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How To Choose The Best Surfing Stand Up Paddle Board

Posted by Alex Clasper

The benefit of SUP surfing is that you get all the adrenaline of catching waves but with the additional help of a paddle to enhance balance and power in the water. If you’re looking to perfect your SUP surfing skills, no doubt you’ll need the best board to achieve this. So without further ado, these are 5 of the most important factors to consider when choosing the best surfing stand up paddle board:

Paddle Board Shape

One of the most important factors to consider when choosing a surf paddle board is the shape. Specialised SUP surf boards are shorter in length than regular paddle boards, and also have a lower volume and narrower tail. These features enhance speed and make the surfing SUP responsive, giving you more control in the waves. Red’s compact surfing sup, the 8’10” Compact Surf SUP, also has a rounded nose that helps to pop the board over white water. 

Fin Type

While the shape and length of the board are likely to be the first factors you look at, it’s also important to look at the fin type when choosing the best surfing stand up paddle board. The fin is important for helping to enhance control, traction and stability on the water. The twin click fins on our surf paddle board are removable and adjustable, making it easier to pack away for travel. In fact, our innovative inflatable compact surf SUP is incredibly easy to travel with as the whole board packs down to the size of a backpack.

Deck Design

One of the biggest challenges when paddling through the surf is staying on the board! That’s why the best surfing stand up paddle board will take the design of the deckpad into careful consideration. The texture and quality of the materials used to make the deck pad will make a big difference to the traction and comfort of the board underfoot. That’s why our high-quality deckpad includes various traction zones to keep you close to the board at all times. 

Materials - Solid Or Inflatable?

Is the best surfing stand up paddle board solid or inflatable? There isn’t a right or wrong answer to this, however inflatable paddle boards certainly have many advantages when it comes to taking on the surf. The softer landing is one distinct advantage alongside the portability of inflatable SUPs that makes it easy to travel and explore a range of new surfing locations. You can also be sure our boards are most definitely durable enough to take on the surf - we have our use of MSL technology to thank for this. 

The Right Accessories

Despite the very best intentions, you won’t get very far without the right accessories, namely your paddle and leash. SUP surfing requires even greater control over the board compared to normal paddling and your paddle itself will play an important role in this. Go for a shorter and/or lighter paddle like our Hybrid and Prime paddles as these will allow you to maintain the control needed to navigate more adventurous conditions. Where your leash is concerned, you will need a specialist surf leash rather than a standard coiled leash. This will ensure you stay safe and that your board doesn’t hit you if you end up in the water.

For more guidance on choosing the best surfing stand up paddle board for you please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our experienced team of paddle boarders at Red. In the meantime, for tips and advice on how to get into paddle board surfing, make sure to check out our beginner’s guide that includes useful safety tips and gear recommendations.