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In the 24/7 climate of the modern world, it’s so easy to stay plugged in. It’s how we modern folks “stay connected”, right? But the urgency to browse feeds, post every moment and hashtag every feeling may be jeopardizing our deeper connections to the relationships with the people care the most about, our friends and family.
Since screens and splashes don’t mix, the summer is a perfect time to ditch your screens and try a new water activity that connects you to the people you care about. Talk instead of texting. Observe wildlife instead of snapping pictures. And watch the sunset, not the screen.
Want to get a great workout and learn something together? Check your local parks and recreation listings for group stand-up paddleboarding classes. SUP is gaining momentum with water enthusiasts and has many ways to challenge your mind and body – for the uber athletes, there’s SUP yoga, SUP race and even SUP surf and for the cruisers, stable, wide boards for flatwater paddling. Instructors will show you beginner techniques and entry level strokes and train you in safety as well to help you have a great time while making memories with your favorite people.
Try tubing. If you know how to swim, then you can go tubing. Tubing is a great way to get some folks together and enjoy a sunny afternoon. Do your research to have a safe day. It’s best to tube with a reputable rafting company that can provide PFDs, high-quality tubes, and transportation to a safe stretch of river. Then tuck some sunscreen into your PFD and don’t bring your soggy slippery sneakers! Our Cudas water shoes are thoughtfully designed for a perfect tube day – our shoes are secure, protective, fast draining and grippy to protect your feet from mucky river bottoms.
Try canoeing. Go old school! Channel your inner summer camper and reach back to your Boy Scout days – go canoeing! Canoeing is a wonderful way to spend time connecting with your family because there’s no motor, quiet paddling can get you close to great aquatic and wildlife, like the amazing osprey. And with two people tucked into a boat, canoeing gives you plenty of time to connect with each other as well.
Many state parks rent canoes by the hour for a reasonable rate, and you can spend that hour in leisurely exploration, watching birds and wildlife and just talking. Canoeing is simple to learn: just make sure you know the five essential strokes. Your canoe essentials include a PFD, hat, sunscreen and some good, grippy water shoes for canoeing. The Cudas Flatwater, Shasta, Hyco and Tsunami II styles are great options for good looking comfortable secure water friendly footwear.
Try kayaking. For a challenging water sport that has you floating just inches about the water, take some kayaking classes! Kayak styles vary widely, from sit-on-top styles to long needle nose sea kayaks to stubbier play kayaks. There are even tandem kayak styles so you can grab your favorite paddler to join you. Because you are tucked inside and the kayak is so close to the water, locate some beginner classes. This sport takes some time to master and you will need to learn basic strokes and safety before you head to the open water. If this sounds like fun, it’s a great workout and with some practice and good gear, an awesome opportunity to learn a lifelong hobby.
Take a boat cruise, dinner cruise or ferry ride. Like your water with a sweeping view and a full stomach? Ferries and dinner cruises are a great way to delight your family with amazing sights and are available to all ages and all athletic levels. Dinner cruises are offered in most major harbors and ferries. The ones offered in Maine and Washington state, are famous for whale spotting, seal spotting and offer glimpses of centuries old lighthouses.
So this summer go screenless for an afternoon, an hour or a whole weekend and make memories out on the water you’ll remember for a lifetime.