How to Buy a Stand Up Paddle Board (SUP)

 

How to Buy SUP

Stand up paddling is one of the best and the fastest growing sport in the world. It packs lots of fun, serves as an excellent workout and most of all it is very easy to learn for anybody. Choosing the right type of paddle board depends upon one’s lifestyle, budget and how they plan to use it.

For those who are not sure on how to choose the right type of paddle board, the following guide comes to rescue. It will help in choosing the best board based on the type of activity one desires to indulge in.




Different Types of Paddle Boards

In order to figure out what paddle boards buy one should equip their knowledge on different types of boards. Most people want to buy a multi-functioning paddle board that serves different functions such as surfing, racing, touring, etc. The four most common types of SUP boards available in the market are as follows.

  • All round SUPs
  • Surfing paddleboards
  • Touring SUPs
  • Racing SUPs
  • Fishing SUPs
  • Yoga SUPs

 

All Round SUPs:

These are the perfect choice of paddle boards for novice paddlers and first-timers. These boards can work perfectly on all conditions be it choppy or flat water and are highly versatile. This is the most common paddle board and is compatible for family and pets too.

Surfing Paddleboards:

These boards are perfect for intermediate and advanced paddlers. This is ideal for those who want more action out of their paddling experience. But it is less stable on the water and demands training to surf without falling off. They are extremely maneuverable on waves and are oversizes surfboards with a paddle.

Touring SUPs:

These stand up paddle boards are a perfect choice for serious paddlers who indulge in intense water workouts. They make long distance flatwater cruising easier. They are good to use in lakes, open ocean, and bays. Their construction yields maximum efficiency and glide. There are usually wide and are stable enough for beginners.

Racing SUPs:

These are meant for flatwater races and are ideal for ocean competitions and down winders. Their broad length and extra width generate long glide efficiency with fast sprint speed. They are perfect for recreational and elite racers.

Fishing SUPs:

These are the perfect boards for those wanting to go to fishing on their standup boards without a kayak. They have the best volume a thus the paddler and the gear can stay high and dry out of the water. There are mounts to add rod holders, fish finders and other gear for a perfect expedition.

Yoga SUPs:

These paddle boards are designed for flat water paddling, yoga, and any fitness activity. They stay extremely stable in calm water. Its expanding deck offers good room for yoga.

 

Leveraging on the Size of the Paddle:

To choose the correct size of the paddle, one has to leverage on their weight and their experience level with paddle boarding. Decide the ideal board size based on the volume and its load-bearing capacity. More the volume of the board, greater is its stability on the water. Beginners should choose a board with greater volume and thickness for its extra stability and load-bearing capacity.

  • Those who are under 175 pounds’ weight should choose a boat of length 10.5-11.5 feet.
  • For those in the weight range of 150-225 pounds then a paddle board length of 11.5-12.5 feet is necessary
  • Choose a board that is longer than 12.5 feet if you weigh more than 200-275 pounds

 

SUP Hull Types

The size and the design of the Hull of the standup paddleboard is an important aspect to consider. The hull actually determines how well the board performs in the water. There are two common types of paddle board hulls and those are,

  • Planning hull: The bottom of the board tapers slightly towards its edges like the bottom of the boat. This is an excellent choice of SUP for casual paddling and for surfing owing to its excellent stability and maneuverability.
  • Displacement hull: These boards have a sharp point nose that displaces the water on both sides, making it easy for paddlers to cover long distances. The sharper nose allows the hull to slice through the water. This results in a fast and smooth ride. Most of the touring boards have displacement hull enabling the rider to travel long distances easily.

 

Cost of the board:

Price is an important concern for most people. Most people don’t want an expensive board but should not choose a cheap board to save money. Basic level boards are available for less than $500.

These boards may not last long as their construction is not of high-quality materials. People have to do their research to choose the best model for an incredible cost. Premium priced model cost between $500- $1000.

They are known for their excellent performance, high quality, artistic design, and moderate cost. Luckily, we have a number of high-performance boards without bothering the wallets of the user much.

 

Some common mistakes to avoid while choosing to buy a SUP:

Having the right board for the size, skill set and conditions is the difference between having quality time on SUP or not. A quality board would offer years of learning and progression. Try to avoid the following mistakes while choosing a board for the best paddling experience.

 

Don’t choose by the length of the board: the board dimensions include its length, width, and thickness. It is better not to choose a board with only the length. The volume of the board indeed decides how stable the board will be on the water. One should choose the length of the board on the basis on their weight and not because everybody is buying a particular length of SUP.

 

Consider the warranty: Warranty is to protect the paddler in the event of manufacturing defects. Choose a brand and the board that has a longer warranty. The warranty is the confidence the manufacturer has on their product and their confidence in the product. It is a good choice to choose a board with a longer commitment. As a standard protocol, all of the paddle boards from premium brands have a 2-year warranty period. Products having a short warranty period on their workmanship for 30 or 60 days indicates that the workmanship is not of high quality.

 

Price of the board: You get what you pay for. A lightweight, high quality and great performing SUP cannot be bought for $299. From the point of view of the manufacturer, low cost translates as low quality.

 

Customer service: choose a brand that treats the board and customer appropriately. Nobody spends so much money on board for it to be treated poorly. Customer service should be available in all steps right from shipping it to set it up.

 

Do not choose the board by graphics alone: Everyone wants to buy a product that looks great. But the choice should be made based on the mechanism of the board, rather than its graphics.

 

Do not buy used boards: The person selling using boards has only one purpose in mind. To sell it without thinking about what is best for the buyer. Beginners will not evaluate the board based on its damage, repairs, and conditions. The history of the board on how it has cared is also not known. So it is better to buy it new.

 

Verdict:

Hope our guide covered you on some important aspects to consider while choosing a stand-up paddleboard. There all lots of variants available in the market and it is up to the surfer to choose the best fit board for them.


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