Will Schmidt

Stand Up Paddler
Laguna Niguel/Dana Point, CA

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What’s your favorite thing about SUPing?  

I love the freedom and self reliance that paddling gives me. There aren’t too many sports that rely so much on an athlete’s physical skill

as well as their mental preparedness. Every venture to open water has its unique risks and rewards.


What brought you to it? / How’d you get into it? 

A love for the ocean and water sports in general got me excited about stand up paddling before it really became

popular. I am a firm believer that the ocean and the sport continue to save my life from an extensive history of debilitating anxiety and depression.


What’s made you really proud/inspired/stoked about it? 

In this day and age when it feels like everything has been done before, I pride myself on being one of the pioneers

of open ocean endurance stand up paddling. Many techniques utilized by distance paddlers have been developed, tested, and practiced by me.


Any awards, recognitions, accomplishments or qualifications you want to mention? 

  • First and only solo/unassisted stand up paddle of the West Coast of the USA from Canada to Mexico via the Pacific Ocean. (May-July 2014)
  • SUP Magazine’s “Top Expedition” Award 2014. (as voted by fans)
  • First and only solo stand up paddle of the inner California Channel Islands chain. (225 miles/7 days, September 2013)
  • Only 2 and 3 time solo stand up paddle of the Catalina Channel. (from Avalon to Dana Point, CA. April, September, and October 2013)
  • Fastest solo paddler across the Catalina Channel. (7:47:52, 39.8 miles, October 2013)
  • Philanthropic efforts through stand up paddle fundraisers have topped $50K for various charities.


What is some little thing in your life – something that you do, or something that someone does for you, whatever - that gives you real joy? 

I adore bringing people to experience the ocean from my point of view. Whether it is paddling, surfing, sailing, or chase boating,

the fire in their eyes is unmistakable. I volunteer for a charity that brings underprivileged children sailing and teaches them teamwork

and sailing fundamentals. Couple that with some wind and a few friendly dolphins and we are in business!


What do you love most about traveling? 

I love experiencing new places and meeting so many different people. I pride myself on being able to throw myself into any situation and

make friends and fans. However, what I love most about my travels is the surprises along the way. I plan my routes as I go so I never really

know what my end result will be. I have finished days sleeping in sea caves and the very next in a four star hotel. The dynamic of my experiences

are the best.



The best way to reach me and keep up to date with anything related to my travels, fans can visit my website, www.AreYouInspiredYet.com.

From this site there are links to my fundraising for various charities (which always stay open to accept donations), my personal Facebook link,

opportunities to purchase swag that benefits non-profit, and contact forms to add an email to my update list. There are plenty of photos, videos,

news stories, and event updates to keep us all INSPIRED!