How to Strap a SUP to Your Roof Rack

Heading out for a paddleboarding adventure? Transporting your stand-up paddleboard (SUP) securely to your destination is crucial, whether it’s a sturdy hardboard or an inflatable model. If you’ve got a car with a roof rack, you’re in luck! This guide, complemented by our visual tutorial on our YouTube Channel, will walk you through the process step by step.

Did you know that you can strap your hard paddle board or even your inflated inflatable paddle board on the top of your car? 

Key Highlights

  1. Essential Supplies for Safe Transport: Listing the must-have items like a roof rack, NRS 9 foot straps, and your SUP to get started.
  2. Step-by-Step Strapping Guide: Offering a detailed, beginner-friendly guide to positioning, centering, securing the board, and final adjustments to ensure the SUP is safely attached to your vehicle.
  3. Pro Tips for a Secure and Quiet Ride: Including expert advice on strap arrangement, noise reduction techniques, and safety considerations, especially when making roadside adjustments.
  4. Board Removal Tips: Providing quick and easy instructions for safely removing your SUP from the roof rack upon arrival at your destination.
  5. Visual Learning Resources: Mentioning the availability of a visual tutorial on YouTube for those who prefer video instructions.

Essential Supplies for Safe Transport

Before we dive in, make sure you have the necessary items:

  • Roof Rack: Your car must be equipped with a roof rack.
  • Straps: We recommend a pair of NRS 9 foot straps, available on Amazon or REI for about $15. These straps are user-friendly and gentle on your board, unlike ratchet straps which can cause damage.
  • SUP: Whether it’s a hardboard or an inflated inflatable, your adventure companion is obviously essential.

A tip for the wise: Limit yourself to strapping no more than three SUPs atop your vehicle to maintain control and prevent any loosening during transit.

how to put a paddleboard on your car

Strapping Your SUP: A Step-by-Step Guide

1. Positioning Your Board: First, balance the board on your head, aligning the center of your head with the board’s handle for equilibrium. Then, carefully place or slide the board on top of your vehicle, ensuring the pad faces down and the tail points forward.

2. Centering the Board: Adjust the board from the rear of your car until it's centered on the rack.

3. Arranging the Straps: From the passenger side, throw the straps over your board near the roof rack's support beams, leaving the buckles hanging on the side.

Pro Tip: Keeping the buckles on the passenger side is safer for roadside adjustments.

4. Securing the Straps: Loop the straps under the support beams on the driver’s side and throw them back over to the side with the buckle. Repeat this step on the passenger side, then feed the strap through the buckle and tighten.

Pro Tip: Twisting the strap atop the board can reduce noise during your drive.

5. Final Check and Adjustment: Ensure the board is firmly in place by testing for any movement. If needed, tighten the straps further by pulling the loose end.

6. Tidying Up: Tuck away the excess strap either by tying it off or shutting your car door on it to prevent flapping and noise while driving.

Congratulations, your SUP is now securely strapped and ready for the journey!

paddle board

Board Removal: Quick and Easy

Removing your SUP is simply the reverse process of mounting it. Start by loosening and detaching the straps, then carefully lift your board off the car. Store your straps safely for next time, grab your paddle, and head to the water!

Pro Tip: Having the buckles be on the passenger side of the car provides safety for yourself if you need to pull off to tighten or adjust on the road.

stand up paddle board


Pro Tip: You can twist the strap on top of the board to prevent the straps from making a lot of noise while you're driving.

 how to strap a sup on your car

For more paddleboarding tips, tricks, and to explore our durable Glide Paddle Boards, check out our other tutorials and product range. Your next water adventure awaits!

Check out our other tutorials here and our Glide Paddle Boards that are made to last.

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