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Paddle Board Highlights
Who is it for?
If you’re looking for a stable, inflatable, all-around board to paddle short to mid-range distances and in the low price point of under $500 then the Thrive from Aqua Marina is worth a look. This stand up paddle (SUP) board comes in drop stitch construction which is somewhat fragile and has its positives and negatives. With its 30 inches in width the board is stable, it has 1.75 lbs per foot, weight a total of 17.11 lbs which makes the board very lightweight but can also have an impact on the durability of the board with the construction not being as strong. Its shape makes the Thrive an all around board that can also be fun in the surf and is suited for intermediate paddlers. Its construction and shape combined best fit this board for short to mid-range distance paddling between 3 and 5 miles max. Retailing at $449, the board is among the most affordable ones you can find.
On first impressions, the graphics and color are good, the shape design is rather thoughtful and the construction strikes as fragile. The Thrive has some nice looks, coming with an interesting mix of color and graphics intended to be quite lively. The shape design is unique for boards in these categories, offering features tailored primarily for recreation. The construction does appear a bit fragile, as something that is meant to be handled carefully. The pump that comes with the board is rather fragile as well and needs to be handled carefully as to not make a hole in the tube which will affect the airflow into the board. The pump was also pretty tricky when trying to attach to the board, it took a few tries to get it right. This paddle board is very easy to carry due to it being lightweight (under 20 lbs). The glide is surprisingly fast for an inflatable and there’s a nice finish. The Thrive comes in a very nice box equipped with a very simple backpack-like cover for the board when not inflated. And once you put it all together, the Thrive is a stable paddle board that most people should be able to easily stand on and paddle away.
Primary UseAll-Around Use
Paddle Boards fall into two broad categories, All-Around and Specialty boards, with all-around designed primarily for recreation while speciality boards for top performance in specific disciplines
Durability is largely a result of the board construction and shape, with more durable boards typically carrying more materials (added layers, PVC, etc) and as such adding to the weight.
Stability is a product of construction and shape, where boards w/ 30”+ wide and 200+ liters in volume offer plenty of stability for your AVG adult while a board under 26” wide is a challenge.
Glide is a result of board shape and construction, w/ boards weighing under 30lbs and designed for racing offering best glide while recreational boards normally being on the slow side.
Dimensions9'9" x 30" x 6"
Industry standard in board dimensions reads: L (length, from nose to tail) x W (width, from rail to rail at midpoint length), and H (height, from top to bottom of board at midpoint length).
Standup paddle boards tend to fall into 4 different weight classes: extremely lightweight (under 20 lbs), lightweight (20-28 lbs), average weight (28-35 lbs), heavy (above 35 lbs).
Volume is a key metric to determine how much weight a board can carry. Boards w/ 200+ liters offer most floatation with boards under 150 liters typically for high-performance surf.
Capacity is the max cargo weight a stand up paddle board can carry, considering not only the paddler’s weight but whatever else the paddler may choose to carry alongside him/her.
Add On'sBungee, Comes with bungee, Fin, Pump and Paddle
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.
Handles directly affect carrying ease, with external grip handles (Liftsup & EZgrab) offering most comfort, Internal Ergo Grip the mid-tier comfort, and box handles as least comfortable.
Fishing rod holders and/or paddle holders can make paddling that much more pleasant, esp. when needing holders for the rod or having a safe place for the paddle during yoga.
|9 Feet 9 Inches||30 Inches||6 Inches||264 L|
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