Buying the Right Paddle Board
Choosing the right board should be an easy instead of overwhelming job. But of course, you have to start by being familiar with the different types they are available in.
Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Boards
For paddlers who live in apartments and find it a pain to transport big boards in their cars, something inflatable should make a lot of sense. As you might expect, they are so much lighter and easier to carry around. But of course, you will have to sacrifice the toughness of a typical board, making wave riding difficult but doable in light conditions.
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Another exciting note is that river SUP has grown into a large part of the sport, and there is no other way to go but inflatable SUPS. The extra give-in makes the board act just like an inflatable raft, and dings or holes can be avoided as you bump into or go over rocks.
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Surf Stand Up Paddle Boards
Surfing paddle boards are often short, narrow, lightweight, and with a thin tail and nose. They are made for high performance and quick turns, and are generally used in the surf zone. They are not appropriate for long distance paddles, because you will have to do much work to maintain them on a particular track, and they are not as stable as larger boards too.
If you want to compete, or you just want to get your core ripped with some intense training, then go get a race board. It’s a lot narrower and longer, with a well-stretched out fin and an exceptionally pointy nose. The design itself is intended to keep you on a single track while you cut through the water as fast as you can. One thing you need to take note of is that unless you’re moving forward at a fairly fast speed, these boards are going to be quite unstable.
SUP Yoga Boards
SUP yoga boards are longer and wider than wave boards. In most cases, the top is soft and there are places where resistance bands, safety equipment like PFD’s, and other exercise tools can be attached. These boards can also be anchored, keeping them from drifting away during a sun salutation.
All-Around/Touring Stand up Paddle Boards
These adaptable boards are usually long and wide, and have a greater volume and a generally pointed nose. Because of their size and volume, they are much more stable compared to wave boards. These boards are suited for flat-water paddling on a lake or cruising outside the surf zone on a pretty day. Touring boards just perfect for newbies.
After determining the right type of paddle board for you, it’s time to decide on a suitable size. Think of volume. Longer, thicker and wider boards have more volume and therefore more stability on the water. Also take note that the bigger the board, the less responsive it will be.