Can I Stand up And Paddle Board When I’m Overweight?

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If you were to answer this question based on advertising for paddle boards, you’d assume the answer was no; you cannot stand up and paddle board when overweight. However, that’s not the case at all. In fact, there are many reasons why an overweight person should be paddle boarding!

In this article, I will discuss a few points, answer the overall question, and pose a few new questions you may not have considered. Then, we’ll examine why it’s a good idea for overweight people to paddle board, how to get started, and what to do when you finally get on that board! Let’s dive in.

Can I Stand up And Paddle Board When I’m Overweight?

Stand Up Paddle boarding for Overweight

Let’s get the main question out of the way. Right off the bat, I’ve already mentioned that the answer is yes. So I want to expand on that and explain why it’s a yes to paddle boarding when you’re overweight. There are boards available specifically for overweight paddlers, so don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. This is an inclusive sport and is open to all shapes and sizes. Standing up on a paddle board is 30% board and 70% determination!

Why You Should Be Paddle Boarding To Lose Weight

This sport has numerous benefits when it comes to weight loss. Here are a few reasons to start paddle boarding to lose weight

Great Cardio Workout

Paddle boarding might look easy, but it’s an extremely strenuous exercise. This is a great cardiovascular exercise to partake in. This is made even more potent by daily paddle boarding.

Lowers Stress

Stress is linked to a lot of health problems, and one of those problems is weight gain. Stress mainly results in mental issues like low self-esteem, unhealthy habits, depression, etc. Paddling is the opposite of stress. Outdoors, in nature, just you and the water. It’s peaceful.

Burning Calories Thanks To A Whole Body Workout

When you exert all the energy that paddle boarding demands, you’re burning calories. Not only that, but having to remain balanced and the constant movement of limbs like your arms to paddle means you’re getting a whole body workout. Every muscle is getting involved and working together to make paddle boarding possible. If you’re a newbie, it’s not going to be easy at first, but the more comfortable you get, the easier it gets. This also applies to when you lose weight.

Low Impact

Paddle boarding is considered a low-impact exercise. If you learn how to maintain balance and paddle, ideally, you’ll find that you won’t be under the same strain that other sports can cause your muscles. Most sports allow you to improve flexibility and fitness but tire you out and strain your muscles. However, with a few corrections, paddling won’t be providing far more benefits than the negatives it comes with.

What’s Better, Running or Paddle Boarding?

Weight loss doesn’t have silver bullet solutions. A combination of exercises is always the best route to take. However, for argument’s sake, let’s just compare running and paddle boarding. Between these two, which is better? Well, running is still considered to be the best exercise for cardiovascular health and for weight loss. Paddling can have similar benefits if done in abundance.

Why I’d say paddle boarding is better is due to the activity itself and the benefits of that activity as more of a byproduct. Paddle boarding is fun; running- it’s a bit boring, right? However, if you’re able to get addicted to paddle boarding, you’ll find it’s far more beneficial both physically and mentally. It’s a sport that requires more energy and is a whole body exercise.

Activities To Do On Your Paddle Board For Weight Loss

If you’re going to take this route to lose weight, then you need to engage in a few specific activities. The best activity you can do is just general paddle boarding and a lot of it! Secondly, yoga. This is a great way to get in shape, and if you combine it with general paddle boarding, you’ll see results you may not have even thought possible.

Tips for Overweight Paddlers

There are a few tips I want to share with you if you’re an overweight paddler:

  1. Paddle slowly – You’re not racing. There’s no need to speed up your paddle boarding unnecessarily. So take it slow. This isn’t like running; it’s completely different and at its own pace.
  2. Remain calm and relaxed throughout – paddle boarding is a calm sport that requires you to be confident, relaxed, and, you guessed it, calm. So don’t overthink it, and take everything one step at a time.
  3. Make sure you’ve got the right-sized paddle – when you’ve got an incorrectly sized paddle, things can go from good to bad pretty quickly. When the paddle is too small, you can’t generate enough power to propel your board forward. On the other hand, larger paddles can be a nightmare to control.
  4. Spend time looking for the right board – when shopping for a paddle board, make sure you’re spending time looking for a board that’s capable of handling your weight. If your weight is towards the end of the weight capacity, perhaps look for another board. This is because you don’t want to get a board barely capable of facilitating your body weight.
  5. Find the perfect location – if you’re an overweight paddler, you want to avoid the ocean as it can be difficult to paddle and potentially dangerous. Instead, focus more on rivers and lakes where the water is far calmer. You don’t want to be struggling the entire time you’re trying to paddle.
  6. Take breaks if necessary – don’t be proud. There’s no shame in taking a break when you need to. The last thing you want is to exert all your energy to the point of exhaustion, where returning to shore is more difficult.


It’s easy to get demotivated or concerned about paddle boarding when you’re overweight. However, paddle boarding is probably the best thing you can do when you’re overweight. It’s an amazing form of exercise that will get you slim down in no time. All paddle boarding requires is determination and a thirst for adventure beyond the equipment.

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