Meet Gina Bradley The Paddle Diva

Gina Bradley has changed many people’s lives while working with them on or in the water. Using her highly acute sense of reading others’ needs, she has developed Ten Guiding Principles, goals she pursues every day in her life and with clients. She has become one of the most sought after women for inspiration through athletic endeavors.

Here, in her first book, Gina shares her wisdom and has made it truly accessible to all. Whether you are on the water or on land, through her guidance you can now live each day as if it is brand new and live your best, most fulfilled life.

In her Guiding Principles, Gina will take you “gently outside your comfort zone” and encourage you to “believe in your strength” and “dig deep” while being “open to the outcome”—all while set against bucolic aquamarine environments of The Hamptons, Montauk, Boca Raton, and Puerto Rico. Like one of her principles, “positivity is contagious,” you will discover what thousands of students who have worked with Gina have already found: that you want to “enjoy the ride” every day with Gina, and you can, through her book and her brand, Paddle Diva.

Paddle Diva makes Stand-Up Paddleboarding (SUP) accessible and enjoyable to all, regardless of age, size, or athletic ability. Using specific methods and tools combined with a contagious enthusiasm and energy, Paddle Diva provides a true sense of accomplishment and adventure to women, men, and children alike.

Gina Bradley has changed many people’s lives while working with them on or in the water. Using her highly acute sense of reading others’ needs, she has developed Ten Guiding Principles, goals she pursues every day in her life and with clients. She has become one of the most sought after women for inspiration through athletic endeavors.

Here, in her first book, Gina shares her wisdom and has made it truly accessible to all. Whether you are on the water or on land, through her guidance you can now live each day as if it is brand new and live your best, most fulfilled life.

 

In her Guiding Principles, Gina will take you “gently outside your comfort zone” and encourage you to “believe in your strength” and “dig deep” while being “open to the outcome”—all while set against bucolic aquamarine environments of The Hamptons, Montauk, Boca Raton, and Puerto Rico. Like one of her principles, “positivity is contagious,” you will discover what thousands of students who have worked with Gina have already found: that you want to “enjoy the ride” every day with Gina, and you can, through her book and her brand, Paddle Diva.

Paddle Diva makes Stand-Up Paddleboarding (SUP) accessible and enjoyable to all, regardless of age, size, or athletic ability. Using specific methods and tools combined with a contagious enthusiasm and energy, Paddle Diva provides a true sense of accomplishment and adventure to women, men, and children alike.

What inspired you to start paddle boarding?

The sport found me! I started before the sport even came into the limelight, I was a windsurfer first and spend many years at Napeague bay zipping around. When my husband had one of the first prototype SUP boards build in 2006 I jumped on and knew immediately that this was a sport that would take off!  I opened with exactly 6 boards! Now in 2017 I have over 40 boards and building a nationwide presence, including Gurney’s of Montauk as an ocean front location.

How did you decide to teach?

The first time I stepped on a stand up Paddle board, my initial thought was “if I can find a way to make this sport accessible, this sport will change lives”. As a windsurfing teacher and a SCUBA diving Instructor I had plenty of experience being on top and below the water. Both sports had one thing in common: long learning curves for mastery. Both these pursuits would push my students outside their comfort zones but the stakes always seemed higher. While on a stand up paddle board, I found that there were some of the exact same challenges and need to push through a fear, a preconceived notion, or self doubt but the simplicity of a paddle, a board and the water made it feel so much less daunting, less risky. Learning how to stand up paddle and actually do it was so much easier than most sports, and the sense of accomplishment was rewarding.

You must hear a lot of secrets when you are on the water.  Can you share one juicy tidbit?

Oh I do! But my lips are sealed. When someone tells me something confidential I keep it that way. There are two things my clients can always count on me for: Keeping secrets when they are shared and NEVER ‘connecting the dots’.  I avoid gossip at all costs!

Who would play you in the movie version of your life?

What a fun questions: Jennifer Aniston

What’s in your fridge? Can you show us?

OMG! YES! I have a fridge stocked with foods that no one would ever imagine b/c I have two kids and it’s a loaded fridge. Cheese sticks, Yogurt tubes, milk, half and half, eggs….But the bottom drawer are filled with loads of organic veggies, greens, celery, and root veggies. I do not impose any diet restrictions on my family and we are all fit, healthy and live a really balanced life. We eat to live, not live to eat!

What did you eat today?

I thrive on eating well, and I as mentioned I don’t force it on my family. Here is my true secrete to staying fit and trim:

  • Drink 16 ounces of water with ½ a lemon first thing when I wake up
  • Prepare a celery juice and drink it throughout the day.
  • Have a drink made with blueberry’s, banana, water, cashews/almonds, and two tablespoons of Synergy Greens and powered Vitamin C. I blend it and drink it all morning.
  • Lunch is always a salad filled with as many organic veggies as I can get in a bowl. If I am on the go, I make sure I have a light lunch that is very wholesome.
  • BIG dinner: Family dinner is my favorite thing. And we are so varied: Chicken cutlets and broccoli, homemade mac and cheese, homemade meat balls and sauce, homemade spring rolls, chick pea stir fry, oven baked chicken wings and about weekly we eat oysters and clams that my husband farms from the bay!

I only eat when I am hungry, and I make sure I drink water all day. If I snack (which is infrequent) I have a supply fruit, nut, dates, dried mango around for those moments my body needs a little lift!

What the furthest you have ever paddled in one session?

From The tip of Montauk to Paddle Diva in East Hampton! That was about 15 miles, I did not realize how far it was going to be, but it was FUN!

I know there is a charitable component to all the race you compete. How much money have you raised?

Over the past year, The Paddle Diva team raised over $10,000 for the BCRF, but in general I have donated to so many foundations and causes that it’s hard to tack a number on it. I have been doing this for over 10 years!

I have no balance, but I really want to paddle, is there a trick?

Just book a paddle with me. I will get you moving. If you can walk you can paddle. You have balance, “no balance” is a state of mind.

What are favorite days to paddle?

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday.

What’s your favorite activity to do with paddlers?

Doing a ‘point to point down-wind” paddle. These are fun longer distance paddles that I plan around the wind and make sure it’s at our backs. It requires a pick up or a drop off and I can’t always guarantee pristine conditions so it’ a more advanced/specialized paddle.

What’s Boga?

Boga, is a manufacturer of Paddle Boards that were made for doing Yoga on and now Fit Mats that are placed in a pool. I am a master trainer for the company and fly all over the US installing and training fitness facilities with pools on the Boga Fit Mat program. I love it! I am less of a fan of SUP Yoga, only b/c I feel like if you are on the water, “lets move” and get on dry land for yoga. We do however offer SUP Yoga and SUP Fitness b/c I understand that it’s still all the rage!

What’s your why?

The water informs me. I want to share that with all.

Weren’t you a city girl? How did you wind up at the beach?

Yes I grew up in NYC in the 70”s before it was ‘cool’ to live there. We lived in a brownstone on 12th street and back then it was not as amazing as it is now! We were in ‘low rent’ district back then! LOL! I was born in Chicago, IL and I truly never ‘loved’ New York. I feel a connection to the city but the water has always been calling me. I moved to the Caribbean after four years of College on Lake Champlain at UVM. I became a SCUBA instructor, windsurfing pro and lived on a sail boat for two years cruising the entire Caribbean! So when the time came to move back to NYC to start a career in Business Development for Design firms, I discovered Amagansett and Napeague bay where I could windsurf every weekend. I found a great group of like-minded athletes and we all share a house in the Dunes of Amagansett and surfed and sailed away!

Does your family embrace your lifestyle?

Yes, it’s hard not to embrace what I do. I approach life with such enthusiasm that it is hard to go jump on board. Positivity is contagious! Read my book, you will see why!

Are you making money?

Of course. This business has been growing exponentially since I started it. I am a nimble entrepreneur and I am always innovating and changing my approach. The book I just published is a great example of this. It’s already changing the conversation. I can’t’ wait to start this next chapter in my career. Come on, step on with me, let’s see where I will go!

 

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