How to Fall and Get Back on Your Paddle Board

Falling off a stand-up paddleboard (SUP) might seem like a daunting prospect, especially for beginners. However, it's an inevitable part of the paddleboarding experience that, with the right approach, can be managed safely and effectively. Whether you're navigating serene lakes or challenging ocean waves, learning how to fall correctly and get back on your board is essential for every SUP enthusiast.

Key Highlights

  1. The Right Way to Fall: Emphasizing the importance of falling away from the board to avoid injuries, and considering the adoption of the belly flop backwards technique for safer landings.
  2. Keeping Track of Your Essentials: The necessity of wearing a leash for safety, handling the paddle correctly during a fall, and dressing appropriately for an unexpected swim.
  3. The Board Flip Technique: Outlining a step-by-step method for flipping your SUP back over, taking into account the weight of the board and water depth.
  4. Climbing Back On: Providing a detailed guide from positioning the paddle on the board to transitioning from prone to kneeling and then standing, with a focus on balance and stability.
  5. Falling as Part of the Learning Curve: Encouraging readers to view falling off the paddle board not as a setback but as a valuable part of the learning experience, with each fall offering an opportunity to improve paddleboarding skills.

The Right Way to Fall: Ensuring Safety

Fall Away from the Board: It might sound obvious, but instinct might tempt you to land on or grab the board. To avoid injuries like twisted knees or worse, always aim to fall into the water, away from your SUP.

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Adopt the Belly Flop Backwards Technique:

falling off a paddle board


Falling flat can prevent deep plunges into unknown waters, protecting you from underwater hazards. A PFD (Personal Flotation Device) not only ensures safety but also aids in falling shallow, especially in rocky or shallow areas where wearing water shoes is also advisable.

Keeping Track of Your Essentials

Wear a Leash: A leash is your lifeline to your SUP, ensuring the board doesn’t drift away from you, especially on windy days. Be mindful, though, as the board can potentially snap back towards you, so protect your face when reeling it in.

 how to fall off a paddleboard

Handle Your Paddle with Care: If you choose to hold onto your paddle, ensure it enters the water butt end first to avoid strain. If you lose grip, retrieve your paddle by prone paddling on your board, much like a surfer, until you can safely grab it again.

how to get back on a paddleboard

Dress Appropriately

Expect to Swim: Dressing for the possibility of a dip means opting for water-resistant materials and considering a wet or dry suit in colder conditions. Always have a change of clothes handy in your vehicle for post-paddle comfort.


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The Board Flip: A Skill to Practice

Technique for Flipping Your SUP: Approach the tail end, using your non-dominant hand to reach across to the farthest rail, and push up on the nearest rail with your dominant hand. For heavier boards or in deep water, leverage the leash to guide your board to shallower areas for easier flipping.

Climbing Back On: A Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Position Your Paddle: If still in hand, lay it across the SUP for stability.
  2. Initiate the Climb: Grab the board’s handle and the far rail, preferably near the tail for easier reach across the narrower part of the SUP.
  3. Kick and Pull: Use a few strong kicks to propel yourself upwards while pulling with your arms to slide onto the board in a prone position.
  4. From Prone to Kneeling: Stabilize yourself before transitioning to your knees, focusing on the horizon to maintain balance.
  5. Stand Up: With the paddle in hand, hop to your feet and immediately dip the paddle blade into the water for stability, ready to resume your adventure.

In Conclusion: Falling is Part of the Journey

Falling off your SUP is not just inevitable; it's part of the learning curve. With these tips, you’ll not only minimize the risk of injury but also enhance your overall paddleboarding skills. Embrace each fall as an opportunity to improve, knowing that with practice, getting back on your board becomes second nature.

For more paddleboarding tips, tricks, and gear, visit our blog and explore our range of durable and versatile SUPs designed for adventurers at all levels.


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