Despite Stand Up Paddleboarding being a relatively new water sport, paddles for Stand Up Paddleboards (SUP’s) come with an abundant variety of shapes, flex patterns, materials and prices. Paddles are usually made of wood, fibreglass, aluminium, carbon fibre or some combination thereof for the shaft and the blade, as for the blade other materials may be used, such as poly carbonate or some form of composites.
Out of the wide range of selections for paddles, carbon paddles seem to gain growing popularity very quickly due to its strength and lightweight properties. Carbon fibre content depicts the stiffness of the paddle. The more carbon fibre content in the paddle the more stiff the paddle is and more performance oriented, hence the price also increases.
However, when it comes to actually purchasing a carbon paddle, we are faced with a huge price range, typically from under $100 to upwards of $300. Although all advertised as carbon paddles and similar in appearance, this price gap is of course justified by the carbon fibre content and the construction of the paddle, the more affordable versions usually consists of some form of carbon, such as aluminium or fiberglass with carbon wrap while the more expensive ones are made of 100% compressed carbon fibre for both the shaft and blade, an indication of the varying material used may be the weight of the paddle.
With the difference in carbon content depicting the weight and performance of the paddles, paddleboarders should considerwhat is suitable for their particular needs before making a purchase.