Airhead AHSUP-1 Inflatable SUP Review

Airhead-AHSUP-1-Inflatable-SUP-Review

Airhead-AHSUP-1-Paddle-Board-FeaturesThe Airhead AHSUP-1 (AKA the “NaPali”) is a strong competitor to some of the most popular inflatable stand up paddle boards on the market. At 10’6”, it’s a bit longer than some of its closest competitors, making it somewhat faster and smoother to ride. The other main selling point of this board is that it comes with a removable fabric seat for riding “Kayak style”. This gives you another riding option or allows you to bring along a small child as you paddle. This is a nice feature usually only offered on higher-end boards.

As always with inflatable stand up paddle boards, you’re getting a board that’s nearly the same quality as a traditional, rigid board when you’re out on the water, but with the convenience of being able to deflate it and roll it up when you’re done.

We’re a little disappointed that Airhead doesn’t include a paddle with this board. A good paddle will cost you an extra $50 or so — we like the Adjustable Alloy Paddle by BPS.

If you’re looking for a budget board, you may want to also consider the Blue Wave Sports Stingray 10’ (see our review of the Stingray here). It also comes with a removable seat, and includes a paddle, and is about $170 cheaper. Note that it is 6” shorter, however.

At the same price point as the NaPali, you may want to also take a look at the Tower Adventurer or the Isle Airtech 10’  (hit the links to see our reviews of those boards). All of these boards are of great quality, but have minor differences in design and included features. We’ve chosen to review these boards because we’re confident a beginning to intermediate stand up paddler will be very happy with any of them. Your decision comes down to a matter of personal preference.

Again, the main advantages of the Airhead AHSUP-1 over its close competitors are its extra length and the removable seat. Of course, with the Adventurer 2 10’4”, Tower updated their board to be almost as long as the NaPali, so if you’re looking for that extra length, that could also be a very good option.

Paddle Board Features:

The Airhead AHSUP-1 (NaPali) is a nicely-designed board with a comfortable deck and all the gear you need for attaching accessories. The anti-skid EVA deck gives great traction for your feet and is very comfortable for standing or sitting.

  • Coming with a carrying backpack
  • Anti-skid EVA deck
  • 7 D-rings to attach seat, leash, and any other accessories
  • 1 large removable center fin, 2 smaller removable side fins
  • 1 year warranty

Airhead AHSUP-1 Specifications:

Size: 10’6” x 30” wide x 4” thick

Weight: 26 pounds

Weight limit: 200 pounds

Material: Drop-stitch construction, anti-skid EVA pad.

Inflating: Inflates to 10-15 PSI

Airhead Inflatable SUP User Experience:

Set up: Set up is minimal with this board, and pretty standard for inflatable paddle boards. Just pump it up and get on the water!

Airhead-AHSUP-1-Inflateable-SUP-RideThe Ride: The main difference between this board and its competitors is the extra 6 inches of length. This gives you extra speed and a slightly smoother ride. The NaPali also gets high marks for its high-quality EVA standing surface, which offers good grip for the feet and a nice cushion for your tender butt when you’re sitting down. And it’s nice to have that option of sit down paddling for when you’re tired or just want a different workout.

Pros:

  • Comes with a removable seat for using the board “Kayak style”
  • Nice anti-skid EVA deck pad for traction and comfort

Cons:

  • Paddle is not included. You’ll need to buy one.
  • The air pressure gauge is not attached to the hand pump, so you have to switch back and forth as you pump to check the pressure.
  • Some users complained about the difficulty in attaching the removable fins, but this seems to have been corrected in newer versions of the board. Just make sure you attach the fins before inflating.
  • Like with all inflatable boards, pumping can be a bit tedious if you don’t have big arm muscles (yet). Some may want to consider getting an automatic pump. A good pump like the Bravo Airhead 12V will run you about $60.

Paddle Board Overall Rating:

Based on all the information we’ve gathered on this board, here’s our overall breakdown for the Tower Adventurer Inflatable Paddle Board (SUP):

  • Price: 85% – Overall this is a very good board and a good price for an entry-level paddler, but we think the package should include a paddle, like other similarly-priced boards.
  • Material: 100% – Good drop-stitch construction and comfy EVA deck pad. This is a very solid board.
  • Design: 95% – Very good board design for a slightly faster ride than similar boards, and we like that we get the option of sitting down in the removable seat. Would be nice to have a better pump, but that’s standard for included pumps.
  • Overall: 93% – High-quality materials with a nice long board design and special removable seat, but a key flaw worth noting — no included paddle.

Airhead-AHSUP-1-Inflatable-Paddle-Board-Overall-Rating

Globo Surf Overview:

Airhead NaPali vs. Tower Adventurer vs. Isle Airtech 10’? It’s a tough decision! We like all of these boards, and we think they all offer solid packages for starting paddlers (except for Airhead’s bonehead omission of a paddle). We recommend reading our reviews of all three boards and choosing the one with the features and style that most appeal to you. With any of them, we’re sure you’ll be pleased.

The Airhead AHSUP-1 (AKA NaPali) is the board to get if you want the extra 6 inches or so for faster, smoother riding, and like the extra option of the removable fabric seat for sit-down, kayak-style paddling. In spite of our disappointment with the lack of an included paddle, this is still a very good choice for beginning paddlers.

If you like the Airhead AHSUP-1, check out its product page on Amazon to read the rest of the customer reviews and get your free shipping!

Sources

  1. Air pressure, Britannica
  2. Adjustable Alloy Paddle by BPS, Amazon
  3. check out its product page on Amazon, Amazon

Have you tried the Airhead AHSUP-1 for your summertime adventures? Talk to us about how you like it in the comment section below.

REVIEW OVERVIEW
Airhead AHSUP-1 Stand Up Paddle Board Review

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