2023 is slowly coming to a close and 2024 is waiting in the wings. This is when we at FatStick will start rolling out our plans for the new year.
With safety, accessibility and sustainability featuring heavily in our world, it’s time to up our game and set an example for the world of stand up paddle boarding.
We will always be the first SUP brand in the world to have provided a Quick Release Safety Belt with every inflatable paddle board package, so where do we go from here?
Our next step it to add these belts to every hard board package and to scrutinise the current design and make improvements – as we all know, there’s no such thing as perfect, so we can’t sit still. It’s important to continually assess our products to make sure we’re providing quality equipment that is not only long lasting, but safe.
We’re lucky enough to work closely with some incredible people in the SUP world and have the ear of some incredible people – Brendon Prince, Sarah Thornely, Dale Mears – these folks constantly offer feedback and help us become a better brand.
This year Sam and Andy travelled back to China to visit the FatStick Factories.
This is hugely important to the brand identity in order to show how we do things. Whilst in China the boys were able to work with the factory design manager to create an Accessible SUP Seat that wasn’t only durable, it would also be comfortable and able to help those with disabilities access the world of paddle boarding without having to heavily invest in specialist equipment.
Made from the same drop stitch material as our boards, the new accessible seat is incredibly supportive and rigid enough to offer support and prevent lateral movement. It’s also gentle on limbs and bottoms. This is a big step forward in the world of accessible water sports as it removes the spectacle of setting up a board for a user that needs a little extra help.
The other plus point in the epic, yet simple design, is its costing. No crazy price points and it deflates to pack away into the paddle board bag. In fact, the Pure Art boards will soon be supplied with these seats as standard.
The other BIG plus is the seat will retro fit to all boards (not just FatStick boards) that have kayak seat D-rings, so there’s no need to invest in a whole new set up.
Next on the list is the FatStick Donkey….yup, you read it correctly – the Donkey!
Anyone that knows the FatStick brand knows that sustainability has been a huge part of our onward journey since we became the first paddle board brand to package all our inflatable boards in paper and card, removing all single use plastics in the packaging.
We aren’t blind to the fact that the materials that make up the boards and accessories we make are largely unrecyclable, but this is where our commitment comes to make our products long lasting and repairable. Reusability is high on our agenda.
We currently plant trees when certain items through our range are purchased, and this year, we have joined teams with Ocean Co. who are a brand that invest in communities around the globe. These communities work to remove plastic before it reaches the ocean.
This means that the plastics collected can be reused and recycled. At the time of writing, the donations to the project from FatStick have helped communities collect over 681kgs of ocean bound plastic. That’s equivalent to nearly 60,000 plastic drinks bottles.
Andy will be returning to China later in 2024 in order to work on the new projects surrounding the accessibility seat and ‘The Donkey’, however, whilst there he will be meeting with the FatStick clothing manufacturer to create a new clothing line made from organic and recycled materials. This will add to our already greener materials that are used in our FatWraps.
There’s always more! But that’s where you come in. What more do you want to see? What else would you like to see us do next? What products should we be looking to improve or add?
We’d love to hear from you, ‘cos you’re legends!