Are you thinking about getting some inflatable paddle boards for yourself or your kids? The reason I ask is simple, these inflatable paddles are the newest rage in the water sports world! They have become very popular in the surfing community. They were invented by surfers that were looking for a cheap way to get into the water. These are not just for the pros though.
Inflatable paddle boards are very inexpensive compared to the other water sport equipment like snowboards and skiing boots. Yes, you can lose your inflatable out of the sky, it will never ding or scrape. Even if you accidentally drop your inflatable paddle board, there is still a pretty good chance that your board will still be damaged and might have to be repaired right away. However, if you just want a fun ride, an inflatable is definitely going to be your best bet.
One thing you have to understand about an inflatable paddle boards is that they are only good for two to three hours on land. Once you hit the water you have to make sure that you put them on solid boards. Some people use their inflatable board on sups as well, but not very often. It is more comfortable for people who plan on spending more time in the water.
Inflatables are great because they are easy to store when not in use. It is kind of hard to put one of these boards in the trunk of your car when you are driving and especially if your car has a small bed. It's just too hard to put one of these boards up onto a solid board and haul it around all day. Paddle boarding is one of those things where it can be both enjoyable and dangerous at the same time. It can be fun to go out into the ocean or lakes and have a blast tubing, but the danger comes when the conditions get bad.
The general rule of thumb is that if a manufacturer says that their product is suited for low speed (high tide) or slow moving (low water) rafting, then it probably is not and should not be trusted. Paddle boards that are built with poor construction will just not last very long. The general rule is that if you're not going to use a board that can go over 18 ft, stay away from inflatable rafts.
Paddle boards are also great for other activities, including kayaking, canoeing, fishing and surfing. These inflatable sups are much easier to launch and much easier to maneuver in the water. They make kayaking much easier, as they allow the kayaker to more quickly move about in the water because they don't have to deal with getting the canoe to a certain speed in order to reach where they want to go.
Fiberglass is another material that is often used to make inflatable paddle boards. Fiberglass is durable and light weight, which makes it perfect for storage. There are drawbacks though. It is very difficult to repair a board made out of fiberglass because the gel that is used to build the material breaks down quickly and easily. Also, repairing a fiberglass board is very complicated and usually requires the help of an expert. It's much easier to repair a plastic board.
Another type of inflatable board that is very popular is the hard paddle boards. Hard paddle boards are made out of a hard material such as vinyl. These boards are great for hard water rapids, but some surfers have found them to be a little too heavy for their liking. Another drawback to these boards is that they tend to take a long time to inflate. If you will be using your board on more difficult flat water rapids, then this might not be a great option for you.