So, you’ve been bit by the surf bug.
We’re sorry, there is no cure, you’re doomed.
Lifelong symptomatic treatment for salt in the veins and a unquenchable yearning for empty lineups and endless sets is the only option, and it isn’t covered by insurance.
Jokes, we’ll stop now. You’ve started surfing and love it. Maybe you’ve taken some lessons, gone to a camp, or simply borrowed an old beater from a friend and paddled out. Cool, real cool. Your next step in feeding this addiction is to invest in your own shred stick, that’s what the kids are calling them, right? Gnarly.
The golden rule for buying a surfboard is buy within your skill level. It’s very, very, very unlikely that you’ll ‘grow’ into your surfboard. You can’t progress if you can’t catch a wave.The golden rule for buying a surfboard is buy within your skill level. It’s very, very, very unlikely that you’ll ‘grow’ into your surfboard. You can’t progress if you can’t catch a wave.
Yup, we just repeated ourselves, in bold no less.
THE GOLDEN RULE FOR BUYING A SURFBOARD IS BUY WITHIN YOUR SKILL LEVEL. IT’S VERY, VERY, VERY UNLIKELY THAT YOU’LL ‘GROW’ INTO YOUR SURFBOARD. YOU CAN’T PROGRESS IF YOU CAN’T CATCH A WAVE.
Yeah a third time. All caps, and bold. We ain’t playin’. When you’re ready to progress, then buy something you’ll be able to surf, but not necessarily rip on.
The two most important factors when choosing your first surfboard are your weight and your surfing ability. Unless you’re an exceptional surfer, the heavier you are the larger the board you’ll need and the less experienced you are the larger the board you’ll need. Surfboards are broken down into six common categories with a couple of extra outliers that really only apply if you’re an expert surfer. These categories are named after a general size and shape which corresponds with the type of surfboard. Within these categories are limitless combinations of volumes and shape details. The base categories for surfboards are: Malibus/longboards, mini mals/fun boards, eggs, hybrids, fish, and shortboards. Guns and tow-boards are two additional surfboard categories, but are reserved for surfing huge waves by expert surfers, so they’re not a consideration for the majority of surfers out there.
Malibus, mini mals, and eggs are all generally going to be larger and of higher volume, while Hybrids, Fish, and shortboards are generally going to be shorter and of less volume, this doesn’t apply 100% of the time, but as a hard and fast rule, it works.
Longboards/Malibus (9-12 feet)
Longboards are just that, long. They have rounded blunt noses with a rounded tail, and they typically sport a single fin but can also have a thruster set-up (three fins, two smaller ones in front of a large one in the back). They are wide and have a uniform width throughout, and a slight taper in the tail. Longboards are the Cadillacs of the surfboard world, large and comfy, but they don’t exactly turn on a dime. They are a good option for beginners, and great in small, slow surf, however their large size makes them difficult to handle in and out of the water.
Mini-mals/Funboards (7-9 feet)
A mini mal or funboard is a great place to start when purchasing your first surfboard. Essentially they are smalled-down longboards. Typically set up in a thruster fin setup and being perhaps a little bit wider than a longboard they provide excellent buoyancy and stability. Their large size also makes them a breeze to paddle into waves and pop-up on, while staying under the large proportions of true longboards allows mini mals to be far less cumbersome in and around the water. Their smaller dimensions also makes turning on waves easier and more fun.
Eggs (6-8.5 feet)
Eggs are stubby, rounded, and shrunk down minimals or funboards. Not recommended for beginner surfers, however they are great for intermediate through expert surfers in smaller mushy surf and are all about having fun and catching lots of waves. While not ideal, larger eggs are manageable for beginner surfers due to their width and volume and allow room for progression.
Hybrids (5-7 feet)
Hybrids are designed to be one board quivers, meaning they’re going to be surfable and fun in a variety of conditions. Having said that, while some hybrids feature shapes similar to eggs and minimals, they are not intended for the beginner surfer.
SHORTBOARD (5.5-7 feet)
Shortboards are generally going to be the smallest boards out there and are reserved for expert surfers who can shred with their eyes closed. The small size and volume of shortboards allows excellent mobility for tricks and sharp turns, however you have to be a good surfer to catch and stay up on waves. Shortboards look rad, and are what all the pros are riding in everyday surf, but don’t be tempted to step up to a shortboard until you’re absolutely bulletproof on larger boards.
FISH (under 7 feet)
A fish surfboard is generally a short, wider, stumpy, board which is designed to surf and have fun in less than desirable conditions. Fishes do come in larger lengths and can be suitable for the beginner/intermediate surfer however if they do not have enough volume they can still be a challenge to surf. As always volume plays a big role in how easy it will be to catch and surf waves with a fish. Fish boards usually have the swallow tail, and are often twin-finned which allows for more slide and more fun for good surfers on small days. Fishes are great boards to progress on. They still generally maintain a lot of volume, while giving intermediate surfers a taste of what a shortboard feels like.
Well there you go! A foray into the wide world of surfboards! If you have a favorite board, we’d love to hear from you! Hit us up in the comment section!
Mahalo and aloha!
And as always if you’d like to learn more about what GorillaSafe is all about, check out our website at: GogorillaSafe.com