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Find Your Balance – SUP Boarding

Adventurous |

Fun Ways to Enjoy Stand Up Paddle boarding

If you haven’t tried Stand Up Paddle (SUP) boarding yet, Cayman’s warm and clear water paired with miles of coastline make it a great place to learn.

Although it may look difficult, it takes just minutes to master the basics.  Once you are up and paddling, you’ll find it is one of the most tranquil ways to enjoy being out on the water and getting a golden tan.

There’s no noise, no exhaust fumes, no complicated kit – it’s just you, a gentle sea breeze and clear, turquoise sea for miles. The fact that you are getting a great core workout at the same time is just a silver lining.

Several watersports operators rent boards, give lessons and run tours, so once you’ve found your sea legs, consider trying one of the following:

Paddle Fit

If you want to take the workout element up a notch, a paddle fitness class is a great way to get in shape and have fun at the same time.  A bit like circuit training, the class combines drills on the beach with drills on the board. Running, jumping and lunging is always tougher in soft sand, so be prepared to work up a sweat before you hop on your board. Once afloat, you paddle fast between markers, dropping down to do sets of squats, planks and press ups, before paddling to your next marker.

Join a class with the fantastic, Kiristen Cousins (www.vitaminseacayman.com) on Seven Mile Beach or why not have Damo Davis come to your villa and teach a private paddle boarding class for you and your family (www.caymanstanduppaddleco.ky).

Glow in the Dark Paddle

For a completely different SUP experience, nighttime tours to the Bioluminescent Bay at Rum Point can be arranged. The waters of this sheltered lagoon have an extremely high concentration of light-emitting plankton which glow when disturbed. It’s only visible on the darkest nights of the month, but the sight of the swirling blue trails that appear each time your paddle slices through the inky water is quite magical. Cayman Stand Up Paddle Co can arrange private tours.

A paddle on the wild side

For a view of a very different side of the Cayman Islands, consider exploring the mangroves by SUP. Sweet Spot Watersports (www.sweetspotwatersports.com), based in Northside, lead tours into Little Sound, a mangrove bay that is part of the Marine Park. You’ll see no sign of human civilization here, but you’ll be able to paddle right up to these curious aquatic trees and observe how they grow straight out of the water. Your tour guide will point out the different varieties of mangroves, explain how they have adapted to the high salinity of the water, and tell you all about the important environmental role they play, from protecting coastlines and providing a safe place for young fish to grow, to storing CO2.

SUP Yoga

Add a whole new dimension to your yoga practice when you take your downward dog on to the water. For an SUP yoga class you’ll tie your board to a buoy and an instructor will lead you through a simple yoga class. The instability of the board will challenge your balance even in poses you never knew required balance. And if you lose your balance… well, it’s a pleasant dip in the ocean! Finish off stretching out on your board and letting its gentle rocking lull you into deep relaxation.  SUP yoga classes can be arranged through Thrive Fit (www.thrivefitcayman.com)