Surfboards can be divided into a plethora of categories based on their length, width, style, volume, rocker, and material. For a clear understanding of how to choose the right one for a start, we will categorize the surfboards based on board categories that will help you choose better.
So without further ado, let us quickly dive into the details.
Surfboards based on Length
Length is one of the most important considerations while buying a surfboard. It determines the speed and ease of your movement in the water and also how well you balance yourself. Based on length, surfboards can be divided into long and shortboards. As a beginner, you should always choose a longboard.
Longboards are surfboards with lengths greater than 7”. The reason it is recommended for beginners is that it allows more space for the surfer to adjust himself on the surfboard. During initial surfs, balancing is one of the major issues and longboards help to address it. As you progress, you can switch over to the shorter ones which are good for professional moves.
Surfboards based on Width
Just like the length of the surfboard, the width is directly proportional to the ease of balancing. When you are new to surfing, the moves between catching different waves become very difficult to handle. A wider surface ensures that you do not trip over and fall.
It gives you more space to comfortably accommodate yourself and balance when paddling and standing on the wave. The width of the board is measured from the center where it is the widest. A good width for beginner surfboards ranges between 22-24″. For more information, you can refer to this detailed surfboard guide.
Surfboards based on Height
The height of the board determines the thickness as in how thick the surfboard is. Now choosing the right thickness is slightly more complex than picking the right length and width. Unlike picking the maximum value, you have to strike the right balance when it comes to the thickness.
While a too thin surfboard would lead to balancing issues, a very thick one make maneuvering very difficult. As a beginner, you should choose the surfboard with a slightly pumped-up thickness from 2.5-3″. This range is considered ideal for the right buoyancy needed to catch and ride small waves with ease.
Surfboards based on Volume
The volume of a surfboard refers to the space it takes up in the water. It can be determined by the amount of water it displaces. Volume is again a tricky determiner that needs to be taken care of. Two surfboards can be shaped with the same exact dimensions, yet maintain different shapes and volumes.
As a beginner, you should ideally choose a surfboard with a bigger volume. The volume is measured in litres. A beginner should be riding the equivalent of 100% of their body weight in volume. I.e. A beginner weighing 65kg should be riding a surfboard around 65 litres in volume. Alternatively, an experienced surfer can ride a surfboard that’s 35% – 40% of their body weight in volume.
Surfboards based on Rocker
Rocker defines the combination of curves in the surfboard. The curve is the shape from its nose to its tail. Less rocker or flat surfboards are comparatively easier to ride. It is an ideal pick for beginners while more rocker or banana-shaped boards are preferred by professionals.
The reason you should choose a flat rocker board is that it provides clean, smooth rides even in poor surf conditions. It allows quick paddling, making it easy to catch the waves.
Surfboards based on Material
Based on material, surfboards can be broadly classified as soft top, wooden, polyurethane, and epoxy. For beginners, soft-top and epoxy surfboards are considered best since they are light in weight and low maintenance. Those who have already mastered the art of surfing prefer PU foam and wooden surfboards because they are more sturdy and help them take expert moves while surfing.
The reason you should choose the soft-top surfboard is that the chances of slips and falls are quite high in the beginning. Soft tops prevent serious injuries from falling.
So Which One Should You Buy?
The aforementioned points would have already given you an idea of how to choose the best surfer for a beginner. To make it even easier, we are listing 4 overall good surfboards that you can consider buying.
- Noll- Mid Size Egg
- 2.T Patterson- Pill-2
- Panda-The Repeater