As a child I wasn’t really exposed much to exercise. I hated cross country as I really couldn’t run that far as I wasn’t at all fit. We were also made to do netball, hockey and rounders but I didn’t mind. I was OK at netball and hockey but I loved rounders. It made me feel like I was good at something physical.
As a teenager I wasn’t really encouraged to do exercise even though I was overweight. I didn’t really do anything else other than go to the gym at school as a PE alternative in sixth form. I just felt that everything active was too adventurous for me.
Before I had my hip replacement I only really went walking and swimming and played ultimate Frisbee in the summer. Since having my hip replacement I now do a lot of pilates- mat, equipment, fitness and aerial. I love it because it keeps my hip working and means I am a bit more pain free.
I came across paddle boarding by chance. A friend suggested I try it although I knew nothing about it only having seen them on holidays and wondered what they were for. I must have been up for the challenge as my hip replacement means standing up on dry land can be a difficult let alone water!
Since then I’ve never looked back. Paddle boarding really suits me. I love getting out on the water and being active socially and without having to push to the limits.
Paddle boarding is low impact and means I can be active and sociable. The different boards give you a challenge and although it looks pretty easy there’s a lot of technique to give you a sense of achievement when you’ve mastered it.
At first I was nervous as I thought I would fall in and not be able to get back on the board but I’ve still not fallen in! I have a 100% no fall in rate which gives me an enormous sense of achievement… the same as the first time!
Also being in the harbour you get a lot of attention which can make you a little nervous but then you just realise that it’s a pretty new sport and so people are just curious.
If anyone is interested in trying paddle boarding my advice to them would be to go for it! I spent years not doing things for fear of failure and all it achieved was that I spent years not doing things. Now if it doesn’t work out at least I have a hilarious story for the pub… I have a lot of hilarious stories and quite a few adventure tales too.
SUP provides award winning training and instruction for beginner and experienced paddle boarders in the heart of the city. People can get involved in week night and weekend urban adventures with us from £25pp. Full details are on www.supbristol.com and our season operates from March – October.
Tasters happen on Monday and Thursday’s 16.30-18.00 and cost £25.00. Boards and paddles are included in the hire price.