There are pros and cons to using a really lightweight ISUP. One of the biggest advantages of a light board is that it will be extremely portable, easy to carry and simple to take anywhere.
This might be really appealing if you are a smaller person, love to travel or want to hike or bike to your paddling destination.
In general the lighter weight boards are often smaller, leaner, thinner and possibly have less accessories.
They are often very fast to turn and maneuver but also take more skill to paddle as they might be less stable especially in wind and choppy water. This is especially true for a thinner 4” thick board.
A couple things to watch out for or at least be aware of is that sometimes (not always) a lighter paddle board will not always be as durable as a heavier one.
There are a couple reasons for this:
- For one there might have been less material used in the construction in order to keep the weight down. So the material will not be as thick or strong.
- Second the deck pad might not be full length (it may cover only half the board), which keeps the weight down. However a long deck pad also adds an extra protective layer to the tops of the board.
Factors That Affect Weight
So to summarize the main factors that affect the weight of an inflatable paddle board are:
- Size, shape and design
- Thickness of material used in construction
- Length of deck pad
Lightest ISUP’s We Have Reviewed
airSUP 96sl -15.5 lbs.
- 9’6” long, 32” wide, 4” thick, can hold up to 240 lbs. but best suited for riders up to 200 lbs.
- Best suited for allround fun, versatile, good on any type of water.
C4 Waterman Sub Vector – 20 lbs.
- 10’ long, 30” wide, 4” thick
- Best suited for surf and rivers and riders with a smaller frame.
Earth River 9’6” – 20 lbs.
- 9’6” long, 31” wide, 5” thick, can hold up to 220 lbs.
- Best suited for rivers, whitewater and surf and those with a smaller frame.
Isle Explorer – 19.1 lbs.
- 11’ long, 32” wide, 6” thick, can hold up to 275 lbs.
- Best suited for someone who wants a board that is very stable and can hold a lot of weight. Good for lakes, rivers or ocean bays.
Lokahi WE – 22 lbs.
- 10’6” long, 33” wide, 5” thick, can hold up to 250 lbs.
- Best suited for allround recreational paddling, very versatile and fun.
NRS Earl 4 – 21 lbs.
- 10’6” long, 30” wide, 4” thick, can hold up to 200 lbs.
- Best suited for lakes, calm rivers or ocean bays. Versatile for just about anyone to use but the 4” thickness is better suited for a smaller rider.
NRS Earl 6 – 22 lbs.
- 10’6” long, 30” wide, 6” thick, can hold up to 240 lbs.
- Best suited for a larger rider, versatile and can be used on any type of water.
Sea Eagle Longboard 11 – 22 lbs.
- 11’ long, 30” wide, 6” thick, can hold up to 200 lbs.
- Very versatile, great for all types of water and would suite a wide variety of riders with different skill levels.
SIC Air Glide Recon – 19.4 lbs.
- 10’4” long, 31” wide, 6” thick, can hold up to 220 lbs.
- Best suited for cruising, surf or smaller riders – although if you have the skill level this board is fun no matter what your size but will be less stable for a larger rider.
Starboard Astro Whopper – 22 lbs.
- 10’ long, 35” wide, 4” thick,, can hold up to 210 lbs.
- Versatile and can be used for recreational flat water paddling or for rivers or surf. The 4” thickness makes it very responsive and the 35” width adds stability.
Sea Eagle Longboard 12’6” – 24 lbs.
- 30” wide, 6” thick, can hold up to 250 lbs.
- For a longer board this one is a great weight that is still easy to manage. Well made and very durable. Very popular SUP that is fun to use in just about any condition and suits a large variety of riders. Can old a lot of weight
Naish One – 24 lbs.
- 12’6” long, 30” wide, 6” thick, can hold up to 250+ lbs.
- This one is also a great weight for the size. Another awesome ISUP that is ideal for touring on flat water or plowing through choppy ocean waves. It can also hold a lot of weight and is great for just about anyone.
Isle 10’ – 17.5 lbs.
I haven’t reviewed the Isle 10’ yet but wanted to include it in this list as it weighs only 17.5 lbs.
I have reviewed another Isle board and have been really impressed with the quality of construction and durable considering they are priced quite well.
This 10 footer would be a great all-around board. It should also be easy to paddle, fairly stable and versatile.
For more information go to Amazon.com.