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How to choose a skateboard

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While skateboards are most often associated with doing flips, grinds and slides, they are also a highly convenient mode of transport. Their light weight and high maneuverability makes them ideally suited to short trips around town as well as the skatepark. 

While skateboards are most often associated with doing flips, grinds and slides, they are also a highly convenient mode of transport. Their light weight and high maneuverability makes them ideally suited to short trips around town as well as the skatepark.

Muž na skateboardu
Advantages and disadvantages
  • Excellent maneuverability
  • Tough and durable wheels
  • Perfect for tricks
  • Suitable for short journeys around town
  • Less stability than longboards
  • Small wheels can jam on uneven ground

Frequently asked questions when choosing a skateboard

What safety precautions can you take when skateboarding?

Whether you're a beginner or an experienced skater, it goes without saying that skateboarding can be a dangerous passtime. Standard safety equipment is recommended and includes a helmet and knee, elbow, wrist and palm protectors.

It is possible to skate in the rain?

Skateboarding in the rain is not a good idea. Wet conditions make it much more difficult to control the skateboard, meaning you are more likely to injure yourself. Furthermore, water can cause the deck to soften and warp, while bearings may become clogged or rusty.

Skateboards
  • The most common type of boards
  • Lightweight and highly maneuverable
  • Ideal for ramps and skateparks
skateboards

Important parameters

Deck size

Skateboard decks are rectangular with rounded ends that angle upwards. They vary in size and material used.

The width and length of a skateboard has a big influence on its rideability. Wider boards are suitable for beginners, larger riders with larger feet, and for skating ramps. Conversely, narrower skaterboards are suitable for smaller riders and for more technical skateboarding, such as flatground tricks.

AgeHeightShoe size (EUR)Board dimensions (W x H)
Up to 5 yearsUp to 90 cmUp to 34Up to 6.5" x 27.2"
6-8 years1 m35-387" × 28"
9-12 years1.3 m39-417.3" x 29"
13 and over1.6 m42 and larger7.4 "x 30.8 and larger
Deck material

Decks are composed of 5-9 layers. The best quality skateboards are made of Canadian maple, which offers excellent strength and flexibility, although beginners often go for the cheaper Chinese maple, beech or oak. Skateboards made from laminate or PVC are even cheaper, but are not suitable for doing tricks.

Trucks

Trucks connect the wheels to the deck and allow you to steer the skateboard. They should be chosen according to the width of the deck and the style of skating you want to do. As trucks are one of the heaviest parts of a skateboard, it is good idea to get lighter trucks, such as those with hollow axles or made from titanium, especially if you plan to do tricks.

Trucks come in three basic sizes:

  • Low provide increased stability when performing flip tricks; should be coupled with smaller wheels (usually 50-53 mm); not the best option for travelling around the city.
  • Middle universal size suitable for most styles; can be coupled with 54-59 mm wheels.
  • High suitable for carving and cruising around the city; should be coupled with 56 mm and larger wheels.
Wheels

Smaller wheels are lighter, but they are also slower and less comfortable on uneven surfaces.

Diameter:

  • 50-53 mm small; suitable for tricks and technical skating.
  • 54-59 mm universal size; suitable for skateparks and cruising around the city.
  • 60 mm  better on unevent terrain; more often found on longboards and cruisers; not suitable for tricks, but ideal for cruising around the city.

Hardness:

Softer wheels behave better on rough surfaces as they absorb vibration, but they are also slower. Harder wheels are faster and are better suited to smooth concrete surfaces, making them the ideal choice for skateparks.

  • 78a-87a  the softest wheels; unsuitable for smooth surfaces or skating pools; more often found on longboards.
  • 88a-95a fast; suitable for rougher surfaces and street skating.
  • 96a-99a  faster; suitable for flat surfaces, including skateparks.
  • 101 and higher the fastest and hardest wheels; ideal for professional use at skateparks.
Bearings

Bearings ensure that the wheels spin smoothly. Bearing quality is measured on the 1-9 ABEC scale, where 9 indicates the highest quality bearings. The higher the bearing quality, the faster and smoother your ride will be. Anything marked ABEC 5 and above can be considered good quality.

Glossary - Skateboards
Trucks

Trucks are the metal T-shaped parts that connect the skateboard deck to the wheels. The ideal truck size depends on the width of the deck and the style of skating.

Bowl

A space designed for skateboarding that resembles an empty swimming pool.

Glossary
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