Updated: Mar 24, 2022
Gladiator Paddleboards have been in my mind for a while. High quality boards made with the best designs at a very reasonable price. They do a range of 3 board types. The Elite, The Pro and The Lite.
Gladiator's top of the range kit that starts at £628.95.
Gladiator's mid range boards starting at £480. It comes in a range of sizes 10'4, 10'6, 10'7, 10'8, 11'2, 11'4, 11'6 and 12'6s and the 12'6t.
We see the Lite range as perfect for kids and teenagers starting out in the sport. The kids boards start from just £354.95
As a brand Gladiator ensure that their boards are designed by the feel of when you are out paddling. All of their boards 10’6 and below have a 4.7” drop stitch. The drop stitch is the length of the strings inside the board which creates the height or thickness. Most other brands within their price range have 6” of height for boards of 10’6 and under. When the board is 4.7” in height it can help a lot of paddlers feel more comfortable. The reason being: you are closer to the water. If you like surfing then the 4.7" is the board height you want.
A 6” drop means that because you have more height so you can also add more weight which is why lots of companies use those dimensions. They hold a higher volume and are great for getting out exploring. Ideal for heavy kit on a camping expedition with a dog and a child and the kitchen sink. If you’re buying a paddleboard for you to get into the sport then there are hundreds of options which people often overlook. I like to think of the 6” being a Land Rover going off-road where as the 4.7 is a fast fun board that’s easy to manoeuvre like your 2 seater sports car or longer coupe. The Gladiator 10’8 is designed with a 6” drop as an all rounder board which suits a heavier rider or for anyone that wants to get out but bring added weight with them. It's what I like to think of as an "All rounder-touring board". It won't surf as well at the 10'6 but it'll tour as well as any other brands around the 11 foot mark.
Pro 10'6 - Review
This board is great to ride, it tracks, well feels stable and feels solid. It has a round front nose which makes it a perfect allrounder so would be fun at the beach to catch some surf or to take it out and explore the sea, lochs and canals. It's just an ideal board really. Does everything.
The 3-piece paddle works for kids too because the middle section can be taken out. It has a sturdy but flexible nylon paddle fin. It has what Gladiator call the double skin ‘Strongedge’.
Overview It comes complete with a great carbon 3 piece paddle, a US curved fun, black coiled leash, a pump, repair kit which has 2 fin screws incase you lose one, plus a spacious carry back with wheels for the days you don't want to put it on your back. The boards itself has handles galore to carry it and the deck mat is fantastic and compares to deck mats of boards that cost a lot more. It is eve has a kick on the tail for foot placement if you want to work on those step back turns.
Technology The new Xstrong technology allows for a ‘solid’ board effect. Thanks to its design and manufacturing method the narrow super-strong edge becomes an integral part of the SUP board, as a result, the board offers even more rigidity, glide and performance with the added bonus that the thinner edge looks stunning. Gladiator have also upped the game on the fin box for both the Pro and Elite Range, made from ultra strong white plastic, and a white gladiator branded fin, they have also removed the 2 side fins, making the board really easy to pack away. One other special little thing that Gladiator has that other brands often don't is an anchor ring on the bottom of the board. Perfect for a spot of yoga or fishing if you want to stay in one place.
Another reason for choosing Gladiator as a brand to retail with is that they make incredible boards for kids. Getting sizes correct for kids can be tricky because the width of the board is really important. When you make the decision to buy for your kids, it’s good to think about what you will be doing with them. If you mostly paddle long distances to explore the lochs of The Trossachs or if you like hitting the beach and catching some waves. This then gives you a couple of choices. An all round shape or a tourer. Paddleboarding with your kids is a huge amount of fun, and being on the water with them is always going to bring a smile to their faces.
The shorter the board the easier it is to turn. It’s why the paddle surf boards are designed to be short. The longer the board, the easier it should track and stay in a straight line.
The price of these boards also make them very affordable. Paddleboarding can be expensive if you’re sorting out an entire family. The price range of Gladiator is difficult to beat for the quality of board you get. At 28” wide it will allow kids of all ages to enjoy themselves and feel comfortable on the board without over stretching when they paddle. With it‘s 4.7” stitch it will hold up to 90kg.
The Gladiator 10’6 Kids touring board also it just 28″ wide. It is designed for riders wanting to go the extra distance, paddling along side parents and enjoying adventure paddling. If you compare it with the 9'6 you can see the difference in shape particulrlary around the top of the board.
If you have any questions about the brand please get in touch.