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10 Health Benefits of Paddle Boarding

Updated: Jul 9, 2023

Paddle Boarding is a wonderful exercise for all ages and skill levels. It’s a fantastic low impact exercise that uses a combination of leg, arm and back muscles and really engages your core muscles. In doing so, you can improve your strength and balance as well as your endurance for physical activity. To learn more about paddleboarding including how to pick a board, check out Paddleboarding for Beginners.

No matter how old you are or level of fitness, you can enjoy the peacefulness of paddle boarding on tranquil waters while listening to nature’s songs. And burn tons of calories too.

Check out the Top Benefits of Paddle Boarding below:

1. Total Body Workout

Paddle Boarding is great for getting in shape since it utilizes multiple muscle groups. In order to maintain your balance, you will engage your core, back and leg muscles while your back, arms, shoulders and chest muscles help propel you forward and help maneuver the paddleboard in whatever direction you want to travel.

2. Improve Your Posture

Young woman standing on a paddle board with a red rim with arms stretched overhead holding her paddle board paddle.
Young woman balancing on a paddle board

In today’s society, many of us work at desk jobs, spend multiple hours sitting and playing with our electronic devices and otherwise have sedentary lives. As a result of being hunched over keyboards and devices, we can easily develop poor posture. However taking up Paddle boarding can help elongate multiple muscle groups and improve flexibility. The movement needed to Paddle board can strengthen these muscle groups and improve your posture.

3. Mental Health

Being outdoors and connecting with nature rather than screen time on our electronic devices can improve our mental well being. Peaceful sounds from nature vs traffic sounds, airplane noises and other urban sounds seemingly disappear while on the water.

4. Balance is Everything

Woman performing a yoga pose on a paddle board on a lake
Woman performing a yoga pose on a paddle board on a lake

There is a reason why Stand Up Paddle boards are big. The larger the surface the more stability it will have. How wide and long a paddleboard is will depend on a person’s height and weight. A taller person will need a longer board. A wider width also provides more balance. The added stability a larger board provides makes it an excellent choice for beginners. However, expect to fall off the board a few times until you get used to it. (It took me 10 minutes to get my balance on the paddle board my first time and less time to fall off!) Learn more on how to pick the right size paddle board here. You can use a hard paddle board or an Inflatable paddle board that's easy to transport and store in small spaces. Check out some of my favorite Inflatable paddle boards with a kayak seat here. I have used both hard and inflatable and sometimes I just want to sit down and relax and a kayak seat makes it more comfortable to hang out and enjoy the view.

5. Relaxation is a Dream

Woman laying on her back relaxing on a paddle board on the water
Woman relaxing on a paddle board on the water

The calming effect of tranquil water can quiet the mind, revive your spirit and send dancing waves of relaxation throughout your body. When on the water, it’s easy to forget the modern life and indulge your mind, body and spirit.

6. Great Way to Meet New Friends

4 male Friends enjoying stand up paddle boarding on a lake
Friends enjoying stand up paddle boarding on a lake

Paddle boarding is a wonderful opportunity to share your love of nature and water with friends and make new ones along the way. As 2020 progressed, social distancing became part of our vernacular and people sought ways to still have fun but stay safe doing so. Paddle boarding gave us that opportunity to enjoy nature with friends and family throughout the US and the World. Now that we're halfway through the summer of 2023, paddle boarding has only gotten more popular as people explored new places to visit. Check out paddle boarding in Blue Springs State Park in Florida as a wonderful place to paddle board, kayak and visit the manatees! There are Paddle boarding groups you can find online near you that are always ready to paddle away!

7. Improving Cardiovascular Health

We have already mentioned how paddle boarding can improve your muscular strength and flexibility. But don’t forget the heart is a muscle too and has a big job to do on a daily basis. Keeping our heart in good condition is paramount to good health. You don’t need to run a marathon or bike miles to receive heart health benefits. Prolonged sustained movement can provide a wonderful benefit too. It’s easy to paddle board for an hour and lose track of the time. Plus it’s easy on the joints!

8. Reduces Stress

Everyone has stress in their lives to some degree. Being consumed or overwhelmed by it can lead to a deterioration of our physical and mental health. Being out in nature especially on the water can have a soothing effect on our mind, body and spirit. The sound of water has a calming effect that can melt our stress away. Not only will you enjoy the calming sounds of nature, your body will stimulate your brain to produce serotonin and endorphins which contribute to improving your mood and you being happy.

9. Boosts Vitamin D

Vitamin D also known as the Sunshine Vitamin is an important molecule needed for a good immune system and healthy bones. Sunshine can also have a relaxing and calming effect on you as well. So pick up a paddle, grab your board and paddle away.

A man and his dog enjoying paddle boarding
A man and his dog enjoying paddle boarding

10. SUP with Your Dog

The old expression that “Dog is Man’s Best Friend” is no more apparent than your fur baby hanging out with you on the water. Whoever coined the term Dog paddle knows many dogs love to swim but they enjoy being with their human more. You know they love hanging out on the board while you do all the work. Happiness is this free Health benefit.

Whatever inspires you to Paddle Board, we hope you find a passion for it and enjoy the lifelong benefits of this wonderful exercise. Paddle boarding can be done on Lakes, Rivers, Oceans, or Natural Springs just about any time of the year. It’s low cost also makes it affordable for families. You can rent paddle boards at a paddle center near you or on vacation before committing to buying. Happy Paddling!

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