Best Paddle Board for the Money: Are you looking for a beginner stand up paddle board? In this post, I’ll show you the best paddle board for the money any beginner can pick…
We know that choosing the best beginner stand up paddle board is a big step and often times having the right gear can be just as important as the board you are riding, I have taken time to compile the following sup reviews for beginners.
There a lot of different recommendations out there regarding what is the right SUP board for a beginner. For someone just getting into the sport of stand up paddle boarding, it all boils down to one thing: staying on the board.
If you can’t stay on the paddle board as a beginner you will not enjoy the experience and will probably give it up.
So, What is the Best Paddle Board for the Money?
With the rapid growth in popularity of paddleboarding, a very important question comes up: What is the best paddle board for the money?
In this post, I’m going to point you to the right direction and ensure your hands on the best SUP for the money… so sit tight…
Ladies and gentlemen, the best stand paddle board for the money is the Tower Paddle Boards Adventurer Inflatable 9’10” SUP Package.
The highly durable SUP (made from Military grade PVC material) is perfect for just about anyone any age and skill level.
For more details about the best paddle board for the money, scroll down to the “Tower Paddle Boards Adventurer Review” section.
Best Paddle Board for the Money – Sup Reviews for Beginners 2017
Tower Adventurer Inflatable SUP – Tower Inflatable SUP
Tower Inflatable Sup Specifications
Dimensions: 9’10″ x 32″ x 6″
Weight: 24 lbs.
Purpose: Cruising, Traveling
Users: Beginners, Travelers
Material: High-Pressure Inflatable
Price: $ $ $ $ $
At first thought when you think of an inflatable stand up paddle board something like a toy or a raft that resembles a SUP comes to mind, but the Tower Adventurer is anything but what I would have imagined.
The board is tough, rigid, can handle a lot of weight and is easy to transport from place to place. Some stability and a little maneuverability are sacrificed to have the accessibility of an inflatable board that can roll up into a 1 foot in diameter section and carried in a duffle bag.
When inflated fully, the Tower Adventurer has all of the features that any beginner or short distance cruiser may need. Overall Tower has come up with a very impressive Inflatable SUP that sets a new standard in the ever growing industry.
Tracking with this board is only fair, but when speaking in the realm of inflatable boards it is pretty good. The board has a 2 +1 fin design with a detachable center fin. Paddling up wind can prove to be a little more difficult because of how high the inflatable board sits atop the water.
With that said, the extra 2 inches of thickness on the rail does keep the board from sagging and sitting low in the water like some other inflatable boards.
This board wasn’t built for speed and is better suited for the beginner or traveler. If you are more interested in speed, a hard board like the Surftech Lahui Kai might be in order.
The beginner sup boards have added stability compared to some of the other inflatable boards on the market. The Tower Adventurer has an overall width of 32”, which is an added 2” to the average inflatable SUP on the market today.
Tower has also added an extra 2” of thickness to this board at 6” thick. This extra thickness helps to keep the board super rigid with virtually no sagging at all. Compared to a hard SUP, the Tower Adventurer is just as stable as some narrower hard SUPs.
Overall, any beginner should have no problem with the stability of this board.
The Tower Adventurer is made with a high-pressure drop stitch system that not only stays rigid and firm, but is resistant to impacts that cause a lot of hard SUPs damage. Other than being portable, the major draw to inflatable SUPs is that they can take a pretty serious beating without being any worse for the wear and this board definitely fits the mold.
Tower has posted videos showing this board being run over by cars and being thrown off of buildings with no damage. I challenge anyone to do that with a foam or fiberglass board.
The added 2” of width to the board also makes for a comfortable ride with plenty of room to move around on the deck of the board and a comfortable deck pad makes it easy on your feet and knees for long distance paddling.
Overall this is a great inflatable board with a very attractive price. For someone who is just getting into the sport or needs to travel with their board this is a great find. Tower has really gone above and beyond with this inflatable board.
The only downfalls with this inflatable that I see is that it does lack some of the bells and whistles that come along with other boards (multiple handles for carrying, d-rings for strapping things down) and when bought as a package (with paddle and pump) the paddle and pump are only of mediocre quality. I am very impressed with this board overall.
Keeper Sports SUP 10’6″ Review
Keeper Sports SUP 10’6″ Specifications
Dimensions: 10’6″ x 31″ x 5.5″
Weight: 25 lbs.
Purpose: Cruising, Fitness
Material: EPS High Density Foam
Price: $ $ $ $ $
With the Keeper Sport 10’6” board you are getting what you pay for. This is not necessarily a bad thing it is just important to understand that this is a lower end board made for the beginner, someone who is just getting into the sport, or someone on a budget.
The board is composed of High Density EPS foam, which is how they can make a large SUP at such an attractive price. Overal,l this is an economy board with mediocre performance and construction, but it is important to have these boards on the market to allow everyone who wants to give Stand Up Paddle Boarding a chance to get out on the water.
The Keeper Sport has a single fin system with one large skeg on the back of the board. This one fin system is fine for beginners especially if you are just looking to do some flat water riding. Remember that all fins are not created equal and sometimes a fin can help or hurt you depending on what you are looking to do.
Check out our choosing a fin blog for more information
This board has a rail thickness of 5.5” which is a pretty average thickness when it comes to SUPs. With a nice thick rail and a wide deck at 32” wide this board has pretty good stability. The top of the board does not have any deck pad on in, it is just EPS Foam so if you do get this board you may want to add a deck pad for better footing and comfort.
The construction material of the best SUP for beginners is where you really pay the price. The board is made with EPS Foam, which is nice and comfortable on your feet and soft if you fall off, however, the foam is not as durable as fiberglass, wood, of inflatable boards.
The tops of these boards can be damaged very easily if not handled with care. The board does have three wooden stringers for added rigidity. EPS Foam is not optimal, but it does allow the board to be attractively priced.
The Keeper Sport is a beginner’s board priced and made for just that. This board is not your top of the line, but if you are just looking to find an economical way to get out on the water this would be a good board. The package that comes with this board is a paddle and a roof rack.
Neither the paddle nor the rack is of outstanding quality, but they do get the job done. I would suggest this board for beginners that are not ready to make the big jump of an expensive board but want the feeling of a solid SUP.
BIC Sport ACE-TEC Wahine 10’6″ Review
BIC Sport ACE-TEC Wahine 10’6″ Specifications
Dimensions: 10’6″ x 31.5″ x 4.8″
Weight: 26 lbs.
Purpose: Cruising, Small Surf, Fitness
Users: Beginner, Intermediate
Material: Polystyrene Core, Fiberglass, ACA Plastic Outer Skin
Price: $ $ $ $ $
The BIC Sport ACE-TEC Wahine 10’6” looks to be BIC’s attempt at a good women’s beginner to intermediate SUP and they have succeeded. The board is lightweight which makes it easy to carry and is also made for a slightly light weight paddler.
Not to mention the great graphics with its pink nose trim and large pink Hawaiian flower on the deck pad. The large deck pad also makes it an optimal stand up paddle board for those interested in paddle board yoga and fitness activities.
The BIC Sport ACE-TEC 10’6” is made to be somewhat of an all around board that can be equally maneuverable in flat water as it is in some surf. The construction of the ACE-TEC board allows it to be a lot lighter weight than many other boards out there, which I think gives it an advantage in maneuverability.
The moderate rocker on this paddle board also makes it an easy rider out there in the surf.
The 10’6” is much less of a “boat” in the water than the 11’6” but they are built for different purposes. This board isn’t going to be your top notch surfing and racing board, but it does offer what any beginner or intermediate paddle boarder is looking for in all around maneuverability. The board also has a 2+1 fin set up which is ideal for surfing with a 10” FCS Dolphin center fin and 2 FCS M5 side fins
Despite the light weight of the BIC Sport ACE-TEC it has pretty high volume at 185 liters which is even 10 more liters than the BIC SPORT ACS and it is rated to support anyone up to 200 lbs. Even though this is something of a utility board made to be maneuverable and light it appears BIC hasn’t sacrificed any stability with this board.
The 10’6” paddleboard is even stable enough to do yoga and paddle board fitness routines on with no problem.
ACE-TEC construction gives a very durable yet lightweight construction that is not only great for beginners who may bang their boards around it is perfect for some of the women out there that might be hesitant to get one of the heavier boards.
The board has a polystyrene core that is wrapped in fiberglass and epoxy. The whole paddle board’s outer layer is covered in a ACA plastic skin that really cuts down on dings and is UV resistant.
This is great utility board that is heavily geared towards all those women paddle boarders out there. It would be a great board for any beginner and is geared for slightly less weight paddlers than your average paddlers, but can still support up to 200 lbs.
The features that stand out most to me are the light weight of the board at only 26 lbs., the durability of the ACE-TEC construction, and the great graphics with the large pink flower on the deck pad.
Choose a Beginner Stand Up Paddle Board (SUP)
The following are some of the factors you need to consider when shopping for beginner SUP boards. Read this section keenly and you’ll end up with the best paddle board for the money…
Stability = staying on the board.
There are a couple different factors that go into stability, which I will discuss in detail and which is also the reason there is not just one specific answer for what the right board is for a beginner. There are also some important details to consider other than stability when thinking about purchasing your first stand up paddle board.
If you want to read no further… a beginner can probably get out there and have a good time on any paddle board that is at least 10’6” long x 30” wide x 4” thick. That’s 10’6 x 30” x 4” or larger.
For those interested in why that number will most likely work…
Stability is a function of how much side-to-side action a board has when standing on it and how much flotation a board has with your weight balanced on it. Length, width, and thickness all play a part in this. Essentially, length x width x thickness = volume.
The more volume the best stand up paddle board for beginners has the more stable it is likely to be. Volume is not the only factor. A wider board tends to hold more surface area on the water and is less likely to tip over and the same can be said for a longer board.
One thought on length, many people think if I just get the largest board out there, I should be fine. This is probably true for being to able to stand up on the board, but when it comes to maneuverability, the longer a board becomes the harder it often becomes to maneuver, so it is important to strike a balance when thinking about the length of the board.
The length of the paddle board a beginner chooses should be decided more by the individual’s body weight rather than their experience level.
Body weight vs. Board length is also a tricky area to cover because it is a function of volume as well, not just length. In general, a 9’4” paddle board can handle about 130lbs, 10’4” – 180lbs, and 11’4” – 220lbs.
Other areas to consider when looking for the best SUP boards for beginners:
How much weight can you literally carry?
The weight of the board can be important if you are going to be carrying it. If you can’t get the board off of the car there’s a good chance you’re not going to be taking in down to the water all that often.
If the weight of the board is an issue, you can choose a smaller board or an inflatable sup. The industry has made some great strides in the inflatable sup market and there are some great boards that are portable and for great prices.
How are you transporting the board and will it fit?
Stand up paddle boards by nature are huge. Sure, a 12’6” paddle board looks good online, but does it fit on top of your car or even fit in your garage or storage room.
What type of landing area will you be using?
If you are planning to put the paddle board in the water at an area that has rocks, docks or other hard surfaces and your experience level isn’t very good, there is a good chance that at one time or another you will be running into one of these hard objects.
Even a slight bump can put a pretty good ding in your brand new fiberglass board. Some more durable options are inflatable or polyethylene construction materials.
What activities do you plan to be doing with your stand up paddle board?
There are so many things people use their paddleboards for whether it be cruising, racing, surfing, fitness, or fishing. All of these different activities have specialized boards and some boards can be used across many categories.
It is beneficial to get a board that is designed for the activities you will be doing, but not always necessary.
Thanks for visiting my blog and I hope the SUP reviews for beginners have helped to make your decision of getting just the best paddle board for the money a little easier.
Happy paddling! Get out there and have some fun.