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Kialoa Tiare Fiberglass Adjustable Review

This top-tier SUP paddle is designed with female paddlers in mind, offering easy adjustability and excellent paddling performance
Kialoa Tiare Fiberglass Adjustable
Photo: Kialoa
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Price:  $199 List | Check Price at REI
Pros:  Easy to adjust, sleek, great paddle performance
Cons:  Handle more prone to hotspots
Manufacturer:   Kialoa
By Marissa Fox ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Jul 29, 2021
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86
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 14
  • Performance - 30% 8
  • Weight - 20% 7
  • Ease of Adjustment - 20% 10
  • Locking Mechanism - 20% 10
  • Aesthetics - 10% 8

Our Verdict

The Kialoa Tiare is a premium paddle with a women’s-specific design. It offers a smaller grip and a thinner shaft that is more ergonomic for smaller hands. It’s easy to adjust with the built-in LeverLock in the handle and offers enough travel for a wide range of heights. The Tiare has great paddling performance, with a smaller blade area. All in all, this paddle is one of our favorites.

Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards  Best Buy Award Best Buy Award   
Price $199 List
Check Price at REI
$114.00 at Backcountry$30 List
Check Price at Amazon
$34.99 at Amazon$39.95 at Amazon
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Pros Easy to adjust, sleek, great paddle performanceCuts cleanly through water, durable bladeInexpensive, large adjustment range, durable nylon bladeFunctional, low costInexpensive, easy to transport
Cons Handle more prone to hotspotsHeavy, looks like a toyHeavy, locking mechanism can get in the way of hands when switching hands and/or paddlingHeavySo-so performance, looks cheap
Bottom Line This top-tier SUP paddle is designed with female paddlers in mind, offering easy adjustability and excellent paddling performanceThe Vibe is a great all-around paddle that moves water well and is easy to manageThis sturdy product wins our Best Buy award for a multitude of reasonsA heavy paddle, the Own the Wave Adjustable has the lowest retail price in our reviewThis paddle is one of the least expensive options but performed commensurate to its price tag
Rating Categories Tiare Fiberglass Ad... Werner Vibe Bullet Proof Surf A... Own the Wave Adjust... SUPply Co 3-Piece P...
Performance (30%)
8.0
9.0
7.0
6.0
5.0
Weight (20%)
7.0
6.0
3.0
4.0
3.0
Ease Of Adjustment (20%)
10.0
10.0
7.0
7.0
5.0
Locking Mechanism (20%)
10.0
10.0
7.0
7.0
7.0
Aesthetics (10%)
8.0
6.0
6.0
5.0
5.0
Specs Tiare Fiberglass Ad... Werner Vibe Bullet Proof Surf A... Own the Wave Adjust... SUPply Co 3-Piece P...
Paddle Weight 1.5 lbs 1.7 lbs 2.2 lbs 2.0 lbs 2.1 lbs
Shaft Material Fiberglass Fiberglass Aluminum Alloy Aluminum
Blade Dimensions 80 sq in 100 sq in 95 sq in 95 sq in Not listed
Blade Material Fiberglass Fibrlite Injection molded fiberglass Nylon composite Nylon composite Nylon
Blade Design Dihedral Dihedral Dihedral Concave Concave/Flat
Blade Shape Teardrop Rectangular Teardrop Teardrop Teardrop
Offset 10 degrees 10 degrees 10.5 degrees Not listed Not listed
Adjustablility (inches) 16 in 16 in 18 in 18 in 18 in
Length Range (inches) 66 in - 82 in 68 in - 84 in 71 in - 83 in 71 in - 83 in 67-85
Number of Pieces 2-piece 3-piece (available in 1, 2, or 3) 2-piece 2-piece (available in 2 or 3) 3-piece
Compact Size 66 in 34.5 in 65 in 65 in
Includes Cover No No Yes No No
Locking Mechanism Handle LeverLock Handle LeverLock "TwinPin" Collar Clamp "TwinPin" Collar Clamp Dual-Pin Collar Clamp

Our Analysis and Test Results

This paddle was designed in consultation with an expert female paddler, particularly for female paddlers. Our testers loved it — and we highly recommend it to any ladies looking to take their paddling to the next level.

Performance Comparison


The smaller teardrop blade on this paddle makes it easier for a...
The smaller teardrop blade on this paddle makes it easier for a faster cadence.
Photo: David Wise

Performance


Our first set of tests and evaluations looked at how the Tiare feels on the water. This paddle did exceptionally well, meriting one of the better scores of the entire pack of paddles. We based this on how much power we felt we were getting out of each product, how it felt to hold and paddle, and how cleanly it entered and exited the water.

The fiberglass shaft on the Tiare is very rigid and does a great job of effectively and efficiently transferring your power into pushing the board forward. It’s very rigid, so you aren’t wasting a bunch of energy by bending the paddle. The 10-degree offset gives you an increased effective paddling length per stroke, and the teardrop shape enters the water cleanly and easily.

This paddle has a 10-degree offset and a teardrop blade.
This paddle has a 10-degree offset and a teardrop blade.
Photo: David Wise

However, this paddle does have a smaller overall surface area than many of the other top-tier products, so you are limited at the amount of power that you can get per paddle stroke, though it will be much less fatiguing to paddle if you don’t have a ton of upper body strength.

We also noticed that the ridges on the handle can cause hot spots or a bit more irritation than some of the smoother options.

Weight


We moved on to comparing and evaluating the heft of each paddle. Heavier paddles make longer trips much more fatiguing — even if they only tip the scales a tiny bit more than the lighter ones. The Tiare did decently well, earning a score in the middle of the group.


This paddle weighs in at 1.5 pounds or 24 ounces. The lightest carbon paddles are a little closer to 1.2 to 1.3 pounds, while the cheaper aluminum options can be as heavy as 2.2 pounds.

Ease of Adjustment


Next, we moved on to comparing and scoring how user-friendly and easy to adjust the length of each paddle is. The Kialoa Tiare did very well, earning one of the best scores out of all the paddles that we have tested.

It's easy to adjust the length of this paddle to get the perfect...
It's easy to adjust the length of this paddle to get the perfect paddle stroke.
Photo: David Wise

This paddle offers up to 16 inches of adjustment, ranging from 66 inches to 82 inches. The telescoping fiberglass shafts move freely, and it’s easy to adjust the length, even on the water. We also like that this paddle offers continuous adjustment in that range, instead of discrete settings.

The locking mechanism integrated into the handle is one of our...
The locking mechanism integrated into the handle is one of our all-time favorites.
Photo: David Wise

Locking Mechanism


Moving on from the ease of adjustment, our next metric focuses on the locking mechanism of each of these adjustable paddles. The Tiare again delivered top-tier results, earning another one of the best scores.

This paddle has a LeverLock locking mechanism, which is a single lever in the center of the handle. Lift this up, and an internal mechanism releases, allowing you to adjust the length. Fold it down, and this internal mechanism locks the length in place, while the lever also conveniently lies flush with the handle.

This is by far our favorite type of locking mechanism, vastly outperforming the camlock or dual-pin paddles in our mind. We find it much sleeker and easier to use.

While it might not be the most striking paddle out there, the Kialoa...
While it might not be the most striking paddle out there, the Kialoa still scored quite well in our aesthetics metric.
Photo: David Wise

Aesthetics


For our last rating metric, we — quite literally — looked at the aesthetics of each stand up paddle board paddle. This Tiare finished out the tests with another strong showing, earning an above-average score.

This paddle doesn’t have the most striking appearance, but we like the color combination and the smooth lines.

Value


This paddle is definitely one of the more expensive options out there, so it probably isn’t a great option for anyone shopping on a tight budget.

Conclusion


If you are looking for a top-tier product designed with the lady paddler in mind, then we highly recommend the Kialoa Tiare. It has great paddling performance and is very convenient and easy to use, with the smaller handle and paddle blade perfect for smaller paddlers.

Marissa Fox