Zero to Hero SUP

Zero To Hero SUP Course Overview Paddling on Loch Insh and the River Spey is a fantastic way to experience the natural beauty of Scotland while enjoying the thrill of stand-up paddleboarding (SUP).

Zero To Hero SUP Course Itinerary

A stand-up paddleboarding (SUP) course in Aviemore & the Cairngorms can be a great way to go from zero to hero in this fun and exciting sport. In this overview, we’ll explore what a typical SUP course on a loch and a river might look like.

We will meet and greet at Loch Insh and organise a shuttle so that we have a vehicle down the bottom – this may mean driving your car down so that way we have all the kit you want for the get out at the bottom before returning to the top with one vehicle. At the end of the day we will drop off whoever has their vehicle at the top so they can retrieve their car.

The course will start with an introduction to the basic equipment and safety procedures. This will include learning about the paddle, board, leash, and personal flotation device (PFD). Participants will also learn how to assess the conditions of the water and weather to ensure they can safely paddle (if they wish to). 

In loch Insh, participants will experience open water paddling and learn how to handle the waves and wind. They will learn how to use the paddle to stabilize the board and maintain forward momentum. And they will also learn how to safely fall off the board and climb back on (again should they wish it). On top of this, the course will look at the fundamentals of paddleboarding (balance, power transfer, connectivity, posture and feel). This will include learning how to properly stand up on the board, balance, and how to use the paddle to move forward, turn, and stop. Participants will practice these skills in the loch before moving onto the river.

Once the basic skills have been mastered, the course will progress to the river Spey and paddle down to Aviemore. Participants will learn how to read the water, identify potential hazards (trees, rocks, shallows, deeper river sections etc), and how to navigate currents efficiently. Literally Zero – Hero if you have no prior experience, you will feel a true sense of pride navigating down the river successfully. Whitewater paddleboarding is the largest growing outdoor sport and we guarantee you will enjoy it!

In a river, participants will experience moving water and learn how to read the current, eddies, and rapids. They will learn how to use the paddle to maneuver the board around obstacles and through rapids. 

Throughout the course, participants will receive feedback and coaching from their instructor. The instructor will provide appropriate tips which may include, developing and improving technique, reading the water, and staying safe.

At the end of the course, participants should feel confident and competent in their stand-up paddleboarding skills. They should be able to handle a variety of conditions on a loch or river, and be aware of potential hazards.

Overall, a Zero to hero SUP course on a loch and a river can be a thrilling and challenging experience. It provides participants with the opportunity to learn new skills, enjoy the great outdoors, and challenge themselves in a safe and controlled environment. With the help of a certified instructor and a commitment to safety, anyone can go from zero to hero in stand-up paddleboarding.

We pride ourselves on providing as much kit as possible for you.  However, the list below is what we recommend you should bring to your Zero to Hero SUP course:

  • Something to go underneath a wetsuit – swimwear or a spare pair of underwear. (We do provide swimshorts to wear over the top of the wetsuit for greater style and modesty.)
  • Travel insurance. (We are insured for all our trips, but we recommend everyone has their own travel insurance as well.)
  • Transportation to the venue. (We may be able to help with this though – if you need transportation please drop us an enquiry and we can see what we can do to help.)
  • Lunch, water.
  • Personal medication
  • Sun cream, midge net

Here at Highland Outdoor Adventures, we pride ourselves on providing as much as we can but you are welcome to bring your own equipment if you do prefer. The list below is what we provide you with on the day.

  • Hala SUP’s -The world’s best Stand up Paddleboards – perfect for our Zero to Hero Course.
  • Paddles.
  • Wetsuits
  • Buoyancy aids.
  • Helmets.
  • SUP leashes on a quick release belt.
  • Neoprene wetsuit boots.
  • Swimshorts to go over the top of wetsuits.
  • Dry bags so you can bring equipment you might want along with you.
  • All instruction.
  • All first aid and safety equipment.
  • Photographs of the day provided for you at no extra cost! If the weather is good we will have a DSLR professional camera and maybe even a drone, so we can take photos and videos of your adventure and you can look back at the day for years to come. If the weather is less favourable we will bring a GoPro (as it is waterproof) so we will still be able to take photos for you.
  • Fully certified instructors who are the best in the country on a SUP.
  • Changing robes or a pop up tent for those who wish or need for more privacy while putting on a wetsuit.

From £60 per adult

Departure days

  • Monday
  • Tuesday
  • Wednesday
  • Thursday
  • Friday
  • Saturday
  • Sunday

January — December

Contact details

Highland Outdoor Adventures

Glenavon Cottage
Main Street

Key facilities

  • Parking

Tour information


  • Insh


1 Day


  • Kayak


  • Bespoke
  • Private
  • Small Group (1-16)


  • English


  • Adventure
  • Canoeing/Kayaking
  • Outdoor Activities

Tour prices

From £60 Per Adult £40 Per Child

Book now

Prices are subject to change depending on season

Highland Outdoor Adventures

Tour company information

Highland Outdoor Adventures

Looking for a fun and exciting adventure outdoor activity in the Highlands which will be a highlight of your holiday in Scotland? Or maybe you live here and want an outing on the rivers, lochs, sea, mountains or crags? Or perhaps you want to improve your skills, work to an assessment or take a qualification in paddling or climbing? Welcome to Highland Outdoor Adventures offering a range of climbing, walking and paddling options for individuals, groups and the whole family – including outings and courses for all levels (beginners through to experts).

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