There are still lots of pitfalls when buying a new paddle board. Here’s a list of some things to avoid when looking for your best SUP mate.
Avoid any paddle board that doesn’t use fusion technology as standard.
Most new iSUPs – in fact nearly all – are manufactured in fusion technology. The board’s outer layer is fused to the Dropstitch inner. This is the bare minimum you should expect when buying a new inflatable paddle board. If the one you’re considering is made in such a way then we’d suggest it won’t last too long and won’t offer a great deal of performance. This leads to overall satisfaction and enjoyment of SUP.
Avoid single skin inflatable SUPs (mostly).
Single skin fusion boards are ok for lighter riders but bend in the middle (deflection) too much for moderate to heavier riders. This means wet feet and more resistance when paddling which leads to being fatigued faster, less enjoyment, and potential injury through over exertion. Double layer boards bend much less. Double layer boards that use premium woven Dropstitch will be even stiffer, but this comes with a higher price tag. If your budget only stretches to a single skin budget board, make sure it is 6″ thick as this helps with stiffness with budget boards.
Avoid cheap and look more at budget.
Some brands have a permanent sale on. But just because something is half price does not mean it is good value or a bargain. We won’t name names as you can easily find out who. Cheap is cheap though. In terms of quality. If budget is a requirement then do your research thoroughly.
Avoid heavy SUPs.
Heavy boards are heavy boards. Whether hard shell SUPs or inflatable. Just avoid them as they’ll do you no favours.
Avoid too much opinion and trust your paddle board buying instincts.
It is often helpful to speak to friends who paddle and can offer some buying advice. Also speak to instructors, paddle with a club and be cheeky and ask to try different boards from retailers and brands. Ultimately though avoid listening to too much opinion and trust your own instincts. (9 times out of 10 you’ll probably be right).
Avoid SUPs that are too short.
Longer SUPs have more glide, track better and will ultimately give you a better experience on the water. Paddling less to cover more ground is always a good thing.
Avoid going too thin with your paddle board.
Even though some 4” and 5” thick boards offer good levels of performance for most adults a 6” inflatable SUP delivers the best performance. Most iSUPs less than 6” are too bendy and won’t be that fun to pilot.
If you need any more guidance with buying a stand up paddle board get in touch with us here at McConks.