We are reader-supported. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.

Paddle boarding continues to grow in popularity and is becoming more and more of a popular sport.

Accordingly, there are now rules and regulations from the authorities on many waters that you must comply with. One of these regulations is the marking of your paddle board.

At some waters (such as Lake Constance) it is mandatory that the paddle board is marked with the owner’s details. In the case of violation, you are threatened with a sometimes handsome fine.

In the following guide, you will learn why it makes sense to label your paddle board, apart from the regulations, which information is important and which methods are available to you for this.

If you have any further questions, feel free to leave a comment below. I will try to answer you as soon as possible!

Why Should You Label Paddle Boards?

There are many good reasons to label your paddle board with your details. Here I explain the most important ones to you:

Mandatory Labeling

As I said, the marking of the boards with the owner’s data is now mandatory at some, popular waters and is controlled accordingly. So if you want to save yourself a hefty fine, be sure to label your paddle boards.

Loss or Theft

You might be unfortunate enough to forget your board somewhere or, in the worst case scenario, lose it on the water, for example after falling into the water without leash (safety line).

The labeling increases the probability enormously that you get your beloved board back. The finder can then easily contact you.

Additionally, if you label your board directly and indelibly, it becomes uninteresting to thieves.

High-quality boards can cost a stick of money and are accordingly attractive to thieves. If your data is clearly written on the board, it is no longer usable for most thieves.

However, you can then resell the board much more difficult. So you should be sure that the paddle board remains in your possession before you permanently write on the surface.

Likewise, it should be clear that you probably can no longer exchange a board with your data.

Emergency Situations

Of course, the fun factor always comes first in paddle boarding, but unfortunately, with any water sport, you also have to consider the worst-case scenario.

Should you get into an emergency situation, it may happen that you can no longer comment on your person (unconsciousness, hypothermia, etc.). Rescuers will then have the ability to identify you through the labeling.

If a paddle board without a paddler is found on or near a body of water (e.g. by officers of the water police etc.), an accident must of course always be considered.

If your board is labeled in detail, you can be contacted and thus ensure that no extensive rescue measures may be necessary.

In case of doubt, there is even the possibility that you must take over the high cost of an unnecessary search effort in the absence of labeling.

What Should You Write on the Paddle Board?

To fulfill the labeling requirement, in most cases it is sufficient to write the full name and address.

However, in order to cover all the mentioned situations as much as possible, I recommend you to label your paddle boards with the following information:

  • Name and address
  • Phone number or mobile phone number
  • possibly indication of a so-called emergency contact incl. mobile phone number

The more detailed your details are, the better all conceivable (emergency) situations are covered!

Labeling a Paddle Board: 4 Methods

There are countless ways to label your paddle board, here’s a selection of the most popular methods:

Method #1: Label your paddle boards with a waterproof pen

There are numerous waterproof pens available in stores that you can use to label your board. It is best not to choose a model that writes too thinly, so that the information can be read easily.

Make sure that the pen is suitable for plastic and especially for PVC (the main material of most paddle boards).

If you are creative, you can of course try to make your data match the design of your board. The waterproof pens come in many colors and with a little talent, you can turn your board into a unique piece at the same time.

We recommend a waterproof pen such as this:

Permanent Paint Pens Black Markers
If you click this link and make a purchase, we may earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

The advantage of direct inscription is the low, inexpensive effort. Furthermore, this type of inscription is hardly reversible, and the board is therefore relatively uninteresting for thieves.

The disadvantage is that it is difficult to pass on or sell the board, and it may not be possible to return it to the dealer or exchange it. Also, in the case of a (address) change, the method of permanent labeling is less suitable.

Method #2: Attach a dog tag (or badge) to the paddle board

If you’ve ever seen a Hollywood war movie or been in the military yourself, you’re probably familiar with these little metal badges. Even with soldiers, the small metal tags have the purpose of identification.

There are numerous manufacturers who stamp these so-called dog tags with your data and send them to you for relatively little money and within a very short time. You have the choice between different materials and designs.

You can use a dog tag such as from this provider:

Custom Dog Tags, Funny Double Sided
If you click this link and make a purchase, we may earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

To attach the small tag to your paddle board, you can simply use a piece of string or a cable tie, sometimes a small chain is already included. A rubber band is also very suitable, so nothing tears off if you get stuck somewhere.

The best place to attach the dog tag to your paddle board are existing D-rings, e.g. the one where you attach the leash (safety line).

Alternatively, the luggage net or a carrying loop is also suitable for this purpose. However, you should not attach the badge to the stand or in the immediate vicinity of it, otherwise you could injure yourself!

The advantage of this method is that the label is not permanently on the board. So you can react flexibly if your data changes or you want to lend your board. However, thieves are certainly less deterred by the small sign.

Method #3: Attach a sticker to the paddle board

For this purpose, the well-known manufacturers (Tesa, UHU, Zweckform, etc.) offer special adhesive labels. Such as these:

The Nisha 24 PC Pack (4 X 4) Art
If you click this link and make a purchase, we may earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

The labels are waterproof (even in salt water), UV resistant, extremely durable, and have very strong adhesion. To write on them, you can simply use a waterproof pen or design them as you like with a laser printer.

Of course, you can also design and order your individual sticker at a professional printing service (print-on-demand store). There are almost no limits to your design possibilities, but orders in small quantities are a bit more expensive.

The type of sticker you choose is up to you. However, do not select a sticker that is too small, so that your data can be easily read, and make sure that it is highly resistant to UV light and (salt) water! Apply the sticker best on a free and clearly visible place of the board surface.

Method #4: Apply SUP Tag

SUP tags are small printed cards that contain a logo on one side and your contact information on the other.

In principle, you can also craft a SUP tag with your data using the simplest means.

When choosing the material, you just have to make sure that everything is waterproof and has no sharp edges, so as not to hurt yourself and the board. Thicker foils of any kind are great.

Maybe you have a laminator. Then you can simply print out your information, laminate it and attach the resulting sign to the board with cable ties, a piece of string or a rubber band.

Or simply take a so-called clear cover (document cover), cut it to fit and label it waterproof. Holes for fastening are already present on this material.

Another sturdy option offers you the PVC strips, which are often included in the delivery of the board as part of the so-called repair kit.

Most of the time they even match the color of the board. Cut a small piece of it, write your data on it with a suitable pen and attach it to the board.

Lupo Heavy Duty Liquid Vinyl Repair
If you click this link and make a purchase, we may earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

There are no limits to your creativity and you don’t always have to spend money on professional solutions. Look around which suitable materials you already have anyway and use them!


Labeling your paddle boards makes sense in many ways. On the one hand, the marking is mandatory on more and more waters, on the other hand, the labeling increases your protection in case of emergency.

If you lose your board, the probability of getting it back without any problems increases.

Last but not least, a clearly marked paddle board is sure to deter one or two (opportunistic) thieves. Which method is the best for you, you should ultimately decide for yourself!

Hi, my name is Max. In 2016, on my first SUP trip, I was still a bit shaky on the SUP board. But quickly the ambition grabbed me and my passion for SUP was ignited. That’s why I founded stand-up-paddling.org the same year. Our mission is to help beginners discover this sport and bring more transparency into the market with our in-depth product reviews.