How To Paddle Board Faster: 7 Tips for Fast SUP-ing

If you are going to enjoy the full thrill of stand up paddle boarding, you need to know how to paddle board faster.

After all, apart from snorkeling and diving, most surface water sports need speed for fun.

If you are a beginner in stand up paddle boarding, you need to start slowly. In addition, you can start your training in a lagoon where you don’t have waves.

However, there comes a time when your skill improves, and you need to know how to paddle faster.

How To Paddle Board Faster

When you want to increase your paddling speed to racing level, you can do a few things, which I will show you here. You will not be able to SUP anywhere at speed.

It takes skill and experience, and the choice of a good paddle boarding destination. Here are important guidelines for building your paddleboarding speed.

1. Know the speed you are aiming for – above 4 knots

The best paddle board speed is a maximum of 4 knots, that is, for the regular boards. However, when it comes to racing SUP boards, it is a different story altogether since some can even do over 10 knots.

Of course, it takes a combination of many factors like the skills of the driver as well as the flow of the current.

It is easier to build more speed on a SUP when paddling downriver than on the calm lake waters.

So, as a beginner, you have been doing between 2 and 4 knots. What is the new speed you can aim for when we say, you need to paddle faster?

If you can aim for 5 to 8 knots, that is great speed. In fact, only experienced stand up paddle board racers achieve a speed of 8 knots.

2. Get a fast SUP board

If the fastest rally driver was to drive a Prius, he would not make a lot of headway. Therefore, to move fast, it takes the combination of a fast SUP board as well as good skills.

Beginner or regular SUP boards are either inflated or solid. On the same note, they are broader than the racing SUP boards. Therefore, a fast board must be narrow.

Since you already know how to maintain your balance on the board, you know how to climb back after falling in the water; you need speed.

About the length of your board, most people ask: are longer paddle boards faster? The answer is yes, they are. The fastest SUP boards are narrow and longer.

3. Reach further with your strokes

The best thing is to reach further with your strokes, but make sure you are within your comfortable zone.

And reaching far is not all. Once your paddle gets into the water, let it sink in deeply and then pull it towards you. That is a power stroke, and it will propel a fast inflatable SUP across the water at high speed.

4. Make your turns smaller

When you do not care to follow SUP racing techniques, you should make wide turns when you want to turn.

When you want to try advanced SUP paddle technique, that is a luxury you cannot afford. Therefore, make your turns smaller by keeping your paddle close to the side of the SUP.

Paddle turn also refers to the distance that you are covering with the paddle as you make each stroke.

Thus, you should not make a wide turning motion when you bring the paddle from the front towards you. Keep the paddle close to the board.

Image of how to make a paddle board go faster

5. Engage the whole body rather than just the arms

You need to engage the core muscles to help you paddle faster. When your paddle strokes come from the core muscles, you are able to make further reaches, and you will not tire quickly.

Also, let the knees protrude slightly at an angle towards the front. This stance keeps you stable and balanced on the SUP board.

6. Make less strokes to avoid burning out

It is best to make long strokes rather than make many short ones. Just to repeat what we already said, it is best to start making your stroke from far, dig deeper and then pull it in towards you, while keeping it close to the side of the board.

The idea is to keep paddling for as long as possible with high efficiency. If you get too tired too fast, you will not be able to achieve good paddle board speed.

The techniques for how to paddle a SUP should help you retain your strength for as long as possible.

7. Know Your paddling surroundings

Your surroundings can affect your paddle boarding speed. For instance, if you are paddling downriver, you want to know where the rocks are and slow down. This can affect your efforts for how to make a paddle board faster.

When you are paddling in the ocean, if the water is too rough, it can affect your speed. Thus, it is vital to choose the best time to paddle board in the ocean.

Plot out your route before getting into the water. That way, when you start paddling, you can just follow your preset route.


That is it for how to paddle board faster. If you have the right board and the skill, it is simple to learn how to make a paddle board faster.

How to make a paddle board go faster depends on your skill and your energy. Therefore, eat something before you hit the water. You can also carry a few snack bars on your board to re-energize.

Anyone can ride a fast SUP. You just need to know a few SUP tips and techniques to make your paddle board go faster.

If you are looking for the fastest racing SUP, you might want to get the ROI Racing SUP that you can buy on

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