Location Definition

  • Inland bodies of water greater than 1 km (0.6 miles) wide
  • Coastal ocean locations 

Location Conditions

  • ​Wind behind or on quarter
  • Wind speed greater than 12 knots up to 20 knots
  • Swell size up to 4ft 
  • May be white capping waves 
  • Paddling distances of up to 10 kms (6 miles) 
  • Distance from shore up to 500 metres (1,640 ft) 
  • Free from hazards (hazards includes: boats, rocks, pollution, dangerous marine creatures, etc.)

If the conditions are greater than those stated above, the SUP activity should not proceed.  


  • Downwind SUP paddle board (minimum 12ft 6″) 
  • Suitable paddle with correct blade
  • Coiled leashes of correct length must be fixed to the board
  • SUP clothing suitable for paddling
  • Hydration – camel back or water bottle
  • Energy food
  • Watch – ideally a GPS watch

Instructor Qualifications

  • Level 3 Stand Up Paddle Instructor (Downwind & Distance Paddling)
  • Current Surf Rescue 
  • Current Senior First Aid
  • Working with children check (as applicable to the country)



At least 12 years of age (guide only – to take into consideration strength needed to paddle against wind and tide).

Entry Requirements

  • Able to swim 100 metres (328 ft)
  • Exposed waters stand up paddle skills
  • Ocean safety knowledge, skills and awareness (for ocean paddling)
  • Inland waters safety knowledge, skills and awareness (for inland bodies of water) 

Student Management

Instructor to Student Ratio

No more than 6 students to 1 fully accredited instructor  1:6  (inland waterways)
No more than 4 students to 1 fully accredited instructor  1:4   (ocean locations)

Group Size

No more than 4 or 6 clients (1 group) to be in the one place in the water, at any one time. If there are more than 4 or 6 clients (1 group), the groups are to be separated by a minimum 100 metres.   (for busy locations)       

Paddling Safety 

  • Students and instructors wear leash at all times
  • In shallow water and water depth less than 3ft and on entry and exit to water, participants must paddle on knees or bum
  • The instructor is to be on a board, in the water, close to students at all times
  • Regroup at regular intervals