The first international inflatable board competition

Posted in News on Tuesday, July 29, 2014 by The Beachcomber News Correspondent

Stand-up Paddle Boarding is an ancient form of board sport practised by the Polynesian people. It was brought back to centre stage in the 1960s by the beach boys in Waikiki, Hawaii. The use of boards made it easier then to teach surfing and instructors could take pictures of their students during  the lessons.

Stand-up Paddle Boarding is an ancient form of board sport practised by the Polynesian people. It was brought back to centre stage in the 1960s by the beach boys in Waikiki, Hawaii. The use of boards made it easier then to teach surfing and instructors could take pictures of their students during  the lessons.

In 2000, the famous surfers, Dave Kalama, Archie Kalepa and Laird Hamilton took up Stand-up Paddle Boarding to continue  training even in the absence of waves. The sport received increased attention from the media with stars like the actress, Cameron Diaz and the singer, Rihanna making it a beach holiday essential, leading to a paddling ‘tsunami’ worldwide. And Mauritius is no exception! Stand-up Paddle Boarding is a most pleasant way to delve into the mangrove mazes, turquoise lagoons, tropical rivers and waterfalls and lush vegetation of the island. Only a paddle’s reach away are feeling of escape, freedom and well-being that are perfectly in sync with the average temperature of 28°C experienced in the Indian Ocean.

Overlooking a marine park which is unique in the world, the three sandy beaches of the Shandrani Resort & Spa offer a whole new experience of freedom. Located on the south-east coast, the resort is the luxury address for all-inclusive stays in Mauritius. Its five restaurants, Spa by Clarins, 9-hole golf course and Kids Club are the promise of an exotic and relaxing stay.

The first edition of the Beachcomber Paddle Week-end is all about physical performance and self-challenging in a friendly atmosphere! Board sport professionals will also be present to give some precious advice on a daily basis to competitors. With such guidance and support, they will be provided with everything they need for a great paddling experience.

The races will be contested on inflatable boards with a maximum length of 12.6 feet in two categories, Women and Men and two divisions, Elite and Recreational. Younger participants will also be allowed to enter the event and the best young talents will be rewarded in the Beachcomber Kids division. Each division will have its own medals table with gold, silver and bronze!

For the 2014 edition, a comprehensive racing programme has been put together to provide great exercise and fun for all! Participants can test their endurance with the Long Distance Race, their speed with the Spring Race, or enhance team spirit with the Team Race and there’s definitely a challenge for everyone! And because Stand-up Paddle Boarding conjures up a sense of exoticism, competitors will also get a chance to try racing under the moonlight with the Full Moon Race, a world premiere.

Get your paddles ready!