Just a few years ago owning a paddle board and getting it to the water wasn’t necessarily a simple task. A lot was required in order transport from one place to another. You had to either own a truck, a van, or a car with a roof mounted rack system that keeps your SUP in place.
You’d also have to worry about damaging your precious cargo in the transportation process, as they are very susceptible to rocks and hard surfaces. Scratches, cracks and dents are very common and cause the board to be unsightly.
Non-inflatable paddle boards are also heavy and becomes very annoying quickly when carrying them any sort of distance. So if you plan on hiking a bit to the special spot, you better plan on catching your breath before you start paddling.
Non-Inflatable Paddle boards
But the days are of lugging around heavy paddle boards is now over. Inflatable Paddle Boards, commonly called iSUP boards have now taken the market by storm. Nearly every e company has jumped on the band wagon and is now manufacturing several different iSUP boards to choose from. Having an inflatable option now makes it possible for everyone to own one.
An iSUP board, when deflated, generally measures around 1’ in diameter and just over 30” wide and weighs about 26lbs. This makes it easy to fit into a backpack or rolling case, which makes it easy to transport to that special spot that requires a little hike to get too. You could even take this as a carry-on when flying to a destination.
Durability is an extremely common concern when inflatable and paddle board are used in the same sentence. iSUP designers realize that having a something durable is important, that’s why these are nearly indestructible. Never worry about a ding, dent, or crack again when you go iSUP. I’ve even seen people run over them with their jeep without acquiring any damage at all.
- Inconvenient to transport
- Tough to carry long distances
- Easily damaged
Inflatable Paddle Boards
Now that you understand why owning an iSUP is the way to go, let’s take a look as some of the most popular inflatable boards on the market!
- Easy to transport
- Fits in backpack or rolling case
- Extremely durable
Tower Paddle Boards – Adventurer iSUP Package
The Adventurer is quite possible the most popular inflatable paddle board on the market and there is definitely reason for it. This is a fantastically priced all-around iSUP that is perfect for the beginner all the way up to the seasoned professional.
Whether you’re looking to just have fun with some friends out on the water, hit some waves, race a few friends, throw a hook and line in the water and fish this iSUP will do the trick.
This iSUP package comes in two different sizes, 9’10” and 10’4”. It also comes with everything you need to get out on the water and start paddling. This package includes the adventurer inflatable paddle board, an iSUP pump and a 3pc adjustable fiberglass paddle. I would definitely recommend this board to anyone wanting to get into paddle boarding without spending a lot of money.
Red Paddle Co – RIDE
Although Red Paddle Co isn’t here to offer the most inexpensive option like Tower Paddle Boards, they’re here to offer nothing but quality and design.
There aren’t many if any iSUP manufactures that can say they build a better quality board than Red Paddle and the Ride series is definitely nothing short of excellent. It is designed to be extremely versatile and provide great performance all around.
The Ride series is available in three different sizes, 9’8”, 10’6” and 10’8”. The most popular model being the middle of the road Ride 10’6”, which is the model I would suggest going with.
If you’d like more stability or if you weigh over 200lbs, I would suggest going with the 10’8” model that is a little wider and longer. If you’re looking for a high quality option with a cool design, pick up the Ride from Red Paddle Co.
Starboard SUP – All Round iSUP
Out of all the iSUP brands I have ran across, Starboard seems to have the largest selection. Last I checked, they offered 24 different iSUPs to choose from including a gigantic 18’6 x 60” multi-person model!
Like Red Paddle Co, Starboard isn’t necessarily the most inexpensive solution, but offers extreme quality and top-notch design. Their boards are definitely a head turner.
Their All Round iSUP model features 5 different sizes ranging from the smallest size being 9’x30’ and the largest being 12’x33”. A great middle of the road choice in their iSUP lineup is the Drive, which measures in at 10’5 x 30”.
This is a great all around choice that delivers great tracking, speed, stability and maneuverability. If your main concern is quality, check out this more premium solution from Starboard SUP.
My Vote for Best Inflatable Paddle Board
Any of these will be a great cure for your itch to get out on the water start paddling. However, if you are looking for a high quality premium option, I would recommend going with either a Red Paddle or Starboard SUP.
If you’re want something inexpensive, Tower Paddle Boards provides a great solution while still offering a quality product.
You can also see our full list of paddleboards for more reviews.