Thursday, 12 December 2019

What to Wear for Stand Up Paddle Boarding in Winter

Not just a summer sport!



Autumn and winter actually offer something of the best and most beautiful paddling of the year. The cold weather sunsets and sunrises frame some of the most scenic views that can be seen from the water in the Surrey Hills and beyond.

We are often asked about what to wear for winter SUP paddling so we thought it might be useful to write down some of our advice, based on our own paddle boarding experience.

Firstly it depends on where and what discipline of paddling you are planning to enjoy through the winter and for what purpose. We will start with leisure and fitness paddling on flat water, lagoons, lakes and inland waterways.


Leisure/Fitness SUP


Dependent on your paddling experience and your confidence in yourself regarding not falling in you can approach winter paddling in similar way to your winter trail running or MTB rides. If you are at a stage where you are confident that it is unlikely you will fall our advise is to dress as if you were going for a winter run or ride and for the weather conditions appropriate to the day.

  1. Keep the extremities warm ie hats, gloves and a good 5mm pair of wetsuit boots will keep you comfortable and warm during your session. 

  2. We would also recommend wetsuit leggings and a top rather than a full wetsuit as this can be more comfortable for paddling in. If you do end up in the drink you will be out the water and back on your board pretty damn quickly! The neoprene base layer will soon warm up as you continue paddling and you will be back on track. 

  3. Alternatively there are drysuit options available to you which can also come in two pieces.



Please note that winter wetsuits are always available to hire from SHAC at the lagoon in Buckland when you choose a Intro or Progression to SUP as well as for SUP Freerides.

As with all outdoor winter activities the best way to manage body temperature is by wearing layers that can be removed or added as required. Your base layer is the key element and best to be neoprene.

It is also essential to have a spare set of warm clothes ready to change into once you are off the water.

Our top tip is to always remember that cold water shock is a very real thing! As always the key is to either get out quickly and back on your board and paddling or take a moment to let the body adjust and focus on your breathing before trying to swim. Leashes are essential in all paddling disciplines and weather conditions, even more so than a personal flotation device, this keeps you connected to the board and prevents a long swim home, the board can be your flotation device and you can get out the water on to it, however without a leash your board can be quickly taken away by wind or swell which means you are stuck in the water with a long swim home - always wear a leash and select the right one for the discipline you plan to enjoy! Leash selection blog coming soon.





Winter SUP Racing


If you are now at the stage that you have or want to try racing paddle boards there are plenty of winter race series that happen across the country and further afield. The best advice we can give is to be bold and start cold! Don’t wear to much because as the race progresses you will become much warmer like going for a winter run, in a race environment you don’t want to be having to remove layers and strap them to your board or put them in a back pack and lose time.

We advise SUP racers to wear a good neoprene-based base layer, warm wetsuit boots, hat, paddling gloves and possibly a wind proof jacket for windy conditions.

#TEAMSHAC


Surfing and Downwinding


Both these disciplines are ocean based activities and will require a full surfing style wetsuit 3-5mm in thickness depending on the suit. With surfing it is inevitable that you will be in the water so keeping warm is key, neoprene boots, gloves and hood or beanie are the best way to enjoy a decent surf session.



Similarly with downwinding it can be quite likely you will end up in the water at some point, less so than surfing but the chances are still pretty high especially if you have limited experience so things remain as above but you may consider a two piece option for your neoprene base layer and a decent wind proof jacket over the top.

As always a leash is the most important piece of safety equipment as with all disciplines, you should also consider a personal flotation device, dependent on your experience and the tides and conditions. Please also take care to select the right leash for the discipline you are enjoying, for example a quick release leash for rivers. article to follow on leash selection in due course.

We have now entered the colder months of the year but stand up paddle boarding at the SHAC doesn’t stop for the cold. Freeride sessions are available on Sundays from 10am - 1pm and our new progression session on a Sunday morning from 10.15 - 11.15 as well as Winter Introduction to SUP sessions 11.30 - 12.30.



Find out more about the Surrey Hills Adventure Company and winter SUP programme or get in touch to book a winter SUP experience.

Monday, 11 November 2019

Christmas Holiday Adventures with The SHAC


The SHACs Winter Woodland Adventure Days
Christmas Holiday Dates Now Available
Please click on the links for your preferred location below.

"The Surrey Hills Adventure Company Holiday Adventures are located @ Belmont Preparatory School, Holmbury St Mary and New for 2019 our New Sites Wigwam Woods at Birtley House Estate Bramley and Viking Camp at Buckland Park Lake Reigate.


The SHAC at Belmont School - Holmbury St Mary - Nr Dorking Click Here - Mon 16th and Wed 18th Dec

Thursday, 31 October 2019

SUP NIGHT RIDER SESSIONS - THURSDAYS 6-8PM


THE SHAC's SUP NIGHT RIDER SESSIONS ARE BACK OUT ON THE MAIN LAKE EVERY THURSDAY 6-8PM STARTING TONIGHT - 31ST OCTOBER.

PADDLING IN THE DARK IS A UNIQUE AND WONDERFUL EXPERIENCE, THE ADDED ELEMENT OF DARKNESS NOT ONLY BRINGS PEACE AND TRANQUILITY BUT ALSO HEIGHTENS THE SENSES AND INCREASES MINDFUL ACTIVITY. GET AWAY FROM IT ALL FOR AN HOUR OR TWO AND RECHARGE YOUR TRANQUILITY BANKS UNDER THE STARS.


PLEASE NOTE THAT YOU MUST HAVE COMPLETED AND INTRODUCTION SESSION WITH THE SHAC BEFORE ATTENDING A NIGHT RIDER SESSION. WETSUITS ARE RECOMMENDED - WINTER WETSUITS ARE AVAILABLE TO HIRE BUT PLEASE LET US KNOW IF YOU NEED ONE. WET SUIT BOOTS ARE RECOMMENDED AND ARE ALSO AVAILABLE TO HIRE IF REQUIRED.

Friday, 25 October 2019

STA Winter Swimming Safety and Cold Water Swimming Knowledge CPD

Sunday 3rd Nov 9am - 11.30am



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We are delighted to announce our STA winter swimming safety and foundation course delivered in partnership with the STA and SwimyourSwim on Sunday 3rd Nov 2019.


The course has been created to develop the knowledge of those wishing to swim and assist individuals swimming over winter 
in cold water (ideally, but not limited to, water temperatures of 12ÂșC or less ).

The attendees will be involved in all aspects of winter swimming, ice mile or qualifier attempts, from the swimmers briefing, 
pre swim preparation and data recording to stroke rate monitoring and post swim recovery.

The course will include a combination of classroom and practical in water training.

There will be a debrief at the end of the morning and the course attendees will be awarded with an STA certificate 
and one CPD point on completion.

Team SHAC strongly recommend that any of our swimmers looking to swim further into the winter season participate in this course, 
the more we can be aware of the dangers, our personal limits and other swimmers around us in order to recognise issues and react 
to them quickly and correctly the better and safer for us all. 

We are extremely fortunate that Leon Fryer from SwimYourSwim and STA Tutor is available as the lead coach on this course, 
Leon is a successful ice mile swimmer and has coached numerous others through the process. This is a course not to be missed.

We have a one off special price for the course of £49.99 including VAT. if you need to hire a wetsuit on the day please let us know 
your approximate size as limited suits are available. wetsuit hire is £10.00 per suit payable on the day.



(Please note our 2019 demo suits are now available to purchase for £99.00)

 


Saturday, 19 October 2019

WIN 2 TICKETS TO THE OCEAN FILM FESTIVAL!!!

Follow us on Facebook to find out how to enter https://www.facebook.com/theshac.co.uk/

The Ocean Film Festival is returning to the UK in Autumn 2019 with the world's best ocean films from above and below the surface. SURF, DIVE, SAIL, FREEDIVE, PADDLE, SWIM - the Ocean Film Festival has it all. We hope you enjoy the trailer and get inspired for the upcoming tour.

Find out more about at www.oceanfilmfestival.co.uk