SUP – the hot new thing to do in watersports

Credit: 38 Degrees North Credit: 38 Degrees North

Seemingly out of nowhere, Stand-up-paddle boarding (SUP) has emerged as a great way to explore beaches in the UK and beyond. A major advantage is the fact that it’s best done on still waters, opening up a whole host of swell-free beaches that would otherwise just be good for sunbathing on! Editor Heleana Quartey, fresh from a week in Ibiza came across Kelly Morgan of 38 Degrees North, so we thought we’d get in touch to find out what has made SUP the next big thing.


Credit: 38 Degrees North

Credit: 38 Degrees North

It seems that suddenly SUP has gained a massive profile in the UK – even amongst people not traditionally into action sports – why do you think that is?

I think SUP has really caught the public’s imagination because it’s quite an accessible pastime and is quite simple to pick up. It’s relaxing and serene, a great way to be on the water, and once you’ve got your balance, fairly easy. It delivers a great full body workout, especially hitting the core, and like anything, you can make it more challenging, if you go for it and paddle hard it’s a tough, toning workout. Alternatively, get into a nice gentle rhythm and it’s almost meditative. Simple to learn, great fun and puts a smile on your face.
It surprised me that Ibiza has an amazing wellness scene – do you find that most people are from London, wanting to get some more sun?

A lot of our clients are from London, but we get a lot from all over the UK, generally their looking to kickstart their fitness in beautiful sunny surroundings, and Ibiza certainly fits the bill. We’ve got turquoise seas, white sandy beaches, and pine clad hills to hike in, it’s really a great place to be active and work out.

Credit: 38 Degrees North

Credit: 38 Degrees North

What events have you got planned in the UK and in Ibiza for this summer?

Through the summer we’re running our week long Optimal Fitness camps in Ibiza, along with bespoke fitness breaks, and for the end of the season here we’re launching our Healthy Hedonism break – a long weekend where you train hard for 2 days, then on the Sunday it’s a private yacht to Formentera for beach games, before cruising back with the sunset for VIP dinner and dancing at world famous beach club Blue Marlin! Work hard, play harder. We’ll also be launching some weekend pop-up training events in and around London towards the end of the summer and want to establish these as a regular thing.
Do you do surf sessions for women? If so, tell us more about them.

Sadly there is rarely surf in Ibiza (we do get some in winter) so SUP is our main thing here as it’s a great flat water sport and a good way to see the coastline from a different perspective. We like to throw some SUP yoga in there as well to keep it challenging, and we find it’s equally accessible for men and women, though generally women do tend to pick it up faster.

You can find out more about 38 Degrees north and their range of fitness holidays, including SUP and SUP yoga, here.

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