NEVER TURN YOUR BACK ON THE OCEAN
“Mai Huli`oe I Kokua o Ke Kai,”
The famous Hawaiian swimmer, surfer and film star Duke Kahanamoku, helped popularise the motto, “Never turn your back on the ocean.” His reasons for promoting this old Hawaiian proverb were two fold. Firstly he wanted people to watch out for the physical dangers of being hit by a wave. Secondly he wanted mankind to show respect for the ocean.
You may already be an avid paddle boarder/surfer/swimmer …. Or perhaps you are wanting to embark on a new way of living as part of the new year and new decade? Either way - the paddle boarding community is all about caring and sharing, so here are our top tips to start you off on the right path. As we say here at The Mallorca SUP Company ….
“BE MORE DUKE”
Respect the Ocean
The words from the Big Guy remind one to respect the ocean and its unpredictable nature. When you are in or near the water, always watch the movement of the ocean, especially for rogue waves that can easily knock you off your feet.
Always be aware of your surroundings
Wave and weather conditions change at the drop of a hat. Look for any posted signs advising of dangerous waters or for the beach flags. Pay attention to the tides if you are in a tidal zone, which is always steadily rising or falling. At low tide the water is much shallower and more reef and rock is exposed. Watch out for other water users and boats. And last but not least: when in doubt, don’t go out.
Don’t get all stressed out if you can’t stand up right away or get tumbled by a wave. Supping is supposed to be FUN! Try not to take yourself too seriously and don’t be too hard on yourself. If you fall off your board, laugh it off and relish the moment of being in the water.
Live in the moment
Supping is all about the here and now. You observe and react with the changing moments. Be conscious of yourself, but not too critical. Take in the beauty of a passing rainbow, the sunrise or sunset and enjoy time spent away from technology
Eat before you go so you have energy
Supping believe it or not takes a lot out of you, especially if you haven’t built up your endurance yet. Eat afterwards too ... food never tasted so good! And don't forget the H20. Keeping hydrated will help keep your strength up and stop you cramping in your feet and hands.
You will have good days and bad days
Some days the wave conditions may be harder to manage or maybe you’re just feeling “off,” but try to make the best of it. Be thankful you had the opportunity to spend time in nature, bumping into old friends ... or make new friends!
This will help you to identify where you are or should be in the water. Since water is constantly changing and moving, it’s good to your position by pinpointing stationary objects, such as buildings or trees. The wind or current may cause you to unknowingly drift further than you thought you were and the landmark(s) will help you know where to paddle back to.
Practice and be patient with yourself
Supping is harder than it looks, especially when you watch someone who’s been doing it all of their life. At first, it may seem like a lot of effort, finding the time, packing up your board, driving to different spots, paddling out, paddling back, rinsing everything, putting the board back in the bag and finally heading back home. But after a handful of times, doing all of that gets easier. Plus, simply being on the water feels amazing. Eventually you realise putting in time and dedication is totally worth it. And you're improving!
Marine life is spectacular!
Sea birds in the sky above, jellyfish lazily floating past your board, dolphins jumping in the sunset in the distance, seals swimming past to say hello! You may even see turtles if you are really lucky! Be respectful and when it comes to wildlife as you both could potentially pose a threat to one another.
See it pick it up!
We can all become ocean advocates and play our part in protecting our waterways and beaches. Plastic is choking our oceans and killing marine life. It’s everywhere u look. It’s our mission to teach and encourage everyone to take responsibility. Just two minutes picking up litter on the beaches and river banks can make a huge difference to the planet. And when you are out on the water grab those plastic bags and floating water bottles - stick em on the front of the board and dispose of them when you get back to shore - safe in the knowledge you may have just saved a turtle or a sea birds life by you act of kindness to the planet!
That’s all for now folks! May your New Year be full of love, laughter and of course ….. SUPPING!
Maluhia a me ke aloha