One of the more amusing hobbies to observe in big cities is skateboarding; the epitome of rebelling youth and urban sub culture. While hoodies, boards and grinding may not be for everyone, those who do find this appealing can find a guide to getting started with the essential components below.
Much is to be considered when choosing to skateboard. You must be sure to have the right safety equipment including proper foot wear, helmet, and other cushion pads as needed. All of these items will be sure to keep you safe in the event of an accident or fall. There is also a certain amount of athleticism and balance that is a must to be a successful skateboarder. While all these items are pertinent to skateboards, nothing is as important as the right board or “deck”, trucks, and wheels. We can now go into the depth and detail of choosing the right deck for your style of skating, as well as your level of skateboarding expertise.
Skateboard decks are the object on which the skateboarder stands and balances during the ride. The decks vary in width and length, but they typically range from 7- 11 inches in width and 28-33 inches in length. Choosing the right width and length are important and typically depend of the skill and what the boarder plans to do with the board. Typically shorter and skinnier boards are used to do tricks including flip tricks, ollies, aerials, etc. The shorter and skinnier board allows the rider to use less force to maneuver the board to do a trick due to a significant decrease in the weight of the board.
When choosing the right deck it may be important to the skateboarder to have the right design of graphic on the underside of the deck. There are many designs that can be bought as already printed on the deck, or the skater can purchase a type of deck called a “blank”. A blank deck is one in which the board itself is devoid of all graphics. This will allow the boarder to create and design their own board to be unlike anyone else’s board.
Skateboarding allows the boarder all kinds of freedom when it comes to decorating their board on the underside; however the top side of the boards is pretty similar. The top side of the deck usually has some sort of griping and rough material that allows for the boarder to have a good control of the board. This gripping material is called “grip tape.” Grip tape is an adhesive on one side to stick to the board and the other side is a sort of sand paper material. To add some variety the grip tape can be purchased in various colors.
Another type of deck that is rising in popularity is the version of a skateboard called a “longboard.” The longboard design was originally used to create a sense of surfing while skateboarding. A long board typically ranges from 33 to 59 inches in length that is often maneuvered with a pole with a rubber ball at the end to allow the rider a great amount of control. The pole aides mainly in turning the board slightly.
There are many things to think about when choosing the right skateboard for each ride. The deck is very important for the rider to express themselves creatively but also very important to choose the correct length for the board. Depending upon the type of boarding to be done the rider may choose a longer or shorter board. It is also important to have the right grip tape on the top side of the board. This allows for the boarder to grip the board with their shoes for better control. If the boarder would like to try something different perhaps longboarding may offer a new avenue for the rider.