Can You Use Your Stand Up Paddle Board As Exercise Equipment?

Stand up paddle boarding is not only easy and fun, it also burns calories and works out several muscle groups at the same time, making it an increasingly attractive outdoor exercise activity. In fact, that board can double as a piece of exercise equipment and water sports gear. Plus, experts have proven that there are lots of good health benefits of stand up paddle boarding. So, if you’ve been looking for the perfect recreational activity that gives you a good workout, then it is time to start SUPing.

What Muscles Are Used In Stand Up Paddle Boarding?

If you’re looking at this fun sport as a good addition to your fitness routine, then you might be wondering why type of workout you can expect from it. According to Active Times, it is a killer workout. Why? Well, the main feature of stand up paddleboarding is balancing on the board, and that requires a strong core. Basically, when you are out on the water, your core muscles work constantly to keep you topside. But it’s not just about balancing upright on the paddle board. You’ll want to propel yourself forward through the water (and maybe even the waves), so you will work out your back, shoulder and arm muscles as you gently stroke the water, alternating sides of the board every few pulls. Both sides enjoy an even workout when paddling, and if you are doing some stand up paddle surfing then you might end up getting even more of a workout in those waves!

Your legs also cooperate with your core to keep you perfectly balanced, so from your feet to your lower back, you’ll be using just about all the muscles in between. The best part is that SUP is low-impact, so you won’t be risking damage to your feet, legs, knees and joints while you float atop calm waters. SUP is a great sport for those recovering from traumas sustained in higher-impact sports like running, tennis and weight lifting. SUP allows you remain active and to keep your cardio conditioning while healing from injuries.

Now, if you would like to jazz up your SUP workout routine while enjoying social engagements, you can also sign up for SUP yoga classes. This has become quite popular all over the country. If your location already has SUP groups, it’s most likely to also support at least one SUP yoga group. Your instructor will lead you to calm waters where you will anchor your board and perform yoga exercises appropriate for your experience and desired level of intensity, combining the muscle use for SUP with those of your poses. And all of the benefits of this united workout plan will be enjoyed in the fresh air and sunshine. We see no downsides here.

Paddle Board Workout Calories – How Many Calories Does An Hour Of Stand Up Paddle Boarding Burn?

If you are using your board for weight loss and fat burning, then you might be wondering how many calories can you burn while SUPing, right? That will depend, of course, on how relaxed or how intense your boarding activity is. For example, if you are new to the sport, you will probably be taking it easy until you gain more skill, so you will burn between 305 and 430 calories per hour, depending on your sex and size. If you add yoga to the mix you will consume between 416 and 540. Once you’ve gained enough experience, you’ll be able to paddle faster, catch waves and surf or even engage in races.  These activities will cost you between 615 and 1,125 calories per hour. With SUP activities, your energy burn will rival that of any land-based activity from walking to sprinting to marathon running. Isle Surf & SUP made the infographic below that breaks down the calories burned by different paddle boarding activities.

SUP calories burned
credit: Isle Surf & SUP

So, if you’ve been thinking to change up your exercise routine to one that is easy on your joints, conditions every large muscle group, enhances balance and keeps your heart in good shape all while enjoying the ocean, lake or river, then you can’t go wrong with SUPing. Even the Huffington Post thinks that stand up paddle boarding is the perfect combination of fun and exercise!

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