What Are the Different Types of Paddle Boards?

Stand Up Paddling (SUP) has become a fun, popular hobby among many people who are wanting to spend more time outside and on the water! With so many different Paddle Boards out there, it can be hard to know which one is right for you. With so many different types of boards out there, it can be hard to get a clear idea of what are the different types of paddle boards out there if you are not an expert on the topic. But we can surely help contribute a bit in your way of becoming one with this article. So, here is a great list of the different types of Paddle Boards so you can find the perfect one for you!


Types of Stand-Up Paddleboards

There are three main types of SUP’s: Epoxy Boards, Inflatable Boards, and Soft Top Paddle Boards. Epoxy Boards are usually the most expensive Boards you will find, while Soft Top Boards are typically the most affordable. They are made from different materials and are each perfect for different situations. Whether you are trying to head out for some tranquil time on the water or trying to catch some waves, here is some information on each kind board.


Epoxy Paddleboards

Just like Surf Boards, Epoxy Paddleboards are some of the most popular SUP’s you will find. Epoxy is the original material used for Surf and SUP’s.  Epoxy Boards are hard and usually made of EPS foam, with multiple layers of fiberglass and epoxy resin. These Boards are perfect for long distances and rough waters. Many experienced Paddlers like Epoxy Boards because they glide across the water smoothy while you are able to maintain a good control of the board. If you are looking to use your SUP to surf mainly, this will be the board you will want to choose.


We do want to warn you, Epoxy Boards are the least durable boards, as they can get chipped easily if you drop it. A large enough wave can break these boards if not careful. A huge reason many paddlers choose not to buy an Epoxy board is due to their size. They are typically heavy and hard to transport. You must find a large spot to hold an Epoxy Board and have a car large enough to strap it to the top or a truck you can put it in the back of.


Inflatable Boards

Inflatable Boards have become more and more popular recently among many Paddlers. Many of them love Inflatable boards because they are light weight and easy to carry. They fold up easily and are perfect if you do not have a large car to transport a traditional Paddle Board. Inflatable Boards are also great if you do not have a large storage spot. For many in apartments or condos in the city, Inflatable Boards are the way to go! They are the most durable of all the Paddle Boards because of the materials they are made from.


Even though these boards can deflate and are light weight, they are still very sturdy on the water. If you are looking for a board that is easy to transport and good for more still waters, an Inflatable Paddle Board is probably what you are looking for.


Soft Top Paddle Boards

A Soft Top Paddle Board is made with the middle of the board strong and sturdy, but with a spongy, soft foam material on the deck of the board. It is kind an improvement on a hard board. Most beginners who like hard boards also love Soft Top Boards because they are easier to handle on the water and the soft, foam top makes it comfortable to ride on. Your knees and feet will thank you for choosing this board if you are planning on being out for a while. If you are looking for a fun trip on the water, this is the board for you. The Epoxy Board is better for races and strong waves, but this is your board if you are looking for a leisurely trip.


Different Sized Paddle Boards

Most Paddle Boards you will find are going to be between 10-11 feet long, but there are many different sizes to choose from. Typically, the wider in length you buy a board, the more stable it will be, but it will be slower on the water. These wider and longer boards are perfect for lakes and rivers, where you really don’t need to go fast or through rough waters.


The opposite goes for shorter, less wide boards. The smaller boards are going to be better if you are wanting to cut through the water and ride waves. Smaller boards are perfect if you are wanting to head to the ocean.


Different Shaped Paddle Boards

While we like to think most Paddle Boards look the same, there are two different shaped Paddle Boards you can buy, the Round Boards and Touring Boards. There are many different types within the Round and Touring Boards, but here are the main difference in the two:

  • Round Boards

This is what most people think about when they are thinking of a Paddle Board. Round boards have more of a rounded shape on the nose and are wide boards. They are great for stability and work great if you are going out for a leisurely paddle. This board is ideal if you are wanting to do SUP yoga. This board is great for all levels of paddlers and perfect for beginners!

  • Touring Board

Touring Boards have more of a pointed nose and is designed to cut through the water better than the Round Boards. This board is great for more experienced paddlers, as it is harder to balance on.


So, what type of board are you going to be looking for? Are you going for something wide, rounded, and soft topped for a tranquil paddle around a lake? Or are you looking for a shorter, touring board to ride some waves? Is transporting your board something you are going to be something to think about while making your decision? With these tips about which board to buy, you are all set to pick out the perfect board and have a blast out on the water with your new SUP!




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