After personally paddling, weighing, and thoroughly testing dozens of boards, our expert staff has selected the best stand up paddle board 2023 models. These are designated by the "A" grade and organized by categories (inflatable, all-around, touring, etc). In its 6th year the Supconnect team spent countless hours individually assessing each one of the SUP boards below, counting a total of 23 metrics per board and consistently applying them across all products. The end result: simply the most comprehensive, consumer-friendly, value-added review platform in the stand up paddle world. Click through each one of the reviews and find a consistent, in-depth assessment of each product listed.
The Best SUP Boards 2023
- Jobe Yarra Elite
- Body Glove Performer
- ISLE Switch
- Blacken Model X
- Surftech Chameleon
- Aqua Marina Hyper
- Surftech Lido
- Pau Hana Solo SUP Backcountry
The Best Paddle Boards 2023
|Jobe Yarra Elite||23.2 lbs||$1,099.99||All Around||Beginner||Inflatable||32 inches|
|Blackfin Model X||26.15 lbs||$749||All Around||Beginner||Inflatable||35 inches|
|Body Glove Performer 11||23.3 lbs||$999||All Around||Beginner||Inflatable||34 inches|
|Surftech Chameleon||25.4 lbs||$1,130||All Around||Beginner||Non-Inflatable||32 inches|
|Aqua Marina Hyper||27.5 lbs||$869||Touring||Beginner||Inflatable||32 inches|
|Pau Hana Solo SUP Backcountry||16,5 lbs||$1,249||Touring||Intermediate||Inflatable||30 inches|
|ISLE Switch||21.11 lbs||$995||All Around||Beginner||Inflatable||35.5 inches|
|Surftech Lido||28.2 lbs||$995||Rental / All Around||Beginner||Non-Inflatable||32 inches|
Best Paddle Boards 101
3 Things to Consider to Find the Best SUP
The beauty of stand up paddle boarding (SUP) is that there are so many ways and situations where you can participate. Here at Supconnect we break down the different uses of a paddle board into 7 categories: All Around, Touring, Yoga, Fishing, Race, Surf and River. Each category has their own specific purpose and thus, a different shape/design is necessary for each. There are boards that fit into multiple SUP disciplines and can be used in a variety of ways. A brief breakdown of each category is as follows:
- All Around: For multiple purposes but primarily for recreation
- Touring: For cruising paddles beyond the shoreline and for expedition paddling
- Yoga: For optimal stability as a floating yoga mat
- Fishing: For stability to cast the line, with plenty of accessories
- Race: For speed, coming with lightweight build
- Surf: For maneuverability and wave handling
- River: For rapids, river eddies and river wave riding
The best SUPs come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. From inflatables to non-inflatables to 14’ race boards to 36” wide yoga boards, the best paddle boards come in a wide variety. What makes one board fall into the "best" category are a few factors:
- Quality. Quality is a massive factor leading into what gives a SUP a "best" rating. If a board is in a lower price point but uses higher quality materials in its construction the board is going to stand out compared to other boards of the same price point using basic or lower grade materials.
- Looks. The board, to put it simply, is beautiful. Whether it's a simple mix of colors laid out beautifully or a highly detailed mix of graphics, the board needs to look good.
- Add on's. Add on's are key. They, in a way, are 'upgrades' to a board and make the SUP stand out from others that are basic. Add on's could easily be a deciding factor between choosing one board over another which is why boards with add on's will almost always get a few extra points in our book.
Add-on’s are accessories for a paddle board that add to your experience on/off the water. The quality of the bag/backpack and the air pump tend to be directly related to the board’s price points. Aside from your paddle, bags and pumps are the most important add-on’s to your board and can drastically improve your overall experience with the board, such as helping you more easily carry the board and/or pump it up more quickly. Other popular add on’s include bungee cords, a minimalist way to haul things; Connexsup, which allows for all sorts of attachments, even fishing rods; and FCS II/Connect, for easy fin instal. Other add on’s could be upgraded handles like the Liftsup & EZgrab and paddle holders for when you aren’t using your paddle. The best paddle boards almost always will have one if not all of these add-ons included.
Best Paddle Board Reviews
JOBE YARRA ELITE
Right out of the gates this package piqued our interests. Just the packaging alone was gorgeous with great visuals of the board and graphics showing exactly what you get in the box. After opening the box and getting the gear all set up it was clear that this is one of the most complete packages that we've ever seen that all items included are really good quality. Let’s start off with the included accessories. What really stands out the most is the bag that it comes in. The bag is not just your typical zip up backpack bag but rather it is a very well-built dry bag for the board and it even has an additional dry bag for accessories! This is a nice feature that really does make a difference in the long run. Next, it comes with not one, but two fins, one more for recreational paddling and another for distance/touring. This is a really nice and thoughtful detail that helps the board adapt to different conditions and paddling types. The package also comes with a really nice 3-piece carbon paddle so you can easily stow away. And what’s more - you also get a Padded Quick Release Waist Belt included which is a great safety feature. On the water, it was really stable and had a nice glide. We preferred the touring fin over the standard fin as it gave it a little more edge. Overall, the Yarra Elite from Jobe is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a high-quality SUP package that is suitable for all ages and skill levels. This board is meant to last and it is a great value with everything that you get included and is well deserving of our A-grade rating.
|Price: $1,099.99||Build: Inflatable||Weight: 23.2 lbs|
|Use: All Around||Skill: Beginner
BLACKFIN MODEL X
If a very stable, all around inflatable that can also be used for SUP fishing is something you’re looking for, the Blackfin Model X is a must-see. The Model X is a really affordable option and great for both beginners and experienced paddlers alike. This board comes a la carte, meaning it only comes with the board, fins and repair kit. So, if you have all the other necessities like a paddle, pump and leash, this might be a good option when all you’re looking for is the board itself. However, if you need a complete package, those other items are all add ons. The starting price for the Model X is at $749.99 which puts it in the mid-tier market in terms of affordability.
|Price: $749||Build: Inflatable||Weight: 26.15 lbs|
|Use: All Around||Skill: Beginner||Sizes: 10'6"|
BODY GLOVE PERFORMER
The new 2023 Performer from Body Glove has a fresh look once again but the differences aesthetically from last year to this year are pretty subtle. The biggest difference is in the deckpad, paddle and bag. The rail of the board also uses a lighter, brighter blue. Design-wise, there’s a big update in the fin system. Before, the board had 3 built-in fins. This year though, the board has one removable center fin which is a great update and allows the board to pack down smaller and lightens up the overall weight. Another difference from last year is what’s included in the package is slightly different. The 2023 package includes their new Connect System which allows you to connect multiple boards together which is quite cool. Not included this year is the manual pump, only the electric one. This also makes the overall package a smaller one which is nice. Once again, the branding and package as a whole was next level. Another small but powerful detail is the way the board is packaged. The board uses paper instead of plastic for the packaging and has small ties for smaller items. They also plant a tree for every board sold. Love that!!
|Price: $999||Build: Inflatable||Weight: 23.3 lbs|
|Use: All Around||Skill: Beginner
Once again, Surftech wows with a beautiful board design. The 2023 Chameleon is offered in two different colorways and sizes. The smaller size, the 10’4, has a beautiful soft pink sort of watercolor graphics that are really unique. Most boards use solid colors so this is a really nice, fresh design. Similarly, the larger size that’s available, the 11’4, uses the same watercolor graphics but this size has more of a seafoam green. Again, really nice design. The deckpad is very simple in color and plays nicely off the rail color on the board. Speaking of the deckpad, it is made up of Surftech’s Bloom Foam tech which is made up of eco-friendly materials adding another nice touch. The Chameleon doesn’t come with a ton of bells and whistles and takes more of the simplistic approach with a bungee and accessory insert on the nose, the quality of materials and thoughtfulness in the design speak volumes. The weight of the board was nice and light for both sizes which not only made it easy to carry and handle out of the water, but on the water it was really easy to maneuver and turn. The board did feel quite stable, but beginner paddlers might be more comfortable on something with a touch more width and thickness to it. That being said, intermediate and advanced paddlers will love this board. The glide is smooth and the displacement nose design really helps it cut through the water and handle chop. And while the board has more of a touring shape/design it can definitely be used in small waves if you’re up for it. Overall, the Surftech Chameleon is an excellent, quality board that is very deserving of our A-grade.
|Price: $1,130||Build: Non-Inflatable||Weight: 25.4 lbs|
|Use: All Around||Skill: Beginner||Sizes: 10'4", 11'4"|
AQUA MARINA HYPER
Aside from the bold colors used in the design, the double chamber on the Hyper immediately grabbed our attention. This double chamber is a huge value add. Not only does it add an additional layer of safety by adding up to 48 liters of safety floatation but it also helps the rigidity of the board. Win-win. Another noticeable feature is the hydrodynamic rail edges (REC Edge™) incorporated here. One of the trade offs of having an inflatable is that you lose the ability to really shape the board for performance in the water and one of the features that you lose is the ability to have an edge on the rails, which helps the board normally get a, what's called a bite or a hold, like an edge and track in the water. But with these rail edges, this is an attempt to add a bit of an edge to the tail of the board to help the water flow better, like you would see on a composite board. Very thoughtful touch!! The board features a number of bells and whistles that are great additions. The bungees on both the nose and tail of the board are great for storing gear but they’re also unique in that they’re flat instead of the cord shape which is a nice touch. The board was really manageable when carrying to the water and is at an average weight for an inflatable of this size. Wasn’t lightweight but not overly heavy either. On the water, the board felt very stable despite it being narrower than the standard 32”+ that typically make a board stable. The dual chamber very likely has helped on that front, not to mention the added safety that it brings. Overall, this board would be a good transition board from all around to touring as it's still pretty stable and good for a more novice paddler. Even though this board doesn’t come as a complete package (paddle not included) what it does feature was really impressive and deserving of Supconnect’s A-Grade.
|Price: $869||Build: Inflatable||Weight: 27.5 lbs|
|Use: Touring||Skill: Beginner||Sizes: 11'6", 12'6"
PAU HANA SOLO SUP BACKCOUNTRY
Pau Hana first introduced this board a couple of years ago so this review is long overdue but well worth the wait. If we could sum up this review to one word it would be: impressed. Where do we even begin? Let’s start with the packaging. The box itself was really nice and had graphics on it vs a blank cardboard box that we see a lot of boards come in. Next, the bag that the board sits in isn’t what you would typically expect, i.e. a zippered backpack. Instead the bag the board fits in is actually a drybag! This is a really nice touch and really supports the design intent of taking this board out in the wild on an adventure. The paddle also has it's nice unique little bag that keeps the paddle sections neatly organized when it's not put together. Another touch of thoughtfulness that didn't go unnoticed here. Even the pump is unique in that it is more compact in size than the industry standard, helping to keep the overall package nice and lightweight for your adventuring. And, we’d be remiss to mention that this package comes with everything you need. Board, bag, paddle, pump, leash, repair kit, accessory bag and fins. That’s a lot of value for the price of this package. The branding throughout everything, the thoughtfulness and uniqueness of the package and materials - it really stands out as a different type of paddle board. Well-deserving of the Supconnect A-Grade.
|Price: $1,249||Build: Inflatable||Weight: 16.5 lbs|
|Use: Touring||Skill: Intermediate||Sizes: 10'10"|
Graphically, the Switch features a very simple colorway and isn’t very flashy. Where the flash comes in is with all the features and add on’s that are included in the package. First, the board has a bungee on both the nose and tail of the board. It also has straps on the nose and tail in addition to its center handle which makes the board easy to carry if you have a second person assisting you to the water. Then, you have a paddle holder on the rail of the board which is a really nice feature, especially if you’re using it for SUP Yoga, fishing or kayaking when you want to set aside the paddle for a little bit. Another interesting feature is the use of the ‘ISLE Link’ system. Essentially, this system replaces what many other boards use: D rings, for attachment points. Instead, the ISLE Link system is a series of attached fabric loop holes on both sides of the deck near the rails that you can use as anchor systems to attach accessories to your SUP. This allows you to really customize the placement and gives you a lot more control. Nice touch for sure. By just looking at it you can see that the Switch is a really stable board. Putting the board on the water confirmed that assumption and it was very easy to hop on and go for both the SUP use and the kayak use. The board was also really lightweight and easy to carry but it didn’t seem to compromise at all in terms of durability. For everything you get with the package and the package as a whole and at its pricepoint of less than $1,000 the Switch definitely deserves an ‘A’. They did a very good job with this board.
|Price: $929.95||Build: Inflatable||Weight: 26.6 lbs|
|Use: Touring||Skill: Beginner||Sizes: 12'6", 14'
First impressions on the 2023 model of the Lido were that it had a very neutral, classic look. The colors and graphics are very simple and clean. The bells and whistles also stay pretty minimal here with a bungee and accessory attachment on the nose and an extra handle on the tail which is nice to have. Another thing to point out here is that the deckpad spans the entire deck of the board which is nice, especially when wanting to add cargo, or bring smaller passengers on the nose. The pad there makes it much less slippery. This also is helpful if you’re in the mood for some SUP yoga or fitness. And one more point to the deckpad here, it features Surftech’s Bloom Foam which is a bio-friendly foam material which is a thoughtful touch, especially for those who appreciate an eco-friendly product. The Lido was originally designed for the rental market which is a testament to its durability but has in the last few years become available for all consumers and the composite construction keeps weight relatively low compared to all plastics boards. And despite its tough-as-nails construction, the board really isn’t that heavy. It comes in at an average weight and is pretty manageable to carry. On the water, the board felt really stable and had an average glide to it, which is to be expected for an all around board. Not too fast, not too slow. Overall, the Lido is an excellent choice for those looking for an all around board that can handle a ton of use and can handle a lot of wear and tear. As a rental fleet board it checks all the boxes and for that we give it an A-grade. The 2023 design for the Lido is exclusively available at REI.
|Price: $995||Build: Non-Inflatable||Weight: 28.2 lbs|
|Use: All Around / Rental||Skill: Beginner||Sizes: 10'6", 11'6"|
A Look at Imagery from our SUP Reviews
- Best Stand Up Paddle Boards 2022
- Best Beginner Stand Up Paddle Boards 2022
- Best All Around Stand Up Paddle Boards 2022
- Best Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Boards 2022
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