Stand up paddle boarding is a water activity where you may feel your don’t need a life jacket, however weather you do or not a leash for your board is very important. A leash on your board can help you while also prevent other accidents. If you were to lose your balance, from a sudden wave, or a gust of wind and did fall into the water your bored is likely to shoot off away from where you have fallen in, you would then have to swim after it or worse the board shoots off into another paddle boarder.
Having a leash will prevent this happening, it also kept board close to you, depending on the water your are paddle boarding in it is important to have your board close so that if you do fall in you can use it as a float, making it easy to say above the water if you do get into difficulty.
Choosing The Right Leash
So you know you need a leach however there are three types to choose from. I shall go through the 3 options and help advise on the differences and which is suitable for whom and what sort of paddle boarding you are doing:
- The Straight
This is the most common and popular leash, it is ideal for boarders on flat or river water, as well as people who SUP Surf. The straight leash may drag in the water however if you do fall in the board won’t go to far and it is easy to pull in so you can then get back on.
- The Coiled
This leash is ideal for flat water and as it is coiled it will stay on top of the board preventing any drag. As this one is cold, hence its name, it does have a drawback, and that is that if you fall in the board will spring back to you which can be dangers as it could hit you in the head. Because of this I am not a fan and I don’t advise it for SUP surfing where this could leach and waves is a recipe for disaster.
- The Breakaway
Also known as the Quick Release this is the leash for white water, if you get into difficulty you can quickly release yourself from your board, this is important if you become trapped or the board is more of a hindrance than help.