Those who love surfing must also love long boarding that has emerged from surfing and is quite popular now. The difference between a longboard and skateboard is that the former is longer than regular skateboards. As longboarding has mainly emerged from surfing, most of the styles and techniques of doing it are similar to surfing, yet there is a difference in the sports too.
Hence, before a beginner starts using a longboard they must have an idea about longboards.
Different materials used for making longboards are maple, bamboo, and carbon fiber. Although maple longboards are in use for long now, yet bamboo longboards are becoming popular nowadays. Those of love city long boarding prefers bamboo longboards as the longboard made up of bamboo are very flexible. Moreover, these longboards are lighter than the ones made up of maple.
As the bamboo longboards are thinner compared to other types of longboards they bend between the wheels, that gives the skater better stability. The only problem with this board is that it is weaker than the maple longboards that are quite hardy.
Apart from maple and bamboo, nowadays carbon fiber is also used for making longboards. These boards are lighter and stronger, but yet they are not in use much.
Mostly while the skater uses longboard for skating either in the urban streets or downhill. The longboards that are used for skating in the city are also known as cruisers and the most common choice for this is bamboo longboards. They must be designed in such way that skaters can take tight turns while maintaining their stability and speed. If you want to be a freestyler you can try this out as you can learn flexible moves to show off tricks.
Another purpose for which long boards are used is for downhill skating. For this, the longboards needs to be fast and rigid, and they should be fast enough too as a skater will gain speeding as they skate downhill. Beginners are advised not to try this at the beginning as they will need safety gears and they may also not able to cope with the high speed.
Choosing a longboard
The first thing that one must remember while they go for buying a longboard is that they should not get confused with a skateboard. You will find a typical longboard that is up to 5 feet long. Thus, choose one that will be labeled as a longboard.
The next thing that you need to choose is whether to go for maple longboards or bamboo longboards. If you choose bamboo, you will get many advantages. Like it is flexible to use and gives better stability while you skate. Apart from that by using bamboo longboards you are helping nature as maple trees are saved.
Other things that you need to consider while choosing a longboard are
For beginners, it is necessary that their foot is placed between the truck or the axle. It will provide them with better control while they skate. When the rider’s feet are at shoulder width apart, it is necessary that the distance is kept in mind. The axle or the truck must be at a minimum distance of the rider’s feet distance. As a beginner, you can try out a mid-length board that will measure about 39 to 50 inches.
The material used for making the wheels of longboards is polyurethane. They are available in various sizes, thickness, and hardness.
It is always suggested that the beginners use smaller wheels as they are much slower than the larger wheels. Experienced longboarders can use larger wheels as they have enough experience to handle the speed.
Depending upon the purpose for which the longboard will be used the hardness is decided. Generally softer wheels are slower, and it is best for beginners, however, even professionals also use them for longboarding in the city. This is because softer wheels make the ride smoother, especially on the tight turns. When someone is longboarding downhill they prefer hard wheels as they are much faster than the softer counterparts.
Once you buy a wheel for your longboard and find that it is not suiting you, it is easy to replace.
Longboards whether they are bamboo longboards or maple are available in different shapes. They can be pintail, drop-through or Cruiser.
Pintail is wider and more stable than other types. With them, the rider may feel that they are surfing on the air. This type of design is good for both downhill and urban style of longboarding. It is called pintail as the shape resembles like one. With this board, you can only move forward.
Drop-through is better when the rider wants more stability and speed while longboarding.
Cruiser is longboards that has a bend at the rear end. For this, the rider can easily manage sudden turns, pop down or up the steps and also useful for making olleys.
Bearings although may seem small yet plays a vital role in longboards. They are the small balls that are located between the inner metal casing and the wheel shaft. There are bearings that are coarse and are best for making the board slower. The finer ones must be used by professionals only.
They are mainly made up of wood or other composite material. It is deck flex that balances the stiffness, weight of the longboard. It is because of it that the wheel is pushed in the ground.
Once you have a detailed idea about what are the different types of long boards available in the market and which one is best for beginners you can choose one that is right for you. As a beginner always remember that you should not try to follow what your trainer is using. They have enough knowledge about the styles and tricks of longboarding which you do not have. Thus, choose a longboard that is right for you. As a beginner, you can always check best bamboo longboards reviews I’ve found and check their facebook site if you have questions. I would recommend bamboo because of it’s flexible and that will help you learn this sport better.