How Many Calories Can I Burn With SUP
How Many Calories Can I Burn With SUP

Ladies and gentlemen, if you are seeking a fun and exciting way to shed some extra pounds, look no further than Stand-Up Paddleboarding, or SUP for short.

In this article, we will explore the incredible calorie-burning potential of SUP and delve into the various factors that can affect the number of calories burned during a paddleboarding session.

Whether you are a seasoned paddler or new to the sport, get ready to be amazed by the fitness benefits that await you on the water. So grab your paddle and embark on a calorie-burning adventure like no other!

What is SUP?

Stand-up paddleboarding (SUP) has gained immense popularity in recent years, and it’s no wonder why. This water sport combines the excitement of surfing with the tranquility of paddling, resulting in a unique and enjoyable experience for all ages. SUP involves standing on a board and propelling yourself across the water using a paddle. Whether you explore calm lakes or ride ocean waves, SUP offers many health benefits while providing a fun and engaging activity for everyone to enjoy.

Factors Affecting Calorie Burn

Several factors come into play when it comes to calorie burn during SUP. Understanding these factors can help you maximize the effectiveness of your workout and achieve your fitness goals.

Duration of SUP session

The duration of your SUP session directly impacts the number of calories you burn. Like any other exercise, the longer you engage in the activity, the more calories you burn. It is essential to balance the duration of your session and your fitness level to avoid overexertion.

Intensity of paddling

The intensity of your paddling also significantly affects the number of calories burned. Paddling briskly or against a current requires more effort, resulting in a higher calorie burn. You can incorporate interval training or sprinting bursts during your SUP session to increase the intensity.

Body weight and muscle mass

Your body weight and muscle mass also impact the number of calories burned during SUP. Generally, individuals with higher body weight and muscle mass burn more calories during exercise than those with lower body weight and muscle mass. However, SUP can be enjoyed by individuals of all fitness levels and body types, making it a versatile activity for everyone.

Wind and water conditions

The wind and water conditions can affect the intensity of your paddleboarding session. Paddling against a strong wind or in choppy waters requires more effort, resulting in a higher calorie burn. Conversely, paddling with the wind or calm waters may require less exertion. It’s essential to be aware of the current conditions and adjust the intensity of your workout accordingly.

Paddling technique

Efficient paddling techniques can also impact the number of calories burned during SUP. Using proper form and engaging the correct muscles can optimize your paddle stroke and increase the effectiveness of your workout. Learning and practicing proper paddling techniques can help you maximize your calorie burn and reduce the risk of injury.

Average Calorie Burn

The number of calories burned during a SUP session varies depending on the abovementioned factors. On average, a person weighing approximately 160 pounds can expect to burn around 430-600 calories per hour of moderate-intensity paddleboarding. However, it’s important to note that these numbers are estimates, and individual results may vary. Consider using a fitness tracker or heart rate monitor during your SUP sessions to get a more accurate estimate of your calorie burn.

Health Benefits of SUP

Beyond calorie burn, SUP offers many health benefits that can improve your overall well-being. Let’s explore some of these benefits below:

Full-body workout

SUP provides a full-body workout by engaging various muscle groups. Every stroke and movement on the paddleboard activates and strengthens different muscle groups from your legs and core to your arms and back. This comprehensive workout can help tone your body and enhance strength and endurance.

Improves cardiovascular fitness

Engaging in SUP regularly can improve your cardiovascular fitness. The rhythmic paddling and sustained effort increase your heart rate, improving blood circulation and oxygen delivery. Over time, this can lead to a stronger heart and improved cardiovascular health.

Enhances balance and core strength

Balancing on the paddleboard requires constant engagement of your core muscles. This helps improve your balance and stability as you maintain an upright position on an unstable surface. By strengthening your core muscles, SUP can alleviate back pain and improve posture.

Reduces stress and improves mental health

Being surrounded by nature and gently gliding across the water can have a calming and stress-relieving effect. SUP allows you to disconnect from the pressures of daily life and connect with the present moment. Combining physical activity, fresh air, and serene surroundings can improve mood, reduce stress, and promote mental well-being.

Tips to Maximize Calorie Burn

To make the most out of your SUP sessions and maximize your calorie burn, consider the following tips:

Set specific goals

Setting specific goals can provide motivation and help you stay focused during your SUP workouts. Whether aiming for a certain distance, duration, or intensity, having a goal in mind can drive you to push yourself and achieve better results.

Vary your paddle workouts.

To prevent monotony and challenge your body in different ways, vary your paddle workouts. This can include exploring different water bodies, trying new paddling techniques, or incorporating interval training and sprints into your sessions. Keeping your workouts fresh and exciting, you’ll stay engaged and maintain a high-calorie burn.

Engage your core

Remember to engage your core muscles throughout your SUP session. Keeping your core tight and your posture aligned will help you maintain balance and provide an additional workout for your abdominal muscles. Focus on keeping your core engaged and stable as you paddle through the water.

Focus on technique

Investing time learning and improving your paddling technique can significantly impact your calorie burn. Use proper form, engage the correct muscle groups, and focus on efficient strokes. Numerous resources, such as instructional videos and SUP classes, can help you enhance your technique and get the most out of your workouts.

Consider interval training

Interval training in your SUP sessions can elevate your calorie burn and challenge your body. Alternate between periods of high-intensity paddling and recovery periods of lower intensity. This training can boost your metabolism and burn more calories during and after your workout.

Combine SUP with other exercises.

Maximize your calorie burn by combining SUP with other exercises. You can incorporate bodyweight exercises like squats or lunges onto your paddleboard or follow up your SUP session with a strength training or yoga session on land. By diversifying your workouts, you’ll engage different muscle groups and achieve a more well-rounded fitness routine.

Safety Considerations

While SUP is a fun and rewarding activity, it is essential to prioritize safety. Here are some safety considerations to keep in mind:

Learn proper paddling techniques

Before embarking on your SUP journey, take the time to learn proper paddling techniques. Understanding how to navigate and control your paddleboard will enhance your performance and reduce the risk of accidents or injuries.

Wear a personal flotation device.

Always wear a personal flotation device (PFD) when paddleboarding, especially in open water or areas with strong currents. A PFD can provide a layer of safety and buoyancy, ensuring you stay afloat in unforeseen circumstances.

Check weather and water conditions.

Before heading out for a paddle, check the weather and water conditions. Avoid paddleboarding in adverse weather conditions such as high winds, storms, or rough waters. Prioritizing your safety and choosing conditions to enjoy your SUP experience is essential.

Stay hydra is essentialted

Remember to stay hydrated during your SUP sessions, especially during hot days or prolonged workouts. Paddling is physically demanding, and dehydration can lead to fatigue, dizziness, and other health issues. Carry a water bottle with you and take regular breaks to rehydrate.

Sun protection

Protect yourself from the sun’s harmful rays by wearing sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses. Heatstroke and sunburns can quickly dampen the enjoyment of your paddleboarding experience. Apply sunscreen generously before getting on the water and reapply as needed.

Be aware of other water users.

When paddleboarding in crowded waterways or areas frequented by other water users, you must be aware of your surroundings. Respect other boaters, swimmers, and wildlife, and give them the right of way when necessary. Maintain a safe distance and use hand signals to communicate your intentions.

Know your limits

Finally, know your limits and listen to your body. If you feel fatigued, take a break or end your session. Pushing past your limits can lead to accidents, injuries, or exhaustion. It’s essential to paddle within your fitness level and gradually increase the intensity and duration of your sessions.


SUP is not only a fantastic way to explore the great outdoors but also a highly effective workout that offers numerous health benefits.

By understanding the factors affecting calorie burn, incorporating tips to maximize your workout, and prioritizing safety, you can maximize your SUP experience. So grab your paddleboard, head out onto the water, and enjoy SUP’s many physical and mental advantages. Happy paddling!

Diana Hanson
Hi there! I'm Diana Hanson, a SUP enthusiast and paddler with over ten years of experience. I have a deep love for exploring new places and trying out new things on my SUP board. Whether it's gliding across a peaceful lake, navigating a fast-moving river, or riding the exhilarating waves of the ocean, I'm always up for an adventure. As the author of the website, I am passionate about sharing my knowledge and experience with others. My goal is to help beginners learn the skills needed to paddle safely and confidently. I understand the challenges that novices face when starting out, and I'm dedicated to providing them with valuable tips and advice. But my passion doesn't stop there. I also strive to assist experienced paddlers in taking their skills to the next level. Through, I constantly update the site with the latest SUP gear reviews, insider tips, and expert advice. My aim is to ensure that everyone, regardless of their skill level, can get the most out of their paddling experience. I take great pride in my work, and I have been fortunate to receive recognition in the form of prizes and rewards for my contributions to the SUP community. It's an honor to be able to share my passion for this incredible sport with others, and I hope that through, I can inspire and empower fellow SUP enthusiasts to embark on their own unforgettable journeys. Join me on, and let's dive into the exciting world of SUP together!