Where and when was paddleboarding invented?

Early forms of Stand-Up Paddleboarding (SUP) date back as far as 3,000 BC across regions such as China, Peru and Italy.

Historic SUP
Early SUP

Modern Stand-Up Paddleboarding (SUP) began in the 1940s in Waikiki, Hawaii. John Ah Choy was a local Hawaiian who surfed, but as he got older and was unable to get up and down from his board, he would stand on his board from the break and paddle out with a canoe paddle to catch waves.

John Choy SUP inventor
John Ah Choy, 1940s

As the style gained popularity it took on the name “Beach Boy Surfers”. In the 1990s Stand-Up Paddleboarding (SUP) was redefined and modernised as a sport.

SUP lochore
Today’s SUP

This year I think some people who have come out with Och Aye Canoe have inadvertently invented Lie Down SUP – watch this space!

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