Our Story

“The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his information and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence at whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he’s always doing both.” - James Michener

In early 2007, when a mantra of “You Only Live Once” collided with a passion to share standup paddleboarding (SUP) with the world, the YOLO Board® story began in Santa Rosa Beach, FL. Jeff Archer’s first time out on the water was like many people’s first time paddleboarding: epic and transformative. Archer describes, “gliding along on the board with that kind of exhilarating feeling similar to when I was a kid, the first time I took off on a bike without training wheels… and then I looked to one side and the other and I’m paddling with a dolphin on each side of my board. Honestly, I felt like Marlin Perkins on the Wild Kingdom”.

In the formative days of the business to follow, Archer would travel delivering his inspired boards around the state of Florida in a van (where he’d also frequently sleep for the night) introducing the zeal of his own experience and a brand new sport to the region. The picturesque, world-renowned beaches and diverse waterways of Northwest Florida’s Gulf Coast proved to be a perfect backdrop for YOLO Board’s business to take root and its mission to grow. It is a business built on the precept of making SUP easy and accessible for anyone, no matter their age, skill, or fitness level; of producing high quality, artfully designed products; and of providing first rate customer service and experiences to every member of the ever-growing YOLO Tribe.

Since its grassroots beginnings, YOLO Board® has grown into an uncommon lifestyle brand headquartered in Miramar Beach, Florida.  A brand which includes company-owned retail operations along the Emerald Coast, a family of independent retailers across the US and abroad, YOLO® Paddles, YOLO® Bikes, YOLO Brand® Apparel, and YOLO® Coffee’s exceptional coffee blends that the YOLO Tribe can “Rise and Grind” to each morning. At its core, YOLO Board’s philosophy is centered around building community, encouraging discovery, and fostering well-being for all those who come in contact with the brand. The company continues to work each day to empower and inspire by the simple but powerful reminder that “You Only Live Once”… so make it count!


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