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Invented in Hawaii in the 1940s, stand-up paddle boarding has become especially popular in the last decade, partly because unlike surfing it can be practiced by a broad range of people of all ages and fitness levels.
But while most people associate this activity with placid seas and lakes, an increasing number are using them to surf - albeit relatively mild surf, no more than one to two feet high.
Most paddle boards are made of fiberglass and are ten to 12 feet long, but there are other factors that you should keep in mind when buying or renting one, especially if you're going to use it to surf. Here are five questions you should ask yourself beforehand: