Paddle Canada Flatwater Paddleboard (SUP) Instructor

Take a SUP course with Undercurrents!


Learn to teach others the wonders of SUP! The Paddle Canada Flatwater Stand Up Paddleboard Instructor courses are the Canadian certification standard. Learning styles, teaching techniques, and practice teaching sessions are emphasized. We introduce the basics of group management, decision-making, risk assessment, organizing and presenting effective on-water lessons, detecting and correcting common challenges with strokes and rescues, and providing meaningful feedback to students.

Expected Outcome:

Upon successful completion of this course, candidates will be able to instruct within the Paddle Canada Flatwater Paddleboard programs, self-rescue and tow with confidence, paddle gracefully in windy and wavy conditions, plan and execute lessons with clear objectives and learning outcomes, and demonstrate good judgment in group management, safety and weather. You will receive a Paddle Canada Flatwater SUP Instructor certificate.

Instructor Student Ratio:

1:6 (MAX) to ensure you of the best instructional experience possible!


Paddlers at this level usually own their own gear. If needed, SUP boards and related gear are available for rent during this course. Group rescue gear is provided.

This program is appropriate for and valued by: paddling school staff, retail staff, rental company staff, hotel and resort staff offering SUP, municipal Parks and Recreation staff, fitness professionals interested in incorporating stand up paddling as a new modality for fitness, and yoga instructors.

Candidates need to register with Paddle Canada before the first day of class - they will charge you either $10 or $90, depending on your current Paddle Canada membership level.

Paddle Canada offers two different Flatwater Instructor certifications - the Basic and the Advanced. Because we have the industry's leading instructor-trainers, we can run both simultaneously. You should register with Paddle Canada for the certification which you are most qualified for. Call or visit the store and we will help you determine which certification is best for you!

After completing this course get out and practice! Practicing is the proven way to hardwire your new skills so you can enjoy a lifetime of safe paddling. Then start registering Paddle Canada courses to spread your love of paddling far and wide!

Pre-Course: We encourage instructors-candidates to take the 6-hour pre-course to help ensure their paddling skills are at the level required to pass the instructor course. The pre-course takes place on the Friday of the course weekend - starting at 9am. Register for the pre-course here.


At least 16 years of age. (18 for the Advanced instructor certification)

Paddle Canada Advanced Flatwater skill certificate or equivalent (able to pivot turn and edge your board consistently, tow another paddler, comfortably do draw strokes including the cross draw, and paddle with comfort in a variety of flatwater conditions, including winds and waves). Our SUP Next Step or SUP Combo courses both award the prerequisite Paddle Canada skills certificate.

It is the expectation that candidates have experience in excess of the SUP Next Step or SUP Combo course - in other words, you've been out practising since the skills course(s).

Current certification in Standard First Aid with CPR. (14-16 hours).

Current Paddle Canada membership.



Dates, Times & Locations:

Flatwater SUP Instructor course runs:

  • the Friday night immediately before the weekend at Undercurrents (Google map), starting at 6:00 pm
  • Saturday/Sundays at Ghost Lake (Google map) starting at 9:00 am.

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Interested in another date? Call or visit the store!

Registration & Refunds

Full payment is due at registration to secure your spot in the course.

On the rare occasion when Undercurrents cancels a lesson, we will issue a full refund or make every reasonable effort to register you in an equivalent program; it is your choice. We need 3 participants to run a course.

If you cancel for any reason more than 7 days (14 days for multi-day courses) prior to the course commencement, you will receive a full refund less our $10 administrative fee.

There is no refund if you cancel for any reason within 7 days (14 days for multi-day courses) of the course.

Courses go rain or shine. Here in Alberta we can have rain, snow, blistering heat or high winds - sometimes on the same day. Don't believe weather forecasts; dress for varying weather conditions. If you need help, our store staff can give you great advice!

A “risk of thunderstorms” forecast does not mean we will cancel a course. During the warm season “risks” are issued too frequently; we only experience thunderstorms at our course locations 10-20% of the time that a “risk” is issued. We will meet at the course location and make an appropriate decision using the outdoor industry’s standard lightning protocol.

See our policies page for more details.