Paddle boarding is an incredible way to take in the world around you, get in a good workout, and have fun. However, choosing the right one, rigid or inflatable paddle boards, can be difficult, especially if you’re a beginner!
I’m going to help you figure out which type of paddle board is best for your needs, whether it’s rigid or inflatable. With this information in hand (and on top of your head), I hope that you’ll be able to make the best decision for your next vacation and future paddling adventures!
1. Inflatable paddle boards are travel-friendly.
Inflatable paddle boards are much easier to travel with. Once you get to your destination, they can be deflated and then packed into a small bag or case.
This makes them much more portable than rigid boards and also means that they take up less space in your vehicle or gear bag. Some inflatable paddle board models even come with their own carrying cases!
2. Inflatable paddle boards are durable.
Inflatable paddleboards are made of a solid PVC that is stronger than regular PVC. They have been tested and proven to be strong enough to hold up in the most demanding conditions, including those involving heavy surf.
3. Inflatable paddle boards are heavy.
The weight of an inflatable paddle board is dependent on a number of factors including the type of material used to construct the board and its size. The larger the paddle board, the more it will weigh.
Since inflatable paddle boards can be constructed from various types of materials, weights will vary according to this as well. For instance, if you have a fiberglass or carbon fiber paddle board with lots of features (e.g., bungee cord storage), then it will likely weigh more than a basic wooden one without any bells or whistles.
To reduce your overall weight when paddling with your inflatable SUPs, try using fins on your feet rather than foot straps (the latter tend to weigh quite a bit).
If you’re using fins that attach directly onto your shoes or sneakers instead of ones that fit over them like standard ones do—which are less common these days—you’ll want to make sure the screw end doesn’t poke through both layers before attaching them together tightly enough for safety reasons: take care not to slice yourself open!
4. Inflatable paddle boards perform better in rougher conditions.
Inflatable paddle boards are less likely to get damaged when you’re paddling in rougher conditions. That’s because they’re made from more durable material, and they have thicker walls that help protect the board from impact damage.
In addition to that, they’re much more buoyant than rigid boards, which means you’ll be able to paddle with greater ease in rough water. And as we mentioned above, inflatable boards don’t sink like rigid ones do!
Also Read: What Size Surfboard Should Beginners Get?
5. You’ll need a high-pressure pump for your inflatable board.
The one thing that you will definitely need if you are going to use an inflatable paddle board is a high-pressure pump. The pump is not included in your purchase and cannot be used for anything other than inflating the board.
You can find a good model for about $50-60 on Amazon, but it’s important to note that this price does not include the accessories that most people would need to run the pump. If you already have some spare parts lying around, like connectors and hoses, then this might be a good option for you; otherwise, we’d recommend purchasing everything together from one place so there aren’t any compatibility issues later on down the line.
Rigid boards don’t require pumps since they’re made out of solid material (usually fiberglass) which means they stay rigid even when empty – no need to worry about getting all sweaty while trying out different positions!
6. Rigid paddle boards are lighter.
Rigid paddle boards are lighter. The main reason for this is that the construction of rigid paddle boards is much more lightweight than inflatable paddle boards because they are made from carbon fiber, wood and epoxy.
Inflatable paddle boards are typically made from PVC plastic which has a much lower density than any other material used to make a rigid paddle board. This means that an inflatable SUP will weigh significantly more than its solid counterpart.
7. Rigid paddle boards are easier to store.
If you’re not planning to take your board out on the water every day, then a rigid paddle board is probably the best option for you. They’re smaller and lighter than inflatables, which means they can be stored in more places.
Not only will this save you space at home or work, but it also means that if you ever want to take your paddle board somewhere else (like camping), taking it along will be much easier. In addition, most rigid boards can be stored outside—something that’s impossible with inflatable boards!
8. Rigid paddle boards don’t perform as well in choppy waters.
If you’re the type of paddler who spends most of your time in flat water, a rigid paddle board is the way to go. They’re more stable than inflatable boards and are easier to store.
However, rigid paddleboards aren’t as travel-friendly as inflatable models because they can be heavier and take up more space in your car or truck.
Also worth noting: Rigid boards are not meant for rough waters. In fact, many manufacturers recommend against using them in choppy water; they simply won’t perform as well!
On the flip side, if you do decide to take your rigid board out on choppy waters, be sure that it has been designed with stability in mind or wear a life vest while on it (or both!).
9. Rigid paddle boards are more expensive, especially if you’re starting out.
Inflatable paddle boards are generally more affordable, but you’ll pay for the convenience of not having to pump them up. The typical inflatable paddle board costs around $600, which makes it much cheaper than its rigid counterpart.
Inflatable paddle boards are also more durable than their rigid counterparts because they don’t have any moving parts that can break off when hitting rocks or other hard objects in the water.
In addition to being tougher, they’re also easier to store since you can roll them up once you’re finished using them—and thanks to their lightweight nature (they weigh less than ten pounds), this isn’t a huge inconvenience either!
On the other hand, while inflatable paddle boards are great bargains when compared with their rigid cousins…
Inflatable Paddle Boards: FAQ
How Long Do They Last?
Whether you’re buying an inflatable paddle board for yourself or as a gift for someone else, the first question you should ask is how long the board will last.
Inflatable paddle boards are strong, durable and can withstand many uses over many years. However, this doesn’t mean that they’ll last forever if you don’t take care of them properly.
How often do you plan on using your inflatable Paddle Board? Are you planning on using it multiple times per week or once every few months? If it’s the former, then your board may need replacing in around 3 years since they tend to lose their strength over time with extensive use (which is normal).
If it’s the latter case and not used very much at all (or only used by occasional weekend warriors), then more than likely these boards will still be good after 5 years or so!
Can They Be Repaired?
If you have an inflatable paddle board, you know how important it is to keep it in good condition. Inflatable paddle boards can be expensive, so it makes sense that you want to make sure they’re doing their job well.
If your inflatable paddle board starts showing signs of wear and tear, don’t worry: there are plenty of ways for you to repair them and make them as good as new.
- Puncture repair kit: This is the easiest way to fix a puncture in your inflatable paddle board. Simply find the puncture with your hands or a small flashlight, then apply glue or sealant around the area where the leak is coming from (you may have to replace the patch if it doesn’t work). Make sure that no air gets inside while doing this!
- Hole repair kit: If there’s a hole in your inflatable paddle board caused by something sharp like a rock or another object, try using these patches made specifically for this purpose (they’ll stay on even when under water). Just apply some glue around where you want them placed before putting them on top of each other—and voila!
Are They More Stable?
So you’ve decided that an inflatable paddle board is your best bet. Good choice! Now the only question is: Which one?
There are a lot of differences between rigid and inflatable paddle boards, but this article will focus on the stability factor. Inflatable Paddle Boards have a large base which makes them more stable than rigid boards, especially in choppy water or during winds.
They also have a wider middle section which helps with stability even further than their larger base alone would allow for. Rigid Paddle Boards do not have these same characteristics and therefore are less stable than inflatable ones when conditions get rough or there’s wind involved in the equation
Can You Surf On An It?
You can absolutely surf on an inflatable paddle board. In fact, if you’re looking to get into the sport while still being able to bring your SUP along with you, then surfing is a great way to do it. However, there are some things to consider when choosing which type of board will be best for you.
First and foremost: if you want to surf on an inflatable paddle board, then you’ll need a surfboard leash. Most people who purchase inflatable boards already have their own kayak or canoe and don’t need these accessories so they aren’t included in the package with most rentals or purchases.
A surfboard leash attaches around both sides of your board so that it won’t float away from underneath where all those waves break against shoreline rocks during high tide (or low tide). Without one handy attachment point for keeping track of where everything goes after riding off into deep darkness with no lights shining down upon us—it’s important!
Are Inflatable Paddle Boards Better Than Rigid Ones?
Inflatable paddle boards are better than rigid ones. Inflatable boards are more durable, stable and portable. They’re also very affordable and versatile. If you’re a beginner, then an inflatable board is the perfect choice for you.
When you’re choosing between rigid and inflatable paddle boards, consider your personal needs and physical limitations, as well as where you’ll be paddling most often and how much you plan to travel with your board before making a final decision.
For example: Inflatable paddle boards are lighter than their rigid counterparts, making them easier for some people to carry between the car and water.
They also offer more flexibility in terms of where they can be stored—inflatable paddleboards can fit snugly into closets or under beds when not in use, while rigid boards need dedicated storage space that takes up floor space.
If a large amount of storage space isn’t available in your home or apartment (or if moving an inflatable board around is difficult because of limited mobility), then inflatable may be better suited to your needs.
On the other hand, if you don’t have easy access to transportation that’s big enough for bringing it back from wherever it was used last time (such as on vacation), then a rigid style might work better since it doesn’t require any additional effort like inflating/deflating does—just pull it out whenever needed!
Also keep in mind: The more often someone plans on using their board over time means less wear-and-tear overall due no longer having these extra steps involved every time before hitting up open water again!
To wrap up, I’ve given some pros and cons for both rigid and inflatable paddle boards. As you can see, there are benefits to each, but ultimately you’re going to want to consider your personal needs as well as where you’ll be paddling most often before making a final decision.
If this post has helped answer any questions you had about these boards then we’d love to hear from! Feel free to comment below with your thoughts or if I missed anything in my list of pros vs cons.
I’m sure, by now, you’re convinced that inflatable boards are well worth the investment. So, the next question is which one should you get? Well, I’d like to recommend paddle boards from both iRocker and Atoll boards, as they make some the finest inflatable SUPs in the market. And, that’s not me saying it, their 1000+ 5 star reviews say they are the best.
You can use our atoll boards discount code ($100 off) or irocker discount code (10% off), and gift one of the finest SUPs to the adventurer in you.