How to stay safe on your stand up paddleboard

In the book we refer to it as PPE, because it is. Every single thing you wear has a safety function; whether it’s protecting you from the sun or the cold, or from bumps and scrapes.  Making the wrong choices here can be just as dangerous as going out without an appropriate leash or communications!


Here are some of the products that we have in-depth personal experience with and are prepared to recommend.  More reviews coming very soon – the website has only just been launched, and our main goal has been getting the books right.   If you would like to submit a review we’d love to hear from you!

In the book

Here are just some of the discussion points in the book about clothing and protective equipment.  Order your copy of the book now!

  • What to wear
  • Warm water, warm weather
  • Warm water, cooler weather
  • Warm water, cold weather
  • Wet weather
  • What to do with the spare layers?
  • Special circumstances
  • Cold water, warm weather
  • Cold water, cooler weather
  • Cold water, cold weather
  • Recommended brands and products
  • SUPsurfing or river-riding
  • Cold water paddling gear
  • Wetsuits
  • What is a wetsuit?
  • How wetsuits work
  • Open cell vs closed cell neoprene
  • Suitable wetsuit types for SUP
  • How thick and warm?
  • Variable thickness suits
  • Wetsuit maintenance
  • Drysuits
  • Choosing a drysuit
  • Using your suit
  • Drysuit maintenance
  • Hands, head & feet
  • Sun protection
  • Sun protection clothing
  • Sunglasses
  • Hats
  • Sunscreen
  • Helmets
  • In summary
  • PPE knowledge: test yourself

What you choose to wear can have a huge impact on your personal safety, so it’s really worth some detailed discussion and understanding.  Order your copy of the book now!

Brands, Products and Links

Clothing tends to be quite location-specific; the great brands we have here in our corner of the globe may well not be available in your part of the world. Wetsuits and drysuits are rather more universal but hard to do accurate and fair testing on because ultimately it depends so much on getting the fit right.  So we can certainly  point you in the direction of reputable brands – all the brands listed here are well known and trusted within the SUP fraternity. (These are not paid links, we get no kickback for making the recommendations.).  Lots more links and recommendations coming soon!

This iconic Australian brand is really highly rated for its paddling wear, and they also have a great range of wetsuits, boots, buoyancy aids and many other accessories. 

Macwet Gloves
Rated by many paddlers as the finest gloves for paddling that you’re going to find.

A great range of really fantastic technical clothing for paddlesports. 

Under Armour
This US brand has a whole lot of quality outdoor clothing, but of particular interest for SUP are their excellent base layer garments for men and women. 

Mustang Survival
A great portfolio of really awesome SUP appareil and safety accessories, including the MTI beltpack and the Khimera hybrid bouyancy aids, the really stunning Ocean Rodeo drysuits, amongst many others. 

A popular brand making specialist dry suits specifically for paddleboarding

O’Neill wetsuits
The original wetsuit brand, and still to many the best. A great range of wetsuits well suited to paddleboarding, and some cool technical clothing too. 

What are your thoughts on clothing and protective wear?

If you have anything to add to the discussion in the book about PPE then please let us know.  The discussion here will be moderated, and only relevant comments will be accepted. (Differing viewpoints are extremely welcome, but please do read the chapter in the book first, and base your comments on what has been written there. If your view has already been covered in the book there’s no point repeating it again). 

If you want to follow the debate then enter your details below and you’ll be notified when any new comments are added. 

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1 year ago

Your 4 golden rules of safety equipment are excellent and have given me a new way of thinking about my safety.

1 year ago
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Yes. A lot. I realise now how much could have gone wrong.

1 year ago
Reply to

Where did you get these rules from? I have never seen them anywhere else.

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