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What is the difference between an inflatable SUP board and a hard SUP board?

Verschil tussen een opblaasbaar en hard SUP board

Nicole Staartjens |

It can sometimes be difficult to make a good choice for a suitable SUP board. Especially because there are many different models and they are also available as inflatable and hardboards. For this reason it is good to know what the differences are between these two types of SUP boards.

We would therefore like to tell you more about it on this page. We do this based on a number of factors that determine the difference between the two types of stand up paddle boards . Will you read with us?

What is the difference between a Hardboard and an Inflatable SUP?

If you are about to buy a SUP board, you will immediately be given the choice between a Hardboard or Inflatable SUP . This can sometimes be difficult to determine when you don't really have much experience yourself.

Below we will therefore mention a number of points that explain the differences between the two types of boards. This way you immediately know what the advantages and disadvantages are per type of board , and which type would be best for you. This guide covers the following factors of comparison:

  • Experience
  • Storage
  • Transport
  • Cost
  • Sustainability
  • Performance

1. Experience

It is important to know about yourself what your level of experience is. You can base the choice for a suitable SUP board on this.

If we look at the differences between the inflatable and hard SUP boards, we can quickly conclude that an inflatable board is more suitable for the beginner . On an inflatable SUP you have more balance and it is also easier to maintain your balance. This means you fall off your board less often and it costs you less energy.

Are you a more experienced supper and are you looking for a challenge? Then a hardboard can offer you this. In general it is more difficult to keep balance on a hardboard, but it also has its advantages in terms of performance , more about this later. So it can certainly be a good choice for the experienced or professional supper.

We recommend that beginners always start with an inflatable board, as it is easier to control. This way you can get used to the movements and get acquainted with the sport.

2. Storage

In the low season you usually don't go out for supping. That is why you also have to take into account the storage of the board. In this category, the inflatable board is of course the big winner, as you can easily store it in a storage bag. It is good to know how best to do this and what to look out for. Therefore, make sure you read up on the maintenance of a SUP board.

  • A hardboard is a bit more difficult to store, since the board takes up a lot of space. In addition, you should protect the board well to prevent damage . Should you put the board in the shed in the low season, for example? Then make sure you shield the board with blankets, towels or another form of protection.

3. Transportation

The inflatable SUP is of course also the winner in this category. You can easily take the board with you in the storage bag, after which you can pump it up again on location. Once you're done, deflate the board and store it on the bag. How easy is that?

Do you want to take a hardboard to the beach, a river or any other location? Then you often need a lot of space. We regularly see people attaching their boards to the roof of their car . An advantage of this is that you can immediately go on the water upon arrival and do not have to pump up the board first.

4. Cost

As you have probably already found out, an inflatable SUP offers a lot of simplicity. But do you pay extra for this or...? It may surprise you, but an inflatable board is many times cheaper than a hardboard.

For example, you often already have a high-quality board for around € 600 - € 700. Are you looking for a hardboard? Then take into account a price of at least € 1000. Of course you also get something in return.

5. Durability

You might think that the hardboard lasts longer than an inflatable board in terms of durability and lifespan . But nothing is less true. The inflatable SUP board also comes out best in this category. A hardboard is made of rock-hard material, which is therefore also fairly fragile.

Do you accidentally drop the board on your way to the water? Then it may just be that a scratch or crack occurs. In that respect, an inflatable SUP can withstand a scratch or bump much better, since the material is a bit softer.

6. Performance

Now we have finally arrived at the point where the hardboard performs by far the best. Looking at the performance of a hardboard, we soon see that it can hardly be surpassed by an inflatable board, even though they are improved every year.

With a hardboard you are a lot more agile, you can reach high speeds more easily and you can absorb waves better . This is therefore an ideal board for the experienced suppers among us who are looking for a challenge.

Which type of board suits me best?

Looking at the above points, it is important to find out for yourself what you find important. Are you looking for a board that offers a lot of convenience and lasts a long time? Then an inflatable SUP is suitable for you.

Are you a person who is ready for some extra challenge on the water? Then choose a hardboard to push your limits. Whatever your choice, we at Watersports4fun are happy to help you find a suitable SUP board.

If you have questions about a certain board? Then you can always contact our customer service by e-mail, telephone or via live chat. Also take a look at our webshop to look for a suitable SUP board.

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