Inflatable Paddle Board Guide

10 May 2024

Mistral has been at the forefront of inflatable stand-up paddle (SUP) board design and development for over a decade, designing award-winning blow-up paddleboards for families, adventurers, racers and commercial centres. Inflatable paddleboards differ in quality of material and construction. Our premium inflatable paddleboards use only advanced inflatable board materials, providing maximum durability, ruggedness, rigidity, reliability, and safety, into which we design functionality and practicality as core design principles. Get on board today with a Mistral paddleboard; your lifestyle in a bag!

The Benefits of Inflatable Paddleboards

The primary benefits of Mistral inflatable paddle boards are their ease of travel and storage: They roll up neatly and are stowed within a purpose-designed wheeled paddleboard backpack. The inflatable paddle board has eclipsed the kayak's versatility, making inland and coastal waterways open to exploration in a transformative era of adventuring and self-discovery. 

What's in the Bag?

Our 'Just add water' approach ensures you have everything you need for a seamless paddleboarding experience. The ready-to-ride paddleboard solution in a bag includes a board, break-apart adjustable paddle, coiled leash, weed fin, repair kit and dual-action hand pump. With these comprehensive accessories, your inflatable paddle board can be transformed into a ready-to-ride watercraft with minimal effort within 10-15 minutes. Feel reassured and confident about your purchase from Mistral. (Return to Index)

Below: Typical Mistral inflatable paddle board hardware.

Standard Mistral Inflatable Paddleboard Features

Experience the best in paddleboarding with our inflatable sup boards, boasting top-quality features such as: 

• Super high-grip comfort foam non-slip decking
• Elasticated cargo netting
• Removable Mistral-designed 8” weed fin
• Leash attachment plug
• Carry handles
• Additional grab handles (on many models)
• Towing ring with bow scuff pad
• D-ring fittings for SUP kayak seat attachment
• Action camera mount (on many models)

(Note: race boards include carbon race weed fin and without D-rings for SUP kayak seat attachment) 

Below: Typical Mistral inflatable paddle board hardware.

What Do You Want to Do with Your Paddleboard?

Select from our comprehensive range of recreational family paddleboards, SUP yoga and pilates paddleboards or our adventure cruiser touring paddleboards and race paddleboard designs for the paddling purest. Boards for each category feature specific, unique features to enhance your paddleboarding experience.

Recreational Family Inflatable Paddleboards

Our recreational family blow-up inflatable paddleboards are stable, durable and supplied as ready-to-ride packages with all the features required to elevate your paddleboarding experience. Consider your children’s physical size and age/s when making your choice. 

SUP Yog and Pilates Inflatable Paddleboards

Our SUP yoga and pilates paddleboards offer extra stability with a clutter-free deck and soft, smooth, non-slip foam decking that provides comfort, whether standing or prone. 

Inflatable SUP Race Boards

Our inflatable race boards are sleek, fast, and the fastest on the market. Designed for the accomplished paddler with good balance and outstanding paddling skills, our boards will match your abilities and deliver superb glide, handling and top-end speeds.

Adventuring, Touring and Cruising Inflatable Paddleboards

If paddleboard adventuring, cruising and paddleboard touring are your focus, we’ve designed an outstanding range of designs for inland waterway exploration for lakes and slow-moving rivers and coastal cruising. Capable of carrying additional cargo, and with multiple grab handles and added length, our boards are smooth gliding, stable workhorses for distance paddling in comfort with the bonus of D-rings to attach a SUP kayak seat.

Choosing Your Inflatable Paddleboard

Significance of Board Width, Length, Thickness, Volume. Paddleboard specifications of width x length x thickness x volume are critical factors affecting performance and manageability in different water conditions. The paddleboard must match your body mass, height, ability, and intended use. If the inflatable paddle board is just for you, consider your pre-existing skills, previous water sports experience, body weight, and height, as these factors help determine your optimum paddle board specifications needs. 

Paddleboard Length

The primary performance rule is that the longer the board, the faster its potential top speed and glide time. Inflatable paddleboards under 10’ (305cm) are considered short, suitable for children and surfing and highly manoeuvrable. 10 (305cm) to 12’ (366cm) boards are ideal for all-around use, and 12’ (366cm) upwards for faster speeds over water and long-distance paddleboarding. 

Paddleboard Stability Factors (Width)

Length x width x thickness are key stability factors. Width is the primary design factor for accessing paddleboard stability. A wide, stable paddleboard is considered to be greater than 31” (79cm) in width. The most popular design specifications fall between 32-34” (81cm-86cm) and 10-11ft (305cm-335cm) in length. 

Paddleboard Thickness

Inflatable paddleboards vary in thickness from 4" (10 cm), 5" (12.5 cm), and 6" (15 cm). Our boards are 6” (15 cm), requiring less pressure (15-18psi) than a comparable thinner inflatable paddleboard to attain the same rigidity, accommodating a wider range of body weights and cargo options. Tall persons will have a high centre of gravity, making them less stable. Consider a board of 32” (81 cm) in width or more. 

Paddleboard Volume and Body Mass

Each inflatable paddleboard has an internal volume measured in litres, contributing to buoyancy. Your body mass should not sink the board by more than 50%; every 1kg mass will sink 1 lt of volume (buoyancy). A 100 kg rider would sink a board of 200 litres by 50%. If you wish to paddleboard with your dog, allow for their weight and add 1" of board width for increased stability. 

Your Ability Will Determine Your Stability

If you have good balance and pre-existing skill sets from windsurfing, snowboarding, surfing, and other board sports, you will likely manage a narrow paddleboard below 32” (81 cm) in width. 

Double Chamber Inflatable Paddleboards

We offer inflatable paddleboards with dual inflatable chambers as an extra level of safety focused on commercial use. Each chamber must be inflated separately. 

Accessorise Your Paddleboarding Experience

Enhance your paddleboarding experience with Mistral water wear and Mistral apparel, which includes SUP paddling garments and a variety of SUP accessories, including an extensive range of paddleboard paddlesUV-protective men's Lycra® and UV-protective women's Lycra®  in addition to change robes and men's wetsuits and women's wetsuits and an array of apparel in addition to waterproof dry bags contributing to your paddling enjoyment.