Paddleboarding is a water sport in which athletes propel themselves by swimming with their arms while reclining or kneeling on a paddle board in the ocean or other bodies of water. It then evolved into stand-up paddleboarding, or SUP, which first took root in Hawaii; as the name suggests, paddle boarders stand on the boards instead of kneeling or sitting. SUP is a sport that is growing in popularity nowadays.
Finding the right paddle board can be the first step on your way to enjoying the sport. Understanding the various types of paddle boards is one of the things you should know before purchasing one. Once you’ve decided on the paddle board you want, you can consider what size you’ll need based on the activity.
With so many options on the market today, what is the best paddle board for you?
Types of Paddle Boards
In the beginning, SUP boards are distinguishable by the materials and construction method used. The first ones were made of wood, then the later ones used fiberglass; the solid boards sold nowadays are made of epoxy.
Inflatable boards are the most popular and preferred type of SUP boards today. They are constructed with heavy-duty PVC and drop-stitch technique to create an air core. Because they are inflatable, they can be easily stored and transported.
Paddle Boards by Activity
Flatwater Paddle Boards
Also known as all-around paddle boards, they are a versatile option that can perform well in many roles. They are ideal for flatwater paddling, and can be used by paddlers at all skill levels.
Performance Paddle Boards
Also known as surf SUPs, they are intended for enhanced maneuverability and speed. They are shorter and more sensitive to the riders’ weight distribution and are only advised for the more experienced riders.
Racing Paddle Boards
Also known as touring boards, they are long and streamlined for maximum speed, ideal for racing and endurance paddling. These are also ideal for long-distance paddling.
Paddle Boards by Size
Short SUPs are under 10 feet long, and are suitable for SUP surfing and playing with children. Short SUPs have a lower weight capacity due to the lower volume and float, and are unstable for some stationary riders.
SUPs in the medium size range are 10 to 12 feet long. These are the most common for an all-around type SUP. They offer a reasonable amount of volume and float, making them a stable choice for flatwater cruising for riders of any size.
Long SUPs measure starting at 12 feet, but not exceeding 14 feet in length. These boards are built for long-distance exploration and travel. They are fast, sleek, and powerful.
Your choices are limitless when it comes to SUP boards. You can choose one made of fiberglass or one that’s inflatable; you can also choose either a long or a short SUP. There is no stopping you from finding the perfect SUP for your first paddleboarding adventure.
If you’re looking for a starter SUP, visit ROC SUP Co. We have the best SUP boards on the market today. ROC’s boards are versatile, durable, and pet-friendly; the best part is they’re completely inflatable!
Bring your paddle boards wherever your adventure takes you!