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Stand up for paddleboarding

So. We’ve seen them out there in the harbour and we’re curious. Stand Up paddle boarding (SUP) looks a whole lot fun. And it is.
Annie Lorenzen is keen to get more people out on the water to try what is becoming an increasingly popular sport. She plans to organise group sessions, primarily for women, to help with both physical and emotional fitness. As a personal trainer for the last 15 years and competing body builder for four of those, Annie has witnessed — first hand — the benefits of discipline, training and exercise, for holistic wellbeing.

The restorative effect that comes from being on the ocean is no secret and it is very surprising how easy paddleboarding is. The nature of the movement is such that whilst requiring balance and a degree of core strength, the feeling is one of freedom. The rhythm needed to paddle becomes a great leveller as the body rediscovers its own inherent beat. This has a Zen effect. Paddleboarding is quite different to surfing, as you are on top of the water rather than tumbling around in the wash. Stability and elevation provides a good platform to learn the technique and co-ordination required for either sport.

Annie sees paddleboarding as an accessible way to get out in the elements, to enjoy the beauty of nature whilst getting fit. “It’s good to see women having the confidence and enjoying the water. You know they might be feeling like crap, real crap, but they see that they can do it, they can handle it and it is so rewarding to give people the chance to find that.”

The camaraderie of exercise with a group of women is an added bonus. It is easy to chat and laugh away whilst putt-putting around the harbour. Think coffee mornings without the caffeine. Shopping without the guilt.

The boards are light enough to carry and all that is needed to put them on the car roof are surf straps, racks not necessary. No wetsuit required unless you’re a girl… [joke]. Level entry cost of a paddleboard is around $1300 new but there are bargains galore on Trade Me.
Plans are to meet on a regular basis to explore Whaingaroa, whether it a short blat across to Te Akau or day safari further up the harbour . It is a stunning harbour that we have the pleasure to live on, and to be on the water, to look back at Raglan and her surrounds, gives one an appreciation for how truly lucky we are – can’t really think of a better way to explore it.

If you are interested in joining a women’s paddling group or for a one-on-one lesson please contact Annie on 825 0196 or 022 6815120.

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