Inflatable Paddle Boards (iSUP)
An inflatable paddle board is designed with a PVC outer covering and drop stitch construction that creates a core of air. These boards are inflated with a pump to a standard 12 to 15 PSI and become extremely rigid when filled.
Inflatable paddle boards are highly versatile, and can be used in any way that a hard board can be used.Additionally, they are more durable than hard boards, and can withstand more abuse, such as bumps and drops without becoming damaged or scratched.Inflatable boards are the best choice for white water boarding or navigating rocky water-ways, since they can stand up to the collisions much better than a hard board.The difference in performance with an inflatable board vs hard board is only marginal at best when used casually. However, inflatable SUP’s seem to be the more popular choice. For instance, water yoga enthusiasts prefer inflatables over their hard-board counterparts.The price tag of inflatables is a big draw for the casual boarder. These boards tend to have the same high quality and usefulness as a hard board, but usually at a lower price. Your total purchase price usually includes an air pump and a carry bag.These boards will retain their value for resale as they are less likely to be damaged, dinged or scratched by normal usage. The number one attraction of inflatable boards, though, is portability.And, when comparing inflatable vs rigid boards, there’s no competition. The inflatable paddle board blows the hard version out the water when it comes to ease of transport.You don’t need a specialized, expensive roof rack addition to your car or truck; inflatable rafts can be rolled up to the size of a sleeping bag and carried in the back seat or trunk of any car when deflated.These can be transported in your luggage and some can even be transported in a back pack.Avid SUP enthusiasts love the ease of carrying their inflatable boards down trails to lakes and rivers, or across the beach to the water. Most of the inflatable board carrying cases feature back pack straps to make carrying it even easier.Additionally, when deflated and stored in their carrying cases, inflatable boards can travel with you to any worldwide destination. When it comes to inflatable paddle board vs rigid board storage, the inflatable SUP is the clear winner.When deflated, these boards can be stored away safely in the attic, garage, closet, or even under the bed or in a drawer. This makes them an especially attractive choice to those who live in apartments or small houses without much storage space. The downside to owning an inflatable paddle board vs hard board is that you do need to take the time to inflate the board before paddling, whereas the hard board is a load and go option.With an electric pump, inflating the board will take anywhere between thirty seconds to about one minute to fully inflate, and a hand pump may take as long as five to twenty-five minutes.The inflatable board may be more durable than a hard board because it is made of military grade materials, but it can be punctured by sharp nails.They also need to be stored away from sunlight and heat, as these can compromise the integrity of the material.Some users have also reported that their iSUP became slightly less rigid when used in extreme cold or icy waters due to a loss in air pressure, but this is a complication that is rare and only occurring in extreme temperatures.