Paddle boarding profiles: Meet our SUP Explorers

Our ‘Board of the Week’ this week is The Explorer range!

We have taken the time to delve deep into the amazing technical benefits of our Explorer boards, so we hope you now feel well prepped to get out there and give one of these incredible boards a go!

Today however, we are turning the spotlight on our paddle boarding community and hearing a few paddler tales from some lovely people.

Meet Sandra, Andy, John and Matthew – our Lab Technologist, Storeman, Machine Operator and Solution Consultant. Although they may come from rather different backgrounds, they all share a passion for paddle boarding and they each chose to buy a Red Paddle Co Explorer board.

We wanted to get to know them that little bit better and asked a few Q & A’s to find out exactly how they use their boards and why they love Explorer boards so much…Woman paddle boarding diary

Board Type: 12’6″ Explorer

Age Bracket: 46-55 yrs

Approx Weight: 140 lb

Height: 5′ 7″

Job Title: Lab Technologist

Where do you go paddle boarding on a regular basis?

“Currently I am travelling around the world looking for great places to SUP. The Caribbean coast of Mexico was amazing, being able to see rays and colourful fish swim underneath while you paddle. 

Next, I’m off to New Zealand and hope to paddle with dolphins and penguins. 

What kind of water conditions do you normally paddle in with your Explorer board?

“I’m new to SUP so have stuck to calmer waters like BC, Canadian lakes and in Costa Rica the warm tropical fijord of Golfo Dulce and rivers. I loved the Caribbean when the wind wasn’t too strong. 

How far do you typically paddle?

I usually just get out for 1-3 hours but my reason for going with the 12.6 explorer was to be able to do longer multi day trips.

How has paddle boarding changed / improved your life?

Paddle boarding has given me a new way to move at a good speed and be out for several hours to explore the wilderness without the fatigue trail running (my main sport) causes. It’s great cross training for any sport and the freedom of being on the water, has improved my health and wellbeing. “Man doing SUP yoga on paddle board

Board Type: 13’2 Exlporer

Age Bracket: 46-55 yrs.

Approx Weight: 90kg

Height: 193cm

Occupation: Storeman

Where do you go paddle boarding on a regular basis?

My wife and I live in Cornwall and we have St Austell Bay on our doorstep. The beauty of the bay is we can pick and choose locations that provide the calmest water based on wind direction.

Was there a specific reason you took up SUP or a particular reason you chose to buy a board?

 SUP was something on my list of things to try, I drove my wife to a running event and, whilst waiting, I popped into AS Watersports (Exeter, UK) and was introduced to the Red Paddle Co Ride. I was so impressed that I went for a lesson the following week and was immediately hooked. I purchased our Ride 10’6 straight after the lesson. The Ride is a fabulous board and my wife has claimed it as hers. I fancied something more tailored for speed and distance and the 13’2 Explorer+ fitted the bill and I love it. 

What kind of water conditions do you normally paddle in with your Explorer board?

We prefer calm water, I can cope with a bit of swell and generally choose locations that provide the calmest water based on wind direction. Our favourite spots are heading out of Porthpean towards Silvermine beach and Black Head in Cornwall, UK.

How far do you typically paddle?

Typically, I will paddle about 3 miles in a session but on a good day will double this. I’ve completed the Head of the Dart (8 miles) and have entered the Exe Hammer in September.

How has paddle boarding changed / improved your life?

The sense of freedom and relaxation you get from SUP is hard to express, I find it almost spiritual in a similar way to my Yoga practice. I can go from a full on chill session to a full body workout depending on my mood/need, it is hard to think of another sport that gives the same feeling of wellbeing. “Paddle board travels on the beach

Board Type: 13’2 Explorer

Age Bracket: 46-55 yrs.

Weight: 85kg

Height: 185cm

Where do you go paddle boarding on a regular basis? Do you have a favourite / local spot?

I regularly paddle on the Yarra River (Australia) for training. Its goes through the centre of Melbourne which is great as there’s always new things to see. So many people are curious when they see me and I get my picture taken a lot as well as waves from children. My favourite spot to paddle is when I paddle a new location. My weekend paddles are designed to explore new areas. 

Why did you choose to buy a Red Paddle Co board?

The quality, the high psi, the front and back rings for towing. I researched for around a year and decided that the Red Paddle Co 13’2 Explorer+ was the best touring board with all the attachments and weight capacity that I needed. 

Was there a specific reason you took up SUP?

I started out kayaking and found I wasn’t comfortable sitting for long periods. I tried paddle boarding once and thought it felt more comfortable. My first long paddle, a fund raiser for Cancer Council Australia was called “Around the bay”. After this 10km paddle I decided to finish the rest of the bay which is 253km all the way around. 

How has paddle boarding changed / improved your life?

Paddle boarding has given me the opportunity to challenge myself, set goals and spend quality time with myself. Paddling solo in all the types of conditions gives me a feeling of being an explorer. It’s also the anticipation of what’s around the next corner…Man, his dogs and his explorer paddle board

Board Type: 13’2″ Explorer

Age Bracket: 46-55 yrs.

Approx Weight: 90kg

Height: 5.11

Occupation: Solution Consultant

Was there a specific reason you took up SUP or a particular reason you chose to buy a board?

We first tried SUP back in 2014 and loved it. We bought two Rides and subsequently upgraded to Explorers as we nearly always have dogs on board.

What other hobbies do you enjoy outside of SUP?

Dingy Sailing, Skiing, Mountain biking and Hiking

Where do you go paddle boarding on a regular basis and in what kind of water conditions?

My wife and I regularly SUP on the River Hamble, Christchurch Harbour and Poole Harbour (UK) and we normally take our Explorer boards to inland spots, paddling on rivers in any conditions and sometimes on calm sea.

How has paddle boarding changed / improved your life?

Apart from the odd race that we enter, such as the Head of the Dart and Sup4Cancer, we find SUP very relaxing, and it’s a sport that the four of us can do together (2 humans and 2 dogs). We have found that the SUP social scene and group paddles are starting to become more prevalent, and we enjoy those. It has also improved our core body conditioning.