Anyone can enjoy paddle boarding and reap the benefits, regardless of body size. That’s the beauty of SUP.
But when it comes to choosing a paddleboard, the process can be intimidating for heavy guys and ladies. Can the SUP board you want to buy hold your weight? Will you be able to bring gear or your kid along? You want to have fun, not get frustrated in the water, right?
Well, I’m here to help by recommending my eight best stand up paddle boards for big guys. I’ll also talk about how you can choose a paddle board that is right for your individual needs.
Out of all the paddle boards I tested, the Isle Switch is my top pick for the best SUP for larger paddlers. I’ll explain why below, so read on.
Stand Up Paddle Boards For Big Guys Compared
Best for Big Guys
High-Capacity Hybrid for Heavier Paddlers
The Isle Switch paddle board, a SUP-kayak hybrid, supports up to 425 lbs. It offers stability, speed, and versatility with unique features like a kayak seat and foot brace, ideal for diverse paddling experiences.
|Sizes||11’6 x 35.5″ x 6″|
A Versatile, Stable Board for Fishing and Yoga
The Gili Meno is a great do-it-all board. It’s exceptionally stable, but not too slow in the water. Great for larger paddlers, and the 485-lb capacity and mounts make it a great fishing SUP.
|Sizes||11’6 x 35″ x 6″|
Large Stable SUP with Gear Mounts
The XL is wide and stable. It can support up to 485 pounds–enough for you and all your fishing gear. It also comes with lots of D-rings and action mounts for attaching the gear too.
It can be a little slow.
|Sizes||11’6 x 34″ x 6″|
A Fast, Durable Touring Board
This board performs great in the water. It’s fast, but stable enough for beginners who want to improve quickly. The durable construction is backed by a five-year warranty. The only downside is it’s heavy!
|Sizes||14′ x 30″ x 6″|
Best Value SUP
Beautiful SUP That Is Stable and Fast
The Atoll is a nice-looking board that’s super rigid when inflated and can support up to 315 pounds. It has been water-tested at 550+ lbs with multiple riders so it can easily support big guys.
Side fins are not removable–you can’t change the setup.
|Sizes||11′ x 32″ x 6″|
Stable and Fast Board with Multiple Attachment Points
The iRocker All Around glides fast but it’s still stable enough for heavier paddlers and their gear. You can use it for different SUP activities and even for paddling with your little one.
|Sizes||11′ x 32″ x 6″|
Rugged Touring Board with Impressive Performance
The Tower Xplorer 14 glides with impressive speed and is perfect for long-distance paddling. It’s durable and stiff, with a remarkable weight capacity of 800 pounds, and will accommodate you and all your touring gear.
|Sizes||14′ x 32″ x 8″|
An Easy to Control SUP with Excellent Rigidity
The Tower Adventurer is a little smaller and highly maneuverable in pretty much every condition. You can have fun with it on any body of water. It has a 400-pound weight capacity–great for larger paddlers.
|Sizes||10’4 x 32″ x 6″|
Best Stand Up Paddle Boards For a Heavy Person in 2023
Read on for my reviews:
1. Isle Switch Hybrid Paddle Board – Best Paddle Board for a Heavy Rider
The Isle Switch is a hybrid paddle board that doubles as an iSUP and a kayak, and it does both jobs exceptionally well. It’s a complete package, offering an innovative modular system for attaching accessories like a kayak seat and foot brace.
Now, as a heavier paddler myself, weighing around 220 lbs, I can vouch for the Isle Switch’s stability. It can support up to 425 lbs of weight and feels secure on the water, with no wobbling, sagging, or sinking.
Despite being a wide 2-in-1 SUP/kayak hybrid, the Isle Switch is surprisingly fast, thanks to its lightweight design, tapered nose, and large hatchet fin. It also tracks well, meaning it can hold its course and keep you moving in a straight line without too much fuss.
The Isle Switch is quite a large paddle board at 11’6 long, but it’s still pretty easy to turn and move around in the water. The lightweight design makes those strokes feel like a breeze.
In terms of durability, the Isle Switch uses Isle’s Air-Tech Fusion Lite™ technology to create a lightweight yet rigid paddle board. It also comes with a solid 2-year warranty against defects in workmanship and materials.
In conclusion, the Isle Switch is a fantastic choice for heavier paddle boarders looking for a versatile and high-quality board that doesn’t skimp on performance.
2. Gili Meno 11’6 XL
The Gili Meno 11’6 XL is a stable, versatile board. I rate it as a beginner board for large paddlers. It’s also a great multi-purpose board for paddlers who want to use their SUP for yoga or fishing.
This big paddle board is 35 inches wide, which makes it incredibly stable (important for any SUP, but especially for larger, heavier paddlers). This does have an impact on its speed and tracking, though not as much as you might think. The Gili Meno actually glides pretty nicely! I wouldn’t choose it as a touring board, but it’s definitely not bad for a large all-around SUP.
Given its size and weight capacity, the Gili Meno is surprisingly lightweight, which helps with maneuverability. The board weighs just 24 pounds and the wheeled backpack makes it a breeze to move around, even on public transport.
The 485-pound weight capacity and great storage make this an awesome expedition or fishing board. If you’re a heavy guy, it’s hard to find an inflatable SUP that can take you and all your gear, but the Meno delivers! I love the huge bungee storage area at the front of the board. You also get 3 action mounts and 3 Scotty mounts, so you can convert the board into a fishing SUP.
The Gili Meno has a standard three-fin setup, but unlike most boards, you get three different central fins to choose from. I recommend using the 9-inch fin for lakes and ocean paddling, the 4.5-inch fin for deep rivers, and the short 3-inch fin when you’re paddling in very shallow water. The fact that you can change the fins according to the environment makes the Gili Meno a truly versatile board.
In addition to the fins and backpack, the Meno comes with a leash, three-stage pump, repair kit, and a carbon fiber travel paddle. The standard paddle has a nylon blade, but you can upgrade to a full carbon paddle, for a little extra cost.
Read my review of the very stable Gili Meno 11’6 SUP Board
3. Blackfin Model XL
The Blackfin XL from iRocker is the ultimate paddleboard for bigger and taller paddlers. It is a fantastic all-around iSUP that guarantees a good time in any condition.
The Model XL is made using the lightest and strongest construction, triple-layer composite PVC. Having three layers of the military-grade PVC material makes the paddleboard extremely rigid. It can handle 485 pounds when fully inflated. Paddlers on the heavier side can bring all their gear and another adult friend. It does not flex at all.
The inflatable paddleboard has a width of 34 inches and a length of 11’6. This makes it bigger than most single-rider boards. It offers a large platform for extra stability. The Blackfin Model XL doesn’t wobble, even when you have a dog or toddler that won’t sit still on board.
The construction is solid and you won’t have to worry about it bending in the middle. This happens a lot with bigger guys on most cheaper models.
Although the Blackfin is designed for maximum stability, it still performs well. It tracks amazingly and is easy to maneuver. The three-fin system helps with performance in all conditions and you can comfortably surf smaller waves if you like.
You will love the attachment points on the Blackfin Model XL. It has eight action mounts and 20 D-rings. There are two bungee storage areas, at the front and rear. All these plus the weight limit allow you to bring as much luggage as you want.
The deck pad extends all the way past the inflation valve, making this iSUP ideal for yoga and SUP fitness. It has four safety handles for your passenger to hold on to during the ride.
The Blackfin Model XL comes with the fins and a repair kit. Most of the accessories, like a bag, pump and paddle, are optional. This allows you to customize your SUP package according to your needs and is great if you already own paddle board accessories. The only SUP accessory iRocker requires you to purchase is a SUP leash. Since a leash is so important for your safety, they need to make sure you don’t go without.
The carbon shaft of the optional paddle is adjustable and breaks into three pieces for travel. The wheeled bag is quite spacious. It has back support and padded waist and shoulder straps. The Model XL pump is a twin-chamber that does the job 100% faster.
Read my review of the Blackfin XL
4. Bluefin Sprint Carbon 14
If you’re used to paddling an all-around SUP, you’ll really notice the difference in performance when you jump onto the Bluefin Sprint Carbon 14. It glides like a dream – even when you’re a larger paddler.
It’s heavier than other boards, so you need a couple of powerful strokes to get going, but it quickly gets up to speed. It easily holds its own with touring boards, and I reckon you could even use it for racing. At 30 inches wide, it’s not quite as narrow as many touring boards, making it stable enough for ambitious beginners.
The board is fairly maneuverable, given its length. I like that Bluefin has included a raised kick tail – this makes step-back turns so much easier!
The Sprint Carbon 14 performs amazingly well for its price point. It has a unique construction – a standalone inflation loop inside the main air chamber – that along with the carbon stiffening rails gives an extremely rigid, durable inflatable SUP. This paddle board with over 400 pounds weight capacity makes it an ideal touring paddle board for big guys.
The stiff, durable construction makes the board heavier than most inflatable paddle boards. This won’t be an issue if you can park up close to your launch site, but if you want to hike into remote lakes or beaches, I’d choose a different board! It can be cumbersome to carry 28lbs of paddle board over longer distances, after all.
The Sprint Carbon comes with three removable fins, all of which are detachable. The central fin has a US fin box system, so it’s easy to add aftermarket fins. You also get a carbon fiber shaft paddle, a backpack, triple-action pump, leash, and a waterproof phone case!
6. Atoll 11 Paddle Board
The Atoll 11’ is suitable for paddlers that love a classy look. It looks rugged and its performance in the water is just as amazing.
Many things make the Atoll 11’ notable, and one of them is its construction. It is made using military-grade PVC, like many other iSUPs. However, it is uniquely designed to be 40% lighter than the average inflatable boards. This makes it durable and lightweight.
The Atoll 11’ inflates to 15 PSI. Some people refer to it as the “Hard Board Mimicker” because of its rigidity. When inflated to capacity, the iSUP can support individual riders up to 315 pounds without flexing. The Atoll has been successfully water tested with multiple riders with a combined weight of over 550 lbs.
The board is 32 inches wide, giving you a stable platform for what you may want to try.
This paddleboard has a tri-fin system that offers efficient and faster tracking. Its shape and size are just perfect, as far as maneuverability is concerned. You can even let your kid paddle as you teach them.
iSUPs are not usually fast. But the Atoll moves well—you will be impressed. It may not be better than a solid board in this area but it is great.
The Atoll 11’ comes in four colors; army green, aqua marine, light blue and desert sand. Good luck trying to choose because they all look awesome.
There is a bungee cord at the front, attached to six D-rings for your stuff. Extra D-rings are placed on the deck for your leash and other uses.
It comes with a carbon fiberglass paddle, backpack, center fin, dual-action pump and a leash. The paddle breaks down into three pieces and it floats.
The backpack has a zipper opening for your paddleboard to dry while in storage.
Read my review of the Atoll 11′ SUP board.
7. iRocker All-Around 11’ Heavy Duty SUP
The iRocker all-around iSUP is designed for big riders or multiple paddlers. If you have never used an inflatable board before, remove all doubt.
This SUP board is made using quad-layer military-grade PVC. This construction is the highest quality you can find. Unlike many double- and single-layer paddleboards, the iRocker is super stiff and does not flex. The heavy-duty material used makes it great for all kinds of conditions.
Tall paddlers (and beginners) need a board they can trust when it comes to balance. The wider the board, the more stable it is. This iRocker iSUP has a width of 32 inches. It will be easy for you to find a balanced spot.
Although the iRocker is wide enough for stability, it is not too wide that it hinders speed. It has a sporty shape and tri-fin system—both of which facilitate fast tracking. The weight of a board also contributes to its speed, and the iRocker is light. Prepare to be amazed by its performance.
This iSUP is available in five colors; blue, seafoam green, white, aqua and white/blue (stripe). It has a bungee storage section at the front, attached to 6 D-rings. There are more D-rings on the deck and a center carry handle.
For comfort and anti-slip function, there is a crocodile texture pad on the deck.
The iRocker comes with a triple action pump, bag, paddle and leash. The quality paddle is made of fiberglass and can be broken down into three pieces. The pump only weighs 4 pounds, is 100% faster and makes pumping 50% easier.
8. Tower Xplorer 14’ Inflatable SUP
Not many paddleboards can compare to the Tower Xplorer. It was designed to bear all kinds of SUP-related abuse. Check out the details.
This is one of the most rigid and durable boards you will come across. It is made using advanced Dropstitch technology and military-grade material.
To prove its quality, the manufacturer has run an Xplorer iSUP over with a car and thrown it off a building. After all that, no tear could be spotted.
This inflatable is 8 inches thick so it cannot submerge. At 32 inches wide, and given its rigidity, the stability offered is out of this world. It will hold you and all your luggage.
The Tower Xplorer is 14 feet long and has a pointed nose. These two features facilitate speed. It is a great board for people who love touring and racing. It also has a large center fin which helps with tracking.
Since this iSUP has a large platform, it is not limited to touring and racing only. You can use it for yoga, fishing and as a family board.
It features a single fin—easily detachable—and a center handle for easy carrying.
The board has a four-inch nose rocker. Two D-rings are attached; one at the front and another at the back for your leash. It does not include a bungee cord for securing essentials.
Unlike many inflatable paddleboards, the Tower Xplorer does not come with much. You get a three-piece paddle, fin and a high-pressure pump.
9. Tower Adventurer 2 iSUP
With Tower paddleboards, you are assured of two things: durability and rigidity. The Adventurer is no different. It offers that and much more.
The Adventurer 2 is made with Dropstitch technology. The top and the bottom are connected using thousands of fibers. This is why the manufacturers have no problem running over their boards or subjecting them to all kinds of hard conditions.
The rigidity of a Tower Adventurer board matches that of a solid paddleboard. Expect no flex at all. The wide platform (32 inches) makes it easy for anyone to stay balanced. Six-inch thick iSUPs are also known to be buoyant. If you are heavier, make sure you inflate your Adventurer to the recommended PSI.
This paddleboard comes with a large center fin which makes it fast and easy to steer. The pointed nose contributes to speed as well.
You can use the Adventurer for most SUP activities and in any conditions, thanks to its stability and maneuverability.
A bungee cord is attached to the front for securing essentials. If you are a pet owner or yoga enthusiast you will appreciate the large, soft deck pad.
There are three carry handles; at the front, center and back. The paddleboard comes in three colors; gray, blue and turquoise.
The Tower Adventurer 2 package includes a high-pressure pump, paddle, handhold strap, roll-up carrying strap and a center fin. The paddle is made of fiberglass and is adjustable.
Buying Guide: How to Choose a Paddle Board for a Heavy Person
The paddle board you buy determines whether you will have an amazing or frustrating experience.
So here is all the information you need to get it right.
What Makes a SUP “High Capacity”?
The amount of water that a paddle board displaces determines how much weight it can hold. The more water it displaces, the more weight it can hold.
Now, the volume of a SUP is the measure of how much water it displaces. So this basically means that SUP boards with a higher volume can hold more weight.
The volume of a paddleboard is determined by its length, width, and thickness. Bigger paddle boards, thus, have more volume and a higher weight capacity.
Special Considerations for Bigger Guys and Girls
The best thing about stand up paddle boarding is that anyone can do it. If you are a big guy or a plus-size girl, your weight shouldn’t stop you from enjoying this amazing sport.
First, make sure you choose the right paddle board. (We talk about that below). You need a paddle board that comfortably accommodates you so it doesn’t sink or flex.
Once you find a SUP, start slow. Stand up paddle boarding is easy, but not as easy as it looks. You may not paddle as far or as well as you expect to on your first day. Learning the proper techniques takes time.
Focus on building your confidence and having fun.
If standing up proves to be harder than you expected, start by sitting or kneeling. Stand up when you feel comfortable.
Another thing, SUP doesn’t have to be about paddling the entire time. You can take breaks and just float around (not far from the shore).
Maybe try a few simple yoga poses like the seated prayer pose, child’s pose, or even corpse pose.
Inflatable Vs Epoxy Paddle Boards
This is another major decision you’ll have to make when buying a paddle board as a big person.
Generally, inflatable paddle boards are better suited for people on the heavier side. They are thicker, compared to solid paddle boards and, hence, have more volume.
Epoxy paddle boards are thinner and their thickness is not uniform throughout the length of the SUP.
This is why it is easy to find an inflatable paddle board with a weight limit of 400+ pounds.
Solid paddle boards excel when it comes to performance. You will notice that serious racing boards are usually hard paddleboards.
People love inflatable paddle boards because they are easy to store and carry around.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Paddle Board for Heavy Riders
1. Paddle Board Size
First, look at the length, width, and thickness of your paddle board. The right size for you depends on your weight as well as your favorite SUP activity.
For recreational paddle boarding, anything from 10’4 to about 11’6 long would be alright. But if you want exceptional speed and tracking, you will have to go longer, 12’6 to about 14’ long.
I’d recommend a length of 10’6 to 11’6 for yoga. You want to have a large enough platform for your practice.
Width is important when it comes to stability. I wouldn’t recommend anything under 32 inches wide for heavier SUPers.
Go wider if you feel you need the extra stability, especially for yoga and fishing. There are SUPs as wide as 36 inches.
But you should know that the wider a SUP board is, the slower it is likely to be. So keep that in mind.
The thickness of a stand up paddle board affects its weight limit and, for inflatables, rigidity as well.
Thicker is better–but not too thick. 6 inches is okay for inflatables and 4.5 to 5 inches for solid SUPs.
2. Weight Capacity
Always check a paddle board’s weight capacity. Manufacturers indicate it along with other specs.
It tells you how much the board can hold.
Overloading a paddle board will slow it down and interfere with maneuverability. The SUP may also start sinking and ruin your paddling experience.
Your weight plus that of your gear and any extra passenger should be about 50 pounds below your SUP’s weight capacity.
3. Build Quality
A poorly made paddle board, especially an inflatable, is a nightmare. If you are a big guy, it may start flexing when you stand on it. As you can imagine, that is not a pleasant experience.
Quality inflatable paddle boards are built using military-grade PVC, usually two or more layers. When fully-inflated, they are as stiff as solid paddle boards.
They don’t bend and they can easily hold a lot of weight.
Be sure to check the materials used and the warranty. A longer warranty period is a good indication.
The volume will give you an idea of the weight that the SUP can accommodate.
As a heavier paddleboarder, you should consider higher volume paddle boards. Go for thicker models, especially if you are buying an inflatable.
Stand Up Paddle Boards for Big Guys FAQs
Can a Fat Person Paddle Board?
Yes, anyone can paddle board as long as they have the right paddle board.
Is There a Weight Limit for Stand Up Paddle Boarding?
No, there is no weight limit for stand up paddle boarding. People of all sizes can enjoy the sport. Paddle boards, however, have weight limits. So make you get one that is right for your weight.
Can I Lose Weight Paddle Boarding?
Yes, you can lose weight paddle boarding. Stand up paddle boarding is a full-body workout.
You can burn 400 calories per hour, paddling leisurely. Intense activities like SUP racing burn an average of 900 calories per hour.
If you combine SUP with other healthy habits, you can attain your fitness goals.
Is Stand Up Paddle Boarding a Good Workout?
Yes, stand up paddle boarding is a great workout with many health benefits. It engages every muscle in your body and it is fun!
Your weight should never stop you from paddle boarding. With the proper paddleboard, you can enjoy just as much as anyone else.
The Isle Switch inflatable SUP is a safe choice for almost every paddler. Its construction is solid, enabling it to hold over 425 pounds. You may bring whoever and whatever you want.
I can vouch for its stability because I have personally paddled it with someone else on board. It holds up well.
I would recommend the Gili Meno 11’6 XL for bigger beginners. It is extremely stable and it is one of the best SUPs for anyone looking to learn paddleboarding.
Its construction is reliable and you don’t have to worry about flexing or wobbling.
The Tower Adventurer 2 is a good option for anyone on a budget. It is built using rugged materials and can hold up to 400 pounds.
So what is stopping you now? Grab a paddle board and go have fun!
If you have any questions feel free to ask us below.