I finally, yes finally, completed my first voyage into Lake Erie all year long to try stand up paddle boarding.
After my first try was foiled by Mother Nature with a storm, I was able to cash in my reservation with Nalu and join 10 other strangers to see who would fall into the lake the most times while trying to stand up.
Six is the number of times I fell exactly how we were directed not to fall in the lake. The instructors spent about 15 minutes giving us newbies basic instructions of the board, the right way to paddle and how not to fall into the lake when we lost our balance. We were supposed to fall big and flat. Not flail around like a crazy person.
I fell six times so incredibly awkwardly that I somehow and ended up with a big bruise on the front of my right ankle.
Besides my lack of graceful falling, my stand up paddle board experience was 1) amazing and 2) would have been five times easier if it weren't as windy as it was.
But holy hell, was it so much fun! You can paddle on your knees or stomach until you get comfortable in the water and on the board. Like a true newbie, I paddled on my knees for only a few minutes and tried to hop up like surfer pro Kelly Slater and lost the first battle to the board and toppled over into the water.
Note - If I would have been paying attention during the instruction, I would have known that you stand with your feet parallel, not like a surfer, which makes standing up a million times easier.
After I figured out the feet positioning, it was smooth sailing (or as smooth as it was going to get with the rough water) for the rest of my time standing up.
Try it yourself before the lake gets too cold. If nothing else, you get a killer workout from so much paddling and may or may not be as graceful as I was.