Paddle Logger, with its PaddleLIVE capability is the official race distance and time tracking application sponsor of the Virtual Paddle league. Paddler Logger is the recommended app for safety when paddling alone or with limited community support in these times when self-isolating or distancing is both required and good practice.
Paddle Logger is available here in the Apple App Store.
These are strange times indeed. Suddenly, the simple act of being on the water is a privilege. The idea of doing an actual race is out of the question. Or is it?
Because while our sport may be “on hold” and we’re physically isolated, that doesn’t mean we need to feel disconnected. That doesn’t mean we can’t race.
The best thing about our sport is our community. That’s what motivated the crew from Paddle Monster and SUP Racer to team up and start building the Virtual Paddle League — a new series of online “Time Trials” and “Dream Races” that will challenge, motivate and make you feel part of the international paddling community again.
We’ve taken the idea of “virtual race series” and turned it into a legitimate global racing league, complete with time-based Virtual World Rankings, age-group “Leaderboards,” innovative (and damn good fun!) “Dream Races” and plenty more. This is not just a virtual race, this is an international paddling community.
The guiding principle of the Virtual Paddle League is that paddling should be fun. We believe any day on the water is a day well spent, and we want to encourage you to get on the water whenever you can. To challenge yourself, to motivate (and smack-talk) your buddies, and to connect with thousands of fellow paddlers, compare times and share the stoke.
We’re going to be very transparent here: This project isn’t easy. The Virtual Paddle League is a comprehensive, automated system of online time trials, never-before-seen “Dream” race formats, and unique “virtual live streams” that we hope will help re-connect the international paddling community.
It’s ambitious, but we believe it’s a goal worth pursuing. And we invite you on the journey.
We always hold that you never know why someone steps up to a starting line. They may be trying to finish their first 5k just to see if they can do it. They may have lost a loved one, been through a divorce, lost 50 pounds, or won a SUP board in a raffle. They may be a famous grade-school athlete, or a world champion. No matter what your “why” is, there is a place for everyone. Our goal is to help you find that and more in our series. And we’re glad you’re here.
The Virtual Paddle League is the name of a new racing league created by Paddle Monster and SUP Racer. We’re not just creating a virtual race series where you can submit your time, we’re creating an entirely new way of racing.
And starting next week, we’re opening the doors for you to join us, submit your times and see your name in bright lights alongside thousands of paddlers from around the world.
Here are the fourteen pillars that explain what we’re aiming to build.
The foundation of our sport is our community. The Virtual Paddle League is designed to be a community first and foremost, one that you can connect with even if you’re paddling solo on the other side of the world. The Virtual Paddle League is inclusive and open — we encourage members from any country, any age, any ability. Whether you’re Connor Baxter or a fist-time paddler: You’re all equal, you’re all welcome.
The core of the Virtual Paddle League is the “Virtual” World Rankings. But instead of points, you’ll be ranked on your best time in a 5K time trial (though that’s just for starters).
Go for a paddle, record your time, and submit your session. Within seconds, your name will automatically be added to the global leaderboard where you can compare your time with paddlers from Australia, America, France, Brazil and beyond.
The first (of many) events in the Virtual Paddle League will be the classic “5K” time trial. You can submit as many times as you want to improve your personal best and leapfrog your buddies — whether they’re from your local training group or the other side of the world.
We’re all proud of our hometown, and we all want to represent our local crew. So apart from identifying yourself with your national flag on the “Virtual World Rankigns” leaderboard, we’ll be giving you the option to identify with a local training group, paddle club or regional league.
We’ll also be partnering with existing virtual series to host exclusive regional leaderboards. So not only will you feature on the Virtual Paddle League World Rankings, you will proudly show that you’re part of your local paddle crew.
The Virtual Paddle League is all about inclusion, and we respect and promote age divisions for the Virtual World Rankings. You can now find out how your time compares with 40+, 50+, and 60+ year-old paddlers from all around the world, while we’re also running dedicated leaderboards to encourage juniors (under 18) to get out on the water and fine-tune their skills. We follow a slightly modified ICF format where all categories are your age as of January 1, as follows:
Notice how our sport kinda always has the same race formats? Long distance, short course, sprints. Getting a bit old, huh? We’ve all talked about trying new formats, and we think now is the time to do it. Our sport is crying out for fresh new ideas, and now is a better time than any to experiment.
So the Virtual Paddle League will be running “Dream Races” that create race formats our sport has never seen. And you’re invited to participate. These are unique race formats that have never been seen before.
The first “Dream Race” (coming up in just a few weeks) is called “Run From” and involves a virtual Connor Baxter chasing down you and hundreds of other excited/motivated/slightly nervous paddlers around the world. The best part? We’re going to ask you to send us some footage, combine that with all of your times and you may end-up virtually famous on one of our live posts.
Every “Dream Race” is included free with your base membership of the Virtual Paddle League — we’re going to add new “Dream Races” (and new time trial distances) every month.
Stand up paddlers, outrigger, surfski and prone. You’re all welcome in the Virtual Paddle League
Connor Baxter, Seychelle, are just some of the top athletes who you’ll be sharing the same Virtual World Rankings leaderboard with. Stay tuned, there are lots of surprises coming to see how you stack against the pros.
This time is hard on all of us. We’re reminded of races through social media that are completely off the books or delayed and in question. We pledge to keep you having fun racing!
Everyone that joins the Virtual Paddle League will have an opportunity to be recognized, learn, and collaborate with world-wide paddlers in the FB Virtual Paddle League Clubhouse. It’s just another way aim to make the Virtual Paddle League more motivating, more inclusive and more fun.
The Virtual Paddle League team has been working behind-the-scenes for weeks to build a custom, powerful system that turns your training times into the Virtual World Rankings.
As soon as you get off the water, you can submit your time straight from your training app (Garmin or Strava), SpeedCoach or GPS watch, and within seconds you’ll appear on the global leaderboard.
Throughout the season, we’ll continue to listen to your ideas and feedback while we release new improvements weekly!
Every paddler’s time on the Virtual World Rankings comes with verified GPS data — no more worrying about if your buddy paddled an hour after you and did a downwinder on your lake
You’ll also be able to track your progress (and the progress of your friends and rivals) over the course of the season — every time logged on the Virtual Paddle League will be saved even when you beat your previous best.
Watch this space for some cool features coming soon!
This is a new concept. A bold one. We don’t want to promise too much (because it’s never been done before), but we’re damn excited about this part of the Virtual Paddle League.
Every time we run a “Dream Race” we’ll find a way to socially promote the virtual race. We have some really good ideas, so stay tuned to see if we can pull this off!
Hopefully it’ll be a fun way to keep motivated, stay connected and be entertained.
We’ll be recognising the top performers in each of the age divisions and distances every month. These “virtual podium” unveiling sessions will also be live-streamed on Facebook and posted all around the world on Instagram. We’ll even send you a virtual podium graphic that you can repost on your own social media and let your buddies know you seriously kicked their ass this month
The Virtual Paddle Leauge launched on the 10th of May with a simple objective: Go paddle 5km, record your time on a GPS watch or smartphone, and submit your session to the Virtual Paddle League. Within seconds, your time will appear alongside thousands of paddlers from around the world on the Virtual World Rankings. You’ll also get your name on the regional and age-division leaderboards.
And that’s only the beginning.
On May 14, we’ll add our next time trial distance: The 2k Tangle. Suddenly your heart will be pumping as you try to hold a higher speed for 6-10 minutes. This one is going to be intense.
Check the races series for the complete core list, and watch for special announcements for races like “Run From Connor” and others so you can feel the thrill/dread of being chased down by a virtual G.O.A.T.
We’ll be adding unique Marquee races and “Dream Races” every single month to keep the feeling of community fresh and motivated.
We recognize that many people can not safely or legally access water in their area. If that is the case, we’re sorry to say, this virtual event is not for you. Some beaches in Florida, for instance, have been closed and some National and State parks have also been closed to public access. Follow your local, state, and national laws and recommendations.