Best Inflatable Paddleboards (ISUP) For Surfing 2021

Can You Surf On An Inflatable Paddle Board?

The short answer is, yes. You can catch small waves with any paddle board, but if you want to do some carving and ride larger waves you are going to want something more specialized.

A solid paddle board is going to give better performance than an inflatable but not everyone has the room or a way to transport them.

This is where inflatable paddle boards are perfect, you can still surf while having the option to throw your board in the trunk of your car when you are done.

See Also: Inflatable Paddle Boards vs. Solid (Hard) Paddle Boards

When purchasing a surfing inflatable paddle board there are a few things that are going to be important.

First, you want a shorter board, less than 10 feet.

Second, you want a thinner board than the standard 6-inch, this makes maneuverability better, and less likelihood of catching the rail (side of the board) on the water and flipping over.

Honestly, I’m pretty excited about these inflatable paddle boards, catching waves is so fun on a paddle board and ISUP’s can be taken on a plane as a carry-on making them very convenient for wave chasers.

Preview
Best
redder Inflatable Stand-up Paddle Board Rogue SUP for Surfing 9' with 3 Fins, Adjustable Paddle, Security Leash, Pump and Backpack
Better
Hurley PhantomSurf 9' Stand Up Paddle Board with Hikeable Backpack, Air Pump, Adjustable Floating Paddle, Coiled Leash, Fin & Repair Kit (Ombre)
Good
Cooyes Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board 10.6 ft with Premium SUP Accessories and Backpack, Non Slip Deck, Waterproof Bag, Leash, Paddle and Hand Pump for Paddling and Surf Control
Hydro-Force Aqua Journey Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board, 9' x 30' x 6' | Inflatable SUP for Adults & Kids | Complete Kit Includes Adjustable Aluminum Paddle, Hand Pump, Travel Bag, Surf Leash
FBSPORT 10.6' Premium Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board, Yoga Board with Durable SUP Accessories & Carry Bag.Wide Stance, Surf Control, Non-Slip Deck, Leash, Paddle and Pump for Youth & Adult
Pathfinder Inflatable SUP Stand Up Paddleboard 9' 9' (5' Thick)
Pump Included
Paddle Included
Kickpad
Amount Of Fins
3
3
3
3
3
1
Weight Capacity
265 lbs
200 lbs
330 lbs
220 lbs
280 lbs
240 lbs
Length
9 feet
9 feet
10 feet 6 inches
9 feet
10 feet
10 feet
Width
30 inches
30 inches
32 inches
33 inches
30 inches
31 inches
Thickness
4 inches
4 inches
6 inches
6 inches
6 inches
5 inches
Board Weight
20.3 lbs
17.5 lbs
19.5 lbs
22 lbs
22 lbs
24 lbs

Best

Preview
redder Inflatable Stand-up Paddle Board Rogue SUP for Surfing 9' with 3 Fins, Adjustable Paddle, Security Leash, Pump and Backpack
Product (Link)
Pump Included
Paddle Included
Kickpad
Amount Of Fins
3
Weight Capacity
265 lbs
Length
9 feet
Width
30 inches
Thickness
4 inches
Board Weight
20.3 lbs

Better

Preview
Hurley PhantomSurf 9' Stand Up Paddle Board with Hikeable Backpack, Air Pump, Adjustable Floating Paddle, Coiled Leash, Fin & Repair Kit (Ombre)
Pump Included
Paddle Included
Kickpad
Amount Of Fins
3
Weight Capacity
200 lbs
Length
9 feet
Width
30 inches
Thickness
4 inches
Board Weight
17.5 lbs

Good

Preview
Cooyes Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board 10.6 ft with Premium SUP Accessories and Backpack, Non Slip Deck, Waterproof Bag, Leash, Paddle and Hand Pump for Paddling and Surf Control
Product (Link)
Pump Included
Paddle Included
Kickpad
Amount Of Fins
3
Weight Capacity
330 lbs
Length
10 feet 6 inches
Width
32 inches
Thickness
6 inches
Board Weight
19.5 lbs
Preview
Hydro-Force Aqua Journey Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board, 9' x 30' x 6' | Inflatable SUP for Adults & Kids | Complete Kit Includes Adjustable Aluminum Paddle, Hand Pump, Travel Bag, Surf Leash
Pump Included
Paddle Included
Kickpad
Amount Of Fins
3
Weight Capacity
220 lbs
Length
9 feet
Width
33 inches
Thickness
6 inches
Board Weight
22 lbs
Preview
FBSPORT 10.6' Premium Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board, Yoga Board with Durable SUP Accessories & Carry Bag.Wide Stance, Surf Control, Non-Slip Deck, Leash, Paddle and Pump for Youth & Adult
Product (Link)
Pump Included
Paddle Included
Kickpad
Amount Of Fins
3
Weight Capacity
280 lbs
Length
10 feet
Width
30 inches
Thickness
6 inches
Board Weight
22 lbs
Preview
Pathfinder Inflatable SUP Stand Up Paddleboard 9' 9' (5' Thick)
Product (Link)
Pump Included
Paddle Included
Kickpad
Amount Of Fins
1
Weight Capacity
240 lbs
Length
10 feet
Width
31 inches
Thickness
5 inches
Board Weight
24 lbs

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Best Surfing Inflatable Paddle Boards Reviews & Info


1. Redder Rogue ISUP

redder Inflatable Stand-up Paddle Board Rogue SUP for Surfing 9' with 3 Fins, Adjustable Paddle, Security Leash, Pump and Backpack

Check Price at Amazon

The Redder Rogue is a fantastic short inflatable paddle board that can be used for both surfing and all around paddling.

It’s is 9 feet long, 30 inches wide, and 4 inches thick.

The max weight capacity is 265 pounds with a rider weight capacity of 198 pounds.

It weighs 20.28 pounds, has two angled stabilizer fins for better control on the waves, and a slide-in center fin.

This is more of an intermediate to advanced board because the pointed displacement nose is going to sit more in the water for a faster ride but a more unstable one.

The Rogue has a raised kickpad. The foam footpad is bumped up on the back of the board making it so you can have more control when popping the board up over waves and maneuver better when surfing.

The kickpad is not something you have to have, but if you plan on surfing bigger waves it will really help you pop the nose up and give you more steering control.

See Also: Best Waterproof Dry Bag For Kayaking, Camping, Paddling

It has a pointed nose for picking up speed and a double-layered PVC construction for rigidness and durability.

This board is only 4 inches thick and you have a little more rail control, much like a traditional surfboard.

redder Inflatable Stand-up Paddle Board Rogue SUP for Surfing 9' with 3 Fins, Adjustable Paddle, Security Leash, Pump and Backpack

Included with the inflatable paddle board is a backpack/storage bag, a dual-action pump with pressure gauge, a coil leash, a repair kit, and an adjustable paddle.

To see the Redder Rouge in action check out this video.

The Redder Rogue ISUP is one of my favorites.

It’s very specialized for surfing and it doesn’t break the bank. It’s going to take some time getting used to, especially if you haven’t surfed on a paddle board before, but with the double PVC, it can take a beating.

A kickpad is an excellent feature that I personally prefer when paddle board surfing.

All in all, when it comes to surfing this inflatable paddle board is a performer.

PROS

  • Kickpad
  • Dual Layered PVC
  • Thin
  • Maneuverability-friendly Design

CONS

  • Not Beginner Friendly
  • Less Rigid Than Alternatives

2. Hurley Phantom Surf ISUP

Hurley PhantomSurf 9' Stand Up Paddle Board with Hikeable Backpack, Air Pump, Adjustable Floating Paddle, Coiled Leash, Fin & Repair Kit (Ombre)

Check Price at Amazon

The Phantom Surf ISUP by Hurley is a surfing specific inflatable paddleboard that will perform better than most ISUPs on the waves.

It’s only 9 feet long, 30 inches wide, and best of all, 4 inches thick.

The 4 inch thickness is one of the things that makes the Hurley Phantom such a great surfing ISUP. You want your paddle board to be as thin as possible to stop it from catching on the waves and flipping you over.

Board thickness is one of the struggles you get with inflatable paddle boards since they need to be a certain thickness to maintain rigidness. The Phantom is one of the thinnest ISUPs on the market today and in this review.

Because it’s so thin the board is made with two layers of PVC that is laminated together. This not only helps keep everything put it also makes for a very durable surfing paddle board.

The max weight limit is surprisingly high for its size coming in at 200 lbs.

There are three fins on the tail. Two stabilizer fins and a removable long center fin. This is the set up you want for most kinds of paddle board surfing.

There is a 4 D-link bungee storage system on the nose. On the tail there is a handle and some D-links you can use to secure your ankle coil leash.

See Also: Best Electric Pumps For Inflatable Paddleboards (ISUP)

The EVA foam footpad is wide and long and there is also a kickpad at the end which is something you rarely find on paddle boards. The kickpad is one of the things that makes this a surf specific ISUP.

Included with the surf ISUP you get an adjustable paddle, a dual action hand pump with built-in pressure gauge, a repair kit, an ankle leash, and a fantastic dry bag backpack that is large enough to fit the board inside.

The Hurley Phantom Surf ISUP is not just a surfing inflatable paddle board. It’s also a fantastic hiking ISUP as well.

The board weighs only 17.5 lbs making it the lightest SUPs in this review.

The included backpack is more high tech than what is normally included with ISUPs. It has side storage that is made to fit the paddle and the hand pump. There is also a small pocket on the back for smaller items and the large inner storage doubles as a dry bag.

It’s a premium choice, but if you paddle board a lot and what something that you can hike and surf with this is going to be one of the best options out there.

PROS

  • Double Layered PVC
  • Very Thin
  • Super Lightweight
  • Backpack Is Also A Dry Back
  • Dual Action Hand Pump
  • Kickpad

CONS

  • Less Rigid Than Alternatives
  • Low weight capacity

3. Cooyes Wave ISUP

Cooyes Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board 10.6 ft with Premium SUP Accessories and Backpack, Non Slip Deck, Waterproof Bag, Leash, Paddle and Hand Pump for Paddling and Surf Control

Check Price at Amazon

The Cooyes Wave is technically a little longer than a surfing stand up paddle board should be but because of the kickpad and shape, I’m going to include it in this review.

It measures 10 feet 6 inches long, 32 inches wide, and 6 inches thick.

If you’re a shorter person this isn’t the surf ISUP for you but if you are taller and need a board with a higher weight capacity this will be a better option.

The weight capacity is the highest in this review at 330 lbs.

The shape of the ISUP is mostly for cruising but it will work well for cutting through waves for surfing. It’s going to be an easier board to balance on for beginners but the size of waves you will be able to ride will be a little more limited than if you were using a smaller, thinner surf ISUP.

There are three fins on the tail. Two small side bite fins and a removable long center fin.

There is a 6 D-link bungee system on the nose and a D-link on the tail to secure an ankle coil leash.

The footpad is very wide and long with a kickpad in the back for help when surfing.

See Also: Best Slim Inflatable Life Jackets (PFD)

There is only one layer of PVC used but that doesn’t mean this isn’t a durable ISUP.

I’ve had a single layer inflatable paddle board for years and it’s never had any issues with punctures or leaks.

The pro of single layer ISUPs is they are often very lightweight. Even though this board is over 10 feet it still only weighs 19.5 lbs which makes it easier to hike with.

Included with the surf ISUP you get a storage bag/backpack, an adjustable paddle, an ankle coil leash, a waterproof phone bag, a repair kit, and a dual action hand pump with a built-in pressure gauge.

The Cooyes Wave ISUP is technically a surfing board because of the kickpad but it’s also going to be a fantastic cruising board or a great beginner surf paddle board.

PROS

  • Multi-Purpose
  • Kickpad
  • Lightweight
  • Good Beginner ISUP
  • Dual Action Hand Pump
  • High Weight Capacity

CONS

  • Thick
  • Single Layer PVC

4. Hydro-Force Oceana ISUP

Hydro-Force Aqua Journey Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board, 9' x 30' x 6' | Inflatable SUP for Adults & Kids | Complete Kit Includes Adjustable Aluminum Paddle, Hand Pump, Travel Bag, Surf Leash

Check Price at Amazon

The Aqua Journey Hydro-Force by Bestway is a great basic inflatable paddle board you can use to surf a little with and also have as a small all around ISUP.

It measures 9 feet long, 30 inches wide, and 6 inches thick. The weight capacity is 220 lbs.

Surprisingly, it’s made with two layers of PVC which makes this a very durable ISUP that is also extra rigid.

The dual PVC  is nice to have when surfing and paddle boarding in general but it also makes the board a little heavier.

Even though it’s only 9 feet long the Aqua Journey still weighs around 22 lbs.

See Also: Best Inflatable Paddle Boards (ISUP) for Beginners

The EVA footpad is large but there’s no kickpad.

This is more of a short basic inflatable stand up paddleboard you can surf with because of the length.

There is a 4 D-link bungee storage on the nose and a coil leash D-link on the tail.

The Hydro-Force uses 3 fins. One removable long center fin and two smaller side bite fins.

The Hydro-Force Oceana ISUP is a great basic paddle board that can also be used to try out a little surfing. It’s not super thin but the length is perfect and it’s a good option for beginners.

PROS

  • Very rigid
  • Dual Layered PVC
  • Beginner Friendly
  • Good Length For Surfing

CONS

  • No Kickpad
  • Thick
  • Low Weight Capacity

5. FBSPORT ISUP

FBSPORT 10.6' Premium Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board, Yoga Board with Durable SUP Accessories & Carry Bag.Wide Stance, Surf Control, Non-Slip Deck, Leash, Paddle and Pump for Youth & Adult

Check Price at Amazon

The FB Sport ISUP is another basic paddle board that can be used for surfing because of its length.

It’s a great first board for beginners who want to try out surfing on a paddle board before getting something that will be more specialized.

When inflated it measures 10 feet long, 30 inches wide, and 6 inches thick. The weight capacity is fairly high at 280 lbs.

This is another basic ISUP that comes with dual layered PVC. That much PVC is great for rigidness and durability but the board weighs 22 lbs which makes it slightly heavy for hiking to secluded beaches to do some surfing.

It’s still pretty lightweight compared to longer all-around or cruising boards but for a surf inflatable paddle board it’s pretty big.

See Also: Best Coil SUP Leash For Surfing/Paddleboarding

There’s a large EVA foam footpad on the deck.

The 6 D-link bungee system on the nose is large and there’s a coil leash D-link on the tail.

The FB Sport uses a 3 fin configuration with 2 smaller side bite fins and a long removable center fin.

Included with the basic ISUP is a storage bag/backpack, an adjustable paddle, a coil ankle leash, and a single action hand pump with a built-in pressure gauge.

The FBSPORT ISUP is another fantastic ISUP for beginners and taller surfers who need a longer board for stability and a higher weight capacity.

This is also going to be a great all around paddle board you can take anywhere and use for more than just surfing.

PROS

  • Beginner Friendly
  • High Weight Capacity
  • Dual PVC Layers

CONS

  • Thick
  • Single Aciton Hand Pump
  • Heavy
  • No Kickpad

6. Vilano Pathfinder ISUP

Pathfinder Inflatable SUP Stand Up Paddleboard 9' 9' (5' Thick)

Check Price at Amazon

The Vilano Pathfinder is technically a starter inflatable paddle board but it has a few things that make it a decent surfing ISUP.

First, it’s a little thinner than some of the other basic paddle boards in this review.

It measures 10 feet long, 31 inches wide, and 5 inches thick.

Yes, it’s not much thinner than the others but just one inch could make the difference between losing control on a larger wave and being able to handle it.

Once again the PVC is dual layered which really helps the board stay rigid even with the smaller thickness.

It also makes it weigh a little more and the Vilano is the heaviest ISUP in this review at 24 lbs.

The footpad is really long, reaching almost all the way to the end of the tail.

See Also: Best Multi-Person Inflatable Paddle Board (Giant ISUP)

There is a 4 D-link bungee storage on the nose and an ankle leash D-link on the tail.

One slight con to this basic inflatable paddle board is there is only one fin on the bottom. This could also be a pro though if you are a little more experienced with paddle board surfing. Some people like the single fin set up more for maneuvering.

Included with the ISUP is an adjustable paddle, an ankle coil leash, a single action hand pump with a built-in pressure gauge, and a storage bag/backpack.

The Vilano Pathfinder ISUP is a fantastic very basic option that is a little better for riding waves than a few of the other basic options in this review.

If you are a fan of single fins this is going to be one of the best options for you.

PROS

  • Beginner Friendly
  • High Weight Capacity
  • Dual PVC Layers
  • Thinner Than Most Basic Boards

CONS

  • Thick
  • Single Action Hand Pump
  • Heavy
  • Single Fin (May Be Pro Depending On Surf Style)
  • No Kickpad

 


What To Look For In A Surfing ISUP

Length

The length of the paddle board you should buy for surfing depends on what size you are and what you want out of your board.

The shorter you go, the easier maneuvering and sharp turns will be.

If you are a taller person or just a beginner who can’t stand up on a short narrow board, there’s nothing wrong with getting something a little more manageable for you.

Hull Type

Most inflatable paddle boards for surfing have rounded planing hulls for riding on top of the water for a stable smooth ride.

Some boards do have the pointed displacement nose like a touring board.

This makes riding waves a little more advanced. It sucks the board into the water giving you faster speeds but less stability.

Kickpad

When paddling out into the waves with an inflatable paddle board you need to be able to pop the nose of your board up over the waves to get past them.

A kickpad is when they raise the end of the footpad making an edge much like a skateboard. You can use it to kick up the nose of your board. It also helps to keep your back foot in place.

On an inflatable paddle board pretty much all control comes from your back foot since the rails are nonexistent.

If your ISUP doesn’t have a kickpad it isn’t the end of the world and you can still surf, but having one helps.

Board Stiffness

The biggest challenge when surfing with an inflatable paddle board is the board wobbling because it’s not solid.

Many companies have come up with ways to overcome this.

To make a board stiffer the thickness of the board is often increased, but when it comes to surfing you want a board that is as thin as possible.

Having a thin board gives increased rail control and less likelihood of catching the side and rolling over.

By using dual PVC layers manufacturers have been able to increase rigidness.


My Choice For Best Inflatable Surfing Paddle Board

Cooyes Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board 10.6 ft with Premium SUP Accessories and Backpack, Non Slip Deck, Waterproof Bag, Leash, Paddle and Hand Pump for Paddling and Surf Control

Good – Cooyes Wave ISUP

The Cooyes Wave is a little longer than I would prefer but if you are taller or need a higher weight capacity than what you normally find with the shorter surf inflatable paddle boards this is going to be one of the better options.

It has the length of an all-around ISUP but there is still a kickpad included on the footpad which makes it a more surf specific board.

If you are a beginner or someone who won’t be just surfing and want a paddle board that can also perform well on other kinds of water the Cooyes is a good choice.

Hurley PhantomSurf 9' Stand Up Paddle Board with Hikeable Backpack, Air Pump, Adjustable Floating Paddle, Coiled Leash, Fin & Repair Kit (Ombre)

Better – Hurley Phantom Surf ISUP

The Hurley is almost my top choice. In fact, the only slight thing that’s keeping me from recommending it as my top recommendation is the super low weight capacity.

The thickness, length, kickpad, shape, and everything else makes this a very good surf specific stand up paddle board.

If you want something that can handle larger waves and have the maneuverability of an epoxy board this is the closest you will get.

The included accessories are also a huge bonus with the Hurley board.

I really like the high quality dry bag/backpack. It makes this an excellent hiking ISUP which can come in handy when trekking out to the beach.

redder Inflatable Stand-up Paddle Board Rogue SUP for Surfing 9' with 3 Fins, Adjustable Paddle, Security Leash, Pump and Backpack

Best – Redder Rogue ISUP

The Redder Rogue just looks like the kind of paddle board that can cut through waves and maneuver around on a dime.

It has the perfect shape, length, thickness, and footpad for fantastic SUP surfing.

It has a great kickpad and even the nose shape is better for surfing.

I also like the higher weight capacity of 265 lbs. It makes this ISUP more for everyone and it gives you the option to bring a dog along if you want.

It’s a little heavier than the Hurley ISUP but not by much and the included accessories are all of high quality.

Even the backpack/storage bag is better than average and if you know you will be surfing a lot this is going to be the best option.


Frequently Asked Questions About ISUP Surfing

Can You Surf with an Inflatable Paddleboard?

Yes, you can. For surfing big waves you need to get an ISUP specifically for surfing but for small waves even normal ISUPs can be pretty fun.

For more information about surfing with a paddle board check out this article.

What is the Difference Between Paddleboarding and Surfing?

Surfing is using waves to propel you forward and paddle boarding is using a paddle to move you forward.

While you can surf with a paddle board it isn’t as easy to paddle board with a surfboard.

For more information check out this article.

Should I Have an Ankle Coil Leash When Surfing on an Inflatable Stand Up Paddleboard?

Yes, you definitely should.

Falling off your board is a big part of surfing and you need an ankle leash to keep your board from going off into the ocean.

If you don’t have a good coil ankle leash there are some really great options you can check out here.

Can Surfing Inflatable Paddleboards Be Used for More Than Just Surfing?

Yes, they can!

While they may not be as good for still water as lake paddle boards they are still good for paddling around.

The only things they won’t be good for are things like yoga, fishing, and beginners (unless you bought the beginner surfing ISUP then you will be fine).

Should I Wear A Life Jacket When Paddleboarding and Surfing?

A lot of pros aren’t seen wearing life jackets while surfing but the biggest difference between them and us is they have spent countless hours in the ocean swimming and surfing.

Bad things can happen if you are swept off your board and don’t know what to do when you are being spun around in a wave.

I’ve even heard stories of people not knowing which direction to swim and they end up swimming to the bottom.

If you aren’t a fan of big bulky life jackets don’t feel bad you are not alone. There are some really great options out there for people like us.

They make belts that go around your waist and inflate when you pull a tab to become a life vest. For more information on these check out this post.

For more information on the United States Coast Guard’s rules for wearing life jackets when paddle boarding check out this post here.

Are There Better Hand Pumps For Paddleboards?

A lot of times the single-action hand pump that came with your board is not going to be your friend.

They do the job but it takes a long time and you’re tired and sweaty before you even get to paddle boarding.

The good news is they make way better hand pumps and even high-pressure electric pumps that can inflate your board from start to finish.

You don’t have to spend a lot to get a better paddle board inflation experience.

Have any more questions about inflatable paddle boards for surfing? Leave a comment below or check out our FAQ page.

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