What Size Stand Up Paddle Board Should You Get?

When you shop for a stand up paddle board, you have to consider the size.  While the model is important, if you have the wrong size, you will have issues.  There are a few factors to look at when considering the right size.

The Stability Of The Board

If stability is your primary concern, you need to look at a paddleboard that is 10 to 11 feet in length and 32 to 34 inches in width.  Boards of this size are easy to find because they are the most popular size.  For additional stability, you should look at the widest boards.

There is a downside to looking at this size.  The wider the board is, the more sluggish it will be.  This can make your experience less fun because you have to paddle harder and will not get the speed you might want.

Portability And Manoeuvrability

If you are looking for a portable board with a lot of maneuverability, you should look for a board that is around 9’6” in length.  Boards of this size will also be best for people who weigh less than 150 pounds.  It is important to note that these boards will generally have a maximum weight restriction that you should check.

Boards of this size are a lot of fun to use and can be very stable if they are made correctly.  When it comes to width, you should look at between 30 to 32 inches.  With this length, a width larger than 32 inches will be too slow for you to paddle comfortably.

Speed And Straight Tracking

If you are looking for a board that offers you speed, you have to look at a length of 12’6”.  This is the best length for a fast touring board and is the most common length for race paddle boards.  These size boards are easy to find because 12’6” is a very popular size for touring boards.

When it comes to the width, you should look at 32” for a stable touring board.  However, if you are looking at a race model, you will need to choose a thinner board.  It is possible to get racing boards that are 26” to 28”.  These boards will be very fast, but they are less stable, which can be a problem for some paddlers.  If your board will be used for racing and touring, a good compromise width is 30”.

If you are considering this paddleboard size, there is one issue you need to be aware of.  Many people shy away from these boards because of storage issues.  If you do not have a storage area that can hold this board, you should reconsider the size.

Special Sizes For Special Boards

There are a lot of specialist paddle boards on the market, and they will have their own sizing guides.  You should only look at sizing for these boards if you are going to get one of these special boards.  Special boards will include rapid paddleboards.

If you ate going to run rapids, you need a board that id wider than normal.  The standard rapid board will be 36 inches wide.  This is too large for any other activity because the board will be slow, and you need to reach more when paddling.

Another special board will be a surfing board.  These boards generally have a length of 9 feet.  While this length is not the problem, they lack the volume for general paddling and will be harder to balance on.

Look At The Thickness

The length and width of the board are important, but the thickness also plays a role in sizing.  If you are just starting with paddleboarding, you need to look for a thickness of 5 inches.  This is particularly important if you are looking at an inflatable paddle board.

The only time you should look for a thicker board is when you weigh more than 240 pounds.  The extra volume provided by the thickness will help the board float better.  If the board sinks too low, it will drag and slow down.

There are times when you can look at a thickness of 4 inches instead of 5 inches.  This is when you are looking at hardboards made from epoxy.  These boards have enough volume for the average user when they are 4 inches thick.

The Volume Range

When looking at the size of the board you need, you should also consider the volume range.  All boards will provide this information, and it is affected by the dimensions.  While this is a spec you should take note of, it is more important for beginners as expert riders will match the size to what they want to do.

If you are getting a hard board, you should look for a volume range of 170 to 190 liters.  If you are looking at an inflatable board, you need to increase this volume.  The ideal in these cases will be between 220 and 280 liters.  You also need to increase the volume range if you are going to paddle with your pet or children.

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