A Paddleboard industry shift right beneath our feet is taking place, and the old school hard boards are getting harder and harder to spot. Why? Cause of advancing technology and better materials, that's why. I know what you may be thinking there's no way a ton of technology is required to build a giant surfboard you can paddle on.. wrong, you are my friend.
The look of that old school iconic hardboard thrown atop an SUV, truck, or jeep is a bit faded just like the old blue jeans in your closet you haven't worn since high school. Now hardboards are always going to be here hopefully till the end of time for my love of them I at least hope so. We are seeing the ISUP revolution building and getting bigger each year. Paddlers are showing up in a compact car popping the trunk and pulling out a board in a bag my friends and its some cool stuff. ISUP stands for inflatable stand up paddleboard... I know what your thinking cause I did the same years ago when these new-age mythic boards in a bag started blowing up like your waistline after college. There is no way these are like paddling a hardboard. I turned my nose up and walked off with my exceptionally closed-minded thought. That has changed over the last ten years significantly. As a company, we have invested thousands of dollars into purchasing higher-end ISUPS for our customers to enjoy like all our gear we strive to get the best stuff we can get our hands on to benefit our customer experience.
So what makes an ISUP? One of many main vital factors is a technology called drop-stitching. When built with drop-stitching, this provides the unbeatable hardboard feeling you get with fiberglass and like type materials. You can read so much more on the different types and designs like I have, but cut down. I compare it like muscle fibers connected to the top and bottom throughout the ISUP. Once inflated to proper PSI, this creates a substantial firmness feeling that can sometimes be confused for a hardboard by some novice paddlers. Air entered through a special valve that can come with the options as a one-way valve or free-flowing for airing up or packing up your ISUP. These boards come in a ton of sizes and shapes; there is truly no limit there.
The remarkable aspect that you can take your ISUP anywhere is why this style of board is here to stay for a long time. When customers can choose to take their paddleboard on a trip and check bag your ISUP for flights, you can't ignore that the portability is the key feature here. With any brand and any boards, the way you care for them is going to be the most significant factor in how long they last. Care and maintenance for all sups are a whole write up on its self.
Damaging an ISUP vs. a Hardboard is an entirely different repair process. With hardboards, you have the option of fiberglass cloth and resin. With ISUPS, the manufacturer almost always gives you a repair kit with a sheet of PVC and glue for repairs. Over the years, with our customer use of our boards, which is thousands of test hours. ISUPS tend to do better in warding off damage that you would typically get on hard boards when transporting and those incidents involving running up on rocks or dropping your board. With the materials used with ISUPS, they are very kid-friendly options. IUSPS do very well with everyday wear and tear to the point that a lot of rental companies only carry them in their fleet. We are a little different and carry an assortment of boards. Our mission is to get customers a pleasant experience of high-end gear of all types.
This blog is a concise intro to ISUPS. I poured countless hours into researching ISUPS and the manufacturing process since we spend thousands of dollars on them. Love them or hate them ISUPS are a massive part of the future to the industry of paddling. Just like your phone, updates are always coming in. As we spec out our inventory, we cant guide you in a specific brand since we don't have endorsements yet. So take your time to do the research.
Most importantly, if you can get on different brands and sizes, we have always stressed the importance of testing them out for your self. Broaden your mind and take a glance at the ISUPS, for they are genuinely a favorable option for the paddling community. Believe us cause we put thousands of people on them every year for the rental use.