Combine surfing with kayaking and you’ve got standup paddle boarding (SUP) or supping, the fastest-growing water sport in the world. SUP has something for everyone. It’s easy to learn, suits all ages and offers a full-body workout. With a minimum of gear, you can paddle ocean surf or calm lakes and rivers. To get started, you basically just need a board and a paddle.
Even though SUP is a relatively new sport, there is already a bewildering range of equipment available. One of the most reputable brands in the business is Starboard, founded in 1994 by Svein Rasmussen, a well-known racer that entered his first windsurfer board in 1978.
Starboard – the innovation leader
Starboard has been at the forefront of windsurfing board design and technological innovation since its inception. Around 2008, Starboard also introduced boards for supping. Today, Starboard is the world-leading natural watersports brand covering windsurfing, standup paddle boarding, surfing and apparel. Its SUP line now rivals its windsurfing line in size. By designing and manufacturing the best equipment in the industry from one end, and promoting watersports to the general public on the other, Starboard strives to get as many people on the water as possible.
“Frankly speaking, we are a bit paranoid about being ahead of the game”, said Mathieu Rauzier, nautical architect and R&D Manager at Starboard. “We introduced full sandwich carbon boards 4 years ago and already the weight savings are up to 3 kg or well over 6 pounds. The impact that weight has on how your board rides is tremendous.”
High-tech paddles made with Divinycell
Starboard also offers a wide choice of supping paddles to ensure everyone, from beginner to adventurer, finds the perfect choice for their paddle level. Two of their paddle lines – Carbon Super Flex and Tikitech – feature a lightweight Divinycell core and offer high strength with incredibly good flex characteristics. A blade with good flex allows you to paddle longer and harder without getting tired.
Starboard headquarters are located at colorful Lake Taco, close to Bangkok, Thailand. Not far from there lies the local Diab office and warehouse, where the Divinycell comes from.
A friendly partnership
“We’ve been working with Starboard for nearly two years now”, said Miss Cheeraporn Wongchaiphanit at Diab. “Being able to offer local stock and support is of course a huge plus. But our relationship goes even further back with a number of Starboard staff and our staff having been working together at another water sports company. So basically, you can call us friends.”
“Diab’s mission and vision are parallel to our company’s”, agreed Mathieu Rauzier. “We both strive to bring innovation and motivation to the world of water. And get more people to live the Tiki Life, which is our motto.”
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