Excellent. Taking courses from a certified SUP Instructor or becoming one yourself has a lot of advantages. Just so happened that T.J. Turner, Education Director for the ACA and Todd Bishop, Instructor Trainer, invited H2ostoked along for one of their Instructor courses. We quickly learned this wasn’t just a “paddle in the park.”
Hosted by Sweetwater Kayaks and Bishop Boards, the course broke down into a couple days of skills workshops for those who needed some fine tuning, then morphed into two days of experiential, on the water teaching and application. On top of the myriad of strokes and footwork, presentation, safety, rescue, float plans, and education technique were covered in detail. By the end of the course, participants were dancing all over their boards, racing, cruising, teaching, and leading paddle ventures. It was phenomenal.
The American Canoe Association (ACA) has perhaps the oldest and most comprehensive SUP certifying program available. For those of you contemplating taking your SUP skills to another level, the ACA has you covered. The advantages of becoming a certified ACA SUP instructor are multifold: insurance qualified, membership in the largest paddle sports body, you’ll have “cred”, and your family, friends, and clients will have a safer and better time on the water.
Whatever you paddle, do yourself some good and take a class or two. You can bet that the ACA has a class for it.