A Beginner’s Guide to Picking the Right Skateboard
If you or one of your kids are looking to get into skateboarding, buying the first board may be confusing, as there are many different types of boards to pick from. You’ll come across terms like skate deck, shortboard, longboard, cruiser, etc. and while they’re all skateboards, they differ in how they’re built and the type of riding they’re used for.
Regardless, there are a few factors to consider before you buy a board, and picking the right size is the first of the choices you’ll need to make. Board style, length, and width are all important considerations you’ll have to factor in, but the most important thing to consider is how hard and where you’ll skate.
Hardcore skaters replace boards anywhere from once to a few times a year. The right time to replace a skateboard is once its nose, tail or sides show signs of splitting. This can be due to the abuse the skateboard takes, or if you ride in cold and wet areas. Without further ado, let’s discuss the factors you should consider when buying a skateboard.
Familiarizing yourself with all the different board styles is recommended if you’re a beginner looking to get into skateboarding. Skateboards come in 4 basic styles, and each of them is designed for a specific type of skateboarding. With that said, pick the board that’s appropriate for the type of riding you want to perform.
- Featuring a flat nose and kicktails, old school style skateboards have a wider nose and are typically asymmetrical. Old school style skateboards are a very popular choice due to their interesting and unique designs. They are a great choice for skating ramps, pools, and carving on streets.
- Shortboards are designed for performing airborne tricks. They can be typically seen on the streets and in the parks.
- Longboards and cruisers are great for cruising around and transport. Some models are designed for downhill racing, and feature a symmetrical shape. Moreover, they sit lower to the ground and feature larger wheels.
The most important aspect of choosing a skateboard deck is the width. Skateboard decks come in various widths, but the most common ones are 7.5” and 8.25”. The ideal width for you depends on your skating style, shoe size, height and personal preference.
If you get a board that’s too large, you’ll need to use excessive power to ride on it. Plus, performing tricks and skateboarding in general will be harder. If the board is too short though, you’ll have trouble balancing and keeping a yourself stable. 7.5” decks are ideal for most adults and teenagers. In terms of length, most skateboards are about 28”-32”, but length is mostly a concern to advanced skateboarders.