Paddle Boarding is definitely good fun for the whole family. Of course adults of all ages love the sport and what’s not to love? But in terms of equipment, kids get the short end of the stick. Adults have hundreds of boards to choose from with loads of accessories. From inflatables to racing boards, adults get to have all the fun. So where are the youth paddle boards?
Unfortunately there aren’t that many manufactures making youth sized paddle boards, especially when compared to the magnitude of products made for adults. We did some digging here at the The Wet Life to uncover some excellent youth paddle boarding options. But first let’s look at why kids would need a board of their own at all.
Why Even Buy a Youth Paddle Board?
This question isn’t quite as obvious as it seems before you do a little thinking. The average 12 year old is 4 foot 11 inches tall and most adjustable paddles are made to accommodate people that height. And even a 12 year old should be able to paddle a smaller adult sized board and maybe even larger ones. So why not just let them use your own equipment? Or why not get them adult sized equipment and let them grow into it?
Well, to be fair, those are both realistic options and they might even be why the industry is so sparse in child sized products. But neither of those options are very ideal, and here’s why.
Being able to properly steer a paddleboard can be tough even for adults who aren’t using the right technique. Sharper turns require quite a bit of core strength. Young teenagers and kids will have serious trouble trying to maneuver an adult sized paddle board and may not be able to steer at all!
A youth paddle board is designed with kids in mind. The shorter length gives kids the same steering capabilities that you as an adult might have on a full size board.
Maneuverability is not only important for being in the water but also outside the water. Even if a particularly strong kid can paddle and steer an adult paddle board, they will still have trouble carrying it to the beach. Kids will have trouble with the weight of adult paddle boards as well as the size. Youth paddle boards are much easier for kids to carry and launch, which means less work for you!
Fortunately youth paddle boards are significantly cheaper than full sized, adult paddle boards. This is not only because manufacturing is cheaper but also shipping and storage of a smaller board is cheaper.
Also keep in mind that roughhousing kids are likely to do more damage to a board than a careful adult might. This is one of the biggest arguments for a kid to have their own youth size paddle board. If you let your kids use your personal paddle board too often, you might wind up having to buy a new board for yourself because of all of the dings and scratches. Of course a rugged inflatable paddle board might be a good solution to that problem
This one I think is the most important reason that kids should have their own youth paddle boards. When kids have their own equipment they no longer rely on you and your schedule to be able to be active. With their own board and equipment, kids can seize the day and become more independently minded.
When the kids have their own equipment they can also participate in family outings. Rather than everyone in the family needing to share one or two boards, parents and kids can all go on an adventure together. Paddleboarding trips make for great bonding time to really get close to your kids.
What Youth Paddle Boards are available?
Now that we know why it’s important for kids to have their own youth sized paddle boards we can look at what is available to choose from.
Unfortunately there aren’t very many products available for kids. But what is available seems to be of decent quality, largely because they are made by manufacturers of adult boards.
You may have seen the name Wavestorm before. Wavestorm makes the best selling surfboard ever. Wavestorm also makes what is many people’s first stand up paddle board. They have become a powerhouse in the surfing and paddling world by selling their products at Costco.
Of course not all of their products are sold at every Costco location, and not everyone has a Costco membership or a Costco nearby that they can shop at. For those people there are online options.
About The Board
Just like most entry level boards, the Wavestorm Taquito is made from high density EPS foam. The foam is dense but soft, much like the foam used for pool noodles. Boards made of foam like this are called “soft top” boards which are different than the higher end “hard top” boards.
Foam is a great material to use for a youth paddle board. Kids are much more likely to fall while paddle boarding as they get used to the sport and learn to balance Having a soft board means that they are less likely to hurt their head, elbows, or knees when they fall over.
The foam is also more rugged than high end fiberglass. No doubt your kids will bang their new board into anything within a 20 foot radius. With a fiberglass board that would spell certain death. Fiberglass scrapes and punctures will let water in and cause the whole board to become delaminated. And repairing fiberglass is difficult and expensive. Foam can take a beating and even if it is punctured by rocks, branches, or coral; the board will still float and work much like it did before.
Like the larger Wavestorm boards the Taquito also has a hard plastic bottom. The plastic bottom prevents dings and scratches and is super smooth for easy gliding. If you have ever used a boogy board, it’s a lot like that.
The Wavestorm Taquito Youth Paddle Board has a single detachable center fin. The fin is made from ABS plastic which is strong enough for a child to use.
One great feature on the Taquito is a gear strap on the front of the board. The adjustable strap can be used to carry a dry bag, pfd, or any other gear that you child may need to carry. Kids might want to use it to strap down their favorite toy!
What comes in the package?
The package includes:
The paddle that comes with the Taquito is made for children and so can adjust pretty small. The paddle adjusts from 60 inches at the smallest to 75 inches at the largest. That is good for kids that are 4 foot 4 inches tall to 5 foot 7 inches tall.
The paddle packaged with this board is similar to the paddle that comes with the adult sized Wavestorm paddleboard. It has a plastic blade with the logo on it and an aluminum handle.
It might be a good idea to get a paddle leash with the board package. A paddle leash will be helpful for when your kids inevitably drop their paddle into the water. Just attach the leash to the shaft of the paddle and clip the d-ring to their life jacket.
What Is The Weight Limit?
The Taquito youth paddle board has a weight limit of 150 pounds. I wouldn’t recommend this board for kids that are much more than 100 pounds. The 150 pound limit includes any gear as well as the weight of the paddler
What Ages Is the Taquito Made For?
In stand up paddle boarding, age is relative. It all depend on the size of the person paddling. So long as the paddler is under 100 pounds and not too tall for the paddle the Taquito is a great buy.
Is The Taquito Easy For A Kid To Carry?
The Taquito paddle board weighs only 12 pounds and has a handle molded into the board. The Taquito is very easy for kids to carry around because it is so light and is small enough for them to tuck under their arm.
Is The Taquito Youth Paddle Board any good?
The Taquito is a fantastic board for kids. The soft material prevents any injuries and the size is perfect for young kids. This board will serve young kids very well during their youth until they are ready for larger adult sized boards.
Where Can I Buy The Taquito Youth Paddle Board?
Costco is one place to where you can buy the Taquito. You should call ahead before driving to your local store and make sure that they have it in stock because not every store does.
You can also buy the Taquito on Amazon. Amazon sometimes even has a lower price for the Taquito than Costco does. Amazon also has free shipping on this board to have it delivered to your door. No driving necessary!
Click the button below to buy the Wavestorm Taquito Youth Paddle Board!
Lucky Bums Inflatable Youth Paddle Board
Lucky Bums is fairly new on the paddleboarding scene. They have successfully leapt right into the inflatable paddleboard market. The Drop stitch and PVC materials that Lucky Bums uses are pretty much the same that most other iSUPs use. You’ll find that their quality is very comparable to other companies like Tower.
The Lucky Bums inflatable paddleboards come with a 2 year warranty. The warranty covers manufacturer’s defects in materials and workmanship.
About The Board
The Lucky Bums youth paddle board is inflatable, which comes with a number of advantages and a few disadvantages. The major benefit of an inflatable board is it’s portability. Once deflated, an iSUP can easily fit in the trunk of a car or in a board bag. iSUPs are great for people who don’t have a place to store a large board. They are also great for people who need to travel to their paddleboarding destination.
A major advantage of an inflatable paddle board for kids is the durability. The Lucky Bums youth inflatable paddle board is made of the same material that white water rafts are made of. This board is extremely durable and can handle bumps, scrapes, and whacks like no other board. You can even toss this board off the roof of a building or run it over with a car!
Another feature that kids will like is that it’s soft. Because it’s inflatable, the Lucky Bums board won’t hurt if your child falls and hits their elbow or head.
Even though the board is soft, it is still very stiff. The drop stitch fabric that inflatable paddle boards are made from helps to keep them very rigid. Stiffness is important for stability and speed on a paddleboard.
This paddleboard also has a 5 mm traction pad to stand on. This pad, along with the board’s natural softness will be really easy on your child’s feet and knees, which is needed for endurance.
One great thing about the Lucky Bums iSUP is that they use 3 fins even for the 7 foot version. The Lucky Bums youth paddle board has 2 permanently attached side fins and one detachable center fin. Having 3 fins means that this board will track better than a board with just one fin.
The Lucky Bums board also has an elastic gear strap on the front of the board. Kids can use this to strap down a dry bag, a pfd, or even a water gun!
The Lucky Bums youth paddle board is 7 feet long and 4 inches thick. This is a great length for young children and pre-teens.
The weight limit for this board is 120 pounds but remember, that includes the weight of the paddler and all the gear. I don’t recommend this board for anyone over 100 pounds. Once your child breaks 100 pounds, it’s time to look at adult sized boards 9 foot 6 inches long and greater.
What comes in the package?
The package includes:
The paddle that comes in the package is an aluminum, 3-piece adjustable paddle. It can be separated into 3 different pieces so that it can fit in your carrying bag with the board. Pretty neat! Unfortunately the paddle doesn’t float. If it’s dropped in the water it will take a few seconds to fill with water and then will sink. I recommend getting a paddle leash so that you don’t have to constantly rescue your child’s paddle.
The pump is fairly decent quality. Many pumps that come in these package deals can be kind of cheap but the Lucky Bums pump is one of the better ones. The pump should also be able to fit in the bag with the board and paddle.
How Long Does It Take To Pump Up?
The 7 foot youth version of this board takes about 5 minutes or less to pump up. 12-15 psi is considered fully inflated and the pump has a gauge on top to help keep track of the pressure.
Does It Pack Up Easily?
Yes, the Lucky Bums paddle board deflates and rolls up nicely. The board, pump and paddle all fit in the bag for easy carrying.
If you have to travel anywhere to go paddleboarding with your kids then an iSUP is very helpful. Having to carry your own equipment plus your child’s equipment would be very frustrating. With an iSUP you can just roll it up, put it in a pack and throw it over a shoulder.
What Ages Is the Lucky Bums Youth Paddle Board Made For?
Like I said before, as long as the child can balance (and preferably swim) they are old enough to paddle board. Also the real limiting factor on board size is the weight of the paddler. I don’t recommend the Lucky Bums 7 foot iSUP for anyone over 100 pounds.
Is The Lucky Bums iSUP Easy For A Kid To Carry?
The 7’ board only weighs 17 pounds and so should be easy for a child to carry, especially when it is packed up in it’s carrying bag.
Does The Board Come In Different Lengths?
You can buy the Lucky Bums iSUP in 3 lengths; 7 foot, 9 foot, and 11 foot.
The 7 foot board is obviously for kids and has a weight limit of 120 pounds.
The 9 foot board can be used by larger kids, teenagers, and smaller adults. The weight limit on the 9 foot board is 180 pounds but I wouldn’t recommend it for paddlers who weigh more than 130 pounds.
The 11 foot board is Lucky Bums’ full sized adult inflatable paddle board. This board is 6 inches thick and has a weight limit of 320 pounds. Anyone weighing up to 220 pounds can use this board.
Is The Lucky Bums Youth Paddle Board any good?
Yes, the Lucky Bums iSUP is made of quality materials and has quality workmanship. It is definitely a good board.
Where Can I Buy The Lucky Bums Inflatable Youth Paddle Board?
Amazon is the best place to buy the Lucky Bums youth paddle board. When you buy from Amazon you get free shipping as well as the best prices available.
Click the button below to buy the Lucky Bums Inflatable Youth Paddle Board!