Rules - SUP Magazine – The Voice of Standup Paddling

Distance Race

  • ALL SUP distance race competitors must wear a Coast Guard approved PFD.
  • Leashes are required for ALL OPEN competitors.
  • Hydration is recommended for all competitors.

Open & Youth Technical Race

  • PFD's and leashes are required by ALL open SUP competitors. Prone paddlers are not required to wear PFD's.
  • Helmets WILL BE REQUIRED for all Youth race divisions.

Pro Men Technical

  • The top 32 men from 2016 Technical race will be seeded directly into the Quarterfinals
  • 1st round - 4 heats of 20 (or fewer) - 10 advancing from each heat to Quarterfinals
  • Repecharge Round - 2 heats of 20 (or fewer) with 4 advancing into the Quarterfinals
  • Quarter Finals: 4 heats of 20 with 10 from each heat advancing to the Semifinals
  • Semi Finals: 2 heats of 20 with 10 from each heat advancing into the Final

Team Relay

  • Teams will consist of 4 paddlers
  • At least one paddler must be a female
  • At least one paddler must be a Junior (17 or under)
  • Each team may have no more than 2 Pros. A Pro is defined as anyone who competed in the Pro Men or Pro Women Technical or Distance. If a Junior competed in either of the Pro Men's or Pro Women's events, then he/she shall be considered a Pro.


The PPGs will utilize some of the general WPA rules for each of the races. Additional rules will supplement the WPA rules as follows.

  • Unsportsmanlike Conduct
  • False Starts
  • Drafting
  • 5-stroke rule
  • Missing a buoy
  • No diving across finish line


Sportsmanship should be displayed by all participants, spectators, coaches, and parents before, during, and after races. This includes but is not limited to illegal drafting, impeding forward progress, or any intentional pushing, grabbing, or pulling of another persons or board. Extreme cases may result in disqualification.

Penalties for Unsportsmanlike Conduct:
Extreme: Disqualification
Moderate: 1:00 penalty


There is only drafting within same board class and same sex. Separate starts will help eliminate drafting, but Course Officials will watch for any infractions, which may incur a penalty.

Course Officials will monitor drafting

Penalties for Drafting
1st offense: Warning
2nd  offense: 1:00 penalty (Moderate Unsportsmanlike Conduct)
3rd offense: 5:00 penalty

Course Officials will radio athlete number and board description of the offending competitor and also give that competitor a verbal warning.  In the event of a 4th offense that will be considered an Extreme Unsportsmanlike Conduct act resulting in disqualification.


Overly aggressive turns will be judged on the maliciousness of the infraction.

In the event there are multiple competitors on the same wave, there is to be no impeding of other competitor's forward progress. This infraction may result in an Extreme Unsportsmanlike Conduct.