GLIDE 02 Lotus Inflatable Yoga SUP Review
One of our favourite SUP manufacturers, Glide Paddle Sports has a great range of both rigid and inflatable paddle boards that cater for a nice cross-section of paddling disciplines.
One of their more popular boards that continues to gain attention given the increasing popularity of stand up paddle board yoga, is the Glide 02 Lotus Inflatable Yoga SUP. With inflatables offering an incredible level of versatility owing in part to their ease of transport, storage and general portability, its quite easy to see what all of the noise is about.
Let’s take a closer look at the 02 Lotus.
Length: 10′ (305 cm)
Width: 35″ (89 cm)
Thickness / Depth: 6″ (15 cm)
Construction: Fusion Technology PVC / Drop-stitch
Weight: 26 lbs (12 kg)
Volume: 300 Litres
User Weight: 400 lbs (181 kg)
Inflation PSI: Recommended at 12-15 psi
D-rings: 10 (Including Forward Bungee)
Paddle: Adjustable Fibreglass Shaft
Fin: 9” Single Centre Detachable / USA-Style Fin Box
Pump: Single Cylinder Dual Action High Capacity
Leash: 10’ Dual Swivel Coiled SUP Leash
Warranty: 24 Months
Why Paddle Board
As a recreational activity, paddle boarding offers some tremendous health and fitness benefits ranging from a full body workout engaging many of the core muscles albeit in a low impact way, through to improved balance, improvements in endurance and stamina, injury rehabilitation, weight loss and improving our cardiovascular health. Its an exciting way to unwind and decompress whilst at the same time engaging with nature. As one of the fastest growing water sports globally, if you have access to water then its definitely worth giving it a go.
About Glide Paddle Sports
Established in 2008 and based in Salt Lake City, Utah, Glide Paddle Sports are the self-proclaimed Greenest SUP Company on the Planet. A big statement, but the deeper you delve, the more creditable this innovative companies’ argument becomes.
Foundered by Ken Driscoll shortly after he suffered a career ending injury as a professional kayaker, it was Ken’s innovative patent-pending Glide Surface Shield (GSS) coating technology that ultimately helped Glide grow into a respected outdoor brand known for producing highly durable and eco-friendly products.
One of a limited number of U.S. manufacturers that do not outsource any elements of the manufacturing and production cycle, each of Glide’s best in class performance oriented rigid and inflatable paddle boards are made to the highest of standards using the most environmentally friendly materials available. They even have a specifically designed range that is used by rental companies which is a testament to the quality, durability and ultimately longevity of their products.
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At a Glance
☑️ All inclusive iSUP package
☑️ Plenty of width for greater stability
☑️ Significant weight carrying capacity
☑️ Best in class build quality
☑️ Offers versatile paddling performance
☑️ Suitable for paddlers of all levels
☑️ Extremely stable and buoyant
☑️ Not too heavy at 26 lbs (mid-weight)
☑️ Full length EVA deck traction padding
☑️ Includes light-weight fibreglass paddle
☑️ Easily transportable
☑️ Kayak seat and carry strap included
☑️ Pet friendly
☑️ Quality accessories package
☑️ 24 month manufacturers warranty
? No separate D-ring to attach ankle leash
? Tri-fin configuration for greater versatility
? Forward bungee system quite small
Glide utilise the same design and construction methodology in the production of each of their inflatable SUPs. A good thing of course given the considerable focus and attention to detail that goes into the production of what are amongst, if not the most durable and resilient inflatables on the market.
At the heart of the 02 Lotus is a dense drop-stitch core which is made using thousands of polyester threads that are woven together to form a highly resilient inner frame that is able to withstand extreme pressure once fully inflated. Drop-stitch technology has been used in the marine and aviation industries for many years and it is this methodology that enables the inflated vessels to maintain their shape at full inflation. Glide paddle boards are in fact built to withstand up to 25 psi which is well in excess of the typical industry standard.
Woven drop-stitch technology as compared to the knitted drop-stitch method that is used by the majority of industry manufacturers, creates a more rigid and dense structure which has less air between the links. Less air = less spring and bounce meaning that Glide inflatables in essence perform near on the same as hard boards. This process also shaves roughly 3.5 lbs from the boards weight making it easier to carry as well as enhancing its performance and manoeuvrability while out on the water.
Enveloping the inner core of the 02 Lotus are 4 layers of military-grade PVC material. Glide again adopt their own construction process here which utilises their proprietary Fusion Technology where each of the PVC layers are fused together rather than glued further reducing weight and enhancing durability. Each of the seams are then high-pressure heat-pressed to create an airtight seal.
External Board Features
Glide keep it clean and simple when it comes to their boards aesthetics focusing on quality over bells and whistles.
✔️ 4-point Forward Bungee System for the storage of your dry-bag or other small accessories or personal items
✔️ 3 x Grab Handles making it easy for either a single paddler or two riders to carry and transport the inflated board
✔️ 10 well spaced stainless-steel D-rings to accessorise the board which includes attaching the kayak seat that has now been thrown in as a standard inclusion for the majority of the 02 range of inflatables
✔️ Non-slip EVA Deck Traction Padding for a cushioned ride. The brushed finish is ideal for yoga as it’s softer on the skin relative to some of the more rigid diamond grooved decks
✔️ Single 9” dolphin Centre Fin which uses a standard USA-style fin box making the board customisable with other aftermarket fins. Detachable and tool-less, the fin can be attached and removed within seconds
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Performance / Suitability
Stability – new to paddle boarding or an experienced SUPer, board stability is a fundamental characteristic that underpins performance, a sense of security and an overall well-balanced ride. Its also the key attribute that you would expect to find in a board that has been designed for SUP yoga.
Further enhanced by its highly rigid structure, at 35” wide, the Lotus is very stable making it ideally suited to yoga and general stationary board exercises.
Buoyancy – at a typical industry standard of 6” thick for an all round inflatable SUP, the Lotus offers more than enough buoyancy. Again an important characteristic, its ability to bear a significant weight load (400 lbs) further speaks to its rigidity and stability meaning that you will comfortably ride above the waters surface further improving board performance both stationary or when paddling.
Manoeuvrability – a feature that in the first instance may not be front of mind if yoga is your primary focus. An ability to turn and generally manoeuvre as you paddle is of course fairly crucial. While we would like to see the next generation of the Lotus upgraded to a tri-fin configuration making the board more responsive through acute turns, there is not a lot lost with the single only centre fin set-up.
Tracking / Speed – this is where a large robust centre fin does come into play. Detachable for quick and easy transport and storage, the single 9” dolphin centre fin is very durable and can comfortably deal with choppier waters. Once you settle into your paddling stoke, maintaining a straight line course or desired direction is quite achievable. The Lotus can also get up a reasonable amount of speed although its on the shorter side for an all-rounder to don’t get too excited expectations wise. iSUPs are of course not as quick through the water relative to a hard board (circa. 10% slower) so again this needs to be taken into account.
Glide have included all of the core essentials to get you out on the water with no additional spend.
Paddle: the 3-piece paddle operates using a lever lock adjustable grip system allowing for quick and easy adjustments to suit paddlers of all heights. Extending out to 86” in length, the ultra-tough paddle is made with a heavy-duty reinforced nylon blade and fibreglass shaft which not only reduces weight, but also enhances paddling performance with greater rigidity through each paddling stroke.
Pump: the single cylinder dual-action manual SUP pump which includes a high-pressure gauge and inflation hose is fairly standard and somewhat on par with what other manufacturers produce.
If your one for a nice pre-paddling workout and don’t mind spending up to 10 minutes inflating your board then read no more. If however you’d like a little assistance, then we always recommend spending a few extra dollars and investing in a quality electric pump. Our Top 5 Electric Pump Picks has some handy tips on what to look out for as well as recommendations on some of the better brands on the market. Glide also produce their own electric pump that you will get at a discounted rate accessible via this reviews links.
Leash: beyond your Personal Flotation Device (PFD), the included leash which comfortably attaches to your ankle (or calf) is your most important safety item and should be worn at all times. Ensuring that you and your board do not become separated in the event you take a spill, the included 10’ leash contains a multi-layered neoprene cuff for more secure comfort once attached as well as dual-swivels and a coiled cord to reduce tangling and drag through the water.
Backpack: large enough to comfortably fit the deflated board and all accessories, Glide have produced a pretty good quality backpack here which is a bit of a challenge in itself relative to what you will find in the market.
The bag has a single large centre compartment that is accessed through a heavy-duty u-shaped front zip. Features include: adjustable padded shoulder and chest straps; a separate front pouch for additional accessories; side mesh pocket for wet items as well as durable wheels making it easier to carry across flat surfaces or when travelling.
Kayak Seat: a nice standard inclusion for the current generation boards making it ideal for seated paddling. If you’re new to paddling or are out on the water in choppier or windy conditions, kayak seats are a great accessory and can easily be stored under the boards bungee netting for quick and easy access.
Carry Strap: attaches to either side of the board via the centre D-rings making it easier yet again to carry your SUP over longer distances.
Repair Kit: a standard iSUP repair kit which includes colour coded patches and glue as well as a wrench tool to tighten the boards valve if needed.
While slightly wider to better entice SUP yoga enthusiasts, the 02 Lotus is still very much a genuine all round inflatable paddle board that will comfortably meet the needs of the most demanding paddler. With exceptional build quality for greater rigidity, durability and enhanced paddling performance, if you’re in the market for your first SUP or are looking to take it up a notch, then the Lotus and indeed Glide boards in general, should be on your must see shortlist.
Start a conversation and let us know about your favourite Yoga SUP? If you already own a Glide paddle board we’d love to hear from you so don’t be shy.
We hope you found this review of benefit and as always would welcome your feedback. Please feel free to leave a comment below and we will get back to you.
Until then, stay safe and get wet.