If you are getting into standup paddleboarding, you should know you need to bring more than just your SUP to do it right. Wondering what accessories you'll need? We've highlighted our favorite SUP gear to help you get equipped for basic safety and great times on the water.
First things first, you need to make sure that you have the right SUP safety accessories on the water (especially if you are paddling on rivers and/or whitewater!). Some are required and some are optional, but all are rad and will keep you protected.
Wearing or carrying a PFD (personal flotation device) is required
Type III or V PFDs are best for whitewater
Protect that Noggin'
While those paddling calm or flat waterways such as ponds, lakes, and lazy rivers can usually get away without wearing a helmet, if you are going to be paddling whitewater in any capacity then you must wear a whitewater helmet. 'Nuff said. Here are some of our favorite options for SUP:
|Shred Ready Standard
Full Cut Helmet
Elbow + Knee/Shin Pads
|You may have heard
the joke that it’s not
really called stand up
paddleboarding. If you're trying out whitewater SUP, consider wearing knee, shin and/or elbow protection. Your body is unfortunately not as tough as the rocks you may encounter!
|A quick(ish) story about my first time
river SUPing: It was early April and
I was cruising down the Yampa River
at a pretty good pace. I was having
a grand ole time until we got to a
confluence. A lateral wave knocked
me sideways. Instead of falling on
my board, I cartoonishly stumbled
backwards and eventually crashed
into the water, where a massive rock
was hiding under the surface.
This rock not-so-gently kissed the
thinnest, weakest part of my knee:
Big smooch straight on my kneecap.
Knee pads can save you thousands
of dollars in medical money and
hours and hours of PT time, kids.
High Pressure Pumps
Save your muscles for your paddling! Rather than hand pumping your SUP to full pressure, get an Outdoor Master Shark II High Pressure Pump and just plug it in and chill while your SUP inflates. I can think of many things I'd rather do at the put-in or boat ramp than pump up my SUP.
Dry Bags: Something for EverythingYou don't have to leave gear like water bottles, extra layers, and snacks at home while you paddle. You can take anything you can fit on your SUP--as long as you have the right dry bags to put it in!
|When I know I’ll be out for a
an all-day paddle, I usually bring
my Watershed Ocoee with me.
I can easily fit my phone, extra layers,
a hat, sunscreen, and several
snacks inside this waterproof
bag. This bag has no issue fitting on the front of a board and is small
enough to not get in the way or
impact performance while on
Sea to Summit, NRS, and Watershed all make huge selections of dry bags to fit
your water adventure storage needs.
Dry Cases are another
great storage solution for your SUP.
You can use carabiners, cam straps and/or your SUP's
bungee cords and D-Rings to rig your
bags and cases to your paddleboard.
Always rig to flip - just in case
Do More with Dry Wear + SPF Gear
Some of our favorite drysuits on the market are the Immersion Research 7Figure Drysuit [for guys] and the Level Six Freya [for gals]. If you want to extend your SUP season, you will definitely want to invest in a dry suit.
Another piece of apparel we love is our SPF wear. These products protect your precious skin cells under the sun. They're great when it's cool out but especially when it's hot out on the river, because you can dunk your shirt in the water for an instant cool down.
|Men's Sun Protection Apparel
|Women's Sun Protection Apparel
Other Important Goodies
Get a Knife!
If you wear a leash or carry a throw bag, you must have a knife on hand (we prefer securely attaching them to the outside of our PFDs). Here are a few we like:
|NRS Pilot Knife
|NRS Co-Pilot Knife
|NRS Green Knife
You can replace your center fins and your side bite click fins on most inflatable whitewater SUPs. This means riders can modify their ride for low water, surfing, better tracking... the options are pretty limitless!
Swap Your Center Fin
Hala 8" Center Fin
Low Water, No Problem
New and Improved
Hala Pocket Fin
It’s always helpful to have a set of these in your PFD in case you need to swap out a click fin quickly!