What Board Should I Buy?
Different Types for Different Styles
As the sport of stand up paddle boarding has grown in popularity over the last ten years so has the different styles of boards which are now available on the market. Once you have had a few lessons you may look at buying a board of your own but struggling to figure out which board to buy with so much choice available. Below we guide you through what different types of paddleboards are currently available and to help you find the right board for you.
For those that want a board that can do it all then look no further. These are the best board for those who are new to the sport due to their versatility. They are great for getting out on the water and exploring your local waterways of coast with friends or catching the odd wave at the beach. Most are between 10' and 11' and are between 34" and 30" wide to provide a nice stable platform to paddle from.
If you are looking to paddle further than 5km in one go, or go on that multi day adventure, then the touring/exploring boards are a great choice. Slightly narrower than the all round boards and usually around 11' to 13' long mean they glide through the water easily so you can paddle further for longer. Most boards come with space to carry all the gear you could want to make the most of any adventure.
These are more specialist boards and tend to be smaller (sub 9') and narrower than the all round boards to increase the manoeuvrability when on a wave. A great way to stay fit but have a huge amount of fun at the same time. Find a peak to yourself and rack up the wave count when out with friends.
Some boards on the market come fitted with a mount which allows you to attach a windsurfing sail so you can get out when it is slightly to windy to paddle board. If you want to just do a bit of windsurfing and mainly paddleboard then look at a board with a central or side middle fins. If you want to primarily windsurf the board then look at something with a larger central fin/dagger board to help you stay up wind better.
If you want to get competitive and test your athletisim against other paddleboarders then you will want to consider getting a race board. With most countries now having established race scenes and even a world tour that travels the globe the possibilities are endless, if you have the determination!! Boards are either 12'6" or 14'0 in length and come in a variety of widths, shapes and styles depending on where you will be racing. These are the fastest boards that you will find but need a level of experience to be able to make the most out of them and turning is an art!!
For those of you that are looking to take your Yoga/Pilates skills to the next level there are specific boards available which will help you get on the water to practice all of your skills. Boards are based on the all round style but tend to be slightly thicker and wider to keep you dry and stable during complexed moves. They also feature full length deckpads so you can utilise the whole board during your manoeuvres.
One of the most extreme forms of paddle board will test your balance to the limit. Not for the faint hearted, you can now get boards which are specifically designed to ride down fast flowing white water sections of rivers and should always be done with friends.
These boards turn the fun factor up to 12 as you paddle around with friends and family. We all know that the old saying the more the merrier applies to paddle boarding, so instead of heading out on individual craft why not check out the range of multi person boards. Be that families who want to explore together, larger groups looking for fun or teams of 4 looking to test their skills in a competitive environment!
One of the most common questions asked is what construction should I buy. There are two main types currently available which are hard boards and inflatables. You will most likely get to experience what an inflatable board is like during your lesson but to find out more about the differences in counstruction check out this page
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