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The Best Way to Inflate a Paddle Board (Follow These Simple Steps!)

April 10, 2023
Two Paddle Boarders Inflating Their Atoll iSUPs

Inflating your stand-up paddleboard (SUP) is an essential part of enjoying a great day on the water. Proper inflation not only ensures the best performance of your board but also enhances safety and stability. In this article, we will guide you through the simple steps to follow when inflating your paddle board, making the process a breeze.

Before we begin there is one thing you need to keep in mind. Always inflate your board to the recommended PSI. In the case of Atoll, we always recommend inflating to a minimum of 10 PSI and a maximum of 15 PSI. If you don’t reach somewhere in between these inflation numbers, you will lose performance on the water – especially if your board is inflated too low.

With that said, let’s walk you through how to inflate your board. Bonus tip: We also included a few easy-to-follow videos for you to check out as well!

Inflating paddle board

Step 1: Unpack and Unroll Your Paddle Board

Before you begin inflating your paddleboard, find a flat, clean surface to lay it out. This will help prevent any damage or punctures to the board during the inflation process. Remove your board from its carry bag and unroll it carefully, making sure there are no kinks or creases.

We prefer to tell our customers to do this step on the grass. This way, you don’t have to worry about rocks, concrete, or other debris rubbing against the vinyl of your board or causing any damage.

Step 2: Attach the Pump to the Board

First, locate the valve on your paddleboard. It’s usually found near the tail of the board. Remove the valve cap and keep it in a safe place. Connect the hose of your manual or electric pump to the valve by twisting it clockwise until it’s securely attached.

Side tip: Not sure if you want to spend the extra dough for an electric paddle board pump? Check out the difference between the two with this quick video. While you may be able to pump faster with the included pump, the difference you feel in your arms is quite substantial!

Step 3: Inflate the Paddle Board

When inflating paddle boards, if using a manual pump, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and use both hands to pump in an up-and-down motion. If using an electric pump, simply turn it on and let it do the work. As we mentioned above, it’s essential to follow the manufacturer’s recommended PSI (pounds per square inch) for your specific board. Most paddleboards require inflation to between 12-15 PSI, but always double-check your board’s manual for the correct pressure.

Step 4: Monitor the PSI

Keep an eye on the pressure gauge as you’re inflating paddle boards. This will help ensure you don’t over-inflate or under-inflate your board. As the pressure increases, it will become more challenging to pump. Continue pumping until you’ve reached the recommended PSI.

However, if you are using an electric pump, all you have to do is set the right PSI number and let it go to work!

Step 5: Close the Valve

Once you’ve reached the desired PSI while inflating paddle boards, disconnect the pump hose by twisting it counterclockwise. Immediately replace the valve cap to prevent any air from escaping. Ensure the cap is tight and secure.

On most models, including the Atoll 11′ and 9′ boards, when you disengage the pump, the valve will automatically close so that no air can escape the board. Just make sure you unscrew it swiftly so the valve can lock into place.

Step 6: Attach the Fin (if applicable)

Some paddleboards come with removable fins for better tracking and stability in the water. If your board has one, follow the manufacturer’s instructions to attach it securely.

The easiest way to do this is to wait until the board is fully inflated. Then, simply guide the fin in place using the tracks. Once secure, put the pin in place to make sure it doesn’t move while you’re on the water!

Step 7: Prepare Your Gear and Hit the Water

Now that your paddleboard is inflated, gather the rest of your gear, such as your paddle, leash, and personal flotation device (PFD). Ensure your paddle is assembled correctly and adjusted to the proper length. Attach your leash to the board and your ankle, and put on your PFD. You’re now ready to enjoy your SUP adventure!


Inflating paddle boards correctly is vital for optimal performance and safety on the water. By following these simple steps, you can ensure that your board is ready for a fun and enjoyable paddling experience. Always remember to check the recommended PSI for your specific board and to monitor the pressure during inflation. Happy paddling and remember to adventure on!

Questions? Comments? Need some clarification? First, check out the video demonstration below or send a message to our inbox or call us directly at: 8 7 7 . 6 9 8 . 8 5 8 1. We’ll help you out with whatever you need!

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