The sport is open to everyone and Surf Shop Arabia offers lessons to even complete beginners. These start with an explanation about safety on the beach and in the sea. The instructors first ensure that all participants can swim, as it’s essential participants are safe in the water. Instructors also explain how the current and the rip work, to give a proper understanding about how to stay safe while having fun. Unlike other watersports such as surfing, paddleboarding is easy going and great for chilling out, as it’s not so much about adrenaline, according to instructors at Surf Shop Arabia. It’s fantastic for overall fitness and strengthening your core, and has taken off in the UAE, especially in Dubai, because there are relatively few waves and the sea is generally fairly flat.
For something a little different, Surf Dubai has launched a training club exclusively for women. The classes cover life saving, general fitness and nutrition (they’ll be serving a healthy breakfast on their terrace after each lesson) as well as the basics of surfing.
Surf Shop Arabia: www.surfshoparabia.com (04 379 1998). Surf Dubai: Girls Go Surfing Dhs125 per session; www.surfingdubai.com (050 504 3020).
Abu Dhabi Stand Up Paddle Club
Try out this gentle, easygoing water sport at the Corniche and other locations around the city. Lessons, tours and board rental available.
Contact Jen Scully at 050 905 9743. www.abudhabisup.com/www.uaesup.com.
Ignite Surf School UAE
Stand-up paddleboarding (SUP) lessons and hourly board rentals are available at Riva Beach Club on Palm Jumeirah. The Surf School also offers Ladies only classes and SUP Fitness programs which run throughout the week and weekend.
Lessons from Dhs125, board rental from Dhs85 per hour. Riva Beach Club, Palm Jumeirah, www.surfschooluae.com (055 601 0997).
Dubai’s calm waters are perfect for this enjoyable, gentle sport. Apparently it started when surf instructors needed to patrol their classes. And just in case you were wondering, paddlesurfing is a derivative of paddleboarding. Private lessons from Dhs175-350.
Surf Dubai, Umm Suqeim 3 (050 504 3020).