Can a SUP keep up with a kayak?
Perhaps you are curious to know because you are trying to race with a friend, or you simply just want to figure out if SUPs can really go just as fast as a kayak.
If you want to test your SUP skills or want to learn more about this activity, then you are at the right place!
Today, I’ll talk about SUPs and kayaking and how fast you can go on either one. Let’s get started!
Can A SUP Keep Up With a Kayak? How SUP Works
Nothing can be more fun on a hot day than to engage in watersports activities.
This is why if you are looking for an enjoyable way to spend your time in the water, SUP and kayaking are great ideas.
Can a SUP keep up with a kayak, though? Or is it simply impossible?
First, let’s talk about how SUP works. Basically, you stand on a board (a paddleboard) and use a paddle to propel your board to move forward.
It can be challenging because aside from paddling, you need to balance your body. This is why you are also working different muscles when you get on your paddle board and move.
But the short answer to the question, “Can a SUP keep up with a kayak” is a no. You may be a pro in SUP and have well-developed and strong muscles to do the paddling. However, it is not possible to go faster or to keep up with a kayak.
How Kayaking Works
When you kayak, you sit in a canoe-like vessel as you paddle across the water. There is a space for you to sit, which can either be a two-person or a single kayak.
This boat has a pointed shape, allowing it to quickly cut through the water. You can also accelerate your speed because you remain seated.
There is extra leverage with a kayak in terms of hydrodynamics. When kayaking, you remain in a seated position, which makes it faster than the SUP. You also need to balance when on a SUP, which minimizes the speed factor.
You can also check out this video to learn more about the distinction between kayaking and paddling on a SUP:
SUP Vs Kayaking – Which One is Easier?
If you have not tried either one of these two watersports, you may be wondering which one is more beginner-friendly.
The truth is that both kayaking and SUP are easy. You should be able to learn these as quickly as possible.
In fact, just a day of practicing should allow you to pick up and learn the key skills required for these two.
But if you want to improve your upper body strength and stamina, it should take more practice to get better with kayaking and SUP.
When you kayak, you need to learn how to practice a few more things, though. For instance, you have to learn how to return to your boat in case you fall. You also must improve your upper body to prevent injuries linked with repetitive movements.
As with SUPs, these are generally very intuitive. The only thing that can be tough at first is how to balance on the board. This is tricky as it requires core strength and coordination.
But once you have the basics down, you should be able to start paddling in no time. Moreover, you move much freely when you are on the SUP. The constant changes made when you do your paddling stroke minimizes your risks of incurring injuries due to repetitive movements.
Need for Speed – Can A SUP Keep Up with a Kayak?
Now, if you are thinking of racing, then it gets more interesting when you either do kayaking or SUP.
If you are racing with someone on a kayak, you will find it easier to get started when you are on a SUP. Just the fact that it is lighter and easier to take it into the water gives you leverage.
Thus, you can begin paddling and get a major head start at it. However, the stability factor affects the speed of the SUP.
Since there is a lower center of gravity on a kayak, you should be able to balance it better. There is a smaller chance of tipping over, which makes you faster on a kayak than on a SUP.
You can even perform more intensive strokes to really speed up. But with the SUP, you need to stand and balance to maneuver. With a higher center of gravity, balancing is trickier. Therefore, paddling must be done slowly to stay balanced, which reduces your speed.
Safety on SUP and Kayak
Generally, it can be easy for you to fall off a SUP. This is why the key is in maintaining balance. Once you get used to it, you should have an easier experience staying on the board.
With a kayak, it does flip but not as often. However, the really challenging part is getting back on your boat once you have fallen off of it. There are techniques you can perform, however, which makes it easier each time you practice.
So, can a SUP keep up with a kayak?
After learning more about the features and basics of both the SUP and a kayak, it is safe to say that the latter is still faster.
You can get started with paddling when you are in a SUP because it is lighter and more compact. However, once you are both situated in the water, it is actually harder to stay balanced while paddling faster in a SUP.
But both activities are fun and good for your health because of the workout your muscles get each time. And of course, these are enjoyable activities allowing you to spend more time outdoors and in nature, which are great for you!