Beginning August 13, 2016, the World Paddle Association will make leashes and PDF’s mandatory for all competitors in all Open water or specified races. An Open water race is defined as a course being more than one quarter mile from shore, more than one quarter mile either direction from the race location, conditions that may warrant the use of a leash and PFD or as mandated by the race director and WPA. A leash is safety equipment that is attached to the competitor and the board. All other races will require leashes as extra safety for all competitors.
These types of rules and guidelines will not only save lives but allow the sport to access to the water we all enjoy. The WPA was started to help build the sport of stand up paddling with consistent guidelines and safety to sustain long term growth for the sport. For more information see the WPA SUP Guidlines & Rules. See the attached video provided by Warren Currie at EasyRider with how fast a board can get away from when you don’t wear a leash.
Photo courtesy of Mike Muir
Logo and video courtesy of EasyRider