Continuing with our articles on Paddle Surf, Stand Up Paddle or SUP for its acronym in English, today we are going to talk about a fundamental part of this sport such as the tables with which we will slide, what they are like and how to choose the one that best suits us.
On this occasion we spoke with Sebastián Ducos, distributor for Spain of one of the main paddle surf brands: F-One and also of the international accessories firm Manera.
Question. Hi Sebas, how did you discover your passion for sea sports?
Reply. I imagine that like many, I have always lived near the sea and at the age of 11 I decided to sign up for a windsurfing course. The poison entered my heart directly and since then my dream has been to live on my passion. I thank you because I have been doing it for more than 20 years !!!
Q. Tell us briefly about F-One and Manera.
R. F-one is a pioneering French brand in kitesurfing internationally. At the beginning of the Stand Up Paddle they did not hesitate to take out a complete line of boards and paddles. Today we have a complete range of boards and paddles for all disciplines, from initiation, waves, race, through SUP foil and inflatable boards. Manera is the brand that covers all the needs of the practitioner regarding accessories such as wetsuits, leash or technical clothing.
Q. Focusing on the tables, what types are there?
R. Let's say there are 4 types of tables (to make it simple).
-Allround tablesIn their largest measurements they are used for initiation, let's say they are boards over 10 feet (300cm) and with a generous volume of over 120 liters. They are boards for short walks and in their smallest models, you can start surfing.
-Wave tables for surfing, smaller boards below 10 feet and with less volume. In the wave tables there are also several shapes depending on the surfing style of each rider (practitioner).
-Touring tablesThey are longer boards than the allround ones with less beam (narrower) for long walks. Always above 11 feet (335cm). The prelude to the tables of race and competition.
-Race boards, It is the formula one of SUP! Long and narrow boards, only recommended for experts who want to compete and travel long distances. They are boards over 12 feet (365cm) and are usually made of carbon, the lightest material that exists today. An exclusive product with prices well above 2.000 euros.
Q. Inflatable or rigid?
R. Here you would have to know what the buyer's intentions are, especially the use and storage. But there are two very clear things:
-If we are talking about top brands or Premium brands (international brands), inflatable boards are becoming more rigid and are getting closer and closer to the feeling, that is, the feeling, of sliding a rigid board.
- Even so, for now no inflatable board on the market offers you the sliding quality of a rigid board. If you want maximum sensations and feel the sea or the power of the waves under your feet, rigid boards are unrivaled.
Q. What should be taken into account when buying a board?
R. The program, that is, what you want to do with it: take a walk, surf, compete, play with your children for a while ... How are you going to transport it, where are you going to store it ... Regarding whether it is rigid or inflatable to give you an example: yes You do not have a large storage room, or you do not want to transport the board in the cow of your car, your best option will be an inflatable board.
Q. What table would you recommend to a person who is starting?
R. For starters, if you do not intend to do many miles or ride the waves, your best option is an inflatable board of at least 10 feet and about 140 liters. The volume of your board (liters) is calculated based on your weight, so the more you weigh, the more liters you need to achieve good buoyancy and better stability when standing on it. For example, a table of about 140-150 liters is recommended for a person of about 75 kg. and medium level.
Q. The leash or invention, do you think it is important to always use it?
R. FOREVER!!! The sea is a changing medium and you can never trust, a role of wind, a blow of the sea, you ALWAYS have to be connected to your board, and that is provided by the leash. What's more, if a surfer forgets the leash, it doesn't even cross his mind to get into the water.
Q. What is the evolution of SUP boards?
R. Speaking of technology, shapes (shape of a board) or materials used in construction, I think that after several years of the sport's existence, brands have reached a very cutting-edge development. Today everything is based on small details. Where there is an important evolution is in a new discipline with the arrival of hydrofoil as in many other water sports. In SUP or SURF in waves or in the downwind mode (placement of a strong wind in the back) the placement of a hydrofoil "wing" under the hull of the board takes you to a higher level of sliding. You are really flying several centimeters from the sea surface with little friction.
Q. In your opinion, is SUP a seasonal sport? How do you see SUP in Dénia?
R. In our area and specifically in Denia we have perfect weather conditions and conditions to practice SUP throughout the year. A walk in October through Las Rotas with the sea completely free of "tourist pollution" is a joy. With the calm in January, La Marineta is incredibly clean and looks like an aquarium full of life. A pity that we waste this medium in winter when other countries with much worse conditions take advantage of it so much. But the mentalities change and the "alternative" sports are gathering strength.
Q. Would you like to add something else?
R. It is in these complicated moments confined at home that we realize how lucky we are to live where we live, so surely when we get out of this we will go out to sea to enjoy it like never before! The only advice I can give when buying SUP equipment is to go to your local specialized store. They will advise you as professionals who are and most importantly, you will support your local business. Greetings to all, and see you in the water !!!
Thank you. See you (soon) in the water 😉
If you have any questions about Stand Up Paddle, you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org and we will answer you quickly.
Text: Dénia Surf Club
Photos: F-One Spain