After the summer rush, the Hamptons get so quiet that I almost forgot my post-Labor Day group stand up paddle tour! The coaches of Wagner College’s Water Polo team organized the outing of September 8, and, like the disciplined athletes they are, the girls showed up well before the scheduled start time and went right to work helping me set up the beach with 20 boards!
As we taught them how to carry and handle SUP boards, the laughed and enjoyed novelty of this new sport that for once was going to let them interact with the water in an entirely new way. No more “egg beater” legs — there was no treading water at Paddle Diva for this crew today! They were standing on the water, looking at the horizon, and using their core body strength to propel them through Three Mile Harbor!
We started the lesson off with a tutorial on poses that make for great photos! We showed them the paddle overhead shot and the classic “blade up” shot so you can see you are actually holding a paddle and not what can look like a broom to the untrained eye! Following our brief land-based instruction (with a water demonstration by dedicated Paddle Diva client, Cate Rogers) we got the girls stand up paddling on the bay for a nice long ninety-minute tour!
If I could go back in time, I would try water polo as a college sport. This group of girls lacked any pretension or ego — they acted like a true team and helped one another when it was necessary. They had a spirit and an openness to what was a very new approach to the water for many of them. I asked them to help me load the boards back in our storage area, and no sooner was it asked of them, the 20 boards were all neatly lined up and stored in our board room. Wager’s Water Polo team is welcome back at Paddle Diva any time!