At this point, you’ve probably noticed that longboards can come in all sorts of different shapes and sizes. Believe it or not, the shape and size of your board can have a huge impact on your ride. As well as the actual deck, your bearings and wheels can completely change your experience also. If you’re starting off you’re long boarding journey, it’s highly likely you don’t know what each component does and how it will help you – or even sometimes how it can make life harder for you. So over the next few articles, we are going to explain to you the different types of longboards on the market.
Different Types of Longboards Explained
It’s quite simple really! Longboards are made up of 3 components. Changing any of this components will essentially create a different type of longboard. The 3 components are:
- Longboard Decks
- Longboard Bearings
- Longboard Wheels
Longboards are typically either one of two types. Longboards can either be directional or symmetrical. Directional longboards are designed for strictly forward travel only. The nose is distinctly different to the tail, making it obvious to the skater which direction you need to be travelling in. Example boards include the pintail and fishtail. On the other hand symmetrical longboards can be used for any type of boarding. There is no distinct nose or tail, so the skater can travel in any direction they wish!
Longboard Deck Size
Without stating the obvious, it’s safe to say one of the first things you will notice about a longboard is its size. On the market today, there are a vast array of longboard shapes and sizes that you can buy. The facts are that longboards can generally range between 30 to 60 inches long. The size of your board has a huge impact on your ride every time you step on it. Different sizes have different perks. To make this easy, we will break this down into small, medium and large and explain the advantages of each;
- Small Longboards – Are more suited for smaller riders. Smaller riders may find bigger boards a little too tricky to start practicing on.
- Medium Longboards – A great starting point for all styles. Most cruising longboards fit into this longboard category.
- Large – Larger boards tend to have more flexibility and a great surface area creating a much smoother ride on the roads.
Longboard Deck Styles
Let’s put a name to the type of longboard style you’ve seen. Below is a list of the most popular longboard styles you will see on the market today. Below are pictures of the style and a selection of our favourite boards from each style!
Pintail – The pintail style longboard is one of the most popular styles used around the world today. This directional board style has a tapered nose and tail which creates a large surface for the rider to stand. This increases the stability of the board making it easier for you to get from A-Z.
Fishtail – A typically smaller board, the fishtail has a tapered nose with a tail that mimics that of a fishtail (hence the name). The fishtail often acts as a slight kick tail, so you can perform tricks with your longboard.
Mini Cruiser – The mini cruiser is one of, if not the smallest longboard on the market. In fact it’s that small, skaters may even consider this style a type of skateboard. This board can’t be used to get speed and it may prove hard to learn on as you have a small surface area. However for the more established long boarder, this style is great for getting from A to B.
Twin – This board is perfect for multi directional street skating. With a nose identical to the tail, this board can be used to skate in any direction. A twin board is perfect for carving.
Cutout – Cutout longboards have a great stability at higher speeds.
Drop Down – The drop down board, typically has a lower centre of gravity than other boards. The middle section is essentially lower than the nose and tail. The perks of this include a board that is easier to push while provided a more stable ride. The drop down also creates a high level of flex within the frame which reduces the shock of the roads when skating.
Speedboard – A classic speed board has a classic pintail shape. Whats different here is a speed board is made of very stiff material. Flex will be very minimal to allow the rider to reach high speeds.
Stay tuned for our Types of Longboard Part 2 – Longboard Bearings article.