Like clockwork pretty much every spring Body Gloves updates their best-selling Performer Stand Up Paddle Board (SUP) and somehow manages to improve it year over year. Each new iteration has more features that are super handy to make paddling days even more fun. You can see the evolution of the Performer SUP over the course of our previous reviews from the original introduced in 2016, to the first major upgrade in 2020, then with the addition of new features and graphics in 2021 and again in 2022. Each time there is a new version of the Performer SUP it gets better with new graphics and new features added. The profile and shape of the board remain more or less the same each year as it has proven to be a great design for flat and moving water paddling.
For a quick overview of all the updates to the new Body Glove Performer 2023 11’ SUP watch this video:
Over the years we’ve also reviewed the more manoeuvrable Body Glove Raptor 10’8 Inflatable SUP, the Body Glove Glide 11 Inflatable Kayak, the fishing-specific Body Glove Mariner XL11ft iSUP and even the Body Glove EZ 8’2” iBoard Inflatable Surfboard. All of these are still in the Body Glove line-up except for the Mariner and Body Glove now produces 5 inflatable kayaks and two inflatable surfboard options.
For 2023 the Performer SUP gets a subtle graphic update with a new colour scheme that looks even better than the last one. The overall design and dimensions of the board remain the same and have not really changed much since the very first iteration of the Performer way back in 2016, at this time the board was 6" thick and since then it has been reduced by half an inch and the overall board width has increased a little. When you nail the design the first time there really is no need to change it.
Rather than go over all of the features of the new Performer 2023 11’ SUP I will just speak to what is new & improved and you can read the previous reviews listed above to find out what features and specs have remained the same.
The big updates found on the new Body Glove Performer include a tool-less removable fin, a second cargo bungee, the Connect System, a refined paddle design, a new storage backpack and the fact that you no longer get a hand pump but instead just have the electric pump. Let's look at each of these new features below, shall we?
The previous versions of the Performer SUP had three flexible, fixed fins to keep the boar tracking straight. This new 2023 version of the Performer now uses a single removable fin for improved tracking and stability. Because the fin is now removable it means that the board can now pack down smaller when putting it away in the storage backpack.
You can never have enough tie-downs and storage options on a SUP and Body Glove has realized this and added a second cargo bungee on the back of the Performer. The cargo bungee on the front of the board is very handy for those items you need to access easily and now with the one at the rear of the board, you can maximize the Performer’s carry capacity of 320lbs while SUP camping or river running.
While not part of the board, Body Glove has improved the design and colour scheme of both the paddle and storage backpack. Matching aesthetics and a refined design make both of these items improvements from the previous versions.
Body Glove’s new Connect System allows you to connect multiple paddle boards together so that you can paddle with a friend, making it easier than ever to enjoy a fun day on the water.
On the environmental front, Body Glove is continuing its partnership with One Tree Planted which plants a tree for every Performer SUP sold. In addition to this, they are no longer using any single-use plastics in the shipment of their boards. This means that the board is now protected with craft paper, all the bags are reusable and any ties and bands are also made from paper.
Whether you are a novice paddler or an expert, the new 2023 Performer has an ideal overall shape for both flat and moving water and comes complete with all the features and items you need to get out on the water right away.
Connect System, electric pump, 3-piece adjustable paddle, removable fin, coil ankle leash, cell phone dry bag, repair kit and storage backpack
The Body Glove Performer has long been one of my favourite stand-up paddle boards given the board's versatile shape and dimensions. It is ideal for those looking to get into paddling as it provides enough stability to shorten the learning curve for beginners while also providing enough performance for more advanced paddlers looking to take on waves and moving water. The features and add-ons included with the Performer cover anything you could ever want and continue to grow with each new version of the Performer. This new 2023 iteration has once again seen the addition of a few new items making the board more fun and a better overall value.
The upgrade to a tool-less removable fin brings the Performer into a higher class of paddle board and improves the board's stability but I argue that the reduced overall surface area of this single fin compared to the previous three fixed fins does make the board track a little less well but this is a small trade-off when you consider how much more compact the SUP packs away. The additional cargo bungee, at the back of the SUP is a welcome addition for when I take it out paddle board camping as I have two dry bags in addition to a cooler. The paddle included is more refined in appearance as it looks as cool as carbon although it isn’t. At this price point, it is just nice that a paddle is included with the board and while this one is a little heavy it gets the job done. The updated storage backpack matches the SUP well and has a few extra pockets for smaller items along with the paddle itself. The pack is well-designed, high quality and has a carry system that supports the weight of the board well over longer distances.
The one downside for me with the new 2023 Performer SUP is the fact that the hand pump is no longer included with the board but this is understandable as there is the included electric pump. While much less effort is required with the electric pump it does take about 15 minutes to get the board up to the required pressure. Without the inclusion of a wall plug on the pump, I feel that something is still missing. I keep my board inflated all summer long and like to top up the pressure at home before taking it out to the car to transport it and a wall plug option sure would make this a lot easier. I am sure others would agree with this and wonder if the cost of this is too prohibitive for Body Glove to include, or perhaps it is just on the list for next year's version.
I applaud Body Glove’s continued consideration for the environment by replacing any plastic packaging materials with paper in the shipping process. While the production of a paddle board is horrendously bad for the planet this is a small step in the right direction on Body Glove's part and rare in the SUP market. Now if Body Glove can just figure out how to use recycled materials in the production process and non-toxic glues without having to sacrifice quality, that's when we are talking about real change.
Overall the Performer continues to impress and yes, this version is even better than last year's so be sure to check it out.
Price: $1,120CAN / $999US
Dimensions: (L x W x H): 335 x 86 x 13.7cm /
11’ x 34” x 5.4”
Weight: 10.4kg / 23lb
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