Longboards are similar to skateboards but the former is longer, wider, faster, and more durable. Longboards range from 33 to 59 inches in length and 9 to 10 inches in width. With the wide range of benefits that a longboard can provide a rider, including an improved sense of life, you should purchase your first longboard so that you would not miss out on anything. It does not matter if you are a teen, young adult, or fully grown adult; there are longboards suitable for varied age groups. Knowing how to choose the right longboard entails the evaluation of the different features of the sports equipment compared with your longboarding goals.
Longboards come in different setups to suit varied riding uses and capabilities of the rider. You need to assess and be honest about it, your ability level to choose the suitable board setup for you. Below is a section of riding styles that suit different riding levels.
Your riding style will initially be dictated by your ability level. Some riding styles are more suited for expert riders than beginners. As soon as you get a good grip of riding, your riding level will progress, which leads to a shift in riding style. You will have to consider your location when choosing a riding style and a longboard, for that matter.
Probably the first riding style you will engage in. Cruising and carving are fit for a beginner rider. Gliding through gradual slopes and skimming through long, flat distances is what cruising and carving are all about.
Freestyling is suited for intermediate levels or those who want to shift from a beginner to an advanced level. This style allows a rider to learn to control his longboard while developing tricks and technical movements such as sliding.
Freeride is more for the advance to expert level of riders. Skilled board control is needed to slide on more adventurous descents on hills and full curbs.
Downhill riding is for the expert rider. A rider must have control over his body and longboard while going at high speeds in a variety of terrains. A crouching or tucked position is assumed for maximum control and greater stability in downhill riding.
Two features must be assessed when purchasing your very first longboard, namely, board shape and deck style.
The two longboard shapes are both suitable for all levels of riders.
This shape is meant for forwarding riding only. If your riding style falls in any one of these: cruising, freestyle, and downhill, directional boards are for you.
With this shape, a rider can go in any direction. Both ends of this longboard move the same way such that it does not matter which direction it is facing. Freeriders and freestylers will enjoy making angled slides in this board shape.
The stability of the board is greatly influenced by the deck style, so choose this feature well.
The top mount is suitable for any type of riding style. This is the most affordable deck type, however, only some level of stability is achieved. The deck, which is mounted above the trucks as the name suggests, has a high center of gravity. This equates to less stability causing more fatigue in controlling and foot-braking.
Freeriders and downhill riders are most suited to have this deck. Long-distance commuters can also benefit from it. Since the trucks are mounted through the deck, the center of gravity is lower, which means more stability, better control, and less fatigue for the rider.
Freeriders and downhill riders often use this deck. The center of gravity is lowered due to the positioning of the trucks. The term “drop” is used since the deck is mounted under the trucks. This construction entails an effective method of stabilizing the ride for better movement and less fatigue.
Downhill riders mostly use double-drop decks. This is the deck with the lowest center of gravity as the deck provides the rider’s feet the closest possible distance to the ground. While this is the most expensive, this is also the most stable deck form.
When you make your first purchase of a longboard, you must evaluate the shape and deck of the longboard based on your current level, your riding terrain, and your longboarding goals. Just read more about cheap longboards under 50.