Stand up paddleboarding is the fastest-growing water sport around the globe, and it has gained the attention of many within recent years. Why? Well, paddle boarding is a great way to get in touch with nature while also getting a full-body workout, meditation, and it also creates an avenue for socializing. SUP is a low-impact activity with a wide range of board options, making it a sport that anybody can enjoy, regardless of their skill level, location, or preferred type of paddleboarding.
The key to the perfect paddle boarding session is finding the right stand up paddle (SUP) board. Either you want an all-round board, a touring board, a fitness board, or fishing board. Whatever the need may be, the type of SUP you desire will depend on its intended usage. For example, a touring SUP will require speed and efficiency, whilst an all-round SUP will require agility and sturdiness. This means you’ll need to consider a variety of factors to see if a SUP is right for you or not. Paddle boards come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and the one you choose will ultimately affect your performance and control.
Notwithstanding, if you are new to all of this SUP talk or have limited experience, you may be curious to know what to look for when purchasing a board. Let’s take a look at some of the most prominent stand up paddle board features.
Features of a Paddle Board
The Hull Type
Hull design is a complex subject, but it’s never a bad idea to get acquainted with it. A stand up paddle board’s stability is critical, and it is mostly determined by the hull design. A board's hull or body determines how it performs in the water. There are two types of hulls associated with SUPs, namely: Planing & Displacement.
A planing hulled SUP is wide and flat. It is strong and ideal for surfing and all-around use, despite its slow speed. It glides effortlessly across the water’s surface, making it extremely stable and adaptable, as it may also be used for surfing. Displacement hulls, on the other hand, are shaped like a V. This hull shape is intended for those who choose speed over sturdiness. The front end of a displacement hull as mentioned earlier is pointed, which allows it to move quickly in the water.
A board’s volume determines its capacity to float while carrying weight. High-volume boards can support higher weight. The volume is however independent of height. A short board that is thick and wide and so has more volume may be found, whereas a narrow, long, and thin board may have little volume.
Length & Width
SUPs come in a variety of sizes. There are small boards that are less than 9 feet long, medium boards that are 9 to 12 feet long, and long boards that are 12 to 14 feet long. The shorter boards are easier to maneuver than longer boards, making them ideal for beginners and kids. Long boards are better for touring because they are faster. While medium boards are good for surfing or all-around use.
When it comes to the width, SUPs are available in different sizes, up to 36 inches wide. Narrow boards range in width from 29 to 30 inches. They are speedier, but they are not particularly steady. Wide boards on the other hand, which are at least 31 inches wide, are more stable yet slower than narrow boards.
What type of Pump does it include?
Paddleboards that are inflatable must be inflated, and most kits include either a simple or dual-chamber pump. Dual-chamber pumps inflate rapidly and have more inflation choices, while single-chamber pumps are lighter and easier to use. You’ll be able to fill a standard inflatable paddle board in 5 to 10 minutes regardless of which method you employ. There is also electronic pump available in the market, however a manual pump will give you a decent arm workout.
SUPs are built from a variety of materials. The most popular type is EPS foam, which is made up of a foam core that is surrounded by epoxy and fiberglass. Polyurethane foam is used in certain boards, whereas others are inflatable or have a hollow core. For example, hollow core boards are utilized for touring because of their small weight, whereas polyurethane foam boards are substantial and hence appropriate for all-around use.
The sort of SUP you use is then ultimately determined by how these qualities are combined to create a SUP that is appropriate for the task. Paddle boards come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and they can be used for a variety of purposes, including:
These are appropriate for beginners or those who do not wish to compete. They provide additional stability by merging the correct proportions of length, width, and weight. The recommended width is 30 to 34 inches, with a length of 10 to 11 feet.
SUPs for racing and touring
These boats have a displacement hull and are sleeker, lighter, and longer while maintaining the same volume. And they move faster in the water.
There are many different types of stand up paddle boards on the market, and understanding what to look for, and how much you’re willing to spend on a board will help you choose the appropriate one for you.
Before deciding on the best SUP for you, make a list of your own preferences. Most importantly, you must determine what you intend to do with the board. If you know you have no specific activity in mind, buy an all-round stand up paddle board to have a little bit of everything. And if you know you’ll be focusing on a specific paddle board activity, take your time to find a purpose-designed board.
It’s safe to assume that understanding what you’ll use it for will help you figure out what traits to search for in a stand up paddle board.
If you need help choosing the perfect inflatable with features best-suited for your need, then feel free to contact us at SurfStar. We have just what you need!