We decide that Memorial Day 2017 is a good day to take our paddleboards out for their maiden voyage. The previous summer we rented some on Payette Lake in McCall, Idaho. We loved it! And by ‘we’ I mean not me. I fell off twice to which the children cheered in chorus, “Look, she fell off AGAIN!” That was just in case anyone sitting along the shore missed the spectacle that is me when I try to athlete…or be athletic, whatever.
That next day I had to be rescued by Ryan when I got caught in a strong wind (light breeze) that picked up and carried me away to a far off boat dock down shore. This is all quite amusing to children thus SUP (stand up paddleboarding) became their new favorite summer pastime.
I want to like it. Though I’m clearly not the natural I saw in my mind, we decided to pick a couple of paddleboards up. This is also despite the fact that there was just a news story of paddleboarders being warned via helicopter to calmly exit the water since 15 great white sharks were spotted in it. It’s ok to pray if you are so led.
I’m not sportsy. Let’s not pretend. I do YouTube yoga, walk, and now SUP. Take a look at the sporting activities I’m drawn to: laying on a mat and looking at the TV (Wait, am I doing yoga wrong?), going for a stroll, and now I’ve taken up floating. There is a launch 5mins from my doorstep where on a walk I’ve seen a paddleboarding yoga class in action. Is that a goal for me? Likely, no. Some people don’t like their food to touch, I don’t know how I feel about my activities touching. Sounds like an avenue toward death or humiliation, to be avoided. Nice to know it exists though.
As we were packing up to head to a lake 30mins from our house, the littles were reminiscing about my falling and drifting away, fond memories, good times. They are looking forward to a repeat memorable performance for Memorial Day. Watching auntie/mommy take an unplanned dip in the drink would would pair so well with all the swimming and snacking they intended for the day.
What those fools didn’t know is that I watched no less that 1 hour of how-to videos on paddleboarding, thank you YouTube.
I learned a few things about how to get on and off, finding the sweetspot on the board, getting the most out of each stroke of the paddle. Now theory isn’t the same as practice but my practice much improved when I applied my new theory.
A word to y’all who make paddleboards: If there is a sweetspot on the board, go ahead and mark it off. Don’t keep that a secret.
As I think of it, maybe it’s not possible to mark off one sweetspot on a board. I’m not a genius of physical science but considering differences in height and weight perhaps the ‘sweet spot’ is different for each rider. Stand too far forward and the nose is too deep, too far back and the nose is in the air, feet shoulder width apart for stability, knees just bent, adjust the paddle to height and arm length. It’s all quite individual.
We can watch how others do it and learn a few tips and tricks on how they get to their sweet spot, but ultimately we have to stand on the board ourselves finding the best place for our own two feet.
At one point Ryan and I were boarding side by side and he commented on how fast I was able to get my board going. I was holding my paddle correctly was my explanation. Correctly, unlike him.
No one was jazzed about my calling out all the tips I learned from my YouTube guru. They prefered me to be the dunce of SUP. A dunce is certainly preferable to a know it all. Next time I’ll probably keep my learned theory to myself and just focus on the practice of finding my own balance. I can’t find their balance anyway.
They’ll have to find their own sweet spot and the best I can do is find mine.
Thanks for reading.
*I read 12 books in 2016 and have a goal of 24 for 2017.*
I am keeping a running book list. I have no interest in rating or endorsing these books on here but feel free to ask me about them if you are curious. It's just a list of fact. Fact being I finished the book. I only finish books if I want to, so take from that what you will. Below, I'll also include what I am currently reading with no promise of ever finishing.
Books Read in 2017:
1. Hope Heals by Catherine Wolf
2. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
3. Grace for the Good Girl: Letting Go of the Try-Hard Life by Emily P. Freeman
4. In the Shadow of Lakecrest by Elizabeth Blackwell
5. Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave
6. This is Where You Belong: The Art and Science of Loving the Place You Live by Melody Warrnick
7. It's Not Fair: Learning to Love the Life You didn't Choose by Melanie Dale
8. Hope Sings: Risk More. Dream Bigger. Fear Less. by Susanna Foth Aughtmon
9. Queen of the Universe: Encouragement for Moms and Their World-Changning Work by Susanna Foth Aughtmon
10. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
11. Nothing to Prove: Why We Can Stop Trying so Hard by Jennie Allen
Anne of Avonlea by L.M. Montgomery
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