From Ski Magazine:
Because the technique and the destinations are similar to kayaking, a lot of the first people to pick up the sport have been kayakers. “People who know how to read the river pick it up a little faster because they know the strokes,” Gregg says.
The main divergences between the sports are speed and maneuverability. “The ability to move around on the board is the difference,” Gavere says. “On a standup board you can move up and back quickly. You can get the board to plane quickly and get a lot more speed.”
There is also the reality that you’ll be off your board and in the water a lot. “When I first started I was always in the river. I’d swim 20 or 30 times. Now I’ll do the same thing and not swim at all,” Gavere says.
More coverage from the Honolulu Star Advertiser (Cindy Luis):
SUP has taken off from its birthplace of Hawaii and rode a global wave. One knows its gone mainstream when boards and paddles are being sold at Costco…
As the sport continues to grow in popularity, so it does in visibility. SUP divisions are being added to more competitions, such as the Teva Mountain Games in Colorado and this week’s China Uemura’s Longboard Classic. Last weekend’s Haleiwa Arts Festival had an SUP competition for the first time. “It’s huge and it’s only going to continue to grow,” Prejean said. “Most people pick it up pretty quickly and you don’t have to be a crazy athlete to be able to do it.”
More whitewater coverage here.