Below is the definition of the different types of SUP environments that you may be paddling in, and the conditions that you should abide by to stay safe at that type of environment.

Enclosed Flat Water


Photo: IKSUP Netherlands

Defined as:
Inland waterways and bodies of water including creeks, rivers, lakes, lagoons, estuaries, canals, no wider than 1 km (0.6 miles)

Guidelines:
• Flat water no swell, no breaking waves
• Wind speed less than 12 knots
• No more than 250 metres from shore
• Water flow under 4 knots
• At least 200 metres from a river mouth

Exposed Waters

Defined as:
Coastal beaches and bays. Harbours and large inland bodies of water greater than 1 km (0.6 miles) wide

Guidelines:
• Flat water swell / chops up to 2ft.
• No breaking waves
• Shore break less than 1½ ( half metre
• Wind speed less than 12 knots onshore
• Wind speed less than 10 knots offshore
• No more than 250 metres from shore
• At least 200 metres from a river mouth

SUP Surf

You need to be an experienced paddler to do SUP Surfing.
The size and weight of SUP surfing boards make them a potential danger to surfers on standard surf boards
As such, you should be SUP Surfing away from crowds and people surfing standard surf boards.

Defined as:
• Surf up to 1½ ( half metre) (beginner level)
• Surf up to 3 ft (intermediate level)
• Surf up to 4 ft (advanced level)

Downwind

SUP downwinding uses special SUP boards, the ocean swells and wind to help propel you along. It requires skill and strategy to judge the best peaks and troughs (runners) so you remain on course.

Downwind is for experienced paddlers only.

Defined as:
Coastal ocean environments

Guidelines
• Wind behind
• Wind speed 15 to 20 knots
• Swell size between 2ft to 4ft
• No more than 500 metres (1,640 ft) from shore

SUP Yoga


Defined as:
Flat water environments

Guidelines
• inland waters or coastal environments with flat water, no swell or breaking waves, minimal or no wind
• water depth no more than 4ft
• no more than 50 metres from shore
• paddling less than 50 metres to get to the SUP yoga activity area

SUP Fitness



Defined as:
Flat water environments

Guidelines
• inland waters or coastal environments with flat water, no swell or breaking waves, minimal or no wind
• water depth no more than 4ft
• no more than 50 metres from shore
• paddling less than 50 metres to get to the SUP yoga activity area

SUP White Water Rapids


Photo: Whitewater Avon Hepworth / True Spirit Photos Gordon Pettigrew

SUP Racing

Flat water, ocean, endurance long distance.