General Aims

The SUP Boarding Flat Water SUP Skills Award aims to enable participants to:

1. Paddle safely and competently on a SUP on sheltered flat water.

2. Perform basic flat water rescues.

3. Obtain & understand relevant weather and tidal information.

Award Requirements

Requirements for attending a Flatwater SUP Award assessment:

  • No age restriction applies to this award.
  • The SUP Flat Water Skills Award is a pre-requisite for Canoeing Ireland’s Flat water SUP Instructor Award.
  • U18 SUP Flatwater Skills paddlers should be appropriately supervised by a person who is over 18 and who has suitable experience


Participant must successfully demonstrate the following techniques and skills:

  • Forward Paddle, Reverse Paddle, Stopping.
  • An ability to turn while stationary using Forward Sweep Stroke, Reverse Sweep Stroke. Board trim should be adjusted to suit turns.
  • An ability to turn efficiently on the move i.e., Sweeps, Bow Draw, Cross Bow Draw, Step back pivot turn.
  • Draw Strokes (simple draw & sculling draw).
  • Bracing.
  • Stern rudder.
  • Step back pivot Turn
  • Board trim
  • An ability to Mount and Dismount a SUP Board correctly from the bank & water.
  • Balance and Board Trim.
  • A water based dismount, righting and remount of SUP board.

• Self-rescue following a capsize drill in deep water, including righting the SUP board and completing a water based remount without assistance.

• Rescue an unconscious paddler from the water and transport them to the bank.

• An understanding of the Basic Safety Rules of Paddle Sports.

• An understanding of the correct use of SUP board leash and hazards associated with its use and non-use.

• Obtain, understand and be able to translate a weather forecast and tidal information to the area you will be SUPing.

Course Documents