SUP Shortboards

SUP Shortboards to go all out!

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Surfing a shortboard answers above all to a need: the one of the speed imposed by the rhythm of some waves. Some conditions require you to be super fast to keep up with the breaking point, to have an ultra reactive shape to be able to place yourself perfectly. The second need is not for maneuverability, which can be obtained on any board, but for radicality (small curve radius for example).

For whom is shortSUP recommended?

When we take interest in SUP shortboards, we generally have a record on a first board typed longboard, or at least on a generous board. This kind of shape makes it possible to surf in a more dynamic way, it’s on the other hand with the surfer to give rhythm, contrary to a longboard shape which has naturally more glide and inertia. Thus, it’s a board which it will be necessary to be able to make live. Because when we speak about “shortboard”, we often imply the necessity of a confirmed level. Not that these shapes are unattainable, but you need a bit of experience to get the best out of them. And in any case, we advise you not to skip any steps.

If you’re a beginner, then go for a big Karmen, you can add volume to gain comfort without sacrificing performance and handling.

For what?

Surfing a shortboard meets a need, the one of dictated speed by the rhythm of some waves. Some conditions require you to be fast enough to follow the breaking, to have a precise and responsive shape to be able to place yourself perfectly.

The second need isn’t for maneuverability, which can be obtained on any board, but for radicality.

Which shortSUP choose for high performances?

The Mob

Often, the choice of a Mob comes after a first experience in SUP on a bigger board. It follows a desire to shorten your board to gain in maneuverability but without losing comfort because the board is wide, so we imagine it comfortable. But its program is much more than that. It shreds!!!

The secret lies in the balance of this shape, between the relaxed rocker and the surface of the tail. One of the keys to maneuverability in surfing is to have your back foot positioned above the fins. But in slow and soft waves, if you place your back foot well on the tail, there is a good chance that your board will naturally rear back, and lose speed. Basically like hitting the handbrake. This will be the case on boards with a narrow tail, unless you are an outstanding technician who is very light on your feet. So we often see surfers who have their back foot way out in front of them to maintain speed, but when it comes time to turn, it stalls! With the Mob, even if you have rocker, you can easily position your back foot just above the fins, because the Mob’s tail won’t dig in, and will ensure you always have speed.

Even if this tail offers some surface, it remains extremely thin, giving a lot of control and precision in the maneuvers.
For the most experienced, it’s very easy to wedge your foot against the kick tail, the Mob becomes a real skate. You can alternate big carves and tail drifting at the top of the wave.

The Mob picks up speed easily, knowing that, in surfing, speed is the key. Because it is this speed which allows it to make your turns and tricks. It allows you to have a very good flow even on soft waves. So with the Mob you’re easily in sync with the wave and everything becomes easy. Even if this tail offers surface, it remains fine, thus giving a lot of control and precision in the maneuvers.

Which one: Cool or Rad?

  • The Cool is perfect in soft waves. It’s more efficient in small conditions, turns more reliably, and produces speed more easily.
  • The Rad will be more interesting in hollower, faster waves or bigger waves.

It’s exactly the same parallel between a fish and a shortboard. A fish will be more efficient in soft waves, a shortboard in hollow waves. The surface of the planing hull and the surface at the tail are bigger on a fish, because its shape is made for conditions in which you need to create speed. On the other hand, the surface is less important on a shortboard, because it’s generally a board made for conditions in which you have to control your speed.

The difference in width between the two will therefore influence the stability because it can also influence your choice if you surf more often in windy or bumpy conditions for example.

The Mob is offered in 8 sizes, so whatever the level, jig, or whatever the conditions of his home spot, everyone can find what fit best for him:

  • The 7’2 of 90L is great for pros up to 70 kg.
  • The 7’2 of 100L is perfect for chill riders up to 70 kg.
  • The 7’6 of 105L is great for pros up to 80 kg.
  • The 7’6 of 120L is perfect for chill riders up to 80 kg.
  • The 7’11 of 125L is great for sporty people from 70 to 90 kg.
  • The 7’11 of 140L is very comfortable for chill riders from 70 to 90 kg.
  • The 8’3 of 145L is great for sporty people over 80 kg.

The Karmen

The Karmen is perfect for ShortSUP conditions in which the wind comes into play, making balance complicated on the choppy surface. The idea is to widen the tips to gain some stability and accelerate on soft sections. The Karmen’s bullet nose brings that little extra bit of stability and its diamond square tail allows you to have some gas left in the tank.

The Karmen perfectly answers this need to be able to smash everything on a shortboard but without playing the dancer, either in the paddle or in the waiting phases. Either you are very good and you can undersize it, or you want a wiser board by choosing a comfortable volume.

The different sizes and volumes on offer grant you to have a board perfectly adjusted to your weight. If you have a beginner’s level you can also make it very easy by going for the big sizes. For a 100% surfing program or to alternate between a cruising and surfing. The Karmen will work in every condition, a good surfer can use it almost daily.

The Karmen is offered in 8 sizes and two different technologies, so whatever your level and your jig, you’ll necessarily find the one for you.

  • The 6’10 is great for pros up to 65 kg.
  • The 7’3 is great for pros up to 75 kg.
  • The 7’8 is great for the experienced ones up to 85 kg.
  • The 7’11 is great for the experienced ones up to 95 kg.
  • The 8’4 is chiller, ideal for the sporty one up to 90 kg.
  • The 8’9 is great for persons not so sporty that search for comfort up to 90 kg.
  • The 9’2 is “easy” for persons not so sporty that search for comfort up to 100 kg.
  • The 9’10 is very easy for everyone.

The Alley

The Alley has, without a doubt, a sharp shape from its tail to its nose. The goal is simple: to surf in the most radical way possible. You need to be fit and very experienced to ride this board.

The Alley will really express itself in waves that are powerful and hollow. In softer conditions you need to be a very dynamic surfer to make it work. If it’s small you will need to be very technical and light on your feet. The Alley is a demanding board in the smaller sizes but accessible in the bigger sizes so that everyone can experience the ultimate feeling of a shortSUP.

For those who know our surf range, the Alley SUP is the Lethal of our surfboards range ; namely for its round tail in hollow waves and top level surfers that don’t want to feel any limit in their surfing.

It has a pinched outline on tips, making it ultra maneuverable. We can reduce the rail’s length at will by turning on a smaller part of its outline. So, the Alley will be able to bring verticality to your surfing style and cut turns short, even in the hollowest pockets.

The Alley must not be oversized. Too much volume will give it an unpleasant tumble effect while a bit of water on the deck behind will settle it.

  • The 7’2 is great for pros up to 65 kg.
  • The 7’4 is great for pros up to 75 kg.
  • The 7’6 is great for pros up to 85 kg.
  • The 7’8 is chiller, great for sporty persons up to 90 kg.
  • The 8’1 is nice for persons not so sporty that search for comfort up to 90 kg.
  • The 8’6 is “easy” for persons not so sporty that search for comfort up to 100 kg.

Which technology should I choose for my shortSUP board?

We currently offer two technologies for our rigid SUP boards, FSP 2X and FSP Pro. The advantage of these two technologies is to offer a hull in full PVC sandwich. This extremely rigid, hydrophobic and solid shell surrounds the entire surface of the board.


These boards are equipped with innovative technology for the best weight / solidity / performance compromise on the market.The addition of a biaxial fiberglass in addition to the PVC, greatly strengthens the board. It is by designing a new finishing technique, as close as possible to our prototypes made in our French factory that we have succeeded in saving weight. We work with tinted resins to avoid as much as possible the paint which loads the board unnecessarily. Dyed in the mass, your board gains in nobility and durability.


Developed in our French workshop, the FSP Pro techno is just as solid as the FSP 2X techno. The addition of carbon allows this technology to save weight and dynamism. Perfect for advanced surfers looking for the best performance without compromise.

In short: FSP2X for beginners to experienced surfers and FSP Pro for the pros and the most demanding.

Which fins should I choose with my shortSUP?

If you have a Mob…

The Mob is equipped with four fin boxes for a quad setup. A quad setup is made of: two large fins in the front and two smaller ones on the tail. The two rear fins are a sort of duplicate of the central fin of a thruster setup. With four of these, the overall surface area is therefore larger, you have more drive, more speed and more grip. This setup also brings steadiness to the surf, and if the board is more stable, it’s also easier to surf.

  • A quad setup is ideal in low power waves and when we have a wide tail like the Mob. Even in hollow waves, a quad setup brings a great grip during a bottom turn, and the ability to keep a high line on the wave; so you can produce a lot of speed to get through the faster sections easily.

Mob boards are wide, so when you put it on the rail and give some angle to the board, you will always have two fins in contact with water. A thruster setup would be inefficient because when you take a lot of angle, the central fin would be out of the water. It’s this contact of at least two lateral fins that allows you to have grip, to give angle to your board, and therefore to build enough energy at the bottom turn to be shot out towards the lip and wrapping a turn.

You’ll be able to play with the shape and the size of the fins on the Mob, so you will be able to stick as close as possible to the surfing feeling you are looking for.

If you have a Karmen…

On the Karmen, except for the 9’10 which is delivered with a central US box and two side boxes, they are equipped with 5 fin boxes, so you can surf it as a thruster or a quad.

  • The 2+1 setup on the Karmen 9’10 is the one that will bring the most versatility to the board, in this set-up we will try to optimize the control and the grip once the board is on the rail. Thanks to its length, the Karmen 9’10 is also an excellent board for cruising, the possibility to put a large central fin to limit the row effect becomes an asset in cruising.
  • The thruster setup consists of three fins of the same size. We will be looking for maximum liveliness and speed. The board will be very lively and maneuverable. Without a doubt, this is the most common setup. Because it is both a versatile and high performance setup. It’s this setup that allows it to have a lot of pivot, to go from rail to rail in a fluid and fast way. This also allows you to tighten your turns to the maximum.
  • The quad setup can be used in a big range of conditions. The quad setup is the configuration that produces the most speed and grip, so it’s ideal in fast and hollow conditions to get through sections with ease. However, it’s also a setup that works in small waves, where you’ll need to generate speed quickly.

You can adjust the setup to the conditions, but you can also decide to do whatever you want.

If you have an Alley…

The Alley boards are delivered with three fin boxes for a thruster setup, this is surfing’s top level set-up. It’s this fin setup that checks all the boxes in events, that is to make the most radical turns in the least amount of space.

  • There are two different types of setup on this high performance shortSUP. A first with 3 FCS 2 boxes on the small sizes (7’2, 7’4 and 7’6) which will give a lot of maneuverability and therefore possibility to the rider. It’s perfect to go for the most radical turns.
  • The second setup is found on the larger sizes of the Alley (7’8, 8’1 and 8’6). There are 5 FCS2 boxes for a quad setup. Concretely, it allows you to gain more stability, speed and grip. Ideal when conditions get bigger and the rider wants maximum drive.

Understanding fins

To choose the most suitable fin for your surf, the conditions, and your style, you must understand how each of the following parameters, which constitutes the shape of each fin, will influence the behavior of the board.


  • The rake refers to the back curvature of the fin. This is the distance between the end of the base and the end of the trailing edge of the fin (tip). The greater the rake, the closer the tip of the fin will be to the tail of your board. Ideal for experienced and powerful surfers to perform long turns, with maximum grip and drive. The drive corresponds to the ability to hold a trajectory while maintaining speed. A fin with a wide base will help maintain this speed, while a fin with a shorter base will offer less drive. Recommended for rather powerful waves.
  • Conversely, the less rake there is (straighter fin), the greater the pivot. The pivot being the ability to make more or less tight turns. Ideal for tightening curves and turning short, therefore ideal for exploiting waves that lack power.
  • Imagine yourself at the helm of a catamaran with the rudders down, the boat will turn short and you will only need a little pressure to operate the rudders. But raise these rudders by applying a 45° angle to them, in this case it will be difficult to turn it short, and it will require a lot more power.


  • The base is the lower part of the fin. The one that is in contact with the board. A long base will bring more control and ample curves. Ideal in powerful waves on which we will seek more hold, and more stability in curves and trajectories.
  • A short base will provide more pivot and allow you to tighten your turns and free up the tail. We will choose this type of fins in slow waves because we will favor maneuverability over control. The longer the base, the more the fin will offer control and ample turns, the shorter the base, the more the fin will offer pivot, max speed and tight turns.


  • The depth is the height between the base and the tip of your fin. The deeper it is, the more stability and hold you will gain, especially in powerful waves.
  • A short fin will have less friction with the water, which will bring you more speed. This low depth of your fin will free up the tail of your board all the more. This type of fin is recommended in light conditions.


  • The surface, a fin with a large surface will bring more control. This type of fin is recommended for beginners because it also provides more stability. A fin with little surface will provide more freedom under the back foot. The board will be more playful.
  • Distribution of the surface: In hollow / fast conditions, we will rather choose fins with a thin head with little surface at the head which will foil less and therefore less accentuate the curves. In conditions in which the movement will be slow, we will choose surface on the head to accentuate the maneuverability.


  • The flex of a fin determines its ability to deform and return to its original shape. A fin that has flex provides a smoother ride and will forgive mistakes. On the other hand, a fin with little flex, therefore more rigid, will bring more control, more reactivity and more power. Reserved for the most experienced surfers because these fins require the surfer to be very precise in his turns. The deeper and thinner a fin is in the head, the more flex you’ll have.

Which leash?

We’re talking about shortboards, so we generally use an ankle fixed leash with a length corresponding to the size of the board or just below. For example, a 8’ leash on a 8’4 board. The communicated lengths are those of the leash rope, to which you have to add the ties. And the leash stretches under pressure, so we have some margin before taking the board in the nose.

The diameter is also an important point: if it’s thinner, we’re quicker but we risk breaking it above a man’s size. And at the tip of the leash, on a SUP, don’t forget that there is volume so a leash with a rope diameter of 7mm is the most common.

Check its condition before each session and change it every year. This is your life jacket.

Which paddle?

You can choose between an adjustable paddle or a custom-made fixed paddle. If you choose an adjustable one, it’s maybe because you’re a beginner and that you often switch between cruising and surfing, or that you share your board with someone. And in that case, an adjustable paddle can have its interest.

A custom-made paddle will be more interesting if you are often in the water to surf and if you already know the perfect size for you (generally, it will be the same as your height). A fixed paddle will be lighter, its flex will be equally spread along the shaft.

In surfing, you should use a paddle that is a bit shorter than your size. By using a short paddle, hand changes are faster, and don’t forget that the radius of your turns is partly determined by the length of your paddle.

You can also reduce the size of your paddle (-5 to -10 cm) if you use a shortboard around 7’. This will help you to row more dynamically and to gain stability, but be careful with short paddles, your lower back will be loaded.
Choose a paddle with a small to medium blade surface, in order to limit the row effect, and to avoid making half-turns at each stroke.

What cover to choose with your hardboard?

For the Bag, we take a bit larger than the board. First to put the board in it, then to make room for adding fins, protections, etc. Be careful, too big it smacks the roof bars and you can hang yourself after 100km; -)……. or your women will shank you at the first rest stop….;).

Day Bag or Luxe Bag? The name is an answer. The luxury is ideal for travel but takes up a lot of space in everyday life. The Day bag is great for everyday sessions.
At GONG both types are very reinforced. It’s up to you to decide.

Some tips for a successful take off in shortSUP

Going from a standard SUP to a short SUP also means working on your 3D balance. Because you are going to undergo many imbalances to which you were not accustomed: lateral but also longitudinal. In short, it will move in all directions.

To overcome all these disruptions, you should row with your feet offset. Your front foot should be in front of the handle, with the tip pointing at the nose. Your back foot is positioned slightly behind the handle and opens to 45°.

The easiest way to explain this gain in stability is to stand with your feet together in front of a friend and ask them to push you (without taking a run-up!). You’ll certainly back away. Do it again, but this time, stagger your feet. Unless your friend is a member of the Stade Rochelais, you should keep your initial position by staying firmly on your feet.

In SUP, this method will allow you not to fall backwards when your board is pushed by the swell during the take off, to be more flexed on your supports, well strengthened, and to have a much more efficient paddle. And you will be able to flex forward by putting 80% of your weight on the front leg, this will force the nose of your board into the slope of the wave.

This position will also help you to get into the surf position faster. Here is the secret of a good take off in short SUP!

Which quiver?

A wing foiling quiver to enjoy the windy days?
A noserider SUP to relish small conditions and surf in a different way?
Going for a SUP foil setup to finally ride this 30 cm sole wave that no one is interested in but that will give you the longest ride of your lifetime?

The time you spend on the water on one sport will expand your practice of other gliding sports. Nothing replaces experience, time passed at sea, variety of weather conditions sharing with the elements and friends.