5 Best Paddleboard Leashes To Secure Your SUP In 2024

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One essential accessory that often gets overlooked is the paddleboard leash. It’s easy to think that it’s not essential to the sport, but I would tend to disagree.

In this guide, I’ll walk you through the importance of these leashes, unveil the top 5 paddleboard leashes to look out for in 2024, and give you the key considerations before purchasing…

Let’s dive in 💦

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First – let’s address the elephant in the room.🐘

Why Use A Paddleboard Leash?

There are a few key reasons that you should consider:

Safety on the WaterPaddleboard leashes act as a crucial safety feature, ensuring that your board stays connected to you even in challenging conditions. In case you fall off, the leash keeps the board within reach, preventing any potential dangers and allowing you to get back on the board easily.
Preventing Board DriftEver experienced the frustration of watching your paddleboard drift away while you struggle to swim back? A reliable leash eliminates this concern, providing peace of mind and allowing you to focus on enjoying the paddleboarding experience.
Gives You Peace Of MindWhen you’re trying to balance on a SUP, you need to be present and in the moment. But if you’re worrying about a whole bunch of other things (like your board disappearing) then it’s much less likely that you’ll enjoy yourself.

These are just a few of the key reasons why you should always have a paddleboard leash. They may seem obvious (or even simple), but when you’re out in the water it is crucial to keep safety as a top priority.

Things can happen quickly out there and you want every weapon at your disposal to keep you safe and happy. The leash is one of these weapons. So don’t forget about it 😉

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So with that being said, here are the…

The Top 5 Paddleboard Leashes To Keep An Eye On In 2024

These are my favorite leashes for all different types of paddleboards, you could choose any of them and be perfectly happy (and safe on the water).

CategoryLeash
Best Everyday LeashBPS Storm Ultralite Leash
Best Quality LeashDakine Coiled Leash
Best Performance LeashSanta Barbra Premium Leash
Best Lightweight LeashAirhead Scrunchy Leash
Best Budget LeashUnigear Premium SUP Leash

Read below for a more detailed analysis of each of these leashes.

Enjoy!

Leash 1: BPS Storm Ultralite Leash (BEST EVERYDAY LEASH)

paddleboard leash

Where To Buy: Amazon

Key Features:

– 10 Foot coiled leash

– Lightweight and durable

– 360 swivel system to prevent tangling

– 100% Guarantee

The BPS Storm is my most recommended leash. The reason why is because I absolutely love it! It’s a sturdy yet lightweight leash that I have owned for years. It’s coiled so it doesn’t snag on submerged rocks and objects, and it has a 10 foot range that gives you ample room away from your board if you need it.

This was specifically designed for surfing and paddleboarding by a ‘Kiwi’ surfer that wants more people out on the water. It is made by a small business so the quality and personality is guaranteed. I love this leash and I recommend it to anyone.


Leash 2: Dakine Coiled Leash (BEST QUALITY LEASH)

Where To Buy: Tower Paddleboards

Key Features:

– 10 foot coiled leash

– Lightweight and durable

– Triple wrap rail saving technology to protect your board.

– 100% Guarantee

paddleboard leash

This is a leash that is made from a top brand that has been in the watersport space for years now. Dakine is well known for spending a ton of money on research & development on their products, and it shows with this leash.

It is a 10 foot coiled that will ensure that you SUP doesn’t drift away from you in any condition. It is comfortable and doesn’t cause any chafe on your ankle, along with protecting your board with a triple wrap rail saver that stops the leash from constantly scuffing the side of your SUP.

If you’re looking for the top of the range, then this is your best bet!


Leash 3: Santa Barbra Premium Leash (BEST PERFORMANCE LEASH)

paddleboard leash

Where To Buy: Amazon

Key Features:

– 9 foot straight leash

– Lightweight and durable

– Ultra-plush ankle cuff that gives you extra padding to avoid chafing

– 1 Year Guarantee

If you’re looking for a great leash that’s perfect for racing then look no further. The Santa Barbara Surfing premium leash is the top of the range when it comes to straight leashes. It is strong, lightweight and has minimal drag in the water because of the thin coil.

Along with that it is extremely comfortable with a plush ankle cuff that distributes the load and makes leash pulls less painful. If you’re looking for a performance leash then this is your best choice!

See also  Tower Paddle Boards: We Review The 5 Best SUP Picks Of 2024

Leash 4: Airhead Scrunchy Leash (BEST LIGHWEIGHT LEASH)

Where To Buy: Amazon

Key Features:

– 11 foot coiled leash

– Inline swivels prevent tangling

– Lightweight with accordion style webbing

paddleboard leash

This is a really high-quality leash that I enjoyed testing a ton! It is extremely light-weight and uses an accordion type of webbing that that makes it really stretchy. This leash can extend over 11 feet.

The biggest problem with these “scrunchy” leashes is usually that they tangle, but Airhead has included 2 inline swivels that will prevent it from tangling, making it so that this is a solid leash with not downsides. I would recommend it to anyone.


Leash 5: Unigear Premium SUP Leash (BEST BUDGET LEASH)

paddleboard leash

Where To Buy: Amazon

Key Features:

– 10 foot coiled leash

– Made of super-strong 7mm urethane cord that can handle the heaviest board

– Durable and long lasting materials

– Comes with a waterproof wallet for your keys and phone.

This is a really good paddleboard leash if you’re on a budget. None of them are truly that expensive but every dollar counts, right?

This leash is comfortable with an elastic soft sponge material that makes it feel really natural to be wearing it in the water. It is easily attached to your board and it also prevents damage to your paddleboard rail.

An extra benefit is that it comes with a waterproof wallet that will keep your keys and phone safe.


Considerations Before Buying A Paddleboard Leash

Straight Vs. Coiled Paddleboard Leash

When it comes to the type of leash that you want to buy, there are a few key considerations of each of the two types.

Straight Paddleboard Leash:

Pros:

A straight leash is intentionally designed for minimal drag in the water i.e. it isn’t going to slow you down as much as a coiled leash. On top of that – It allows for easy movement and it doesn’t get tangled very much which makes it easy to manage during use.

Cons:

The negatives of a straight leash is that it has limited reach because it’s a fixed length, there are potential tripping hazards and also it does sometimes get caught on seaweed or rocks when paddling.

Coiled Paddleboard Leash:

Pros:

A coiled leash prides itself on being compact and extra stretchy. It is coiled so obviously it is compressed when not expanded and then it can stretch an extra distance when you need it.

Cons:

The cons are they are perceived to be a little bit more bulky because they are coiled up, and along with they do have a tendency to tangle sometimes. Not a huge problem and it’s nothing like your wired headphones 😵 but it’s still worth considering.

Type of Paddleboarding Activities

Different paddleboarding activities demand different leashes. Whether you’re into surfing, touring, or yoga on the board, choosing a leash that suits your specific activity is crucial for optimal performance and safety.

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Here are some general guidelines:

Paddleboard ActivityRecommended Paddleboard Leash Type
SurfingA shorter straight leash for quick movements and reduced drag in the waves.
TouringA longer straight or coiled leash, offering more freedom of movement during extended paddling sessions.
YogaA coiled leash is often preferred for yoga on the board. It minimizes drag and stays neatly out of the way.
RacingA lightweight, minimalistic straight leash to reduce drag and enhance speed.
Recreational PaddlingDepending on personal preference, a straight or coiled leash with a moderate length for versatility.

Board Size and Weight

The size and weight of your paddleboard influence the type of leash you should invest in. Larger boards may require a longer leash for comfortable movement, while lightweight boards may benefit from a coiled leash to prevent unnecessary drag.

Personal Preference

Some paddlers prefer a minimalistic experience, while others appreciate additional features. Consider your personal preferences, such as the attachment mechanism or the color of the leash, to ensure it complements your overall paddleboarding style.

Top Paddleboard Leash Features to Look Out For:

Material and DurabilityThe material of the leash determines its durability. Look for leashes made from high-quality materials that can withstand the harsh conditions of saltwater and sunlight, ensuring a long-lasting investment.
Length and CoilThe length of the leash should align with the type of paddleboarding you do. A longer leash is ideal for open waters, while a coiled leash minimizes drag in calmer conditions, providing a tangle-free experience.
Attachment MechanismThe attachment mechanism should be secure and easy to use. Whether it’s a Velcro strap or a quick-release buckle, choose a leash with an attachment that suits your preferences and ensures a strong connection to your board.

Cleaning a Paddleboard Leash:

1 – Rinse with Fresh Water:

  • After each use, thoroughly rinse the leash with fresh water. This helps remove salt, sand, and other debris that can degrade the materials.

2 – Use Mild Soap:

  • For stubborn dirt or salt residue, use a mild soap or detergent. Avoid harsh chemicals that can damage the leash

3 – Brush Gently

  • If needed, use a soft brush to gently scrub the leash. Pay attention to areas with Velcro or other attachment mechanisms.

4 – Check for Damage:

  • While cleaning, inspect the entire leash for any signs of wear, tear, or damage. Address any issues promptly.

5 – Air Dry:

  • Hang the leash in a shaded area to air dry completely. Avoid direct sunlight, as prolonged exposure can weaken the materials.

Storing a Paddleboard Leash:

1 – Uncoil Before Storage:

  • Always uncoil the leash before storing it. This prevents the leash from retaining a coiled shape, which could affect its performance.

2 – Avoid Sharp Objects:

  • Store the leash away from sharp objects that could potentially damage or puncture it.

3 – Cool and Dry Location:

  • Choose a cool, dry place for storage. Avoid hot or humid areas, as excessive heat or moisture can degrade the materials over time.

4 – Hang or Lay Flat:

  • Hang the leash on a hook or lay it flat. Avoid tightly coiling it for long periods, as this can lead to memory retention in the coil.

5 – Regular Checks:

  • Periodically check the leash, even during storage, for any signs of wear, mold, or deterioration. Address any issues promptly.

By incorporating these cleaning and storage practices into your routine, you’ll ensure that your paddleboard leash remains in optimal condition, ready to provide safety and security on your next paddleboarding adventure.

Conclusion

In the vast sea of paddleboarding accessories, the leash stands out as a humble yet essential tool for a safe and enjoyable experience. Investing in the right leash is an investment in your safety, ensuring that you can ride the waves or explore the waters without losing your board. It also helps you keep your sanity because you don’t have to constantly swim after your board. 🏊‍♂️

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Paddleboard Leash FAQs

How do I choose the right leash for my paddleboard?

Consider the type of paddleboarding you do, your board’s size and weight, and personal preferences. Also review the detailed discussion that we had above on this topic.

Are coiled leashes better than straight ones?

It depends on your preference and the conditions you paddle in. Coiled leashes are great for reducing drag and they also have the added benefit of not getting hooked on things like seaweed and rocks when you’re paddling.

How often should I check my leash for wear and tear?

Regularly inspect your leash before each paddleboarding session and perform a more thorough check monthly. This is the general advice – I don’t always follow it but I try my best to just keep and eye open on the general ‘togetherness’ of my paddleboard and equipment.

Can I use the same leash for different paddleboarding activities?

It’s best to use a leash tailored to the specific demands of each activity for optimal safety and performance. Different leashes have different benefits, but everything will be okay if you use the same one 😉

Do I need a leash if I only paddle close to the shore?

Yes, accidents can happen anywhere. A leash ensures your board stays with you, preventing potential dangers. It’s also a major inconvenience needing to swim after your board because you didn’t have a leash.

paddleboard leash
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Jason Watson

My initial goal was to document my paddleboarding experiences with friends and family, but that has evolved into a commitment to share this sport with as many people as possible because of the health benefits & peace of mind it has given me. This sport is not only a great way to see the world, but it also helps us come closer to ourselves. Information gives us strength!


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