With these 6 rules, you’re on the safe side

Stand-up paddling – SUP for short – is more popular than ever. Of course also with families. However, to ensure that there are no accidents while doing sports on the water, there are important rules when it comes to SUP and children to keep in mind. We spoke with Klaus-Peter Hentschel from the DLRG (Deutsche Lebens-Rettungs-Gesellschaft eV) in Bonn about them. It explains what you should definitely pay attention to when dealing with children and how to avoid mistakes.

Can everyone go SUP?

Let’s get straight to the point: can everyone ride only or do children and adults need some kind of driver’s licence? Water rescue expert Klaus-Peter Henschel, DLRG Bonn area manager, explains: “By definition, a SUP is a small, muscle-powered vehicle, and therefore comparable to a canoe. It is not necessary for SUP to be registered, nor is it required to have a boat license.” Well , so anyone can go kayaking.

These rules must be kept in mind when it comes to SUP and children

There are some important kayaking rules that you should definitely keep in mind:

Rule #1: A SUP board is not a swimming aid!

Your child should be able to swim standing up row paddling. She absolutely needs a life jacket for the right age and weight. Experts recommend a minimum age of about 7-8 years. At best, non-swimmers should make their first attempts at paddling in shallow water. It is best to wait until the children can swim safely.

Rule #2: Appropriate clothing for children.

When the water is still cold, the wetsuit will prevent children from hypothermia. This is faster than adults, especially since children often flop or jump in the water when paddling standing up. So an approved life jacket is mandatory, not just for kids. Here’s the expert’s advice:

All SUP users must wear a life jacket as an emergency buoyancy aid. These life jackets must adapt to the user’s body weight. Life jackets come in a variety of designs. Especially when making a purchase for the first time, you should seek advice from a specialized dealer and not buy without advice. We recommend a hard jacket, as this still offers a bit of protection if you fall on a SUP.

Klaus-Peter Henschel, DLRG District Manager

Solid life jacket, approved for toddlers and teens

The price may be higher now. Price from 08/13/2022 04:14

Adjustable life jacket for adults and children, can be worn over a wetsuit
Adjustable life jacket for adults and children, can be worn over a wetsuit

The price may be higher now. Price as of 08/13/2022 03:41

A protective helmet is also recommended for beginner riders who are still a little wobbly on the board. “Due to the risk of falls for starters, head protection is highly recommended,” says Hentschel. “When it comes to helmets, we also recommend visiting a shop that specializes in canoe accessories.”

Rule #3: Don’t forget the sunscreen.

Children are protected from the sun by a waterproof sunscreen with a sun protection factor of at least 30 and an appropriate hat.

Rule #4: Use the board for the kids.

There are children’s inflatable SUP boards on which little ones can better keep their balance, have a more comfortable posture and better endurance. Alternatively, you can do it like editor-in-chief Mickey and take your child with you on the big family or solo board. In the bow you can make yourself comfortable squatting or catching aquatic plants outside the lake during the trip.

Bondi Aquatic SUP Board for kids between 8 and 14, especially for beginners
Bondi Aquatic SUP Board for kids between 8 and 14, especially for beginners

The price may be higher now. Price as of 08/13/2022 06:26

SUP Board Stand Up Paddle Inflatable Compressed Gr.  S beginners.
SUP Board Stand Up Paddle Inflatable Compressed Gr. S beginners.

The price may be higher now. Price as of 08/13/2022 06:27

SUP board Stand Up Paddle X100 Touring 9' Beginner
SUP board Stand Up Paddle X100 Touring 9′ Beginner

The price may be higher now. Price from 08/13/2022 08:50

Rule #5: Only sail in stagnant water.

For stand-up paddleboarding with kids (especially the younger ones), we highly recommend the shallow waters for a quiet bath or the quarry lake. Because if you want to board in flowing water or in the sea, you must already be experienced in standing paddling.

Inland waterways with commercial shipping are not a suitable practice area for SUP, especially not for children!

Klaus-Peter Henschel, DLRG District Manager

Rule #6: Pay attention to weather and driving restrictions.

Standing paddling is not allowed everywhere, such as nature reserves or enclosed waters eg b. taboo. “Inland waterways with commercial shipping are not a suitable practice area for SUP, especially not for children!” DLRG expert warns. “Before the tour, drivers should be well aware of the conditions of the planned driving area in terms of traffic, water currents, shoals and navigation rules. Weather forecasts and regional forecasts should also not be ignored.”

Sup and kids together really keep fit

SUP with children
Ahoy: Mickey and her son sailed in high spirits

Our Editor-in-Chief Mickey tried the paddling technique with her eight-year-old son and they both loved it. To crown it all, the Big Little voluntarily jumped into the water. slap! These are also water sports, which not only get the kids really excited. Mickey’s conclusion: “Sports for parents – fun for children.” The SUP board is definitely a worthwhile purchase.

Which SUP to buy for the kids?

We have some advice for all the families who have decided that little ones can stand up paddle. You should also keep this in mind if you are planning to buy your own board for your child.

  • SUP boards especially for children of course adapt to the low weight and are available in different sizes. This allows younger players to maintain their balance better and maneuver the board more easily.
  • As with adults, there are two different versions of SUP boards for kids: the aforementioned inflatable boards (also called inflatable boards) or classic hard boards.
  • For the little ones, we recommend an inflatable model first, because kids don’t hurt themselves easily and are easy to handle.
  • When choosing a racket, your child’s height is crucial. The rule of thumb for optimum length is: your child should be able to easily reach the handle with an outstretched arm. By the way, there are also height-adjustable paddles that grow with your child.
Taj Jessen Engels

Germany has become a hotbed for surfers

We no longer have to travel to Australia or the Atlantic Ocean to see great surfers – it’s perfect! Stand-up paddling is also good for your fitness if you follow the most important rules. Sure my two kids are too young to paddle at 2 and 4, but I’ll be getting my sister’s new SUP board this summer and then going to Lake Hitdorf.

What sport is suitable for your child?

Image Credit: Gettyimages / _jure

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