The 8 Best Paddleboard Brands to Buy 2021

The stand-up paddleboard (SUP) has become popular in the past decade or so, as more people are taking to the water on boards in lakes and rivers. Without waves, you would not expect to see people on boards out in the water, but stand-up paddleboarding does not need waves or current or anything else. All you need is a board and a paddle. But what kind of board should you choose?

As a paddleboarder, you have a wide variety of paddleboard brands to explore. There are dozens, if not hundreds, of brands on the market. So, choosing the best brand for you depends on what type of paddling you will be doing. We’ll explore the top brands and how they’re best used below.

Choosing the Right Board for You

Whether you are a new paddleboarder or a seasoned expert, it can be difficult to decide on a brand of board to choose from. With so many choices on the market and so many varieties of boards, you may have a hard time figuring out what to get. We want to help you out. 

The Different Types of Paddleboards

There are also two different types of paddleboards: solid core boards and inflatable boards. 

  • The solid core board is typically a foam core covered with carbon fibers, fiberglass, or wood veneer. Epoxy resin may also be used on top for a stronger board. 
  • Inflatable boards are built from a core of thousands of threads covered with strong layers of polyvinyl chloride (PVC). 

In addition, there are various styles of paddleboards depending on the sport you are into. Some variations of board types include:

  • Flat water paddling
  • Whitewater paddling
  • Touring
  • Yoga
  • Paddle surfing
  • Racing
  • Wind surfing

Best Premium Stand-Up Paddleboard Brands

Because there are so many brands and styles on the market, it can be difficult to decide which board is right for you. We are going to look at the top eight best paddleboard brands on the market to help save you time. 

The first four are premium boards that offer more quality:

iRocker Paddleboards

The iRocker inflatable paddleboards come in four different styles and several different sizes. They range in price from just under $500 to just over $1,000. Each one comes with these accessories: 

  • 10-foot ankle leash with a key pocket 
  • D-Rings
  • Hand pump 
  • Air hose
  • Carbon ultralight paddle 
  • Backpack

The Nautical paddleboard 10’ 6” is a great board for beginners. It is a dual-use inflatable board that comes in two sizes with the following features:

Size10-feet 6-inches11-feet 6-inches
Width32 inches 32 inches 
ThicknessSix inches Six inches 
Tail width16 inches16 inches
Board weight20 pounds22 pounds
Weight in the bag29 pounds 31 pounds 
Volume221 L 221 L

The Blackfin paddleboard lineup has three different models that come in different sizes. Carlo briefly owned the XL model, and wrote about it here. It is wider for more stability and great for bigger riders or yoga enthusiasts. Their features include the following:

ModelBlackfin Model XBlackfin Model XLBlackfin Model V
Size10 feet six inches11 feet six inches12 feet six inches
Width35 inches 34 inches 32 inches
ThicknessSix inches Six inches Six inches
Tail width19 inches18 inches17 inches
Board weight27 pounds29 pounds30 pounds
Weight in the bag37 pounds 39 pounds 40 pounds
Volume237 L 259 L259 L

The iRocker 11’ All Around paddleboard is my top choice from this brand. It also has the widest range of color schemes. We will receive one for review soon, as they are now back in stock. Note we pay for our review boards, they aren’t provided for free. It will accommodate a wide range of rider size and abilities. The 10’ board It is best for riders under 5’10”. Both have the following features:

Size10 foot 11 foot 
Width32 inches 32 inches 
ThicknessSix inches Six inches 
Tail width16 inches16 inches
Board weight24 pounds26 pounds
Weight in the bag36 pounds 36 pounds 
Volume221 L 246 L 

There are two other iRocker paddleboards, which include the Cruiser and the Sport. Carlo’s favorite board, which he purchased and wrote about previously, is the Cruiser.

The Sport is excellent in any type of water and best for those who already have some SUP experience. The Cruiser has an extra wide tail for better stability and is perfect for beginners. They have the following features:

ModelCruiserSport
Size10 feet six inches11 feet 
Width33 inches 31 inches 
ThicknessSix inches Six inches 
Tail width22 inches12 inches
Board weight25 pounds25 pounds
Weight in the bag35 pounds 35 pounds 
Volume234 L 231 L

RedPaddle Company

The RedPaddle Company specializes in inflatable paddleboards. These boards are easy to take wherever you want to go even if you drive a small vehicle or bike. Each one of the RedPaddle SUPs come with all you need to get right into the water. These accessories include:

  • Double action pump
  • Air hose
  • Fins
  • Patch kit
  • Cell phone holder
  • All-Terrain backpack

RedPaddle Company has nine different styles of inflatable boards in 27 different types. From junior boards to the massive 22-foot Dragon, this company has the best selection to choose from. 

All Round SUPs are great for all types of paddling. Each of them are made with monocoque structural laminate (MSL) construction to make them especially durable and they have rocker stiffening system (RSS) battens for maximum stiffness, which is perfect for beginners as well as experienced paddlers. Here are the specs for each of these models:

ModelCompactRide MSLRide MSL/SERide MSLXL Ride
Length9 feet 6 inches9 feet 8 inches10 feet 6 inches10 feet 8 inches17 feet
Width32 inches31 inches32 inches34 inches60 inches
Thickness3.7 inches3.93 inches4.7 inches4.7 inches8 inches
Weight16.3 pounds20 pounds22 pounds23 pounds45.2 pounds
Volume120 L150 L150 L150 L160 L

Touring Paddleboards are made for the pro boarders who want lots of features and top performance. These paddleboards are made for paddlers who want to explore. Whether you are going on a weekend trip or just want to spend a few hours on the lake, the touring paddleboards have something for everyone. Here are the important features and specs of the touring boards.

ModelCompactSport TouringSport/Sport SESportVoyagerVoyager+Voyager Tandem
Length11 feet11 feet 11 feet 3 inches12 feet 6 inches12 feet 6 inches13 feet 2 inches15 feet
Width32 inches30 inches32 inches30 inches32 inches30 inches34 inches
Thickness4.7 inches4.7 inches4.7 inches4.7 inches4.7 inches4.7 inches8 inches
Weight18.6 pounds21.3 pounds22 pounds23.5 pounds24.2 pounds25.3 pounds38.14 pounds
Volume 259 L150 L150 L150 L150 L150 L160 L

Surf Stand Up Paddleboards are tougher and stiffer for surfing the waves. Although traditional surfboards are typically made of solid core, having an inflatable paddleboard designed for surfing gives you the freedom to get in the surf anywhere. 

The Whip has a removable and adjustable fin with a rounded nose and a narrow tail, giving you the best surf possible with an inflatable board. Check out the features of the Whip paddleboard:

ModelWhip
Length8 feet 10 inches
Width29 inches
Thickness3.9 inches
Weight16.3 pounds
Volume150 L

Race SUPs have the special monocoque structural laminate detail to give them the extra stiffness and agility along with solid construction for durability. The forward flex control is patented by RedPaddle Company to remove the flex that increases speed. 

The Tec air manufacturing system makes these boards stiffer and faster than any other racing paddleboards on the market. RedPaddle has several models to choose from with a variety of specs:

ModelMax Race Kids SUPElite RacingElite Racing 140×25Elite Racing 140×27
Length10 feet 6 inches12 feet 6 inches14 feet 14 feet
Width25 inches26 inches25 inches27 inches
Thickness4.7 inches5.9 inches5.9 inches4.7 inches
Weight14.5 pounds21.9 pounds22.7 pounds23.5 pounds
Volume150 L150 L150 L150 L

Yoga Paddleboards are made extra wide to provide you with enough room to strike a pose. Also, the six inches of height keeps most of the water off the board so you can stay relatively dry during your session. RedPaddle Company has one type of yoga paddleboard, which has some great features. Carlo named their Activ Yoga one of his top yoga boards in his paddle board yoga post.

ModelActiv Yoga
Length10 feet 8 inches
Width34 inches
Thickness6 inches
Weight24.2 pounds
Volume150 L

Junior Paddleboards are built smaller and narrower so the younger paddlers can handle them better. The same MSL and Tec Air process makes these boards just as smooth-riding and more stable in a smaller size. There are two models of junior paddleboards. Here are the important features. 

ModelSnapperMax Race Kids SUP
Length9 feet 4 inches10 feet 6 inches
Width24 inches25 inches
Thickness4.7 inches4.7 inches
Weight13.7 pounds14.5 pounds
Volume150 L150 L

White Water SUPs are extra light, more responsive, and tougher than the rest to get you through the rapids. RedPaddle Company knows the excitement whitewater paddling can bring. They gave their Wild MSL Whitewater paddleboard extra durability and a quad-iFin setup, so you don’t get the extra bumps from three-fin setups when going over the rocks. 

The fins are low-profile to minimize hang-ups in the shallows and they are adjustable for different water conditions. Here’s the specs on the Wild: 

ModelWild MSL Whitewater
Length9 feet 6 inches
Width34 inches
Thickness4.7 inches
Weight27.7 pounds
Volume150 L

Wind Surf Boards are made with a built-in mast foot and Sure-Fin dagger removable fin system so you can convert them from a paddleboard to a windsurfer. The Windsurf is perfect for beginners and seasoned windsurfers alike. Grab one of the Ride Rigs for your Windsurf for a lightweight rig that fits like a dream. The specs for the Windsurf are listed below:

ModelWindsurf
Length10 feet 7 inches
Width33 inches
Thickness3.9 inches
Weight23.3 pounds
Volume150 L

Multi-Person Paddleboards range from a two-person board to a massive 17-foot XL with a 60-inch deck for up to eight people. Even the dog can fit on board. These huge paddleboards range from 12 to 22 feet long with a variety of features.

ModelMulti-Person Ride LVoyager TandemXL RideDragon
Length14 feet15 feet17 feet22 feet
Width47 inches34 inches60 inches34 inches
Thickness8 inches8 inches8 inches8 inches
Weight44.9 pounds38.14 pounds45.2 pounds51 pounds
Volume 160 L160 L160 L170 L

Bluefin

The Bluefin name in paddleboards is known worldwide for its precision and stability. They also have a nice variety of boards including six different models to choose from. All of their paddleboards come with several accessories such as:

  • Triple action pump
  • Double paddle
  • Coiled ankle leash
  • D-Rings
  • Air hose
  • Kayak seat
  • Extra fin
  • Backpack

Also, these paddleboards come with conversion kits so you can change your SUP into a kayak. Carlo named the Bluefin Aura Fit as one of his top paddle boards for yoga in this post. In addition, I have a Cruise Carbon due here shortly for review and as my personal paddle board. Carlo wrote about Bluefin here. Here are some of the main features of all the Bluefin models.

ModelCruise/Cruise CarbonCruise JuniorSprintAura FitVoyageMammoth
Length10 feet 8 inches8 feet14 feet10 feet 8 inches10 feet 10 inches18 feet
Width32.3 inches29.1 inches30.3 inches35.8 inches38 inches60 inches
Thickness6.3 inches5.1 inches6.3 inches5.9 inches6 inches8 inches
Weight26 pounds24 pounds27 pounds24.2 pounds25.3 pounds59.5 pounds
Volume 111 L111 L111 L111 L111 L111 L

Nixy Sports

Note the Nixy boards are out of stock until the new 2021 line arrives Dec. 2020. Make your holiday plans to check back with AquaSportsPlanet for updates on their new boards.

Nixy is a family-owned company that makes one thing – paddleboards. They do one thing and they do it well. And their customer service is awesome too. Even though these are listed in the premium section, the prices are all under $1,000. All Nixy paddleboards come with a variety of accessories, including:

  • Coiled ankle leash
  • Adjustable fiberglass paddle
  • Triple action double chamber pump
  • Air hose
  • Premium wheeled backpack
  • Repair kit

Nixy Sports has five models to choose from. They each come in several colors and are warrantied for two years. Here are the features for each of these paddleboards.

ModelNewport G3 All AroundNewport G3 All Around PalmHuntington G3 CompactVenice G3 CruiserManhattan G3 TouringMammoth
Length10 feet 6 inches10 feet 6 inch9 feet 6 inches10 feet 6 inches12 feet 6 inches18 feet
Width33 inches33 inches32 inches34 inches30 inches60 inches
Thickness6 inches6 inches6 inches6 inches6 inches8 inches
Weight23 pounds30 pounds17 pounds23 pounds22 pounds59.5 pounds
Volume300 L300 L250 L350 L335 L111 L

Best Economy Stand-Up Paddleboard Brands 

You do not have to spend a ton of money to get out on the water. Some of the paddleboards we found cost as little as $250 and they do not scrimp on the quality either. They even come with the same or similar accessory packages. There is a paddleboard for every budget. 

Here are four of the top economy stand-up paddleboard brands:

Connelly

Connelly has been crafting stand up paddleboards for more than 50 years and are known for their economic prices as well as their quality. They have both inflatable and solid SUPs to choose from in 10 different models. The prices for Connelly boards range from about $600 to over $1,000. The Connelly Nava is one of three top paddle boards for yoga as covered in Carlo’s paddle board yoga article. These are some of the main features:

ModelRocket Solid CoreClassicSolid CoreHighlineSolid CoreEcho Solid CoreSofty 3D Solid CoreDenali InflatableTahoe InflatableDakota InflatableDrifter InflatableNava Inflatable
Length11 feet 6 inches11 feet 6 inches11 feet 6 inches10 feet 6 inches11 feet 6 inches12 feet 6 inches10 feet 6 inches10 feet 6 inches10 feet 9 feet 6 inches
Width29.5 inches33 inches33 inches32 inches33 inches32 inches32 inches33.5 inches30 inches35.5 inches
Thickness6 inches6 inches6 inches6 inches6 inches6 inches6 inches6 inches6 inches6 inches
Weight31 pounds30.5 pounds32.5 pounds34 pounds30 pounds23 pounds21.4 pounds18 pounds16 pounds20 pounds
Volume255 L220 L240 L190 L250 L330 L290 L265 L185 L355 L

Decathlon

With just four boards to choose from, this economical company may not have the most variety, but you can definitely find something that you can afford. From under $250 to under $850, there is something for every budget at Decathlon. And each board comes with a backpack and pump. Here are some of the specs for the Decathlon SUPs:

ModelTouringTouring 10Touring 11Touring X500 Tandem
Length9 feet10 feet11 feet15 feet
Width29 inches32 inches36 inches35 inches
Thickness5 inches5 inches6 inches6 inches
Weight15.5 pounds19.8 pounds23.1 pounds33 pounds
Volume197 L244 L335 L449 L

Serene Life (Amazon Store)

Serene Life is another economical choice for inflatable paddleboards. For around $400, you can get one of their two styles of paddleboards. These are high-quality boards for a nice price, and they come with all the accessories you need to get in the water right away. They both include:

  • An ankle leash
  • Pump
  • Air hose
  • Adjustable paddle
  • Extra fins
  • Backpack
  • Repair kit

These are the only boards in this article sold on Amazon. Both are available in multiple color schemes. Each of the two models of inflatable paddleboards from Serene Life has its own set of specs:

ModelThunder WaveFree-Flow
Length10 feet10 feet 5 inches
Width30 inches30 inches
Thickness6 inches6 inches
Weight19.6 pounds20.4 pounds
Volume150 L150 L

Gili Sports

For less than you would think, Gili can put anyone in the paddleboard of their dreams. And what is even better is that part of every purchase goes to saving endangered species, reefs, and sea creatures. All of their boards are made with premium PVC material for strength and have an accessory package that includes:

  • 10-foot coiled ankle leash
  • Aluminum travel paddle
  • Two-stage hand pump
  • Snap-in center fin
  • A high quality backpack 

With four models to choose from, in several different colors, you will be sure to find what you are looking for. And you’ll find it for less than $800, Here are the specs:

ModelAir SupAdventure SUPMeno SUPKomodo SUP
Length10 feet 6 inches11/12 feet10/11 feet 6 inches10 feet 6 inches
Width31 inches32 inches35 inches33 inches
Thickness6 inches6 inches6 inches6 inches
Weight19 pounds23/24 pounds23/24 pounds21 pounds
Volume225 L238/272 L245/270 L225 L

Choosing the Right Paddleboard for Your Needs

Are you a racer or a surfer? Maybe you enjoy windsurfing? Yogis enjoy paddleboards as well. Believe it or not, you can do just about anything on a paddleboard. Whether you are planning to do some fishing on the lake or hanging ten in the ocean, there is a paddleboard that is perfect for you. 

Flat Water Paddling

Any of the all-around paddleboards on the list are good for many types of paddleboarding. Fishing or paddling on flat water is easy on the all-around boards. You can take them in any type of water and since they come in many different lengths and widths, they are great for all types of paddling. The all-around paddleboards on this list include:

  • Either of the iRocker All Around paddleboards
  • Any of RedPaddle Company’s Ride MSL paddleboards
  • All of the Bluefin Cruise paddleboards
  • The Nixy Newport G3 All Around paddleboard
  • Connelly Classic or Tahoe paddleboard
  • Either of the Serene Life paddleboards
  • Any of the Gili Sport paddleboards

Touring

For exploring, any touring paddleboard is a good choice. 

These are made with a stiffer build and enhanced stability as well as a profiled nose for high-speed cruising. If you like to glide along and go for long-distance rides, the touring paddleboard is the one you need. Some of the touring paddleboards on the list include:

  • Any of the iRocker Nautical paddleboards
  • RedPaddle Sport, Voyager, or Touring paddleboards
  • Either of the Bluefin Sprint paddleboards
  • The Nixy Manhattan G3 Touring paddleboard
  • The Connelly Rocket or Denali paddleboards
  • Any of the Decathlon paddleboards
  • Gili Sports Adventure, Meno, or Komodo paddleboards

Surfing 

If you like to surf, you need a board that is tougher and stiffer for rough surf. Most surf paddleboards have a removable and adjustable fin, a narrow tail, and a rounded nose. Some of the best surf paddleboards on the list include:

  • The iRocker Sport paddleboard
  • RedPaddle Whip paddleboard
  • Bluefin Voyage paddleboard
  • Nixy Venice Cruiser paddleboard
  • The Connelly Dakota, Drifter, or Echo paddleboard

Racing

For those who like to race or to just go fast, racing paddleboards are made with a special stiffening process as well as RSS stiffening battens to cut through the water with ease. 

They are also made lighter than other paddleboards so you can get that extra edge for racing. Here are the paddleboards on the list that are made for racing:

  • Either of the iRocker Blackfin paddleboards
  • All seven of the RedPaddle Company racing paddleboards
  • The Bluefin Sprint Carbon paddleboard
  • The Nixy Manhattan G3 Touring paddleboard
  • The Connelly Highline paddleboard

Yoga

When you want to get out on the lake and relax, try some yoga on one of the yoga paddleboards. Stretching and posing are easier on the extra wide boards and they are thicker than other boards to help keep you dry while practicing your yoga poses. Here are some of the yoga paddleboards on the list: 

  • The RedPaddle Company Activ Yoga paddleboard
  • The Bluefin Aura Fit Yoga paddleboard
  • The Connelly Nava Yoga paddleboard
  • Either of the Serene Life paddleboards
  • Gili Sports Komodo, Meno, or Air paddleboards

Whitewater Paddling

Those who like adventure and have a bit of a wild streak can really appreciate a good whitewater paddleboard. The only one on this list is the Wild MSL Whitewater from RedPaddle Company. It is built for durability and has high sides for fast river flow. It also resists rock bumping with the quad-iFin setup. 

Wind Surfing

Another exciting paddleboard sport, wind surfing is a fantastic way to feel the wind in your hair and enjoy the speed of the air. The Windsurf from RedPaddle Company is the only one on the list that is made for windsurfing. 

It has a versatile setup and when you partner it with one of the RedPaddle Company Ride Rigs, you can get out there and enjoy the wind and surf at the same time. 

Wrapping it Up

Whichever paddleboard you choose, make sure it is right for your paddling needs. 

Whether it is solid core or inflatable, and regardless of whether you want to surf or race, you are sure to have a blast on one of these paddleboards. 

From the premium high-dollar RedPaddle Company paddleboards to the economical Gili Sports paddleboard, there is something for everyone on this list. 

The most important this is to choose one, get out there, stay safe and have fun!


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Tim Conner, M.D.

Tim Conner, M.D. started boating in 1974. He has been involved in recreational boating continuously since then. Dr. Conner has been active in boating and watersports safety education for decades. He rode his first jet ski in 1997, and rejoined the personal watercraft arena in 2012 with a Sea-Doo GTX 155, followed by 2 supercharged SeaDoos. Scuba certification came in 1988, and he and the family have traveled the world snorkeling and scuba diving for decades. The family has recently taken up paddle boarding. Click the photo for a lot more.

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