It’s been over a decade since paddle boarding entered mainstream water activities. And yet, there seems to be no stop to its popularity. It’s even being combined with other activities, such as yoga. Paddle boarding is an excellent way to keep healthy, and what’s more, it’s fun! Not to mention, paddle boarding is easy, almost anyone can do it.
With the demand for paddle boards also increasing, innovations were inevitable. You might have heard or seen inflatable paddle boards. They look good, not at all like an inflatable float like one would imagine. However, the important question that must be answered is, are inflatable paddle boards good? Below you’ll find the pros and cons of the inflatable paddle board.
The short answer to the question, are inflatable paddle boards good, is yes. Just check out some of its advantages below:
One of the best things about inflatable paddle boards is how portable it is. You can bring it anywhere you go, just deflate, fold, and toss it in a bag. Just imagine trying to ride a plane with a regular surfboard, that’s definitely going to cost you. Regular surfboards also won’t fit into smaller vehicles. What if you plan on going on a paddle boarding trip with only a motorbike?
A paddle board is not just for paddle boarding. You can actually use it for other activities, such as yoga, fishing, and surfing! Some people even like to get creative, they combine inflatable paddle boards to create a base for hammocks.
You might be surprised to find out that paddle boards are actually very durable. Despite the notion that anything filled with air is delicate, paddle boards can actually be used in rough waters or rocky shores.
When a surfboard is not in use, it can definitely take up a lot of space. But with an inflatable paddle board, you can simply store it away in a closet during the off-seasons. This is also the reason why inflatable paddle boards are perfect for those who have very little and precious space. Like if you were going on a cross-country trip on an RV or if you live in a tiny city apartment.
Inflatable paddle boards are actually a better option for newbies. Thanks to a soft deck, as it is inflatable, it won’t hurt as much if you slip off the paddle board. At the same time, the softer deck will be gentler to your feet and legs as opposed to a rigid fiberglass board.
Inflatable Paddle Boards: The Not-So-Good
Now that the advantages of paddle boards are tackled, here are some disadvantages that you need to be aware of:
So… you are definitely going to need an air pump. That’s the price of the inflatable paddle board’s portability. However, if you’ve got one of the best inflatable docks, you can simply use the same air pump for your paddle board.
Another problem related to inflating the paddle board is inflation needs to be precise. If there is too much air, your board will be too stiff whereas if it lacks air, then you’ll find sink spots on it. Either way, you won’t be able to ride your inflatable paddle board properly.
Most high-quality inflatable boards are made of excellent materials. However, there is still a chance that you’ll get holes on your board. The good thing is, most inflatable boards come complete with a repair or patch kit for possible holes.
An inflatable paddle board’s size is comparable to the regular kind. Width is anywhere from 30 to 34 inches while the length is around up to 12 inches. The difference is in the thickness of the actual board. Since inflatable paddle boards are quite thicker, it’ll be harder to cut through waves and more challenging to maneuver through water as opposed to a regular board.
A lot of people are surprised to find out that inflatable paddle boards are actually quite expensive. Almost the same price as a paddleboard made out of epoxy resin. Yes, you’ll be able to find cheaper inflatable paddle boards but the quality won’t be the same.
Now that you know the pros and cons of inflatable boards, you should be able to answer the question, “Are inflatable paddle boards good?” on your own. When you look at the features of an inflatable paddle board, it definitely has many advantages. However, you need to weigh on what are the things that are important to you. For example, how important is portability to you? Are you willing to forgo board riding precision for deck softness and comfort?
In general, inflatable paddle boards are good. But how good is it? That one’s on you.