How to choose an inflatable Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) for Canadians


Maneuvering stand-up inflatable paddle boards on the sea or doing yoga on a sup board in the quiet lakes are among the most popular activities today.

It is considered a pretty adventurous sport, but it brings pleasant feelings when participating. 

So, how to choose a stand-up paddle board (SUP) in Canada?

This article will provide Canadians with information about how to decide on the most appropriate boards and for using them most effectively.


Types of stand up paddle boards (SUP)

Recently, many stand-up paddle boards (SUP) have been used, and they are incredibly diverse for various sorts of sports. However, they are classified based on the following criterion:


Classification based on stand-up paddle design on its body part

  • Planing Hull: Its body is designed in a flat and wide pattern to float on the water and be flexible for use effortlessly. This kind of paddle is suitable for beginners in activities such as surfing, doing yoga, or rowing for relaxation
.SUP Planning Hull
SUP Planing Hull

  • Displacement Hull: This board has a pointed front bow similar to a kayak or canoe. In particular, the kayak's bow or the canoe is designed like that with the role of turning the water to two sides to help the board move smoother and faster on the water. Based on that advantage, you don't need to use too much force to paddle so that they can take you a much longer distance at a faster speed. This type of board is frequently used for SUP travel/camping, rowing as an exercise, and SUP racing.


SUP displacement hull

 SUP Displacement Hull


Classification: Solid vs. Inflatable

  • Solid SUP board: This sort of SUP is made of various materials. As a result, they are sold at different cost levels. If you're in a city then getting them will bring the price down as this can rack up when shipping is totalled outside of the city. Mainly, with medium weighted ones, their cores are constructed of EPS foam, and their covering parts are wrapped with fiberglass and epoxy plastic; their price is reasonable. If they are covered with carbon fiber, the weight of the boards thereby is lighter and stiffer. However, they are more expensive than other types. There are also some sorts that are covered with plastic with a lower price, but it has a larger weight, and its quality of use is not as high. In addition, some kinds of SUP are made of materials combined with wood to improve the product's aesthetics.
  • Inflatable SUP board: Usually the outer part is made from durable and heavy duty PVC with a seam creating a paddle board with a straight and hollow shape in the middle that generates an inner air core. Some companies will advertise military grade PVC - we'd love to know which military that is :) You need to use a pump to push the air into the board to use it. Most boards are designed to inflate at 12–15 pounds/inch, however there are many boards that can go higher. They are considerably sturdy and are safe to maneuver. Moreover, it is not only convenient for you to store neatly after use, but it also weighs in with a more affordable price. As a result, it is favored for selection by many people. If you're looking for mobility then throwing a deflated board in your backpack and walking is easier than lugging a solid board. If you are low on space, that would be another strong selling point of getting an inflatable. 

    Inflatable SUP

    Zray Inflatable SUP


    Some criteria you need to consider before choosing to purchase an inflatable SUP

    When buying a stand-up paddle board (SUP), the following factors are worth weighing up.


    Size board table

    The below table is the popular size chart currently widely applied to design the inflatable SUPs:

    SUP Size Table

    Keep in mind all of our boards have their specifications on their respective pages. The above is simply an idea or guide. 


    Different fin systems

    Fins are important! No fin and your plans for getting across the lake might be fin-ito - pun intended. The fin on a stand-up paddle board helps with stability, speed and direction. Without it, you'll be working much harder and find that you may be going in circles... literally. The following are some popular SUP fin configurations:


    Paddle fin systems

    Paddle fin system


    • Single Fin: Sometimes with a single fin, it will sit in a channel and slide back and forth. 
    • 3-fin system: This is sometimes known as a thruster. 3 fins can give more balance for activities such as surfing. In a 3 fin system, they are usually the same size. 
    • 2 + 1 fin system: This type has a large main fin and two smaller secondary fins on two sides. This sort is suitable for surfing.
    • Quad Fin System: This type has four small-sized and equal fins. This design helps increase movement and speed when surfing.

    You'll notice on boards that some have detachable fins and some are fixed. Fixed can be good when you want to remove a step of work, that is, adding the fins on, but just be mindful to try and not bend them too much when putting your board away. A popular fin, that we have on our Yoga boards, is the American fin box. It has a lock system that is quite popular, it's a standardized fin so finding replacement pieces online is quite easy. 


    SUP floor mats

    When choosing to purchase an inflatable SUP, it is also necessary for you to consider the pattern of the floor mat. At present, there are a variety of patterns and materials used for producing them. We pay close attention to designs that pass our eye test and aim to stock the designs that are most popular. Most boards have an EVA padding which is like a soft non-slip foam. If you're looking for an extra feature, our Zray boards have a little ledge at the back which allows you to pivot on the water faster. This is a heightened foam section which you can lean on to lift the front of the board out of the water and pivot. 


    SUP floor mats

    SUP floor mats

    Places for buying stand up paddle boards (SUP)

    Currently, many addresses sell stand-up paddle boards (SUP) in Canada so it's pretty easy for Canadians to get supply. We have quite a wide range of stock which can be shipped quite fast from our Ontario based fulfillment. For a high-quality and good value Inflatable SUP, you should visit the Sup Outlet. On this website, you can find many reviews on the boards that we offer. We truly believe in protecting the integrity of reviews so if something is not right, we want to hear it. We welcome honest feedback always, through phone, chat or email. 

    >> Check out TheSupOutlet best collection All-Around SUP right here.


    Which inflatable SUP is right for you?

    That's the big question here. Get started by following the instructions below:

    Choose the length of the SUP that is suitable for your age, height, and use purposes. In particular, they are:

    • Short SUP under 10': These are usually better choices for younger paddlers.
    • SUP length from 10' to 12': This type is suitable for Yoga SUP.
    • SUP Length 12'6" or more: Suitable for fast rowing and long-distance travel.
    SUP Length comparision

    Choose the reasonable length of SUP


    Choose an inflatable SUP with an appropriate width to maximize the usable surface area based on your needs. For instance:

    • SUP width over 31 inches: Suitable for long distances with lots of gear or for doing yoga SUP.
    • SUP under 31 inches wide: Right for riders or surfers because of the ability to go at faster speeds.

    Ultimately, choose a SUP that fits your needs, if you want to go far and fast, look at touring boards. If you want to chill and do Yoga, refer to our chart. When in doubt, give us a shout. 


    Choose the Inflatable SUP whose volume is required to be twice your bodyweight

    Choose the Inflatable SUP whose volume is required to be twice your bodyweight


    When choosing the right board for you, look at the fins, specifications, and design. Feel free to ask us questions. If you aren't happy with any purchase, we have you covered with our 30 day money back guarantee and easy returns (we'll send you a label and organize the pick up). Thanks for reading, see you on the next blog.


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