SUP Shoes – What to wear on your feet Stand Up Paddleboarding

SUP Shoes

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SUP Shoes or Barefoot which do you wear Stand Up Paddleboarding?

A question I hear a lot is ‘What should I wear on my feet while Stand Up Paddleboarding?’ And there are of course many answers which depend on the paddle, location, conditions and situation. It is possible to wear nothing – ie go barefoot and I would say this is what most people prefer. SUP Shoes can be a great option if you are Stand Up Paddlboarding in colder climates or on water that has a rocky or muddy coastline.

Booties for Stand Up Paddleboarding

Today we will explore some of the many different types of footwear you can wear while Stand Up Paddleboarding. Weather it’s going barefoot, or wearing footwear you already have, or maybe it’s time to invest in some SUP Shoes that will help keep your feet warm while providing protection and still enabling good board control, we look into the pros and cons of each.

Bare Feet while Stand Up Paddleboarding

ProsCons
Better control over boardMuddy or Rocky waters edge means
dirty or cut feet
Better sense of the surface of boardCold feet in cold conditions
Good grip
Free
Good in warm weather
Going Barefoot while Stand Up Paddleboarding
Going bare foot is a popular option when Stand Up Paddleboarding

Thongs, Flip Flops or Jandles for Stand Up Paddleboarding

ProsCons
Easy to get on and offReally poor control of board
Readily availableCome off easily and could cause hazard
Inexpensive
You probably already have them!
Good for warm weather

Often early on in our paddling adventures we would wear these into the water but took them off once we were on our boards. This way we could have protection for our feet but also easily have the better grip offered by going barefoot once on the board. They can’t be secured to your feet and so can make paddling hazardous. I wouldn’t recommend wearing them during paddling. They can also be quite slippery when wet so caution needs to be exercised when getting out of the water.

Thongs, Jandals or Flip Flops can protect your feet getting into the water to Stand Up Paddleboard

How cool are these Havaianas in our SUP Chick colours!

Click on the images for more information

Runners for Stand Up Paddleboarding

ProsCons
Good for sore feetPoor board control
Stable on your feetPoor board feel
Good for rocky/sharp surfaces where you
may get your feet cut
Harder to clean and dry

It can be good to wear an old pair of runners when starting out if the entry point to the water is rocky. This will protect your feet from rough surfaces and can make your feet more comfortable while on the board. Something many paddle boarders suffer from is sore feet, usually from trying to grip the board too hard. Runners can stop this from happening. The down side is that you lose the feel of the board beneath you and it becomes harder to control due to less grip.

Old Shoes can be a cheap option for Stand Up Paddleboarding

SUP Shoes for Stand Up Paddleboarding

Thin enough to sense board under your feetMore expensive
Designed to get wetCan be tight to get on if no zipper
Drain easilySoles wear out faster than shoes on rough surfaces
Keep your feet warm – good for cold water SUP
Easy to wash
Work well with wetsuits
Coupled with Sealskinz Waterproof Socks can keep your feet dryer longer

Wearing SUP Shoes or Wetsuit Booties when you are Stand Up Paddleboarding gives you the most comfort and flexibility. Not only do SUP shoes help keep your feet warm but they help keep your feet comfortable while maintaining control over your board. Pairing your SUP Shoes with some Sealskinz Waterproof Socks can also help keep your feet dry during your Stand UP Paddleboarding session.

Proper SUP Shoes made from wetsuit material protect the feet but offer good board control while keeping you warm.
SUP Shoes save cuts on feet

I have to say that during the years that I have been paddleboarding I have found that the best options are either going barefoot if it is warm enough to do so or wearing SUP Shoes with my Sealskinz Waterproof Socks when it is colder. The first time I wore my Sealskinz Waterproof Socks with my SUP Shoes I was amazed at how long my feet stayed dry. I suspect that if I were to wear them with my wetsuit this would further prevent water getting in around my ankles so stay tuned for when I test drive that combination!

Sealskinz Waterproof Socks can help keep your feet dryer and warmer when Stand Up Paddleboarding – click the image for current price
SUP Shoes or Wetsuit Booties are great for keeping your feet warm and comfortable when Stand Up Paddleboarding in cooler conditions – click the image for current price

Stay tuned, next week when we take you Christmas Gifts your SUP Chick or SUP Bloke really want.  Do you have a favourite SUP location that you think should be added here?  Contact us on the ‘Contact’ tab and we’ll include it in a later post.

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