Tuesday, July 3, 2012

What’s Up? I SUP!

I added a new acronym and new sport to my already overflowing list …ISUP. It stands for Inflatable Stand Up Paddleboard. If you go to almost any lake (in Florida at least) you will see people standing on oversized surfboards in the water. I’m not sure what the appeal is for paddle boarding. Maybe it’s just trendy and we will laugh about it in a few years. Maybe it’s the almost Jesus like feel of standing on the water. Perhaps it’s the attention you get since standing on the water makes you very visible. Or maybe it’s just a good excuse to be outdoors and on the water.

Many people know about the hard boards but don’t seem to know there is an inflatable option. If you are considering the two some of the benefits of an inflatable are ease of transport and less storage area. Some of the supposed negatives are the board is slower and less responsive but I didn’t have any issue with this. I am not out there to go fast, I just want to enjoy nature and I really didn’t notice any difference in speed anyway. For me it was an inflatable or no board at all due to my small apartment and I am happy with my choice.

I’ve used my board three times already. I’ve done yoga on my board, paddled in the gulf and most recently even had a rescue mission. I showed up at a local lake and a sit down Jet Ski was stuck in the middle of the lake with two guys. One didn’t want to get in the water and the other was having trouble trying to swim to shore with the Jet Ski. I told their friends half joking that I could rescue them in about 10 minutes and began to pump up my board. When I finished inflating the Jet Ski was still near the middle of the lake so I paddled over to them and offered to paddle them in if they held on to the back of my board. Talk about a good workout while I boarded (sitting of course) and pulled a jet ski and two men. But it worked and they were safely to shore and I was the heroin of the day! They promised to post nice things about me in their Facebook status and I asked to be referred to as “an angel named Cathy”. Plus they even tried to give me money which was sweet but totally unnecessary so my friend just told them to pay it forward. This is always a great idea I think.

So far I’ve enjoyed my ISUP but I’m still not sure it will have staying power. It gives me a reason to go to the lake and read and relax and watch the sunset. It feels like a mini vacation and as a benefit I get a little exercise and stretching thrown in. Only time will tell if it endures. If not I still have at least nine other sports to keep me entertained.

Cat “De Cath Lon” Cathy