’17 Summer Gear Guide: The Best in SUP

Our editors curated and personally tested some of the most exciting, innovative, stylish and just plain fun products that Summer 2017 has to offer. Here are our top picks for SUP and paddle sports.

Bluesmiths Lane Hydrophobic Shirt ($79)

Photo: Bluesmiths

Why we chose it: There's no better paddling shirt out there to keep you dry, comfy and protected from the sun.

Why we liked it: The hydrophobic (water repellent) technology really works, keeping you relatively dry after spills.

Tester tip: With its slim fit, bold colors and flat seams to resist chafing, The Lane works as well on the water as it looks off of it.

Cruiser SUP Yoga Board ($949)

Photo: Cruiser SUP

Why we chose it: With SUP Yoga increasing in popularity, we wanted to test a SUP that offered an extra element of stability while practicing yoga out on the water.

Why we liked it: We were surprised with how light and easy the Cruiser SUP Yoga board was to carry, weighing in at only 26 pounds. The 10’6, 33-inch-wide board gives you more stability, which made it perfect for practicing yoga, even when there’s some swell in the water. Equipped with yoga-mat-esque padding on the deck, this board is a stellar choice for SUP Yoga.

Tester Tip: Usable by all ages! The stability and durability makes this an approachable board for all. Great for both SUP Yoga and paddling.

Dakine SUP Paddle Bag ($46)

Photo: Dakine

Why we chose it: Paddles are expensive. We needed a product that would protect our blades both on the road and at home.

Why we liked it: Constructed of durable materials including generous 1/4" foam padding, long-lasting 600D polyester and a heavy-duty zipper, both this bag and our paddles easily withstood heavy use without a problem.

Tester Tip: The bag is plenty big enough to store two paddles, for those paddlers with larger quivers.

Fugoo GoSpeaker ($79.99) and Strap Mount ($9.99)

Photo: Fugoo

Why we chose it: Nothing beats listening to music while on the water, so we needed a high-quality speaker that could handle the abuse of being outdoors.

Why we liked it: The Fugoo Go delivers big sound in a small package. Its Bluetooth connectivity and sound controls are user friendly and despite being tossed around in both the sand and water, it didn't skip a beat.

Tester Tip: The strap mount is better suited for a narrow board or kayak. Otherwise, the elastic band is not large enough to properly secure the speaker, and it will slide off.

Graced by Grit Maggi Sport Top ($42)

Photo: Graced by Grit

Why we chose it: We wanted a top that performed like a sports bra, but could hold its own in the water.

Why we liked it: Does. Not. Budge. This is the top for when you want to go straight from a beach workout to a paddle and then to a swim. Holds on tight and offers full coverage.

Tester Tip: Fits tight, but if you're working out hard, you'll be happy for the snug support.

Motionize SUPerior ($99)

Photo: Motionize

Why we chose it: For standup paddling, technique is everything and we wanted real-time feedback about our stroke – for a price south of $100.

Why we liked it: This small accelerometer provided us with a wealth of helpful stroke feedback including stroke count, strokes per minute, distance traveled per stroke, and entry angle of the blade.

Tester Tip: You need to bring your phone with you on your paddle for the Motionize SUPerior to work, so you will need to invest in a waterproof phone case.

Nocqua Sport Edition Lighting System ($199)

Photo: Nocqua

Why we chose it: Because why only paddle during the day if we can light up the water at night?

Why we liked it: After the initial installation, this system is a breeze to take on and off your craft. Once on the water, the water below you is brightly illuminated, allowing you to see clearly even if it is completely dark out.

Tester Tip: The bright light attracts fish, so paddle in a waterway where you know there are schools of fish for a personal aquarium-like experience.

Patagonia Sunshade Hoody ($69)

Photo: Patagonia

Why we chose it: We're serious supporters of the growing trend of wearing your sun protection, not just slathering it on.

Why we liked it: Provides full coverage from the sun without making you too hot. We wore it in the beating sun on Oahu and were happy to have the protection, even at the expense of our tan lines.

Tester Tip: Go ahead, jump in the water. The Sunshade Hoody is fast-drying and amphibious.

Prana RAI Swim Tight ($70)

Photo: prAna

Why we chose them: We wanted a quick-drying, UPF-carrying pant for a tiny bit of warmth and an extra layer of sun protection out on the water.

Why we liked them: The Rai Swim Tight has all the practical features you need while paddling: a UPF 50+ rating, tight-fit lycra construction, a back pocket with keyloop and a comfortable, wide waistband. SUP gear should be quick-drying so as to reduce chafe and discomfort, and the Rai tights did the job.

Tester Tip: Tight fit. Consider sizing up. If you're not into patterns, prAna also offers a solid black option, which actually better protects against the sun.

Check out more gear reviews from the 2017 Summer Gear Guide:

'17 Summer Gear Guide: The Best in Women's Swim

'17 Summer Gear Guide: The Best in Men's Boardshorts

'17 Summer Gear Guide: The Best in Bike

'17 Summer Gear Guide: The Best in Men's Surf

'17 Summer Gear Guide: The Best in Skate