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Stand Up Paddle Athletes Association announces race board restrictions

SUP racers dash to the water at the 2014 Mongoose Cup
SUP racers dash to the water at the 2014 Mongoose Cup
MaxCat Original

Earlier today, the Stand Up Paddle Athletes Association (SUPAA) announced it had established an agreement with several leading Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP) manufacturers to institute a set of race board restrictions. The agreed upon terms will regulate the width and weight of SUP race boards used in SUPAA sanctioned events beginning in 2015.

14’ Boards

  • Minimum of 23 inches (58.42 cm) wide, as measured at the three inch rail mark
  • Minimum weight of 22.05 lbs (10 kg)

12’6” Boards

  • Minimum of 23.75 inches (60.33 cm) wide, as measured at the three inch rail mark
  • Minimum weight of 19.84 lbs (9 kg)

Additionally, no SUP race board shall have raised rails greater than 12.5 cm, as measured from the standing area to the top of the rail.

The intent of the restrictions is to nurture the sustainable growth of SUP racing while ensuring the sport remains accessible to the public. According to SUPAA, “The simple act of standing on a board to race should never become skill prohibitive to a large percentage of the paddling population.” Manufacturers named by SUPAA as partners in the agreement include: Starboard, Naish, Fanatic, 404, NSP, Imagine, JP, Kings and Bark.

In a statement released by Danny Ching, 6x Battle of the Paddle Champion and owner of 404 SUP, “Manufacturers and athletes have come together and placed restrictions on themselves in order to preserve the essence of fair racing and to increase SUP participation globally. By adding reasonable building specs, SUPAA has maintained one of SUP racing’s greatest strengths, its minimal barriers to entry (low cost, easy to do). These specs will allow greater participation in SUP racing throughout the industry resulting in more SUP customers.”

The agreement to place restrictions on SUP race boards is a notable achievement in preserving the sport’s popularity by instituting a framework for future research and development of equipment. SUP has experienced exponential growth in recent years with races and events taking place year round. In California alone, there are over 45 SUP races currently scheduled this year, based on events listed on the Rogue SUP Race Calendar.

SUPAA was formed to promote SUP by providing an organizational structure for competition and the sport’s future development. For additional details on SUPAA’s mission and programs, visit Supathletes.com.