4 Popular Garmin Watches for Paddle Boarding (Guide)

Paddleboarding is a fun and enjoyable way to play in the open waters while working out your muscles and full body. It essentially increases your balance and strengthens your core.

You can stand or lie on the paddle board and use a paddle or your arms to propel yourself on the water.

If you’re an outdoorsman fitness enthusiast, a Garmin watch will come in handy to monitor your pace, distance, speed, heart rate, and overall performance as far as your workouts are concerned.

This post discusses the top 4 Garmin watches you can consider for your next paddleboarding adventure.

Garmin 010-01769-21 Vivoactive 3, GPS Smartwatch with...
Garmin Fenix 5 Sapphire - Black with Black Band
Budget Choice
Garmin 010-02064-00 Instinct, Rugged Outdoor Watch with GPS,...
Editor Choice
Garmin vívosport, Fitness/Activity Tracker with GPS and...
Garmin 010-01769-21 Vivoactive 3, GPS Smartwatch with...
Garmin Fenix 5 Sapphire - Black with Black Band
Garmin 010-02064-00 Instinct, Rugged Outdoor Watch with GPS,...
Garmin vívosport, Fitness/Activity Tracker with GPS and...
$129.99
$499.99
$159.63
Price not available
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26,341 Reviews
1,019 Reviews
20,181 Reviews
1,163 Reviews
Garmin 010-01769-21 Vivoactive 3, GPS Smartwatch with...
Garmin 010-01769-21 Vivoactive 3, GPS Smartwatch with...
$129.99
26,341 Reviews
Garmin Fenix 5 Sapphire - Black with Black Band
Garmin Fenix 5 Sapphire - Black with Black Band
$499.99
-
1,019 Reviews
Budget Choice
Garmin 010-02064-00 Instinct, Rugged Outdoor Watch with GPS,...
Garmin 010-02064-00 Instinct, Rugged Outdoor Watch with GPS,...
$159.63
20,181 Reviews
Editor Choice
Garmin vívosport, Fitness/Activity Tracker with GPS and...
Garmin vívosport, Fitness/Activity Tracker with GPS and...
Price not available
-
1,163 Reviews

Last update on 2022-09-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Does Garmin Track Paddle Boarding?

Garmin watches can track paddle boarding. The watch has various customizable applications designed to track a variety of activities, including paddleboarding.

It also automatically detects undertakings such as swimming, kayaking, and running.

To track paddleboarding, you need to set up the Stand-Up Paddle Boarding (SUP) tracker. 

Fortunately, SUP is already among the activities listed on the watch. You only need to press the menu button to display the list of activities and select SUP to start tracking.

You can track different categories of data with your Garmin watch, including time, speed, pace, distance, heart rate, cadence, elevation, and temperature. Ensure the timer is running to record your activity history.

What to Look for When Buying?

Water Resistance

Paddleboarding is an outdoor watersport that entails wading through the water.

Your smartwatch will inevitably come into contact with water. So, you need one that is water-resistant.

GPS Tracking

If you plan to paddleboard in the open ocean, you need a Garmin watch with GPS tracking for extra safety.

Activating GPS mode will ensure you don’t get lost at sea.

Durability

Since paddle boarding involves a lot of hand movements, you need a smartwatch that can withstand the rigors of the sport.

Fortunately, Garmin watches consist of study materials such as Gorilla glass and fiber-reinforced polymer for enhanced durability.

Battery Life

Paddleboarding can be fun and exciting, and no doubt, you’ll likely spend many hours on the water.

With this in mind, you need a smartwatch that can last long without the battery dying out.

What is SUP Activity on Garmin?

SUP activity on Garmin refers to Stand-Up Paddle Boarding.

Garmin smartwatches can track a range of activities, including paddling, by selecting SUP on the activity list.

4 best Garmin Watches for Paddleboarding

Garmin Vivoactive 3

Garmin 010-01769-21 Vivoactive 3, GPS Smartwatch with...
26,341 Reviews
Garmin 010-01769-21 Vivoactive 3, GPS Smartwatch with...
  • Garmin Pay contact less payment solution lets you pay for purchases with your watch (available for supported cards from participating banks), display size 1.2...
  • Personalize your watch with thousands of free watch faces, apps and widgets from our Connect IQ store. Glonass, barometric altimeter, compass, accelerometer,...
  • More than 15 preloaded GPS and indoor sports apps, including yoga, running, swimming and more; Case material: Fiber reinforced polymer with stainless steel rear...

Last update on 2022-09-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Garmin Vivoactive 3 is an inexpensive, GPS-enabled smartwatch that comes loaded with dozens of sports apps.

The watch prioritizes sports tracking of several activities, ranging from swimming to paddleboarding.

The Vivoactive 3 is water-resistant up to 50 meters deep and is made of fiber-reinforced polymer for enhanced durability.

It also has a long battery life of 7 days in smartwatch mode and 13 hours in GPS mode.

Top Features

  • Gyroscope for enhanced GPS accuracy.
  • VO2 max for estimating respiration and stress levels.
  • Bluetooth and ANT compatibility.

Pros

  • Live tracking features.
  • Easy to use and configure.
  • Built-in sensors such as a thermometer and compass.

Cons

  • Small touchscreen.

Garmin Fenix 5

Sale
Garmin Fenix 5 Sapphire - Black with Black Band
1,019 Reviews
Garmin Fenix 5 Sapphire - Black with Black Band
  • Premium multi sport GPS watch with elevate wrist heart rate technology; Physical size : 47 x 47 x 15.5 millimeter
  • Fit for adventure with rugged design that features stainless steel bezel, buttons and rear case , features Sunrise or sunset times, GPS time sync
  • Put key stats at your fingertips with the performance widget that shows the effects and progress of your workouts. Battery life smartwatch mode upto 2 weeks;...

Last update on 2022-09-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Garmin Fenix 5 is a premium multisport smartwatch ideal for paddleboarding and other watersports.

The watch is GPS enabled for accurate location tracking and boasts a rugged design for improved durability while on the water. 

This impressive smartwatch is waterproof up to 100 meters deep.

It has a long battery life of 2 weeks in smartwatch mode and 24 hours in GPS mode. You can extend battery life to 60 hours by activating UltraTrac mode.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t have a touchscreen but you can use the control buttons to overcome this shortcoming.

Top Features

  • Built-in heart rate monitor.
  • 3-axis compass.
  • Glonass satellite reception.

Pros

  • Water-resistant design up to 100 meters.
  • Long battery life of 2 weeks.
  • Numerous outdoor sensors.

Cons

  • Somewhat pricey.

Garmin Instinct

Sale
Garmin 010-02064-00 Instinct, Rugged Outdoor Watch with GPS,...
20,181 Reviews
Garmin 010-02064-00 Instinct, Rugged Outdoor Watch with GPS,...
  • Rugged GPS watch built to withstand the toughest environments
  • Constructed to U.S. Military standard 810G for thermal, shock and water resistance (rated to 100 meters)
  • Built in 3 axis compass and barometric altimeter, plus multiple global navigation satellite systems (GPS, Glonass and Galileo) support helps track in more...

Last update on 2022-09-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Garmin Instinct is another premium but inexpensive smartwatch worth checking out.

The watch features a built-in heart rate monitor, which you can use to track your training level. It also supports wellness monitoring for sleep and stress levels.

The highlight of this watch is that it provides smart notifications in real-time.

It also has a very long battery life of 2 weeks in watch mode and 16 hours in GPS mode.

Moreover, you can extend GPS battery life to 40 hours by activating UltraTrac saver mode.

Top Features

  • Built-in heart rate monitor.
  • Supports Galileo and Glonass navigation satellite systems.
  • Trackback for same route navigation.

Pros

  • Durable case and display.
  • Removable keeper loops for extra safety.
  • Long battery life up to 14 days.

Cons

  • Low built-in memory of 16 MB.

Garmin Vivosport HR

Garmin vívosport, Fitness/Activity Tracker with GPS and...
1,163 Reviews
Garmin vívosport, Fitness/Activity Tracker with GPS and...
  • Work out inside, or use built-in GPS to accurately track activities outside
  • Includes fitness monitoring tools such as Vo2 Max and fitness made estimates. Smartphone compatibility- iPhone, android, windows
  • All-day stress tracking helps you stay in touch with your body’s response to potential stressors

Last update on 2022-09-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

If you want a smartwatch with a heart rate monitor, consider the Garmin Vivosport HR.

This watch is highly sensitive and can start monitoring your paddling activities as soon as it senses continuous movement for more than 10 minutes.

The Vivosport HR also comes equipped with other tracking features such as the VO2 Max that can estimate your stress levels based on your respiration.

Besides, the watch is compatible with all smartphones for easy monitoring. 

Top Features

  • Supports GPS mode.
  • Color Garmin Chroma display.
  • Elevate 24/7 for daily fitness monitoring.

Pros

Cons

  • Cannot connect to other auxiliary sensors.

Does Garmin Have A Kayak App?

Garmin has a kayak app available on its watches.

You can track your kayaking activities by downloading and installing the Row SUP Kayak App.

if you’re also interested in other water sports, check out the best Garmin watches for indoor rowing.

How Do I Add Kayaking to My Garmin?

Adding kayaking to your Garmin watch is quick and straightforward. Here are the steps:

  1. Visit the Connect IQ Store on your smartphone.
  2. Search for a suitable kayaking app such as Row SUP Kayak, Go Paddling, or Vaaka Paddling app.
  3. Download and install the app on your smartphone.
  4. Click your Garmin watch icon on Connect IQ platform.
  5. Go to Connect IQ apps.
  6. Click Applications.
  7. Select the kayaking app you want to install on your phone.

Which Garmin Watch Is Most Aaccurate?

The most accurate Garmin watch is the Garmin Forerunner 945.

It takes 13.9 seconds to acquire GPS and has a step-count variance of 37.30%.

Final Thoughts

The best Garmin watch for paddleboarding is undoubtedly the Garmin Fenix 5.

This smartwatch is highly impressive thanks to its 100-meter water resistance and long battery life.

It’s also super accurate since it supports various satellite navigation systems.

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