What is a Touring Paddle Board
Touring paddle boards are designed for people who enjoy speed and glide, and want to travel distance during a paddle session. They are shaped differently then All Around paddle boards which most people are familiar, and unlike All Around boards that are pretty good at doing just about all SUP activities, Touring paddle boards excel in a particular area. They are built to move quickly. They easily hold a straight line, get up to speed quicker and travel further with the same energy output.
Touring paddle boards have a displacement hull which is a much different shape than the common All-Around shape. In particular the nose of the board (bow) will not be rounded with a nose kick like an All Around. Rather, the nose will be like a C1 canoe or K1 kayak, where it is angled to make a razor-sharp bow that slices through the water.
This bow type causes a Touring paddle board’s hull shape to be more semi circular in cross section compared to the All-Around’s shape. As a result, the width of Touring boards are much narrower.
The shape and narrow width of displacement hulls improves the laminar flow of water as the board travels. This ensures that the drag coefficient is low, and as a result, Touring paddle boards glide through the water with little resistance. It’s in flat water where this design really stands out.
The bow with its sharp blade like point produces minimal bow wave. This means the water releases cleanly from the board creating minimal drag.
The stern (rear) of displacement hulls have hard edged tails to allow for rapid closure of the water behind the board. This too minimizes drag.
ADVANTAGES OF TOURING PADDLE BOARDS
The displacement hull requires less energy to get up to speed and travel distance compared to All Around shapes.
It travels in a straight line much easier than other shapes.
In flat water, this hull shape can’t be beat.
DISADVANTAGE OF TOURING PADDLE BOARDS
Less stable than other shapes at low speed or standing still.
Less maneuverable than other SUP shapes and they are not very good in the surf.
Touring paddle boards are great for people who wish to do exactly that. Take tours of their lake or ocean area. If you can visualize yourself paddling half a mile or one kilometer or more in a single direction, then this type of SUP may be right for you. If you want to be able to ride a few waves, or simply screw around on a board a few hundred feet off shore, then a Touring paddle board won’t be a good choice.
The Wappa Blog
Written by Wappa's founder Layne Pennell, the blog's aim is to educate and share his love of stand up paddle boarding with anyone interested in SUP.
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