iRocker All-Around 11’ 2021
iRocker is one of the biggest players in the inflatable paddle board market and has apparently this year reached the number one spot. Of course, you don’t get to that very competitive point without having excellent products and service to back it up.
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Of course, though, in this article, we’ll be specifically talking about the 2021 iRocker 11’All Around inflatable paddleboard. This has been one of our favorites throughout the history of our publication but who exactly would benefit the most from this board and is the 2021 model worth it? These are two questions that will help to answer for you to make the best decision in your first I saw purchase or if you’re looking to upgrade.
Of all the paddleboards iniRocker’s standard line, this is the one that we think will give you the best overall results. This is because it has a longer profile as you see with the sport but still is balanced enough to give you the ability to do just about anything.
Most of our testers prefer to use longer boards. This is true even for our shortest tester, who comes in at about 5 foot 5 inches and 120 pounds. Of course, a lot of this comes down to personal preference and what you’re used to, but longer boards will typically give you a better paddling experience overall since you’re more bullet-shaped and able to move faster in the water.
The only thing that we would say is in the negative column when it comes to general paddleboarding with this board is that it is going to be a bit more difficult to do sharper turns in the water, particularly when you’re moving quickly. This is because this board is designed for forwarding momentum and a longer board is always going to be more difficult to turn than a more rounded shape, such as with the iRocker cruiser.
That being said, it’s still an excellent all-around board for just about everything you’d want to do. The one application we would say that you would probably want to avoid in general with this board would be SUP surfing. That’s not to say that it can’t handle some waves, but the board is too long and the rocker is too low to get some good surfing.
What tends to happen with this board is that if you get any significant waves, the nose will stick into the water and launch you from the back. To be fair, this board is not designed for surfing, nor has anyone said it was good for surfing. Still, we’d like to add these details just to make the review as complete as possible.
As leaders in the industry, iRocker has traditionally been very feature-driven. Back in the day, inflatable paddle boards were considered little more than a Plan B for hardboards or is something little more than a sophisticated pool toy. But as time went on, partially thanks to the efforts of companies like iRocker, customers have become more discerning and expect more from even inflatable paddleboards. iRocker, of course, has answered that call exceptionally well.
To begin with, both the front and back have 6-point bungee storage areas where you can put loose bags and equipment plus D-rings where you can clip on gear like dry bags or coolers. The kind of people that use paddleboards on a regular basis typically enjoys having more storage space because they can stay out on the water longer and take their trip even farther. Most paddleboards out there have some form of storage using bungee cords, but iRocker takes it to the next level.
On the topic of D-rings, there are20 on this iSUP. These rings act as attachment points for both the optional kayak seat as well as for any sort of docking.
A nice touch that we enjoy is how they put a single D-ring underneath the board’s nose since these can be used for towing. When iRocker came out with all of these D-rings throughout the deck a few years ago, we didn’t understand the appeal at first. But the more we take out these boards, the more we find that it’s great having the freedom to attach ropes just about anywhere along the deck. After all, you can always choose water conditions, dock positioning, or vegetation, and having the ability to attach a carabiner or rope just about anywhere works out great!
As with most boards that we love, iRocker was sure to add three grab handles: at the front, rear in the center of the board. Just about any board in the market will have a center grab handle, but having a grab handle at the front and rear gives you a lot of freedom when taking the board in and out of the water. In our opinion, the most important grab handle to add he’s at the rear so that you can lift the board up and not worry about damaging the fins if you’re dragging the board on land. With these three grab handles, nothing stopping you from just getting up and taking the board wherever you want to go!
We love that this model has so many color options to choose from. Having six color choices is something that we don’t always expect from paddleboard manufacturers. In general, paddleboards are available in limited numbers since it takes more money for the producers to stop the production lines and change colors. The 11’All Around has six options for colors this year, which means that you don’t have to compromise when it comes to style.
We mentioned previously that the front rocker of this board is not designed for surfing. That’s because this is a standard rocker that lifts the nose out of the water enough to help you in choppier waters but not so high that it will slow you down. In a perfect world, you would have a low rocker in calmer conditions and a very high rock are in rough conditions to get the most out of that type of water. This moderate rocker is enough to make you feel comfortable paddling under most conditions in most weathers.
The textured pad is extremely comfortable both to stand on for long periods of time as well as to sit down on or even do Sup fitness routines. The texture is specifically designed to keep you onboard even when things get slippery and to move water off the board as quickly as possible. Being a paddleboard, you’re obviously going to get wet and if the pad is not designed with that in mind, it will be very difficult to have traction.
Finally, one of the single best features with iRocker boards in general (in our opinion) is that they have three fins that are all removable. This three-fin setup is becoming more and more common as it gives you additional speed and maneuverability while still being stable but can be a drag when it comes to storage while inflated or rolled up.
A lot of other brands have a removable center fin but have the two side fins being fixed to the PVC material. If you wanted to store the paddleboard fully inflated, it would be difficult to have multiple boards on top of each other or to put it on top of the flat surface. When you roll up the board, you have to find space for those fins without damaging them. With iRocker’s removable fins, life is just that much easier.
In the past, quality in iSUPs was defined in how many layers of PVC a board had, and iRocker was always on the higher end with four layers. The downside to this is added weight. Over the past few years, more and more companies have been manufacturing boards with a tougher inside, which lets them use fewer layers of PVC and theoretically a lighter iSUP. While that may be true in making a stronger board, the problem is that this doesn’t help with outside damage like punctures. And the last thing you need on a multi-day trip is a damaged board.
iRocker’s new construction this year combines the best of both worlds by using a stronger drop stitch core while still having three layers of military-grade PVC on the outside to protect the board. This creates a strong board that can withstand the elements while still finding a way to keep the weight down. This isn’t the lightest 11’ iSUP on the market but probably the strongest, pound for pound.
When purchasing the 2021 iRocker All Around, this is what you can expect out of the box besides the board itself:
- 3-piece travel paddle carbon matte shaft with nylon blade
- Dual chamber, triple action hand pump
- 10’ leash with key stash spot
- Premium travel roller bag
- Removable nylon sup fins (1 center fin and 2 side fins)
- Repair kit (Patches and valve wrench — Does not include glue)
iRocker also includes a wide range of optional accessories including their kayak seat and fishing attachments. If you wanted to also get their electric air pump, you wouldn’t get any problems from us. Trust us when we say we know exactly how difficult these inflatable paddleboards can be to get up to pressure. If you don’t want to spend the time doing that with the included pump or (like us) have to inflate multiple paddleboards at a time, the optional electric air pump can do a world of good.
Year after year, this is our favorite paddleboard from the I rocker line. Of course, if you wanted something a bit more refined, you can always look into their Blackfish line of paddleboards. But all things considered, we find that the features, construction, and price of the 2021 11’All Around paddleboard put it in a very sweet spot.
Naturally, a lot of the reasons we like this particular model are very subjective, particularly when it comes to the length and width. You may find yourself preferring shorter boards or longer boards, but feel that 11 foot is about as long as you want to go unless you wanted more of a racing board. The biggest problem with a board like this is that if you’re taking the board any sort of distance in the wind you might have difficulty handling it by yourself. This may not seem like a concern for most people, but we often find ourselves having to inflate the board in one location and put it in the water in another.
Whether you’re looking for yourself or giving this as a gift to a friend or family member, the 2021 iRocker 11’All Around does exactly what the name implies: it gives you a truly all-purpose paddleboard to use in most water conditions. If the person using the board is taller than about 5 foot 10 inches, then you know that you’ve got the perfect board for them!