is why we have developed the SUP haul.
The Problem with Self-Rescue
Over the last few years we have taught hundreds of people of all ages, body shapes and fitness levels to stand up paddle board and one thing we can all agree on is that getting back on the board is probably the single most tiring part!
Getting back on, or the 'self-rescue' to give it its proper name, takes some exertion for sure. You need some upper body strength and a strong kick with your legs to propel yourself upwards in order to clamber on to your board - glamorous and dignified it is not!
One thing we have observed is that wearing a buoyancy aid can make the self-rescue harder to do as they essentially make the wearer wider. We also find that larger framed or plus size paddlers can also find the self-rescue more tiring and difficult.
This applies to both men and women.
The SUP haul has been inspired to by two amazing women who regularly paddle close to the just SUP uk base at Runnymede. They would launch their SUPS at the river bank and paddle on to the Thames. We noticed they would never paddle far and when one of them fell off, they would swim to the shallow launch spot and then climb back on before heading back out.
Intrigued as to why, we wandered over to say 'Hi' and find out more. Both were more than happy to chat and they explained that they found getting back on to the SUP was very hard and the only option was to get shallow enough in order to be able to stand up to then climb back on. Later in the summer we saw that they had attached a webbing strap to back of the board, forming a loop with which they could step into. This allowed them to use the stronger leg muscles to propel themselves upwards.
The only problem was that the strap was attached to the rear D-ring which is not designed for this type of loading. Attaching a strap to the D-ring, or any deck mounted fixing, could result in it failing (ie. being pulled off the board) - not good wherever you are paddling but particularly bad if you are out at sea! In addition, attaching a strap like this could also invalidate your boards warranty.
Slowly an idea began to form...
This where the SUP haul comes in! It works by using the rigidity of the board itself as the anchor point for the foot-loop. It is both safer and stronger, plus the SUP haul converts in to a shoulder strap and a board-tie - a three-in-one solution!
The SUP haul has been designed, tested and manufactured in the UK. We have used only certified and weight rated components that have been sourced from primary and trusted manufacturers. In addition, the SUP haul has been independently tested at an automotive and safety restraint facility based on the south coast of England.