King of Watersports Founder Charlie spent the day in London yesterday finding out which weird and wonderful places he could take his Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board and ideally not get into trouble.
The aim of the trip was to have a lot of fun while showing the people of London this brilliant new boardsport. Stand Up Paddle boarding (SUP Boarding) has really taken off this summer due to the simplicity and flexibility of the sport and the new inflatable SUPs.
Charlie’s aim was to see where he can SUP in London while showing just how easy the sport is to get into! Stand Up Paddle Boarding can go in a few directions, most of our customers use it for cruising and general fitness. The constant movement of the board on the water is perfect for working your core and the paddling gives you a fantastic work out. There are races up and down the country and many in London throughout the year. SUP Yoga is also a growing area of the sport but don’t worry, Charlie wasn’t floating down the Thames doing a downward-dog!
Our Facebook and Twitter followers were getting in on the action all day, thinking up the best places to Stand Up Paddle Board in London. The suggestions were flowing in and Charlie was committed to Sup-ping as many of the London locations as possible.
Charlie started the day around the core financial and business areas of London, suited up and ready to glide along the waterways. SUP is the perfect balance for anyone who works in an office; the movements involved would build good back and core strength and help release any tension from sitting at a desk. This did not go to plan we found out that you need express permission to use the waterways around Canary Wharf. We tried to sort it out but with time against him and the location suggestions pouring in, there was time for a little balancing act in the fountain in Cabot Square, Canary Wharf before heading on.
Next stop was the Thames and the Houses of Parliament. There were a few rocky moments and some inquisitive Thames boats! The crowds gathered on the bridge to view the crazy man walking on water. Ever the entertainer Charlie staged a couple of spectacular falls. His immune system is audibly working over time today to fight off the filthy water bacteria of the Thames that he accidently gargled on his way back up. Stand Up Paddle Boarding in London is not recommended in the fast lane of the Thames and we would not recommend it… find a fresher part of the river and one with less traffic!
Charlie “King of Watersports”, then headed off down the road to see the Queen. A spot of Stand Up Paddle Boarding in St James’s Park Lake with some un-phased and elegant Pelicans. Quite the opposite to the madness of the Thames, St James’ Park was calm and thoroughly enjoyable! A couple of Londers popped over to say that Charlie had “made their day”.
Outside Buckingham Palace, unfortunately the Queen was otherwise engaged or we are sure she would have loved a go, Paddle boarding really is so easy, and almost anyone could give it a go! A group of children gathered on the bridge for a little chat – “That’s my house!” said Charlie, pointing at Buckingham Palace “I’m the King of Watersports!”
After some quick refreshment, Charlie ignored the DO NOT ENTER signs and under the watchful eye of Nelson he lapped the great fountain of Trafalgar Square on his Stand Up Paddle Board. The crowds gathered and loved it, a couple of happy tourist asked for a go. The gentleman that he is, Charlie willing obliged and the girls hopped on for their own London Stand Up Paddle Boarding session. Unfortunately this was the very moment a burley security guard popped up and had a couple of stern words with the girls. What mischief makers! What were you doing Charlie? “Me?! Well I was stood behind the security guard shaking my head at them of course, very disappointed!” he told us with a cheeky grin. So we would like to apologise to the girls for taking the stick for the King of Watersports. They didn’t seem too phased though and if Stand Up Paddle Boarding in the Trafalgar Square fountain is on their bucket list, as it now should be on everyone’s, then they have certainly ticked that box!
The final Stand Up Paddle Boarding in London location was the Serpentine River. This is known as the “Recreational Lake in Hyde Park” so paddle boarding should be ok right? Wrong.. it seems that only the rowing boats that had been hazard assessed and Health and Safety checked to the extreme. Charlie mounts the board and was merrily paddling about when approached by panicked men in boats; they were worried he would fall in! If they had seen his exemplary survival skills in the middle of the Thames just hours earlier they may not have worried so much but is seems that the “King of Watersports” t-shirt did not calm their worries and they insisted that he end his session immediately.
In a nutshell we are looking to promote that healthy, balanced lifestyle that is mentioned so often, but ditch the running shoes and hit the closest river, lake or ocean with your Stand Up Paddle Board!
While some feathers were ruffled during the day we are pleased to confirm that nobody was injured or harmed, although the trots after drinking water from the Thames haven’t been too pleasant…..
If you would like to know a little more about Stand Up Paddle Boarding we have a brilliant range of boards on our website at King of Watersports. If you need any help picking your perfect board just give us a bell in the office, more than happy to help, as you can see we are experienced Paddle Boarders!