13 Mar Best Paddle Boards For Beginners
I’ve recently discovered a passion for paddle boarding, also commonly called SUP (Stand Up Paddle Boarding). And maybe like you I wondered what is the best paddle board for beginners? At first I thought that all the boards were pretty much the same. So you only needed to pick one and you’d be ready to glide out into the sunset. Unfortunately I was dead wrong! There are quite a few variations and can make a big difference depending on your size, skill level, and location. We won’t get into all the details about the variations of paddle boards in this post. Check out my posts How to Choose a Stand Up Paddle Board and What Size Paddle Board Do I Need for more info on the perfect board for you.
For most beginners that are barely starting out you are going to want a wide set board that is at least 31 inches in width and around 10 feet long. While shorter boards do allow for more maneuverability, big boards provide extra stability and keep you out of the water until you can get your sea legs. Inflatable or foam boards are also highly recommended.
Top 3 Best Paddle Boards for Beginners
The Isle Soft Top Classic is the perfect example of what to look for as a beginner. I like it primarily because it has all the right features of a beginner board.
It is made up of a sturdy tri-wood inlay with a soft foam outer layer which make the board resilient enough to take a beating under any circumstance and won’t bend in the middle like many inflatable stand up paddle boards. It’s hard polyethylene plastic bottom provides a super smooth glide across the surface so you don’t tire yourself out as easily.
The board rides high in the water to keep your feet out of the surf, assuming you want to. Perfect for SUP riders up to 360 lbs and has plenty of open space for yogi lovers wanting to practice their paddle board yoga. Click here to see a demonstration video of the ISLE Soft Top Classic SUP.
Fan of the show Shark Tank? If not that’s okay me either. But one of the great things that has come from the show is the Tower Adventurer SUP and eventually the Adventurer 2. According to the show Mark Cuban personally invested $150K to help bring new life to this company. Now Just because Mark thinks the company is a good investment doesn’t mean the board is great right? Well the board is great too.
The Adventurer and Adventurer 2 boast to be extremely resilient and rigid for inflatable SUP’s. There are even pictures of them standing on the paddle boards in between two objects and to board continues to hold it’s shape. That isn’t typical with most inflatable paddle boards which will bow in the center as you paddle across the water. The image of Capt. Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean sailing his progressively sinking ship into dock keeps replaying in my mind.
Additionally Tower hangs their hat on their direct to consumer business model which keeps your cost down on a great SUP. We also like this board because of it’s portability and easy storage. You won’t always want or be able to throw your board on top of your car and this makes it great to take it anywhere. All around great portable board at a decent price point.
Obviously this board isn’t our first or even second choice. Much like Tower’s Adventurer 2, we really like the rigidity of the board. It’s holds it’s shape and has plenty of space for paddle board yoga or to bring along a fury companion as you explore the open water.
The grab handle in the middle of the board is great for carrying the board from the car out to the beach and there are several hooks for leashes or to strap down additional carry items. With a price point under $500 there is a lot to be excited about with this board. The only common complaint is that the feel of the board is cheap and may not have the same quality feel as other SUP’s. However it is still more than functional and great to get started with.