25 June 2017

Guide to Learning to SUP in Weymouth & Portland


If you follow me on Instagram (@becky_wren) you’ll know I post a lot of pictures of my horses when out in the Dorset countryside, Alfie dog antics, park-running & SUP’ing.

Last autumn I bought a second hand inflatable Fanatic SUP (Stand Up Paddleboard), & now seem to be a bit of a ‘go to’ person in my circle of friends when it comes to SUP questions! Although I’m still very much an amateur, I just love talking about SUPing!

So, I thought I’d share some of my local Dorset knowledge on where to learn to SUP in Weymouth & Portland.

What is SUPing?

SUP or stand up paddle surfing, is exactly what it sounds like. You stand up on a long board, pretty much like a surf board but bigger & more buoyant & use a paddle to push yourself through the water. SUPs come as hardboards or inflatables. Inflatable SUPs are better for beginners & easier to transport. Hardboards are great when you get into competition racing or down-winding.

Where to go SUPing in West Dorset / Weymouth & Portland?

If you’re keen to go ‘SUPing’ but never been out on one before, you can either just hire one & give it a go like I did many years ago or join a class or have a 1-1 – which I’d recommend!



Weymouth Watersports

First of all, it’s really easy to find. As you head out of Weymouth towards Portland, Weymouth Watersports are located at the Ferrybridge Boat Yard & more importantly right beside Billy Winter’s café/bistro, so you can reward yourself with a coffee or pint of cider when you’ve finished. It’s also great if you have friends/family who don’t want to get out on the water, as they can spectate or take photos! There’s also paid parking which is about £1 for an hour.

Richard & the team are super friendly & stock inflatable SUPs, kayaks & wind surfing equipment.

I’ve been to Weymouth Watersports numerous times over the last few years mainly because of the location & easy parking. You can go out for an hour by yourself or join one of their fitness / SUP yoga classes at the weekend. They will also stay open late if you ask them nicely & last year for my birthday I organised a mid-week after work SUP followed by pub grub over at the Cove where you can watch the sunset.


Prices:
1 hour hire = £12
Fitness class = £10 for an hour
SUP Yoga = £12 or £6 if you have your own board.

Always check with the team on their Facebook page, as the good old British weather can mean that some days it’s a bit too windy to head out.

Adventure 4 All


Alex from Adventure 4 All is one of those people you meet who everyone wants to be mates with. He’s super chilled & makes SUPing fun – which is what it should be all about. He also offers a great range of water based activities from SUPing, kayaking to coasteering.

I first met Alex at the Jurassic Club SUP Christmas SUP last year, where we SUPed from Greenhill, around into Weymouth Harbour, moored up & had a mulled wine / cider in one of the pubs & then SUPed back.

If you’ve been SUPing a few times, I’d recommend joining the Jurassic Club SUP who meet every Wednesday at 6.30pm in a Weymouth/Portland location & head out for about an hour finishing off for a pint in a local pub or if it’s a beautiful sunny evening bring a drink to have on your SUP at sea! There’s no better way to finish an evening after work.

Alternatively, you can join one of the SUP classes on a Sunday or hire a board throughout the summer.

Prices:
1 hour hire = £10; 2 ½ hours = £20
SUP Flex & Skills & Drills on a Sunday = £10 or £5 if you bring your own board 
Jurassic SUP Club = free if you have your own SUP or £10 to hire & includes wetsuit

Jurassic Coast Activities



Based over at Overcombe Corner by Café Oasis in Preston, makes Jurassic Coast Activities another great location to combine a SUP & coffee on the beach.

This is the place I learnt to SUP with my friend Helen back in 2010. We were both into our water sports - surfing & kayaking, so just got on & hired one board & had a go. I don’t think we really had a clue what to do or even which way round to hold the paddle. Which is why I’d recommend having at least 1 lesson or joining a fitness class to pick up some tips!!

For prices head to the website & give the team a call.

Other Top Tips:

109 Watersports
Callum & Sara at 109 Watersports are really helpful. They stock everything you need for SUPing & also give great advice on where to go SUPing.

Easy Riders
Ready to go exploring outside of the Weymouth/Portland bubble? Join the Easy Rider SUPers over in Poole who go out in the week evenings & weekends. You can take your own board or hire one. I went for a SUP last November in Sandbanks & met another bunch of friendly people.

SUP Fit
If you fancy a weekend away with some top tuition check out Lucy McCormick’s SUPFit Facebook page. I was fortunate enough to have some amazing tuition by one of the UK’s top female SUPer's Marie Buchanan last October down at Wimbleball Lake in Exmoor which got me hooked & resulted in me buying my Fanatic board from Lucy.

Photo Credit: SUPFit

Do you like SUPing? Where do you go? Anyone SUPed abroad?

Also, if anyone has any SUPing questions, feel free to drop me a note at becky@countrybumpkinchic.co.uk or on my Country Bumpkin Chic Facebook page.

2 comments:

  1. Hi,
    I’m a newbie to Suping, I had my first lesson at Keyhaven with Sean , the owner of The New Forest Paddle Sport Company.
    We live not too far from Weymouth and want to know if you can launch from anywhere or do we need permission?
    Thanks
    Val

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Country Bumpkin Chic14 October 2018 at 08:58

      Hi Val, oh wow SUPing is so much fun. You'll love it! If you head down to Billie Winter's there is a car park (you'll need to pay, but can claim money back if you buy something from Billie's); & you can launch into the sea for free. Have fun SUPing adventures.

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