PaddleBoarding For Dummies


Let me start out by saying that I’m quite out of shape. I like to say that the past year has not been kind to me, but in truth, I’ve not been kind to myself, either. While I’ve always been an active and physically fit woman, in the past year I stopped hitting the gym and doing my morning yoga, and it shows (body, mind, and flexibility). There was never such a wake up call for me as going paddleboarding in Turks and Caicos.

 paddle boarding

This had been a relaxing, welcome few days of tranquility at Ocean Club Resorts, something I had been in short supply of as of late. When the chance came to go paddleboarding, I jumped at it. I loved my past experience with this sport, and was honestly looking for a little action. (I get squirmy sometimes.) I didn’t know what I was getting myself into.

I had previously tried paddleboarding in Florida, on calm, flat, and shallow water in a quiet lagoon. In better shape and with regular yoga practice, I hopped right onto the board, and stayed up the whole time, falling in only after about 2 hours right before we finished the tour. This time, however, was not the same. I was not able to even get onto the board without a whole lot of falling, tipping, and rolling right into the ocean. I finally got on, but could not get to a standing position. The rocking of the ocean had me completely off balance, and I was also quite frustrated with myself.

Two other members of the group went on ahead of us before myself and another “newbie” were able to right ourselves on the paddleboards, which (being both of us competitive in nature) made us want to catch up and figure out how to get up on that thing without drinking half the ocean in the process.
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Paddle Boarding in New Smyrna Beach

Tired of the crazy, frenzied, tourist rush? I love theme parks as much as the next gal (maybe more!) but sometimes, you just have to get away. My son, a friend, and I took a day trip out to New Smyrna Beach to paddle board at East Coast Paddle, and it was one of the highlights of our trip. Spending the day out in the quietude, in nature, and with only 5 people visible to me (including myself) was a welcome break from the crush of crowds you typically find at most attractions.

vacation in florida

About and hour and a half from Kissimmee, East Coast Paddle is an award winning-company, run by a husband and wife team. Proud parents themselves, they are excellent with children. Mine was smitten with wife, Cheryl, who toured about with him on her board the morning through. Cheryl, who has a doctorate in addition to her company and expert paddle boarder-status (and is a boat captain as well- yes, she makes us all look bad, LOL) also acted as tour guide in the river in New Smyrna for us, and was more then patient as we found our balance (or didn’t) and with my son, who kept dangling his feet in the water (which I am sure did not make steering easy for her!) Her husband, Tim, joined us in the beginning, and gave us our “lessons” on how to properly use the paddles and boards before we got on.

I think I annoyed him mildly, as I was only half paying attention (my son was asking a million questions, and also since he was on a boat and wandering, I was nervous- even though he was standing with Cheryl and I was an arm’s length away, LOL. What can I say, nervous mommy!) When we got on the boards, I found myself not having much of an issue finding my balance or keeping it. As a yoga lover for many years, I think that helped a lot, and did a fondness for kayaking. My son got right on Cheryl’s board, and stayed there, no problem. How she kept her balance with his wiggling is beyond me, though! My friend had a rougher start, but then he found his groove and we were on the way.
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