When it’s hot outside and you want to chill and enjoy the chill water, the stand up paddle board can become your favorite entertainment for the day. It offers the intensity of surfing with the benefits that you can sit upright and enjoy the view while making your own way through the water. Unless you are a pro, chances are you know little about SUPs, so a quick buying guide and comparison can be of great help to make a quality choice.
Where will you be able to use your SUP?
The stand up paddle board is easy to maneuver because it’s very lightweight and is easier to sneak than a boat or a canoe. Besides the wide seas and rivers, you can take it on lakes, ponds, bays, streams, and any other form of water that allows you to paddle.
There are many types of boards to choose from
Once you get the hang of handling a SUP, you also need to know some basics like the models you can choose from. There is the surf model that turns very well and glides smoothly on the water, the all-around model that is much wider and more stable so that you can use it for long expeditions, the racing version that is long and narrow and perfect for speed, and the yoga SUP that allows you to handle it with ease as you do your favorite yoga poses.
Choose the right shape, size, and weight for your needs
Depending on where you will use the board, you need to consider some aerodynamics details that influence safety and comfort in use. As claimed by Standuppaddlesupply.com the SUP will need to match your weight and height and will need to be stable enough to keep you safe even in wavy waters.
Height & weight
Keep in mind that the SUP will need to match your weight and height so you have to take some measurements and look for the one that suits your body constitution. If you are short, you need a narrower model that allows you to get your paddle in the water without going too close to the edge. Make sure the board you choose can handle your weight as models vary quite a lot in this category.
While you might be tempted to go for the very narrow model, you need to keep in mind that a few extra inches make the board more stable and prevent any accidents. Narrow models are designed for speed and are perfect for proafessional surfers, so you shouldn’t choose if you are still learning how to surf.
Length also influences the speed and stability of the SUP, as well as its maneuverability on the water. The longer models that look like a kayak are faster while the shorter ones are easier to turn, which is great if you want to catch waves.
Thickness & volume
All the details above influence the thickness and volume of a SUP board and determine how comfortable you will feel while handling it. Remember to try the demo version before you buy one, to make sure it fits you perfectly.
Look into the extra features and accessories
Regardless of how you plan to use the board, it is preferable for it to come with as many extra features and accessories as possible. These extras can provide accommodation for those who want to take up fishing or yoga, they help with storage and maneuverability, and so on.
- Bungee straps that provide secure storage for coolers, clothing, accessories, and essentials you take on your ride.
- Attachment mounts for cameras to record your water adventures with, seats, fishing rod holders, and more.
- A leash that tethers the board to you so that the SUP stays in your proximity when you fall off. Besides the convenience aspect as you won’t have to swim to catch the board, there’s the added safety benefit as you can climb back on top of quicker in case you are not the best swimmer.
- A car rack so that you carry the board on the vehicle’s roof comes in handy as well as it spares you of having to deflate it every time you head to the beach and back to be able to store and transport it.
- A specially designed paddle is a must as it angles forward to provide you with maximum paddling efficiency. When you choose the paddle or adjust the one you bought, make sure its length reaches up to your wrist when you raise your arm above your head.
- Tip: While it is not an accessory generally included with the acquisition, we recommend that you buy and wear a flotation device to keep yourself out of danger when you inevitably fall off. Note that the U.S. Coast Guard rules even state that you are obliged to wear a personal floating device if you exceed the swimming/surfing areas while riding the SUP.