starboard 2024 inflatable sup paddle boards

2 reasons to ALWAYS use a SUP leash

Dakine coiled SUP leash calf cuffThe leash. The stand up paddle board leash is a crucial part of everyone’s SUP kit. For a SUP paddler of any level, on any body of water, it can quite literally mean the difference between life or death… Let that sink in… Sorry, bad choice of words! Mull that over for a minute.

If the paddling conditions change on you, or if you are tired, lost and/or far from shore, in a current, the leash will keep your board tethered to you. Your board gives you floatation and a chance to stay alive. Without a leash, even in a light breeze or small waves or current, your board will drift out of your reach in a matter seconds.

If you’re a surfer, your board’s floatation can also give you a little breather before head pounding sets hold you down.

Even if you lose your paddle, it’ll float. Stay tethered to the SUP board, it is much more important to your safety. You can fetch the paddle when you’re back on the board.

The 2 reasons to wear a SUP leash are:

  1. It is safer for you. Tethered to lifesaving floatation device in case of an emergency.
  2. It is safer for other water users. It keeps the board tethered to you and not drifting, floating, bouncing uncontrollably through the surf, around the lake, down the river, near the shore. SUP boards are big and can be dangerous to others in the water when not under control.

Now you just need to work out which kind of SUP leash is right for you. Read our SUP leash guide here.

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About the author: Julian Kidd
I have been an avid stand up paddle boarder since 2009. I retired from a decade of professional kiteboarding to focus on SUP. Green Water Sports grew from this love of all things SUP. As well as being a keen paddle boarder, I'm a football fan, closet petrol head, web tinkerer, husband and father.