How to Select the Right Longboard

by Annabeth Kaine
Find the right longboard for your skating style.

Find the right longboard for your skating style.

Ryan McVay/Digital Vision/Getty Images

Longboards are "surfboard inspired" decks with larger wheels and wider axles than a standard skateboard. According to the New York Times, longboards offer the chance for old and young alike to skate together since most longboards are used for transportation. Longboards have a wide turning radius and are harder to maneuver than a standard skate board deck, but the wider deck and large wheels provide a more "comfortable" riding experience. Choosing the right longboard depends on your experience level with a skateboard and whether you want to use your deck for transportation or tricks.

Step 1

Contact your local skate shop and inquire about its longboard selection. Most specialty shops have employees who are familiar with the different deck lengths and styles. If you are unsure of what you want to try, this is a sensible place to start.

Step 2

Take measure of your skateboarding skills. Longboards offer transportation, navigation and speed or trick riding. A 40-inch deck works well for level terrain while a 46-inch deck navigates hills with ease by offering additional stability. The larger 60-inch deck allows you to master "surf inspired" tricks, but is not appropriate for beginners.

Step 3

Try out a few different longboards. A 40-inch board with standard wheels is suitable for novice skaters or those looking to expand into longboards from a standard skateboard. Pick a pre-made deck with the trucks and wheels already assembled until you are comfortable with your longboard. Once you find the deck that fits your style, you can upgrade to a custom longboard. Most skate shops will allow you to try out a few different styles in the store before you buy one.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use caution when attempting new tricks on a longboard. The deck and wheels are completely different than a standard skateboard and require a different technique than standard boards.

Photo Credits

  • Ryan McVay/Digital Vision/Getty Images