Paddle board shapes and sizes

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Various paddle board shapes and sizes affect the way your board moves on the water. Flat water cruising or racing, waves or currents, shape determines speed, maneuverability, and stability. Know what you want to do and choose the best board for the job.

The two most popular categories of boards: flat water and wave. Within these categories there are subtle and not-so subtle shape variations. What you choose is about you, and what you want to do. Since all boards handle differently based on your weight and ability, the best thing to do is choose your category and then get a demo of different brands within that category. 

Although major innovations is SUP design have been in construction, paddle board shapes have undergone some changes as board manufacturers hone their craft to develop boards that respond best to different water types. 

When faced with a showroom full of boards, it’s good to have an idea what shape works best for the kind of paddling you have in mind. Again, most SUPs purchased are used for flat water and fitness training, if you’re a beginner this is likely where you’ll start. The key - always to try before you buy.

The following descriptions will give you a good starting point when you’re faced with all those different board shapes. All categories are described, but not all variations within each category.


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Paddle board shapes and sizes for 
flat water

Touring and cruising 

    Touring and cruising SUP boards are designed for longer, more relaxed paddling trips on flatwater. Here are some of the key characteristics of touring and cruising SUP boards: Paddle board shapes and sizes:

  • Length: Touring and cruising SUP boards are typically longer than other types of SUP boards, ranging from 10 to 14 feet or more. This length provides increased stability and tracking, making them ideal for longer paddling trips.
  • Width: These boards are usually wider than other SUP board types, providing additional stability and making them more suitable for beginner or intermediate paddlers.
  • Shape: Touring and cruising SUP boards typically have a more pointed nose and a narrow tail, which helps them move through the water more efficiently and with less resistance.
  • Volume: These boards have a higher volume than other SUP board types, which allows them to carry more weight and gear for longer paddling trips.
  • Stability: While these boards are designed to be stable, they may not be as stable as other SUP board types due to their length and narrow shape. However, their increased length and tracking ability make them easier to control over longer distances.
  • Weight: Touring and cruising SUP boards are typically heavier than other SUP board types, due to their larger size and additional volume.
  • Materials: These boards are often constructed using more durable and high-quality materials, such as epoxy or carbon fiber, to ensure they can withstand the rigors of longer paddling trips.
  • Overall, touring and cruising SUP boards are designed for longer, more relaxed paddling trips on flatwater. Their length, width, shape, volume, stability, weight, and materials all work together to provide a comfortable and efficient paddling experience over longer distances.

LINK 1:57 min: http://youtu.be/LUj-9KsoKw8


Flat water racing 

    Racing SUP boards are designed for speed and efficiency, with a focus on performance. Here are some of the key characteristics of racing SUP boards:

  • Length: Racing SUP boards are longer than other SUP board types, typically ranging from 12'6" to 14' in length. This length provides increased speed and efficiency, making them ideal for racing.
  • Width: These boards are narrower than other SUP board types, providing less resistance and increased speed.
  • Shape: Racing SUP boards typically have a pointed nose and a narrow, rounded tail, which helps them move through the water with less resistance and more speed.
  • Volume: These boards have a lower volume than other SUP board types, which reduces weight and drag and makes them more suitable for speed and efficiency.
  • Stability: Racing SUP boards are less stable than other SUP board types, due to their narrow shape and low volume. This means they require more skill and balance to paddle effectively.
  • Weight: Racing SUP boards are typically lightweight, often constructed using high-tech materials such as carbon fiber, to reduce weight and increase speed.
  • Fin System: Racing SUP boards often feature a removable fin system, which allows the user to customize the board's performance to their specific needs and preferences.
  • Overall, racing paddle board shapes and sizes are designed for speed and efficiency, with a focus on performance over comfort. Their length, width, shape, volume, stability, weight, and fin system all work together to provide a fast and efficient paddling experience, making them ideal for competitive racing and speed-focused paddling activities.

LINK: http://www.legendssup.com/sup-board/sup-race-boards.html


Flat water multi fin all-round 

    A flat water multi-fin all-round SUP board is designed to provide stability and versatility in a variety of water conditions. Here are some of the key characteristics of this type of SUP board:

  • Length: Flat water multi-fin all-round SUP boards typically range in length from 10'6" to 12'6". This length provides stability and tracking ability in flat water, while still being maneuverable enough for recreational use.
  • Width: These boards are usually wider than racing SUP boards, providing additional stability and making them more suitable for beginner or intermediate paddlers.
  • Shape: Flat water multi-fin all-round SUP boards usually have a rounded nose and a wide, rounded tail, which helps to increase stability and maneuverability.
  • Volume: These boards have a higher volume than racing SUP boards, providing increased stability and the ability to carry more weight and gear for recreational use.
  • Stability: Flat water multi-fin all-round SUP boards are designed to be stable in a variety of water conditions, including calm lakes, rivers, and coastal waters.
  • Weight: These boards are usually heavier than racing SUP boards, due to their larger size and additional volume.
  • Fin System: Flat water multi-fin all-round SUP boards typically feature a multi-fin system, which allows the user to customize the board's performance to their specific needs and preferences.
  • Overall, flat water multi-fin all-round paddle board shapes and sizes are designed to provide stability and versatility in a variety of water conditions. Their length, width, shape, volume, stability, weight, and fin system all work together to provide a comfortable and efficient paddling experience for recreational use in flat water.

Stand up paddle boards for surfing

Paddle boards for surfing are designed to provide maneuverability, responsiveness, and agility in the waves. Here are some of the key characteristics of this type of SUP board:

  • Length: Surfing SUP boards are typically shorter than other SUP board types, ranging from 7' to 10' in length. This shorter length provides increased maneuverability and agility in the waves.
  • Width: These boards are narrower than other SUP board types, providing increased responsiveness and agility in the waves.
  • Shape: Surfing SUP boards typically have a pointed nose and a narrow, rounded tail, which helps them turn quickly and easily in the waves.
  • Volume: These boards have a lower volume than other SUP board types, which reduces weight and drag and makes them more suitable for maneuvering in the waves.
  • Stability: Surfing SUP boards are less stable than other SUP board types, due to their narrow shape and low volume. This means they require more skill and balance to paddle effectively in the waves.
  • Weight: Surfing SUP boards are typically lightweight, often constructed using high-tech materials such as carbon fiber, to reduce weight and increase maneuverability.
  • Fin System: Surfing SUP boards often feature a tri-fin or quad-fin system, which allows the user to customize the board's performance in the waves to their specific needs and preferences.

Overall, surfing paddle board shapes and sizes are designed to provide maneuverability, responsiveness, and agility in the waves, making them ideal for surfers looking to expand their skill set or for experienced paddle surfers. Their length, width, shape, volume, stability, weight, and fin system all work together to provide a fast and responsive paddling experience, making them ideal for riding waves and performing tricks in the surf.


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WAVE SHAPES

Surf

  • • riding swells (for aggressive beginner to expert)
  • • waist high waves (for aggressive intermediate to expert)
  • • big waves (for aggressive intermediate to expert)
  • • Nose - round
  • • Tail - varying but generally narrow
  • • Width - varying but towards narrow
  • • Length - usually shorter boards from 8 ft to 10 ft (there are exceptions)
  • • Stringer - more rocker (greater curve over the length of the board)


Downwind - down wind riding (for aggressive beginner to expert)

  • • Usually longer for stability at high speeds, narrow for speed and pointed nose to cut through swells and waves.


Wave all-round shapes - all-round from flat water to over-head waves (for intermediate to expert)

  • • Many variations


River surf

  • • Nose - round
  • • Tail - straight
  • • Width - varying
  • • Length - Short 
  • • Stringer - more rocker (greater curve over the length of the board)

LINK: http://www.legendssup.com/sup-board/sup-river-boards.html




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