Will Littleboy – Fatstick SUP race team rider interview

Will Littleboy is a true gent. One of our Fatstick SUP racers he’s super friendly, approachable and always happy to have a chat on the beach. He’s also known to hit the dance floor given opportunity – and no, we don’t mean in a dad dancing stylee! Mr Littleboy can properly shake it. We caught up with Will to get the goss.

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  1. When did you first become aware of stand up paddling and what made you want to get involved?

I first became aware of it about six years ago when some windsurfing mates were really getting in to it, and we were all out surfing at a local break. They were getting loads more waves than I was on my longboard – I had to investigate. A while later a friend at work found out I paddle boarded and suggested I try a local race, which I did, and that was it. I was hooked.

  1. Describe your local put in – what makes it great for SUP?

Any of the Bournemouth beaches can provide good waves on the right day or mirror smooth conditions in a northerly. Beautiful views, friends to meet up with and free parking (if you know where) make it a great place to paddle.

  1. How often do you manage to get wet?

I try to get out as much as possible, but with work and a family it’s usually just at the weekends in the winter and a couple of times a week in the summer. Sometimes more on a good week!

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  1. Is it mainly flat water stuff or do you mix up your paddling with waves (or other)?

I tend to do whatever the conditions are best for, so mainly on the sea and river (depending on the wind direction) with some waves when they are there, and some SUP fishing too when the mackerel are biting.

  1. Do you do anything specific for race training prep?

Like most paddlers I’m constantly trying to improve my paddle technique and efficiency and I tend to circuit train mid-week for fitness, other than that I just paddle when I can.

  1. Tell us about the Fatstick kit you’re currently using – what do you like most about your set up?

It’s a 14ft X 27’’ Fatstick race. It has fair bit of rocker with a wave piercing bough, so it’s good in a variety of conditions including small waves and downwind. The board is finished in bamboo veneer with black detailing and has a slightly recessed deck with a white deck grip. All in all a quality piece of kit.

  1. 2016’s season is now under way. What events do you plan on entering?

I’ll be doing some of the UK SUP Clubs events that I did last year, most probably the Head of the Dart, Battle of the Thames, the BaySup technical race in Bournemouth, one in Weymouth and a few local races too. There seem to be a lot more SUP races to compete in than there were a few years ago – it’s a good sign that the sport is growing with lots of active participation.

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  1. Where’s your favourite location for stand up – UK or overseas and why do you rate it?

It has to be the Bournemouth area with miles of beaches, some good surf breaks (on the right day), Christchurch, Poole and harbours at either end, and the rivers Stour and Frome mean there are some great locations with a lot of variety.

  1. What other (if any) sports do you practice?

Just windsurfing and surfing when the conditions are right – but more often than not it seems to be the right conditions for paddle boarding. And I dance too – I do quite a lot of partner dancing and cabarets, especially in the winter. Well, it keeps me warm!

  1. Do your family SUP or indulge in any other of your watery passions?

When the conditions are right and we are all free I’ll take my kids paddle boarding, windsurfing or surfing, as a fun thing to do together. They are both really into their team sports at the moment, so I don’t push it.

  1. What’s the best thing about SUP?

There are many things really – accessibility, versatility, and the relatively low set up costs for a water sport to name a few. But I think the main attraction for most people is the short initial learning curve that gets them on the water and enjoying themselves quickly.

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  1. Do you think it’ll become the biggest water sport in the world?

It certainly has the potential to as it comes in so many guises – racing, surfing, cruising, Yoga, fishing, SUP polo, giant SUP… but time will tell. 30 years ago I thought that windsurfing was the king of water sports, then came along kitesurfing, now SUP. What next?

  1. Any final shouts?

A big thanks to Reuben May of Fatstick Paddleboards. Cheers dude!

 

 

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Pete Edkins – Porthleven SUP legend team rider interview

A Porthleven boy born and bred Pete Edkins has grown up with one of the UKʼs premier reef breaks on his doorstep. Anybody who knows ʻLev will be aware how busy it can get – while not a secret spot it certainly has its fair share of protective locals. Unsurprising when you consider itʼs not a break for the faint hearted – shallow and rocky with a narrow take off experience is most definitely needed to ride here. And yet Pete has chosen to paddle a SUP in whatʼs considered prime surfing real estate – big cojones indeed. We caught up with Pete to hear more about the fabled spot, how it is to surf as a stand up and what motivates the UKʼs most photographed paddle surfer (currently) to get amongst it.

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Tell us about your surfing background – you obviously havenʼt always ridden waves with a paddle in your hand.

I started surfing when I was 13. We used to walk to Praa Sands with one board between four of us and would spend all summer on our wooden belly boards on the pier. I surfed a short board up until two years ago.

Why did you decide to start SUPing at Porthleven?

Porthleven is my home break. Itʼs one of the best reefs in Europe. Every wave is an adrenalin rush. I would choose to SUP in Porthleven over any other place and itʼs somewhere I have surfed since day one.

Did you get a load of stick when you first went out on a stand up?

YES! I got so much stick to start with, lots of cheering when I made mistakes. But what would you expect?

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Howʼs the vibe now – is it heckles all the way or have surfers got used to you?

The vibe is pretty cool. Being one of the old surf crew there they had to accept me on my paddle board (I wasnʼt going anywhere).

Is it a hard wave to ride on a SUP – what do you have to be aware of and what hazards can bite you?

Crowds mainly: up to 30/40 people on the peak all the time. You paddle for a wave and there will be 10 – 15 people paddling towards you, you have to weave in and out of them. I have snapped 24 leashes there in the past two years, so boards have ended up on the rocks a few times. There are no margins for error as there will always be someone in front of you and if you get caught inside you will have a beating across the rocks

What would you say to any aspiring paddle surfer looking to mix it up at ʻLev?

Get used to crowds! If you canʼt handle crowds and are not comfortable in a pack of surfers avoid Porthleven at all costs as there is only one take off point. Be aware that it is surfer territory and the guys are good riders – they wonʼt give you right of way.

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How did Fatstickʼs support come about?

Fatstick saw some pictures of me on my SUP through Facebook and contacted me and asked if I was interested in joining the team.

What gear are you currently rocking and why? Howʼs it working out at whatʼs essentially a hollow, fast, peeling wave?

At the moment I am riding the Fatstick 8.6ft Fish with a Fatstick carbon paddle. Itʼs been a fantastic board. I have ridden it in 2ft – 15ft waves. Just surfs amazing. Iʼve had some of the best barrels ever on a paddle board on my Fatstick. I also use a shorter 8.2ft surf and a 9ft long SUP when conditions are right.

Where else do you surf or is Porthleven pretty much your one stop shop?

I like to mix it up and travel all over the Cornish Coast, every break is different. Iʼve got some amazing secret spots but sorry no pics and canʼt tell you where!

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Any trips planned in 2016 for SUP surf missions – if so, where you headed (UK or abroad)?

Maybe a trip Morocco or perhaps go back to France and make more friends at La Graviere…

Final thoughts and shout outs?

If someone is verbally abusive in the water just be nice and don’t retaliate! A big shout out and thank you to the nicest guys at Fatstick for supplying me with such fantastic gear. And to all the talented photographers for their pictures. I owe them all a few pints.

Pics courtesy Reginald Clark and Tom

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Get me wet now! Fatstick Bamboo Bullet 10ft no shipping offer

People have said we’re a bit mad for doing this but we love our customers that much we’re willing to get you on the water for just a snip. Putting our money where our mouths are the super popular Fatstick Bamboo Bullet 10ft is now on offer without the cost of shipping. That means you lovely people can (and will) be up and paddling for a mere £659. And not only that, we’ll chuck in a free paddle and leash as per our January sale – even more of a saving!

And let’s be honest, you’ll look as lovely on the water paddling one of these beauties as Gemma does below…

Gemma Halliday Fatstick Bamboo Bullet 10ft

There’s never been a better time to get out stand up paddle boarding. It may be crisp outdoors but it’s great for a SUP and the Bamboo Bullet 10ft will take you from flat water to waves. So what are you waiting for? Get involved now by hitting us up. Call the FS hotline and scream: ‘Get me wet now!’ and we’ll happily oblige.

Give 07791076537 a bell or email Fatstick@hotmail.com for more.

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New Fatstick team rider – Steve Roberts interview

Fatstick recently acquired the services of Steven Roberts to help promote and push the Fatstick SUP brand. Steve is a local south coast paddler/windsurfer and will be representing us at both surf and race events in 2016. We caught up with Steve to find out a little more about him. Check out the interview below.

Give us a little bit of your stand up paddle board background – when did you start, where did you learn and what prompted you to take up SUP? 

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I think it was 2009 when I first had a go on a SUP. I rented one from Andy Biggs on Hayling and took it out to the sand bar and rode a wave for what seemed like miles. I remember telling all my mates how good it was – they took the piss for a while. A couple of months later we all had them though. For us it was the perfect light wind alternative to windsurfing.

Where’s your local put in and what does it offer from a SUP point of view?

Hayling Island is my local spot. It’s great for all disciplines of paddle boarding. We’ve got waves off the south side and sheltered harbours all round for flat days. If we could move the Isle of Wight out of the way it would be perfect!

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Do you have specific spots in mind when you paddle or are you just happy to be immersed in salty brine? 

I normally go wherever the waves look good. Saunton Sands is a favourite weekend spot. I would love to go to Hawaii but more realistically I hope to get over to Ireland or back up to Tiree this year. 

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Got any bucket list spots you want to tick off in the coming weeks, months and years? 

You can’t beat your home break when it’s firing, but I’ve had some great sessions at Saunton (Devon). Super long and mellow waves. 

Who’s your regular paddle crew and how do they add to your everyday SUP mix?

The usual suspects down at Hayling’s seafront (I won’t name them because they’re usually meant to be somewhere else). Trips away are with my windsurf mates. It works well, we are all about the same ability in windsurfing and SUP so are always pushing each other. 

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What about surfing heroes in general – which rippers do you look up to?

Guys like Laird Hamilton and Kai Lenny are great all rounders.

What’s your favourite SUP discipline?

Waves!

Planning on doing any comps this year? If so, where and when?

I’ve got the South Coast Surf SUP Classic in the next few weeks. I’m also planning on doing all the BSUPA wave events in 2016. As for racing, I’m doing the Round Hayling at Easter and then hopefully various club races over the summer.

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Talk to us about the Fatstick kit you’ll be rocking this year – what’s your set up all about?

For surfing I will be using Fatstick’s 8.6ft Fish. It’s a bit bigger than I normally use but super easy to catch waves and still very manoeuvrable so should be ideal for competitions. For racing I will be the Fatstick 14ft Bamboo race board.

As a team rider, what does that entail? What are you expected to deliver in return for support from Fatstick?

It’s a sweet deal. I get the loan of the boards for the year and in return I will be competing and representing Fattsick in as many comps as possible and generally helping to promote the brand through social media and being seen on the water.

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Do you do anything specific as far as training goes outside of water time – weights or gym work for instance? 

I do cross fit 3-4 days a week and some running. Crossfit is functional fitness (pull ups, burpees and stuff like that) combined with Olympic weight lifting – ideal training for SUP.

How does this compliment your stand up paddling? 

It builds strength, fitness and flexibility so I’m hoping it pays of in the racing.

Any final shouts, thanks or praise?

Thanks to Fatstick for the support so far and to this amazing winter of swell and wind!

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Happy New Year from Fatstick!

How was your year? We had an awesome time!

For 12 months the Fatstick team helped spread the stand up paddle boarding stoke near and far. We travelled the length and breath of the country – in the case of FS head honch Reuben we even managed a French sojourn – all in the name of spreading the Fatstick SUP message. And to top off an awesome year we added a unique and original stand up paddle board to the already extensive Fatstick range. (If you haven’t seen the SUPSkate then check it out here – www.supdirect.co.uk/fatstick-shop/4584165157/supskate/10334116).

10646658_878897395551642_8746094299870030951_nSo as the curtain closes on 2015 we’re excited at the prospect of another awesome 12 months. We’ve got lots planned and will no doubt see many of you out and about this year. In the meantime don’t forget to keep an eye on Fatstick channels for all the info and goss. Oh, and be sure to hit up the FS shop for our New Year sale where we’re offering any size SUP with a free paddle and leash – www.supdirect.co.uk/fatstick-shop/4584165156/JAN-SALE-ITEMS

As always, if you’ve got any questions then fee free to hit us up – www.supdirect.co.uk/contact-us/4572621339

Have an awesome 2016 and we’ll see you on the water!

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Carbon Pro Series 10ft SUPBoarder Mag review

As much as 2016 will see new product additions to the Fatstick stand up paddle board range there will also be the non-movers. By this we mean equipment that will remain the same. Our super popular Carbon Pro Series is a case in point. With super sexy good looks and killer high end construction it’s a range that’d be at home hanging on your living room wall as well as out in the water.

SUPBoarder Mag reviewed our 10ft version earlier in 2015. You can check out what they said in the vid below. Cheers guys!

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Our new toy – meet the Fatstick SUPSkate 8ft!

Over the past few weeks we’ve been leaking tit bits of info about our brand new stand up paddle surfboard – the SUPSkate 8ft.

We’re super stoked to be able to offer a product that’s been 100% designed, shaped and produced in the UK. As a home grown watersports company we think it’s important to show what can be achieved on Blighty shores – utilising the design talents of a local shaper. This Fatstick SUPSkate 8ftproves that we’re committed to producing equipment suitable for conditions we find in this country and therefore service the needs of UK SUPers. It also shows that we’re not afraid of investing in innovative products and being more than simply an affordable stand up paddle boarding brand.

That said, the SUPSkate is still affordable – at £799 you simply can’t knock it!

We’d also like to extend out thanks to SUP Mag UK who have been testing the prototype version for review in the next issue. Utilising their expertise and
listening to feedback has helped no end with the finished product. (They also got some cracking shots for us to use as well). Thanks guys!

The Fatstick SUPSkate 8ft x 32″ x 3.74″ x 130L will be available from January 2016 – get your order in now!. In the meantime, if you want to discuss the SUPSkate 8ft, or any other Fatstick product, then please don’t hesitate to give us a call on 07791 076537.

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