What Size Paddle Board Do I Need?

Choosing the right size sup board can be a daunting task, especially if you are a beginner paddler. Paddle boards are of different shapes and sizes. Choosing the right one will make all the difference in your sup boarding endeavors. 

Here is a guide for the appropriate size paddle board. 

Paddle Board Dimensions

The board’s dimensions that you must know are:

  • Length-This is the paddle board measurement from the tip to the tail. 
  • Width- Side to side measurement of a board
  • Thickness- Top to the bottom distance of the board
  • Volume- the measurement of the board’s buoyancy in liters

What Size Paddle Board Do I Need for My Weight?

A very essential consideration to make when choosing a paddle board size is your weight. Weight and skill level usually determine how much the sup board volume should be. 

If your weight is less than 200lbs, a standard paddle board will work for you. A weight up to 235lbs needs a board with up to 175 liters of volume to ensure stability. 275 lbs. of weight need a board with at least 245L of volume. If you weigh over 300lbs, a board with more than 272L volumes will provide adequate stability.

A board with the wrong volume for your weight will be unstable, drag too much in the water and ride too slow. 

Beginner paddle boards

A beginner paddle board should be easy to ride. Ideal volumes for a beginner paddle are:

Inflatable paddle board volume: 220L-280L

Hard paddle board volume range: 170L-190L

Intermediate to advanced paddle boards

After paddle boarding for a considerable period, you can consider advancing to a board will less volume. Experienced paddlers usually prefer narrow sup boards due to their speed. 

Ideal sup sizes for this are:

Inflatable SUPs: 200-250L, 10′-12’6 long, 30″-33″ wide

Hard/ Epoxy SUPs: 165-195L, 10’-12’6 long, 29-32 wide

What Length should the paddle be?

The popular paddle length is between 10′ -11′ and is fitting for an all round sup. Longer paddle boards are faster, while shorter ones are more maneuverable and responsive. 

Paddle boards under 10 feet are

  • Best for surfing
  • Have a planning hull
  • Good for kids 13 yrs. old or younger

Paddle boards 11 feet and under are

  • Suitable for all round use
  • Great for recreational purposes, SUP yoga, and fishing.
  • Commonly have planing hulls, some have displacement hulls

Paddle boards 12 feet and above

  • Great for SUP touring and racing
  • Mostly have displacement hulls
  • They stay straight in water for longer.

How Wide Should the Paddle Board Be?

For beginners, the board should have a 32-34-inch width. Advanced paddlers can use a 30-32-inch-wide board. Multi-person paddleboards have 42-56-inch width because they are designed for 4-7 riders every time. 

How Thick Should the Paddle Be?

All inflatable sups are 6 inches thick, while hard epoxy sups are 4 inches thick. This makes inflatable sup more stable than a hard one. 

Final Thoughts

Knowledge of the right size paddle board will help you get a board that will serve you for a long time. It should not be a daunting task anymore if you follow these guidelines. 

Find more information, about SUP Paddles.