Getting out for a paddle in the summer is as good as it gets. But lugging an inflatable paddleboard to a body of water can be a challenge and a significant barrier to entry (not to mention the cost). Luckily, Decathlon has made a SUP that packs down into a 30L backpack, about the same size as one you might wear for a commute to the office. This kind of packability makes it incredibly versatile — something you can stow in your trunk and pump up when you have a window of opportunity.
There is a saying about photography that the best camera is the one you have with you. When the opportunity for a great shot arrives, you’re either equipped to capture it or not. With two kids and limited time to get out on the water, I have found this concept to be true about stand-up paddleboarding as well. You never know when the opportunity will present itself. So, having a paddleboard that can stay in the trunk without taking up space for groceries, daily essentials, car seats, or kids’ gear is key.
In short: This paddleboard does just that; it packs down so that it can join on weekend trips while still leaving room for passengers and luggage. Decathlon has gone where many brands haven’t — totally stripping down the idea of a standard paddleboard to the bare bones of design. Its impressive small size and light weight does come with a caveat: you choose what size and weight-limit model works for you. (Most standup paddleboards aim to offer as light a weight as possible, while pushing the limit of how much weight you can bring; but the average adult doesn’t need that 300-pound capacity.) Though, if you are likely to be loading up this SUP with coolers, gear, and kids like you would the car, you’ll want to consider its limitations in weight. Otherwise, this is the perfect SUP to let live in your trunk all season.
- Length 10'
- Fins 2
- Handle Off-centered
- Three sizes available, depending on user weight (S, M, or L)
- Price $349-499
- Weight All three models are under 18 lbs.
- Manual pump and 5-piece compact paddle sold separately ($70)
- Easy instructions
- Minimalist design
- Twin fins work well
- Steers well, fun to paddle
- Compression straps on 30L pack
- Bordering on too bare-bones
- Low weight limit
- Easy to turn, harder to steer straight
- Minimal bungee storage
- Not recommended for multiple riders/passengers
Decathlon Itiwit Adult Ultra SUP Review
The key to Decathlon achieving a smaller package and lighter weight is simply to reduce the size — and that comes with a caveat: the user weight varies by board size. Or maybe that’s a perk in your book, depending on what type of paddler you are.
In short, if you don’t weigh a whole lot, and aren’t carrying a heavy dry bag or passengers (dog, small kid), go for the lightest package possible, but just know there’s a low weight limit. If you want a little wiggle room, do what I did and get the larger (size L) Adult Ultra SUP package. Here are the options:
- Size S mode for under 130 pounds (kids and small riders)
- Size M Adult model for 130-175 pounds
- Size L Adult model for 175+ pounds (200 pounds max based on our testing)
The Decathlon Itiwit packs down into a 30L backpack, but this does not include the pump and paddle (sold separately). However, I found it easy to stash the paddle along the water bottle holder and strap located on the side of the pack. And, I was able to tuck the pump under the top flap with the straps extended.
This made it slightly more awkward to carry and might be a consideration if you’re planning on hiking down to a lake for a paddle, but for a short to medium distance on foot, it was still much more portable and comfortable to carry than most inflatable SUPs.
The other draw of the Itiwit Ultralight is the corresponding product weight. The paddleboard comes in three different model sizes based on volume and yield weights. The small board is 13.2 pounds when inflated, the medium board is 15.4 pounds, and the large board clocks in at 17.6 pounds (confirmed in testing).
This makes transportation a breeze, and makes it much more likely that I’ll throw it on my bike for a trip down to the Charles River. As with overall size, a reduction in weight also reduces logistical barriers to actually getting out on the water.
Assembly & First Impressions
Like most inflatable SUPs, if you are going to manually pump your board up, remember to stretch your triceps. It’s going to be a sweaty and semi-arduous few minutes. But the Itiwit does have some nice features that make assembly less of a hassle than usual.
The valve only requires a quarter turn to switch from inflation to deflation, so you are spared any tricky nozzles that, if not in the correct position, can instantly blast preciously pumped air right back at you when removing the pump.
I also appreciated the simplicity of the fin attachment. Rather than having to unscrew a bolt and slot it into position (and forever fearing that you will lose that screw), the fins slide right into a slot and a slide clicks them into place.
They have felt quite secure, and there are no screws to lose. This is a fairly common fin setup you’ll see with other SUPs, and it was a smart choice for the brand for approachability and ease of use.
Twin Fin Setup and Performance
In order to pack down so small, the Itiwit Ultra Compact SUP folds in half. Thus, it’s devoid of a larger center fin, which typically allows for greater stability and ability to turn.
Two small fins (twin fins) are rarer on SUPs but can lead to a lively, easy-to-turn, albeit less stable ride. However, I had no issues with maneuverability, or keeping up with my friends on single and three-fin setups.
The Itiwit felt secure and forgiving in motion, whether I was cruising down the Charles River in Boston and battling the wakes of larger boats, or enjoying a calm paddle on a pond in the Berkshires. Speed and distance might not be its forte — neither is steering pin straight — but convenience and ease of use certainly is.
Setup and design left good first impressions, the fin configuration works well, and the board was fun to paddle. All that leaves now is packing up. While the Decathlon Itiwit Adult Ultra is highly packable, it does take some precise folding to get everything into place.
Instead of a large, long roller-style package, it’s a compact and slightly chunky one. If you leave behind the large manual pump and opt for an electric pump, the whole thing could pack down even smaller.
If you are looking for advanced performance or are embarking on a trip of considerable distance, you’ll likely want to invest in a more nimble, technical, longer-length, and likely expensive board. But at this price point, you’ll be hard-pressed to match the portability, ease, and convenience of the Decathlon Itiwit Adult Ultra.
If your goal is to take advantage of as many opportunities to paddle as you can, and space is a consideration, this SUP is going to maximize your chances to get on the water. There are two major drawbacks, however: you need to clock in under the max weight limit of 175-200 pounds for the size large, and you need to adjust expectations in terms of what you can bring on board (because of the weight, and the shrimpy front bungees).
Conclusion? This board is as basic as it gets. But for what it is, it’s great.