What to Wear When Paddleboarding

by | Jun 17, 2016

One of the best things about owning a paddle board is that you can have fun on the water in all seasons. However, being on the water in all different kinds of weather brings challenges with it. So, if you love getting on your SUP no matter the weather, what should you wear when paddleboarding?

The Challenges of What to Wear

Because you can take your SUP out in all weathers, you need to think of what to wear. There are a number of situations why you need to think about this:
  • Even if the air temperature is warm, there could be a big difference in the water temperature. This means that if you fall in the water, you could get a shock.
  • If there is strong sunshine, you still need sunscreen even in cool weather.
  • There are a number of options for keeping yourself warm in cold weather, both wetsuits and dry suits.
  • What about safety concerns? Should  I wear a lifejacket or a an ankle leash? YES!

What to Wear in Hot Weather

Usually, in hot weather, all you need to wear is beach stuff. So, all you need are your favourite shorts, t-shirt, and bikini, generally water oriented clothing no cotton! However, you will need to think about sun exposure. When you are on the water you are exposed to more sun because the sun’s rays will reflect off the water. So, use a high-quality sunscreen that is waterproof and has a high SPF. If you are on the water for a long time, you may be better wearing a “rash guard” or UV shirt. These are very lightweight and you will hardly notice that you are wearing it and it will protect you from UV radiation. You will also want to have a good pair of sunglasses so that you don strain your eyes too much. If you’re on the water, then a cheap pair of sunglasses is best, just in case they fall in the water but there are eyeglass retention holders and floating glasses that you can buy.

What to Wear in Cold Weather

It is more difficult to know what to wear when paddleboarding in cold weather. So, what should you wear in cold weather? We all know that heat rises and it is the same in your body. A hat will help to keep a lot of your heat in your body. This will help to keep your hands and feet warmer. Even a wool hat when it’s wet will keep you warm. Although a poly-blend sports hat may not be as heavy when it’s wet.
  • Thermal Tops. Because your upper body moves a lot while paddleboarding, you need to have a thermal top which stretches well and is form-fitting. This will help to transfer sweat and moisture from your skin.
  • Thermal bottoms. If you are flat water paddling a pair of polypropylene or neoprene thermal bottoms will help to keep you warm.
  • Gloves and Boots. The best kind of booties for paddleboarding has a thin sole and is made from neoprene. The material allows water to soak through and that along with your body heat creates insulation. The thin sole helps you to ‘feel’ the board, which is essential for stability and maneuvering. It is always best to warm your booties before putting them on as they will stay warm longer. It is the same with gloves.
Some paddleboarders prefer a dry suit for paddleboarding as this will keep you warm and dry in case you fall in the water. SUP safety  requires that you wear a life jacket when you are paddleboarding outside of designated swim/surf areas. Ankle Leash: How many times have I heard someone say, Oh I am a lifeguard so I don’t need to, I am a really good swimmer! Leashes Save Lives wear it, I never go out with out mine doesn’t matter how calm the water is, anything can happen. If you want to get the best out of your paddleboarding, then it’s essential to know what to wear when paddleboarding. So dress appropriately and you will have so much fun on the water.