The latest edition of SUP Mag is now available for you to enjoy! This spring issue features a huge array of travel features, coaching, interviews and more. It is a must read for all SUP enthusiasts.
In this edition of SUP Mag, you can read Emma Love’s interview with #ShePaddles Ambassador Vikki McPherson as they catch up on all things SUP. Emma Love will be talking to eight #ShePaddles Ambassadors in a series of interviews across the year, so keep an eye out for more.
Vikki’s paddling journey can only be described as inspiring! We discuss how stepping out of her comfort zone has led to her supporting women in her local community and why the role of a British Canoeing #ShePaddles Ambassador is so important in celebrating the diversity of women’s voices.
What tempted you to have a go at paddleboarding?
For a couple of years, my older children had been going SUP’ing, and I would sit watching them, thinking it looked terrific fun. At the time, I didn’t want to go on a paddleboard because I didn’t have a lot of water confidence or energy – this was when my youngest son was still very little. Then in May 2020, I booked a family session, and it turned out that my daughter could not come along, so we had this free space. I suddenly felt brave and decided I would take her place!
What was your overriding memory of your first time on the water?
I remember just feeling so fortunate that we could paddle on such a beautiful and local loch. It was very tranquil that day, and I was just blown away by this fantastic feeling - of both physically being surrounded by water and experiencing nature!
Can you describe what it was that made you want to continue to develop your SUP skills?
That first time I got on a SUP, I remember I was shaking, and it felt like such an alien experience. But by the end of the two hours, I was totally hooked. I think I had only two or three sessions before I knew I needed to learn more and wanted to know more, and I just wanted to be able to push my boundaries, improve my knowledge and technique, and do as much paddling as I could. This was quite a shocker for my kids because I had previously been so scared of trying SUP!
How do you achieve a family/SUP balance?
It’s easier in the summer because the kids and I can all go and stay the whole day at the loch, swimming and paddling. The little one comes on the front of my board, and we all have a great time. In the winter, it’s more challenging because it’s cold and the kids don’t want to go. It takes a bit of planning to make sure everyone is looked after so I can go out with a friend for a weekly paddle.
Congratulations on being selected as a British Canoeing #ShePaddles Ambassador. How has your paddling journey influenced your view of the role?
I am just so passionate about being an ambassador because of the change I experienced. Before SUP, I would describe myself as quite shy. When you have been a parent (as I have) for 13 years, it is easy to forget your sense of self, have fun, look after your mental health, and make time for yourself. Paddleboarding has made me jump outside my box! These days I am like, where did this person come from? I want to encourage and support women to get out of their comfort zones. I paddle with ladies in my village, with other mums, and it has become quite clear to me how important it is (as adults) that we find our passion, find our joy and just go for it!
Emma and Vikki’s chat continues inside SUP Mag where you can read about her upcoming plans to work on her coaching qualifications and she shares advice on how to become a #ShePaddles Ambassador.
For more stories like this, kit reviews, travel articles and coaching features from the world of SUP, purchase a subscription to Stand Up Paddle Mag UK.
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