How to prepare for a SUP competition

There are a number of reasons why people get into paddle boarding, it could be for health, social or leisure. Whatever the reason people have for buying their first paddle board, it’s not long before many get hooked on the sport and start to work on improving their abilities and techniques.

For a number of the top performers, they may start to look at ways to challenge themselves and what better way to do this than entering a SUP competition. There’s many SUP competitions that take place every year and it’s not difficult to sign up. Some can be perfect for first timers and others are ideal for seasoned SUP competitors. To get the most out of your performance at a SUP competition, what tips can you follow to ensure you are in tip top shape to compete?

Create a plan

Failing to prepare is preparing to fail after all…Putting together an effective training plan is going to give you the best chances of success. The longer you have to train for a race the better and leaving it last minute isn’t going to give you the best chance to perform at your best. Take into account what kind of race you’re doing, is it a long race where you need to practice your endurance or maybe it is a sprint race where working on your speed is paramount. Research the best ways to train for these and stay consistent.

Make a list

Before race day, make a list of items you’ll need to take and pack them ready. If you leave it until the day, chances are your nerves will be setting in and you’ll be less likely to think clearly and therefore risk forgetting something important. If you have everything ready for race day then you can spend the morning stretching and mentally preparing. Add everything to the list from your paddle, SUP base layers, to water and medication.

Fuel your body

Before any intense physical activity, it is important that throughout your training and especially in the days and hours leading up to your SUP competition you are eating the right foods that will provide you with optimal energy. On the morning of your competition it is important to eat foods that are going to provide you with a slow release of energy, oats make an ideal meal. Try to eat your meal 3-4 hours before the race and then have a small snack like a banana at least one hour before.

Above all remember that the competition is supposed to be fun, so try not to let your anxieties get in the way. After your first few competitions you will start to feel less nervous and be able to relax into them.

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