How To Buy the Most Suitable Longboard – The Ultimate Guide For Beginners

Whether you are a newbie or an expert in skateboarding, you can’t deny the importance of having proper skating equipment. A good longboard enhances the quality and enjoyment of this popular activity.

Now, when it comes to longboards, especially for beginners, many people struggle to find a suitable one. There are many contributing factors to a good longboard including shape, features and users’ ability.?

In this article, I will guide you through some basic features of longboards as well as help you determine your level.

The level of your experience significantly affects the kind of longboard you should buy. In the skating world, there are three categories regarding the skill of “boarders”: cruising, downhill and freeriding.

How To Buy the Most Suitable Longboard – The Ultimate Guide For Beginners

Is this longboard suitable for you?

Cruising

Not every longboard is the same. Those for beginners are called cruising longboards. They are made particularly for newbies who aren’t good at balancing.

This board is large and even on both sides. It ensures safety for the new user and helps them to learn to even out.

With this kind of longboards, you can ride for long distances. The main feature of this item is to glide smoothly . You can easily be sliding through crowded markets or streets without the fear of falling off.

If you just started skating, this is the kind of board for you.

Downhill

Once you have learned how to balance yourself on the board, it is time to move on to the next level. This is called downhill.

When you already have the confidence to skate while maintaining control and authority, you can start moving downhill. Now, it is not only about equilibrium.

When you already have the confidence to skate while maintaining control and authority, you can start moving downhill. Now, it is not only about equilibrium.

Going downhill requires a lot of abilities. You have to control your speed and constancy.

As you can see, most of the downhill longboards offer a wide body and two thin heads. These features help lessen the wind force and enhance the stability.

You need to determine your style in order to buy a suitable longboard

You need to determine your style in order to buy a suitable longboard

Freeriding

After mastering the downhill skill, you can now try freeriding. It is an advanced technique that allows you to chill and thrill at the same time.

Freeriding requires a lot of speed and direction control. You can ride big or small hills while in the total authority of your movement and the balance of your board.

As a result, freeriding boards often have a small shape to enhance the use of different types of maneuvers, which increase the difficulty of riding.

Elements of a longboard

There are many things you need to consider when it comes to longboards. In this section, I will show you the five most essential elements.

Wheels

Wheels are an indispensable part of the longboards. Without wheels, you can’t move the boards anywhere. Therefore, it is essential to be cautious when choosing wheels.
Wheels hold the board and are in direct contact with the ground. There are two basic shapes of wheels.
Round shaped wheels allow riders to perform many challenging tasks such as freeriding or any other freestyle movements. The form allows the least tractions to happen during skating. Hence, skaters must focus more on actions.

There are two types of wheels

There are two types of wheels

Square shaped wheels produce more traction with the ground. Which means it’s safer to skate with them. Due to the resistance from the square shape, sliding downhill becomes more natural too.

Flex

Choosing the flex depends on multiple factors, it's not only based on the level of skaters or skating purpose. The board flex also plays an essential part in actions and safety of skating.
To tell about the flexibility of the flex, we should consider the material, length and concave.
Soft flex provides the best absorption for any movement. However, it causes the board to go backwards when the users speed up. Even though, too soft flex cannot stay stable with high speeds.
Stiff flex might do better at balancing whilst speeding up. However, users should be experienced in dealing with shock, because this stiff flex does not perform well at absorbing.
The medium flex has a better absorption capacity than the stiff one, but it’s not as unstable as the soft flexes when users speed up. However, the capacity is limited. The most suitable flex should be picked base on the skating style

The length

The length is an intangible, yet crucial element on longboards You should pay attention to this feature because it decides the turning agility.
The longer boards seem to be more stable, but when you want to turn the board into another direction, it’s not as easy as managing a shorter one. 

Style of decks

Deck style is a contributing factor to a good longboard.

Deck style is a contributing factor to a good longboard.

Each deck style will lead you to a different experience in riding, because the deck will decide how the foot-brake, the impulse and the sliding happen when you are skating.
Therefore, choosing the deck style means determining your riding style. For you to decide, here are some options
The top mount turned up earlier than any other style. Maybe due to it being a classic, many skaters choose the top mount for their first riding experience, yet even some others displaying more advanced skills think of it as a prime choice.
This style can be seen as the traditional. It's merely mounted above the truck . A simple design helps users do driftings sharply and more efficiently.
However, you have to manage well with stability, because the focus of gravity is higher than other deck styles. This one is the most affordable style and a multifunctional deck in comparison with others
A drop through deck is in a lower position. Positioning the truck through the board at lower site helps with stability.
There is less foot contact with the ground when you skate with this deck. Hence, it’s more preferable for long skating.
The drop deck is styled nearer to the ground. Some people are used to seeing straight and flat boards, therefore they find this design ridiculous. However, lowering the deck assists foot-breaking the best.
You will never experience a cleaner and quicker foot-break with any other traditional deck. As a result of the quick slide, it’s favorable for downhill riding.
The double drop deck happens when we have an even lower deck than the drop deck.The design makes it look like touching the ground. Therefore, the capacity of foot-break comes to the highest.
However, it’s hard to make a deck with perfect distance to the ground that can provide the best traction for foot-breaking, no doubts that the price for double drop deck is costly.
Only those who defy themselves with arduous downhill rides invest money on it. 

The shape of the board

The board shape contributes to a significant part in riding. For skaters, different shapes tell different features of skating.
The kick tails on a longboard appear in the two ends of the board, and they help skaters with lifting off the board or making turns or curbs.
It’s the regular and most popular look of a longboard, the one you see on the streets frequently. The kick tails can be done with either both ends or only one end.
The wheel cutouts come with the look of losing a piece of the board right above the wheel. The cutouts work with preventing wheel bites which happen gradually when you are skating.
However, you should be skillful because this shape makes turning on the board a challenge.
A wheel well board is the vice versa. It works much better with turning, but the trucks might get loose. A riser will fix that.
Concave board offers you a higher edge at the end of the back. Skaters can stay more stable with the edges without the help of grip tape.
Moreover, users have more space to use at the back and hence, they can make “breaks” better. For downhill riding they will need the help of a concave skate, to do better stunts and tricks.

What else should I buy with a longboard?

Longboards are the main course, but you need some help to enjoy it to the fullest. So what should you pick along with the longboard?

A longboard backpack is important for riders

A longboard backpack is important for riders

A longboard backpack will allow you to carry your valuable board around with no inconvenience. Sometimes, you have to stop skating and you can’t just keep the board behind.
A backpack gives you an upper hand in maintaining the board safe. Besides, it can store different things such as gear or tools 

Wheel/bearings

As mentioned above, wheels can bring users modifications at the time of skating. The different shapes or sizes of the wheels can make huge differences.
In general, buying a longboard asks for a lot of mind work. You should consider little by little, before picking a longboard, all the aspects that seems to fit you. Everything whether it relates to the design of the board or not will affect your use of the board.
For cruisers, it’s better to analyze and investigate thoroughly, before going for any random longboard, because they are rarely experienced in skateboarding. People with more expertise can start choosing the board based on their hobbies and style.
For those people, that can deal with most of the longboards. Researching a little more about what they really want for long-term riding will result in the most suitable longboard. 

Conclusion

On the market, there are many brands and styles of longboards, and they are made with specific purposes. Any wise buyer has to study carefully about the products they want to buy and determine their own level to find out which suits them best.
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