Paddle boarding.

I recently sold my well used poly Chatham 16 and will be shopping for a paddle board. I have not found a site similar to this one with paddle board reviews or advice. Many small forums and sites, but nothing like what this site, has to offer (I love this place). I would like to learn what’s a good beginner board. Perhaps a good brand. I hear about Yolo, Hovie, Surftec NSP, Bark. Not sure if any or all are really good. Perhaps it’s just a matter of time before this site offers paddle board support as well.

A couple weeks ago i rented a paddleboard. It was made by Bic and this was my first time trying SUP. After getting over the initial balance issues this was a very easy board to learn on and after a while could get it moving at a steady pace. I haven’t had any expierence with any other boards but this board was great to learn on.,3,74/11-4-acs-sup,836.html

good question!
This IS a paddling site, after all. No better time than the present to serve and attract another user group.

I’m interested also and would like to learn more. For example, are there differences in boards depending on whether you want to surf or paddle flatwater?

Many style pf paddle boards…
just like kayaking. There are racing boards, cruiser boards, high rocker and flat boards. Even fishing paddle boards. Perhaps it’s time to request to open another page at and add a paddle board section. I hear that the BCU even has a 2-star class for paddle boarding. I am almost ready to buy a Hovie board or the original YOLO boar. That’s why I am here. To try to find more advice and direction. I don’t want to go by what the profit motivated salesman wants to sell me. I want to hear actual user/paddler advice.

SUP Message Board

I found this message board but I"m not sure if it will help you.


I found a brand that is called Glide SUP. They make an epoxy weight board that is as durable as plastic. The have been testing the Glide guard for 2 years now and I have had mine for a year now and no problems so far. They are really cool. Check out their site at They make river boards, rec boards and touring boards that are all made in the US. Let me know if you have any questions on this product.


It is fun!
I got the cheapest SUP I could find, the Ocean Kayak Nalu SUB/SOT “hybrid”, for playing around on a pond. It’s basically a rotomolded SOT designed for standing. I wanted something rugged, that could be dragged down rocks without a keel getting damaged (it has built in keels). I can’t compare with sleeker, more expensive “real” SUPs - it is probably a barge by comparison - but it is a blast. Anyone can stand up stably and paddle off, and can get back on easily if they fall. It is a fun pastime.

Try this site
SUP magazine site

12’6" , 14’ , unlimiteds
If a person is not interested in the surfing, IMHO I would suggest going straight to the race boards … These are way faster, have real glide to them and are more efficient. They are just as stable too so no worries here.


Best website to post questions / ideas for real world opinions and do research:

Another nice one for info.

Manufacturers: but imported from China ( generic souless designs IMHO ) ( well, not ‘till next spring : )

TONS more board manufacturers ( and importers from the same Chinese factory ) as compared to the limited OC-1 builders. Most of above are more related to the race boards I was talking about … These are SOOO much nicer and more efficient than the typical 10 - 12’ generics you see @ Costco / Target and most surf shops. As above, if you have zero interest in the surf, IMHO, I would skip the generic boards altogether. Cost factor and personal preference and family responsibilities to over ride any of this though : )

Give Sweetwater in St.Pete a look. Russell holds several brands and the shop is on the water where you can try before you buy. A good source to start.

Russell? Oh yeah…
I have been talking and talking with him for a while! He has the Hovie that I am considering. However, his selection and current stock is very low and it could be weeks before he gets more boards. I am slated to see him Saturday. I first have to call him and make sure he received more boards or that he has a couple available. Still, I am looking for more advice and options.

how short can you get?
How short a board can you get for use in surf?

keep in mind
for the most part on the inland lakes or rivers of the area, you will want a board that has a hull made for touring. If you plan to surf and want the long board and paddle to get back out, then get the flat style that surf better. The SUP I use is great for hull speed for it has a design similar to that of a kayak hull. Flat works well for carving and wave riding but doesn’t hold forward speed well.

More SUP!

– Last Updated: Sep-27-11 11:38 PM EST –

I too am looking for more information about SUPS. I have been paddling for 30 years, started in canoes and moved to kayaks about 10 years ago. Still love the boats but am always looking for ways to keep me excited and active in the sport. Tried first SUP at Cocoa Beach in the surf - fell off a lot but had a blast. Ron Jon's did suggest that I take the rental over to the other side of the island and start in the flat water but didn't have transporation options - and being from a landlocked state, I had to give the waves a try. Even in the surf (with a tropical storm approaching!) I made quick enough progress that I was confident I would find it very enjoyable on flatwater. Have seen a few SUPS in Arkansas so knew it was beginning to make inroads here. Was able to demo a Liquid Logic Versa Board (very stable and versatile, but feels like a SOT you can also stand on) and a NRS Big Earl inflatable SUP at the Arkansas Canoe Club Rendezvous two weeks ago on flatwater Lake Catherine. Love the portability of an inflatable, but it definitely is less stable than hardshell. On dead calm surface, water continually lapped across the area where I was standing. It was more rigid that I expected but does have more flex that the hard boards I tried. Would not carry the dog and the gear I take out with me for an "island day" on one of the big lakes here in Arkansas. Amazed at how much easier it was on flatwater, convinced I want one, but more confused about which one. Please add a SUP page,!

There are four main components to think about when choosing your first paddle board:

Type of paddle board – All around paddle board, SUP cruiser paddle board, SUP sport paddle board.

Length – A good rule of thumb is that longer boards are faster and shorter boards are more maneuverable.
Width – Wider boards tend to be more stable but come at a cost of being slower.
Volume and weight capacity – You want a board that is going to support your weight and any gear, pets, or other people that you plan on accompanying you on your SUP.

1 Like