If you are torn between a SUP (stand up paddle board) and a kayak, your not alone. While many want a SUP board they still like the thought of being able to recline in a seat and just paddle around without having to focus all of your attention on balancing.
Recently several SUP board manufactures have added a seat option for their SUP boards.
Stand up paddle boards have become mainstream among ocean, lake and river water enthusiasts, and now with the invention of the stand up pedal board, you may be wondering which board is right for you? Lets take a closer look at the types of SUP boards currently available and then we will explore the difference in style of boards.
Types of SUP Boards
Paddle SUP Boards: The board pictured here is a fairly standard paddle style SUP board. By using your upper body strength to paddle the board in the direction you intend to travel.
Pedal SUP Boards: Pedal SUP boards use your feet in a stair step type motion to propel the board forward, and the bike style handle bar has built in levers that you squeeze to change direction. Here is a link to the Mirage Elipse Stand up Pedal Board.
Hybrid SUP Boards: The hybrid or crossover SUP is a board that can be used both as a pedal or paddle board. Currently the Hobie Cat Mirage Eclipse is the only hybrid pedal board available on the market.
Now that you now the different types of boards available, we will focus on styles of SUP boards.
There are thee main board styles of SUP boards to choose from. Understanding the differences between the boards will help you make a more informed purchasing decision.
Recreational aka Traditional SUP boards: These boards provide stability by having a good size surface volume, while at the same time offering the maneuverability that your average SUP boarder needs. As mentioned above this is the type of board used for pedal sup boards. Available as Pedal, Paddle or Hybrid boards.
Surf SUP boards: These boards tend to be narrower and shorter offering ocean and river wave catchers maximum maneuverability. The tradeoff is that they are not nearly as stable as recreational or touring SUP boards. Available as Paddle boards.
Touring SUP boards: These boards are big and broad, perfect for racing and ocean tours. By far the most stable of all SUP boards, the drawback being the lack in maneuverability. Available as Pedal boards.
The only pedal board currently available is the Mirage Eclipse, which comes in two sizes and colors. The slightly smaller Mirage Eclipse is 10’6″ in length and 33 1/2″ wide, while the larger board is 12′ in length and 35″ wide. These dimensions put the Mirage Eclipse board in the same range as recreational, all around traditional SUP boards, making them a stable, easy to maneuver option for both newcomers and seasoned vetrans. Another important element of the Mirage Eclipse pedal board, is that it is a hybrid SUP board. In other words you can easily use this board as both a traditional style Paddle board, or add several components included with the board, like the handle bars and Mirage pedal drive to create a Pedal SUP.
Other factors to keep in mind are price, weight and durability.