Paddleboarding is fun, exciting, and challenging. Aside from great skills and talent, you must have the right equipment to make sure that you’re efficient and safe as you indulge in this sport. There are many pieces of equipment to consider for safe and efficient paddle boarding but the biggest and probably the most important equipment is the inflatable paddleboard. Let’s find out how to buy the best inflatable paddleboard and how to make the most out of your money with this handy review.
The 5 best inflatable paddleboards
We have chosen 5 inflatable paddle boards for you this year. We based our choice according to the type of material, design, shape, sizes available, and colors available. We know you’ll find the right inflatable paddleboard that’s perfect for your needs from our top list.
Star Rating: 4.7 out of 5
Best Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board from SereneLife
- Made from high-quality material that’s durable.
- Has an upgraded design for balancing and stability.
- Easy to maneuver with triple bottom fins.
- Comes in an all-in-one kit.
- Dimensions: 10’ 6” x 30” x 6”, 19 pounds
- Maximum Capacity: 300 pounds
- Material: military-grade PVC material
- Special Features: wider SUP, triple bottom fins
- Accessories: bottom panel fins, foldable paddle, manual pump, safety leash, storage bag, waterproof personal bag
The SereneLife Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board is thicker and able to hold more weight compared to other SUPs. It is made from upgraded premium military-grade material that won’t rip, crack or change shape. It has a wider top to provide balance and stability.
You can use the SereneLife in freshwater or saltwater; to paddle across lakes and rivers. It has three bottom fins that help improve speed and maneuverability plus these fins help beginners and kids steer the board easier. Bungee cord riggings on top will keep your bags and other items safely as you paddle.
This is a portable inflatable paddleboard that easily deflates and folds away when not in use. You will also get complete accessories including an aluminum paddle, a safety leash with coiled cuffs, and a manual air pump. You’ll also get a free waterproof carrying bag and storage bag with your purchase.
- This board is made from very durable military-grade materials that will last a long time.
- With triplefin design to improve your movements especially for beginner users.
- With a wider top for improved balance and stability.
- Easy to take anywhere, foldable and transportable.
- Comes with sturdy riggings and all the accessories you need.
- Complaints that the board is not as sturdy as a hardboard.
- Wobbly on choppy waters.
Star Rating: 4.8 out of 5
Best Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board with Complete Accessories from Roc
- Available in many designs and colors
- This is a durable, lightweight paddleboard.
- Comes with all the accessories you need.
- Dimensions: 10’ x 32” x 6”, 17.5 pounds
- Maximum Capacity: 275 pounds
- Material: military-grade PVC material.
- Special Features: extra-wide, with three bottom fins, complete package
- Accessories: collapsible aluminum paddle, hand pump, safety leash, waterproof bag, backpack, and fins.
The Roc inflatable paddle board is made from durable, high-quality materials. It is one of the lightest boards with a wider design that will fit all types of riders and people of any age. You can use this SUP in the ocean, on a lake, or in rivers.
This Roc board weighs just 17 pounds, lighter compared to other brands. It comes with triple fins to help you ride across the water with ease. This board is 6 inches thick, just the best size to hold up to 300 pounds. Meanwhile, the bungee cord riggings on top help keep all your stuff safe. You can ride with your backpack, food supply, or anything you need to bring for your trip.
You can choose from seven different colors including pink, blue, black, green, desert, aqua, and charcoal. You will also get a complete set so you’re ready to paddle away once you get this out of the box. You will get a collapsible aluminum paddle, hand pump, safety leash, waterproof bag, fins, and backpack.
- Made from military-grade materials, very durable and lightweight.
- Wider and lighter than other paddleboards.
- Can be used in any type of water.
- Comes with all the things you need to start your trip.
- Thick board at 6 inches and can accommodate up to 300 pounds.
- Available in seven different colors.
- Fins are non-removable.
- The carrying bag will stain.
- This board is hard to inflate.
Star Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Best Inflatable Paddle Board with Accessories and Bag from FBSPORT
- With a wide and lightweight design.
- Made from the best quality materials.
- Comes with complete accessories including a carrying backpack.
- Dimensions: 10’ x 30” x 6”, 22 pounds
- Maximum Capacity: 280 pounds
- Material: thick PVC
- Special Features: wider and lightweight design, complete accessories, non-slip top deck.
- Accessories: alloy paddle that can float, coiled ankle cuff, carrying bag, pump, and fins.
The FBSPORT inflatable paddleboard is available in more than ten different colors and designs. It is wider and light, you’ll find this easy to balance even in rough or moving water. It is made from the toughest, high-quality materials which means you can use this board many times.
The FBSPORT paddleboard has a safe non-slip deck that makes this perfect for beginners and all users. The deck is also soft so you won’t easily get hurt on a fall. You can use this paddleboard in many water activities like spearfishing, snorkeling, touring, fishing, and simply recreational paddling. You can use it in all kinds of weather.
This SUP also comes with complete accessories such as an alloy paddle, removable big fin, safety leash with ankle cuffs, pump, and carrying bag.
- Made from very durable, high-quality materials.
- Available in more than 10 different designs and colors.
- Comes with complete accessories and a carrying bag.
- The large fin is removable.
- Can be used in all kinds of water sports.
- Lightweight, easy to transport, easy to assemble.
- Problems/ complaints regarding the pump.
- Pressure gauge problems
Star Rating: 4.8 out of 5
Best Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board with Non-Slip Deck from Run Wave
- Made from strong and durable PVC material.
- Portable, easy to carry, with handy carrying bag.
- With a wider SUP design for enhanced stability and balance.
- Dimensions: 11’ x 33” x 6”, 25 pounds
- Maximum Capacity: 352 pounds
- Material: PVC material
- Special Features: Advanced Drop stitch technology, lightweight, wider standing space, non-slip surface
- Accessories: high-pressure pump, safety leash, floating paddle, foot leash, fins, carrying bag.
The Run Wave inflatable paddle board is made from top-quality material for light and high-intensity use. It inflates and deflates easily in just five minutes. You can easily fold it and roll it to take anywhere you want to paddle. You can use this SUP on a lake, sea, or river. You can also use it on a large pool or wave pool.
The top deck has a non-slip pattern that works best for beginner users. The deck is also wider which improves stability and balance as you stand or sit. You’ll also get the best value for your money as it comes with a foot leash, three fins, high-pressure pump, paddle, and repair accessories. It comes with a backpack for easy transport anywhere you want to go.
- With a wide, non-slip surface.
- With removable three fins.
- Comes with complete accessories including a large bag.
- With a wider deck for stability and balance.
- Rigging is not well-designed.
- Complaints that the removable fins are very easy to remove.
Star Rating: 4.6 out of 5
Best Inflatable, Ultra-Light Paddle Board from FunWater
- Made from PVC, 35 percent lighter than other inflatable paddleboards.
- With removable fins for improved balance.
- Comes with complete accessories and a carrying bag.
- Dimensions: 10’ 6” x 33” x 6”, 17.6 pounds
- Maximum Capacity: 330 pounds
- Material: PVC
- Special Features: strengthened board, removable fins, complete accessories
- Accessories: 3 removable fins, adjustable aluminum paddle, pump, traveling backpack, waterproof bag, and coil leash.
The FunWater inflatable SUP is very light with a double layer of PVC. It is thicker than most boards at 35% thicker to hold more weight. This board is very durable and very strong. It has removable tri fins, well-built riggings, and complete accessories.
Your purchase of the FunWater SUP gives more value to your money. Aside from the board, you will also get an adjustable aluminum paddle, coil leash, backpack, and three fins.
- Very light and wide design.
- With a maximum capacity of 330 pounds.
- Ideal for all skill levels including beginners and children.
- It comes with an additional layer of PVC for durability and stability.
- With removable fins and complete accessories.
- Easy to take anywhere, transportable, and easy to inflate and deflate.
- With a 30-day return policy and 1-year manufacturer warranty.
- Complaints with the paddle.
- Complaints that the pump doesn’t work.
How to Purchase the Best Inflatable Paddle Board
Whether you’re new to paddleboarding or you’re already enjoying the sport, it pays to learn how to buy a suitable, safe, and durable inflatable paddleboard. Here is a basic buying guide to find the best inflatable paddleboard.
Different paddleboard categories
If you’re new to this activity, it’s best to start with an all-around inflatable paddleboard or SUP (stand-up paddleboarding). A basic board will let you do all kinds of things and get you started on different kinds of paddleboarding.
If you have experienced paddleboarding or other water sports and you want to start learning how to go fast, a performance SUP would work great. Meanwhile, a stable inflatable SUP is best if you want to avoid falling and improve your confidence.
Paddleboard brand matters
Shopping for inflatable paddle boards according to brand helps you zero in on the exact board you’re looking for. However, there are some not-so-well-known brands that offer great quality boards. Don’t overlook these as you shop.
Just some of the popular brands to check out are Earth River, Red Paddle, Starboard, Naish, and NRS. You might think that popular paddleboard brands are costly and won’t work for people with a strict budget. Actually, some well-known brands sell quality, affordable SUP boards as well. You’ll likely find these boards on sale towards the end of the season.
Size and shape selection
A simple rule is followed when it comes to selecting the ideal paddleboard size: a larger paddler board user should use a larger board. However, the size of the paddleboard may also depend on the skill of the user. Take note that a longer paddleboard will glide more than a shortboard. A narrower board is quicker compared to a wider board.
A board with a wider tail will be more stable compared to one with a narrower tail. Paddleboards with a narrow tail will be able to turn quicker and thus, is better when doing all kinds of maneuvers.
Thicker paddleboards can carry more weight compared to thinner boards but, thinner boards are more stable compared to thicker boards when carrying the correct weight.
Type of materials
Paddleboards come in all sorts of materials and different layers of material. Boards with a single layer of material will be lighter and cheaper. Some with many layers are very rigid and heavy. You may find some boards with the word “fusion” which means that additional supports were included to reduce the weight but will still be very durable and stiff.
Rugged paddle boards come with a dual-layer with the second layer made from reinforced PVC material that is bonded to the primary layer. This type of SUP is more expensive owing to its high manufacturing costs. The additional layer makes the board more durable but with an extra 4 pounds of weight. This board can handle the extreme demands of paddling especially in rough and tough environments.
Paddleboard deck pad and riggings
The deck pad should be made from high-quality materials to provide the best and the most comfortable surface while you paddle. The thickness and the density of the deck pad material vary from one manufacturer to another. Some boards have a sticky, safe top to help you keep your balance while you ride. Some boards have a smoother top but are more durable than other types of boards.
Some high-end boards come with a kick tail and a raised back with an arch bar to keep your back foot flat on the surface. Also, some deck pads come with elastic ropes or bungee tie-downs so you can hold on to the board. These tie-downs can also carry the stuff you need on the trail.
Be careful not to choose paddle boards with unnecessary attachments since these will only add weight. You should be very careful with additional components as these can snag at your feet and legs as you move. Choose only components that you will need.
Deck riggings must be positioned correctly attached to stainless steel D-rings. The bungee cord layout should be well-designed and sensibly installed on the deck.
Finally, decks come in different colors and designs. If you have a specific color or style in mind, you’re likely going to find one from the many available from manufacturers and top brands.
Selecting the correct fin system
This type of fin gives paddleboards the versatility and high performance that you’re looking for. Most first-time buyers are not so keen on choosing the correct fins and usually make a huge mistake in the long run.
The right fin will help you become more agile. Most high-end boards have configurable and interchangeable fins along the side and center of the board. With all interchangeable fins, you can greatly improve your skills.
You can ride a paddleboard with just the center fins especially if you want a faster board. You can install a large center fin plus two smaller sides for lateral stability. This configuration can help you in high currents and during windy weather. For shallow waters, a short center fin or just the two sides to easily move through obstacles plus keep the board stable and agile. A Paddleboard with configurable fins is rare and costs a lot.
Meanwhile, boards with a permanent tri-fin system have three equally-sized durable fins. These fins are 4 inches each in-depth and are perfect when moving over rocks and on shallow water.
Basic fin setups on entry-level boards have two shallow side permanent fins and a large single fin on the center. Entry-level boards can move in basic water and wind conditions such as a calm lake. These won’t work on shallow water or in currents.
Beginners should choose paddle boards with complete accessories. These also give you more value for your purchase. The paddle must have a good and sturdy handle, convenient adjustment system, strong shaft, good blade design, and must have the correct weight.
Other important accessories to take note of are pumps, personal floatation device (PFD), leash, and carrying bag. The bag should be easy to carry around, waterproof, and puncture-proof.
These are the most frequently asked questions about inflatable paddleboards.
Are inflatable paddle boards the best for beginners?
Inflatable paddleboards are great for beginners who travel to different places to indulge in the sport. Inflatable boards are very durable and won’t easily scratch, bend or break when you drop them.
Are solid paddleboards better than inflatable ones?
Hard or solid paddle boards provide the best performance compared to inflatable boards. Solid boards are more agile, have enhanced glide, and are able to catch waves better than inflatable paddleboards.
How do you find the right paddle board according to your height?
When choosing the right paddleboard according to size, you must add around 9 to 10 inches to your height. You should also consider your weight when selecting the correct paddleboard.
How do you find the right paddle board according to your weight?
The right paddleboard according to your weight will depend on the width and the thickness of the board. For instance, riders who are 150 to 175 pounds should use a board with a width of 31 to 33 inches and a thickness of 5 inches. Those with 175 to 200 pounds weight should use a board with 32 to 34 inches width and 5 inches thickness.
How much weight can an inflatable paddle board carry?
Regular paddleboards can accommodate from 200 to 300 pounds. There are also paddleboards that can take as much as 500 pounds. A paddleboard can weigh 15 to 41+ pounds and the heavier the board is, the more weight it can take.
When it comes to the best inflatable paddleboard, it’s a tie between the SereneLife Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board and the Roc Inflatable Paddle Board. Both boards are made from top-quality PVC material that’s tough, reliable, and durable. The SereneLife SUP is one of the lightest boards with a wider design that will work for all types of riders. The Roc board weighs only 17 pounds and is 6 inches thick which holds up to 300 pounds.
You can use the SereneLife and Roc paddleboards in the ocean, on a lake, or on the river. Both come with bungee cord riggings to keep all your stuff safe. These inflatable paddle boards also come with complete accessories including a paddle, air pump, fins, safety leash, bag, and carrying a backpack.
Consider the SereneLife and Roc paddleboards if you’re looking for the best inflatable paddle board this year.