Best Kids Paddle Boards | Our 2023 Buying Guide

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Best Paddleboards for Kids 2022
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Stand Up Paddleboarding is an incredibly fun way to recreate on the water with your whole family. Often we can paddle with young children with us right on the front of our all-around inflatable SUPs. But, as kids get a little older, a little bigger, and a little more independent there comes a time where everyone is going to have even more fun when the kids get to graduate to their own paddleboards.

For many kids, a full-size all-around iSUP is just too big to be able to reasonably paddle. The extra length and width of these boards make them harder for kids to maneuver, harder for them to paddle straight, and harder for them to carry to the water and get inflated.

Luckily, there are a variety of iSUPs on the market that are made just for kids! These boards are not only shorter and narrower, but also thinner. This makes them easier to carry, easier to inflate, and easier to use on the water.

When choosing a kid’s paddleboard, there are a few things to keep in mind. Many of the basics of choosing a paddleboard are the same – you want to consider and balance sizing, construction, and cost. With a Kid’s board you also want to think about room to grow with your little one, and (as the third child myself) whether or not there are more kids coming up the line to use the board after!

Below is a list of our favorite kid’s iSUPs and why we like them. We started with the basics like size and construction, but then also considered the board’s “growability,” and of course, sought the input of younger paddlers using these boards.

Best Paddleboard for Kids Comparison Chart

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Top-Rated Paddleboards for Kids

BOARDDIMENSIONSCAPACITYWARRANTYPRICE
Thurso Adept

Thurso Adept

Thurso Adept
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9’ x 28" x 4.7"
19 pounds
120 lbs2 years,
30-day money back

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Nautical Kids

Nautical Kids

Nautical Kids
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9’ x 32" x 6"
17 pounds
220 lbs2 years,
60-day money back
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Sea Gods ASR

Sea Gods ASR

Sea Gods ASR’
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8’ x 28" x 4.5"
17 pounds
120 lbs

Lifetime warranty,
30-day money back

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Gili Cuda 9’ / 8’

Gili Cuda 9’ / 8’

Gili Cuda 9’ / 8
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9’ / 8’ x 30" x 4"
18 pounds
130 lbs2 years,
60-day money back
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Thurso Prodigy Jr.

Thurso Prodigy Jr.

Thurso Prodigy Jr.
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7’6” x 30" x 4"
19 pounds
80 lbs2 years,
30-day money back
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Bluefin Cruise Jr.

Bluefin Cruise Jr.

Bluefin Cruise Jr.
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8’ x 29" x 5"
TBD pounds
160 lbs5 years,
30-day money back
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Bote Flow Aero

Bote Flow Aero

Bote Flow Aero’
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8’ x 30" x 4.5"
17 pounds
100 lbs2 years,
30-day money back

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Honu Arlie (out of stock in US/UK)

Honu Arlie (out of stock in US/UK)

Honu Arlie (out of stock in US/UK)
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8’6” x 27" x 4.7"
12 pounds
150 lbs4 years,
30-day money back


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Thurso Adept

9’ x 28” x 4.7”
Availability: US, CAN, UK, EU
Read Review Here

Thurso Adept
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The Thurso Adept is our top pick for a kid-specific iSUP. The Adept uses the same excellent construction as the highly rated Water Walker series iSUPs including the carbon fiber reinforced rail and woven drop stitch fabric. At 9’ x 28” there’s plenty of stability for smaller children without being so wide that it can be difficult to paddle straight, but the 9’ length will keep working for your kids as they grow. Most importantly though, it was one of our young tester’s favorites!

Check the best price for the Adept Youth iSUP by Thurso Surf


Nautical Kids

10’8” x 33” x 6”
Availability: US, CAN, UK, EU, AUS
Read Review Here

Nautical Kids
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The Nautical Kids iSUP is a shortened version of the highly-rated Nautical budget iSUP by iRocker. The Nautical Kids shares the same construction and essentially the same feature set as the full-size Nautical iSUP, but shorter (9’ long) and thinner (5” thick). It is still 32” wide. This extra width does make the Nautical Kids one of the most stable iSUPs on this list, but can make carrying the inflated board and paddling it straight more difficult for shorter children. It does have the highest weight capacity on our list (220 lbs) and its extra width does mean that it will remain stable for your growing kids as they enter their tweens and early teen years.

Bottom Line: The Nautical Kids iSUP offers a lot of room to grow and a huge set of on-board features for your kids at a wallet-friendly price.

Check the best price for the Nautical Kids iSUP by iRocker


Sea Gods ASR

8’ x 28” x 4.5”
Availability: US, CAN

Sea Gods ASR
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The Sea Gods ASR – Adult Supervision Required – is a smaller kids iSUP at 8’ long and 28” wide, but has the same excellent construction as Sea God’s other iSUPs like the Diatom. The fusion PVC shell, high-density drop stitch, and heat-molded seams let you and your little use the ASR at up to 20 PSI for ultimate stiffness (which aids in stability). While it is on the smaller side for this list, it’s ideal for kids up to 120lb, and comes with Sea Gods’ lifetime warranty.

Bottom Line: The Sea Gods ASR is incredibly well built and carries a lifetime warranty to keep up with your kids.

Check the best price for the ASR by Sea Gods


Gili Cuda 9’/8’

9’/8’ x 30” x 4.0”
Availability: US, International Shipping Available
Read Review Here

Gili Cuda 9’/8
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The Gili Sports Cuda kids iSUP shares the same construction and similar feature set to the popular Gili Air iSUP, and it comes in two different sizes. The Cuda 8’ is 8’ long, 30” wide, and 4” thick with a weight capacity of 95 lbs. The Cuda 9’ is 9’ long, 30” wide, and 4” thick with a weight capacity of 130 lbs.

The shorter version is a little more maneuverable, while the longer version tracks a little bit straighter. For most children this difference won’t be particularly noticeable until they get a bit of experience under their belt. I prefer the Cuda 9’ version for its ability to continue to work well for kids as they grow into the early teens when they may outgrow the Cuda 8’, but not yet ready for a full-size paddleboard.

Bottom Line: The Gili Cuda offers a large feature set and two sizes to best fit your kids’ needs without breaking the bank.

Check the best price for the Cuda 8′ and 9′ by Gili Sports


Thurso Prodigy Jr.

7.5’ x 30” x 4”
Availability: US, CAN, UK, EU

Thurso Prodigy Jr.
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The Thurso Prodigy Jr. is the smallest iSUP on our list at just 7.5’ long. It is 30” wide, which adds a good deal of volume and stability compared to a narrower kids’ iSUP. Because of its shorter length and lower weight capacity, the Prodigy Jr. is best for younger kids, or as a first Surf SUP for older kids. The Prodigy Jr. also gets the same excellent materials and construction as Thurso’s full-size iSUPs, but without the carbon fiber rail reinforcements. This helps keep the cost down, but the additional stiffening is not really needed on such a short iSUP to begin with.

Bottom Line: The Thurso Prodigy Jr. is great for younger children or as a Surf SUP for tween kids.

Check the best price for the Prodigy Jr. by Thurso Surf


Bluefin Cruise Jr.

8’ x 29” x 5”
Availability: US, CAN, UK, EU, AUS

Bluefin Cruise Jr.
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The Bluefin Cruise Jr. is a smaller version of the popular Bluefin Cruise 10’8”. It’s not only shorter, though, it’s also narrower and thinner (9’ x 29” x 5”). All of this together makes a much better fit for kids while still using the same materials and construction as the full-size version. The Cruise Jr. also includes a kayak seat and kayak paddle conversion with the kit.

Bottom Line: The Bluefin Cruise Jr. is a great all-in-one kit that includes a kayak seat and paddle conversion.

Check the best price for the Cruise Jr. by Bluefin


Bote Flow Aero

8’ x 30” x 4.5”
Availability: US, CAN
Read Review Here

Bote Flow Aero
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The Bote Flow Aero kids iSUP uses Bote’s AeroBote construction technology – the same as in their higher-end iSUPs like the HD Aero. This dual-layer PVC material is stiffer and more durable than single-layer constructions.

When paddleboards are scaled down to better fit younger paddlers, they often have reduced tracking making them harder to paddle in a straight line. The extra large center fin that comes with the Bote Flow Aero helps correct this effect and helps increase stability.

Bottom Line: The Bote Flow Aero is an extra-durable kids iSUP that also makes it easier for your kids to paddle straight and keep up with the family.

Check the best price for the Flow Aero by Bote


Honu Arlie

8.5’ x 27” x 4.7”
Availability: US, UK, AUS

The Honu Arlie is currently out of stock in the US and UK.

Honu Arlie
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The Honu Arlie shares the same ultralight, high-performance design and construction as the full-size Honu Byron. At 27” wide, the Arlie is the narrowest iSUP on this list, but still has excellent stability and great surf-ability as well. It’s also the only iSUP on this list to include a raised kick-pad on the tail of the board to allow your littles to work on more advanced maneuvers like pivot-turns, and gives them better control when riding the waves. The US fin box also opens up a world of performance changes for different water conditions. While it doesn’t include a paddle with the kit, Honu also offers a kid’s size paddle with a nylon blade and carbon fiber/fiberglass shaft.

Bottom Line:The Honu Arlie is the high-performance iSUP designed just for kids (but we won’t tell anyone if you hop on to catch a wave to two!).

Check the best price for the Arlie by Honu


Paddleboards for Kids FAQs

What Makes a Paddleboard Good for a Kid?

Picking a paddleboard for a child has the same process and concerns for adults. You want to make sure to match the paddleboard size to the rider size and make sure that it has all of the features you want and need. Durability is also a key concern with kids iSUPs as they may be more likely to drag, drop, bump, or otherwise use their new iSUP in some rather inventive ways! Lastly, consider your child’s growth. Buying a board that just fits them now means it’s not likely to fit next year.

What Do I Need to Paddle With My Kids?

Aside from your own regular paddleboarding gear, your kids will need their own set (SUP, Paddle, Fins, Leash) and their own, well-fitted PFD. PFDs should be worn by all paddlers, however many locations require people under a certain age must wear a PFD while paddling by law, so make sure to check.

What Other Considerations Are There When Paddling With Kids?

Especially for younger children, plan for short trips with lots of breaks. Bring plenty of water, snacks, and sunscreen as well. Make sure to check the weather forecast – including wind and tide (if applicable) – to make sure that conditions will be safe for kids on their own iSUPs.

Final Thoughts – Best Paddleboards for Kids

Paddleboarding with your kids can be a wonderful and fulfilling activity for the whole family. You can also use this as a great opportunity to engage your kids in more than just splashing around! Have them help you pick a location, check the weather, pack up the equipment. Letting them lead you on a trip can be just as exciting (or more!) and help your kids build confidence and develop critical thinking and planning skills while having a great time paddling.

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