If you live close to a lake or bay, paddle boarding could be a perfect activity for your child. Plus it offers a ton of health benefits.
If you’re worried about transporting the board, don’t. Paddle boards are much easier to transport than canoes or kayaks. The inflatable models can even fit into a compact car. Rigid models can be strapped onto the top of your vehicle or ride in a truck bed. Paddle boards come in a variety of sizes, too.
As long as your child can swim and is trained on how to safely use a paddle board, there’s no reason why stand up paddle boarding can’t become his new favorite activity and help him a healthier, more active life.
- Your Child Can Get a Full-Body Workout
If you haven’t done any paddle boarding before, you might not realize its benefits. After all, how good of a workout can you really get just standing on a board and paddling? It turns out there’s a lot more going on than just standing.
Balance is a key factor when standing and paddling on the board, and core, abdominal, leg and back muscles are all engaged to help stabilize the body. In addition, while using the paddle to propel the paddleboard, the muscles in the arms, back and shoulders get a workout.
- Paddle Boarding Is Good for Your Child’s Heart
If your child really works his muscles to propel the board via paddling,the effect can be similar to other cardio workouts, such as sports that require running. If you have more than one child that’s capable of paddle boarding, they can motivate one another while on the water. For example, a good-natured paddle board race can elevate the heart rate enough to result in cardiovascular benefits.
- Paddle Boarding is Low Impact
If your child plays other sports and can’t risk sustaining any type of injury for fear of having to sit out part of the season, paddle boarding can be a good way to still enjoy exercising outside of school.
Stand-up paddle boarding is extremely low-impact. The chances of injury are lowas long as your child is knowledgeable about how to safely use the board. Paddle boarding can also be a good pick for children who are rehabbing from an injury but still need to exercise. It can help build your child’s strength without damaging high-impact effects.
- Paddle Boarding Can Help Improve Balance
If your child could use some help with balance, engaging in paddle boarding can be a helpful strategy. As mentioned before, when standing on the board, your core muscles and leg muscles have to be engaged to keep you balanced. The more your childparticipates in paddle boarding, the stronger he will become at maintaining his balance — not only on the paddle board but also during other activities as well.
- Paddle BoardingAllows an Appreciation of Nature
If your child could use some time to connect with nature and de-stress, paddle boarding is a great choice. Being out on the water will allow your child to enjoy the effects ofgliding over the water in a natural setting.
This is especially true if you can find a lake or bay to paddle board on that’s free of motorized water vehicles, such as jet skis and boats. As for health benefits, the simple act of getting out and enjoying nature can serve to boost one’s mental outlook.
- Paddle Boarding Builds Strength and Stamina
Any form of consistent exercise can build strength and stamina, including paddle boarding. Although one trip to the lake won’t make much of a difference, choosing to make paddle boarding a regular part of your child’s life can help your child build valuable overall body strength and endurance, which can help increase performance.
- Paddle Boarding is Safer Than Surfing
Finally, if your child has been bugging you to let him take up surfing, paddle boarding can serve as a much safer substitute. Stand-up paddleboards are very buoyant. They’re also thicker and heavier than surfboards.
As long as your child is well-versed in paddle boarding safety and the board is in flat water, the risk of injury is practically nonexistent. For safety with children, it’s best to avoid the open sea where heavy waves could be present. Only very experienced paddle boarders should attempt those type of conditions.
Although there are undoubtedly other benefits that your child can gain from paddle boarding, these are the ones that can contribute to his physical and mental health.