Paddleboarding provides core workout

One of the newest water sports devices that is rapidly growing in popularity is the stand-up paddle board. This device can now be seen on many calm, protected bodies of water. 

Typical dimensions are 12 feet long and 31 inches wide with a weight of about 30 pounds. These boards are surprisingly stable and can support up to 275 pounds.

The fitness aspect includes using core muscles to generate power and maintain balance. Core muscles include lower abdominal muscles that run from the lower rib cage to the pelvis. Low back muscles and ligaments that support the spine are also crucial to providing stability.

Upper leg muscles deliver strength to the hips and are involved in stabilizing the torso during lateral movements.

Muscles throughout the upper extremities from the shoulders to the hands are important for paddling. Although paddleboarding is typically performed on calm bodies of water, any waves or swift currents can quickly increase the intensity of a paddling workout.

Among the greatest health risks the elderly face are falls. This problem is sometimes a result of poor balance and an inability to recover quickly. Paddleboarding and other activities that demand good balance can develop skills that may avoid these dangers in the future. Interestingly, some paddleboarders have incorporated yoga exercises while paddleboarding.

Stretching is always advised before any athletic activity and paddleboarding is no exception. Like kayaks and windsurfers, paddleboards are water vessels and a personal flotation device should always be worn.

In addition to the fitness aspects of paddleboarding, many have been drawn to this activity for its peaceful nature and opportunity to relax.

Paddleboarding presents an opportunity for people with average athletic skills to engage in a new activity.