Picking out the right SUP is important in making sure you get the best out of your experience. SUPs are made in different shapes and sizes according to your choice of discipline: Surfing, touring, and racing. The volume, width, length, thickness, and curve of the board are all important aspects that will help you enjoy your time out in the water.

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Surfing

This board is designed for speed and accurate turns, while being able to cut through the water pretty well. Ten feet is about the maximum length for a surfing SUP. This board is also much rockier than touring and racing boards because of the top curve. And lastly, it is important to know that the fins are much different on these boards in order to help with high-speed turns.

 

Touring

Touring is the most common way to use SUPs. These boards are usually a bit longer and narrower in order to cut through the water, allowing them to make longer distances. They are also usually a lot flatter on top than surfing SUPs in order to maintain stability. While these boards weren’t meant for speed, they do maintain their speed well once the board starts going. Their pointed tips create a displacement hull that allows them to cut through the water better.

 

Specific Features to Keep in Mind

The longer, narrower boards with pointed tips are great for speed and long distances. They are great for cutting through the water.
The rounded tips and flatter boards are better for flat water and all-around paddling. They are best for plowing through the water.
The wider and higher volume boards allow for the best stability and maximum weight capacity.
Inflatables are best for those who travel and don’t have the ability to carry a larger board.
Inflatables are thicker and ride higher on the water, so speed is a bit more difficult. However, they are still used for surfing and racing.

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