Review by Sam Rogers
Being of smaller stature the guys from SUP Mag UK asked me to check out O’Shea’s Grom 7.8ft inflatable stand up paddle board and report back the findings. Designed for smaller paddlers and nippers it’s an example of the brand’s dedication to providing quality inflatable products to younger SUPers of all abilities. (Check out previous O’Shea iSUP reviews elsewhere on the SUPM website – Ed).
I haven’t had much experience with iSUPs but the Grom 7.8ft is super easy to set up with everything provided in one neat package. Inflating to 15 PSI is a swift and efficient process with the provided pump – all instructions are clearly visible and marked on the board itself. For kids this is great as they can easily blow the board up themselves without adult help.
I’d heard about the brand’s fin system and can attest to the no hassle approach they’ve gone for. Simply slot the fin in its box and tighten with finger and thumb. I also liked the solid side fins – although moulded onto the board’s hull, were stiff and didn’t bend. The provided bag is functional and I liked the board’s eye catching bold graphics.
Carrying is a joy as the Grom is so light – perfect for any kids looking for independence. O’Shea have woven a decent amount of secondary stability into the board which will work for paddlers at the top end of the weight spectrum. As such getting going straight off the beach is a super quick process.
For an inflatable the board’s glide is superb. I was actually shocked how easy it was to cover distance. There’s no problem keeping up with the rest of your family while paddling which will allow everyone to enjoy a fulfilling session and not hang around for stragglers.
O’Shea’s Grom is a super fun all round paddle board that will allow younger SUPers to develop their skills. It can go anywhere and do most things you ask of it. We even chucked it at some small waves and found it performed admirably here – great if your nipper’s looking to progress into surf.
Back on the beach it’s super easy to pack away and being an inflatable stores nicely in the back of my car. Those not old enough to drive can simply sling over their shoulder and walk, cycle or skate to the beach.
Although O’Shea’s Grom 7.8ft iSUP is specifically designed for kids it also works well for smaller paddlers. I was just above the max weight capacity but found it no trouble piloting. In fact, it was extremely efficient when punting across flat water – beginners and intermediates will enjoy how it covers ground. Even though the Grom isn’t a dedicated surf SUP it was super fun in small waves but fits the all round SUP mode even better. O’Shea’s Grom iSUP is a versatile inflatable that covers a variety of SUP disciplines. From flat water to small waves if you’re an aspiring grom, beginning their SUP journey, you’ll certainly have fun with this board and give mum and dad a run for their money!