5 Important Skateboard Components to Understand for The Beginner’s First Skateboard
What is more exciting than to go out and enjoy a perfect day while cruising on your skateboard. Skateboarding has become the most attractive sports since forever. The best thing is there is no absolute starting age. Both kids and adults can have fun as they try to ride a skateboard for the first time. That is why it is important to choose the starter skateboards carefully. Some beginners will rush straight into buying the one that looks right. That is the common mistake to avoid.
There are different kinds of skateboard to choose from. Each type also comes in various sizes. There are many vital components in the skateboard to pay your attention to. It might seem a little bit confusing for you right now. Do not worry. In this in-depth guide, you will understand how to pick out the easiest skateboard for beginners.
Before getting to the specific components of the skateboard, let’s discuss a little bit about the different types of the skateboard. It is crucial to know beforehand what kind of activities that you want to try out with your skateboard because the type will be depending on this decision.
Longboard or Skateboard
Longboards, (aka longskates), are usually longer than the standard skateboards. They have a size of 32 to 42 inch long. They are a little bit easier to stand on and keep balance, which might make it easier to start your first ride.
Nonetheless, they offer a different experience with the gliding speed. Due to the fact that their sheer long size provides a great boost to the acceleration, you can cover a lot of distances in cruising mode.
However, the catch is that they are harder to perform jumps and other cool tricks on. So if your style is gliding and sliding down on the hill or traveling over a long distance, longboards are a perfect choice.
They are shorter than the longboards and often are in between 28 and 33 inches long. While not offering the greater speed, standard skateboards are the top choices if performing impressive tricks is your desire. They have a curvy deck design that supports various jump tricks such as Ollie and Kickflip.
Due to their short size, standard skateboards are not suitable for longer rides. To make it up, their shapes and wheels structure make them perfect for skating parks, where the surface is flat. There are also many small ramps in skating park that is really fun to ride up and down while performing some exciting tricks.
They are usually for the professional and seasoned skateboard players. Since all the decks, wheels, bearings, etc. can be customizable up to the specific needs. The pros usually pick out the different parts from various famous manufacturers and assemble the components back all together by themselves.
in order not to cause you any confusion, let’s focus on the topic of skateboard components.
If you want to hang out with your best friends in the park and learn some new skateboard tricks together, it is strongly recommended to pick an easiest skateboard type to ride. That is why the list below will focus on the standard skateboard components while leaving out the longboards’ one for another topic.
5 important skateboard components for selection
1/ Choosing the decks
Decks are the crucial frameworks of the skateboards, especially for beginners. A firm and solid deck will ensure the perfect support and balance when you first stand on the skateboard. There are a couple of choices of material.
Plastic skateboards make a good start for first-time learners. They are the cheapest in regard to the purchase price. However, as you progress to the next stage, slimmer boards will provide better surface grip which is more convenient for trick performance.
Now you are wondering:
What is the right deck size for my first skateboard?
The answer is very straightforward. Below is the list that can help you pick out the right skateboard for you.
Overview of skateboard size for kids:
Since the kids are still in development years, it is good to plan on the right deck size that is suitable for their growth.
Micro Size: If your kids are 5 years old or younger, it is recommended to get a deck between 6.5 inches and 6.75 inches. They will fit in with the shoe size of 3 or smaller.
Mini Size: If your kids are between 6 and 8 years old, get the deck with 7.0 inch. They will fit the shoe size between 4 and 6.
Mid Size: If your kids are between 9 and 12 years old, get the deck between 4.5 and 5.2 inches. They will fit the shoe size between 7 and 8.
Full Size: If your kid is above 13 years old, get the deck from 7.5 inches to larger than 8 inches. They will fit the shoe size of 9 or larger.
Overview of skateboard size for adults:
For the grown-ups, the decks also come in different sizes, and each size can serve different purposes.
Skaters that ride along the street will often prefer skateboards between a 7.5 to 8 inch. If you prefer skating in the parks, an 8-inch board or larger is a better choice. But if you do not have any idea yet, just embark your skateboarding journey with the standard 8 inches wide and 30-inch long deck. They are also the prevalent selection for beginners.
The wheels are also another essential component of the skateboard. For street skating, it is a good piece of advice to choose the smaller wheels as they are more responsive to jump and flip. A standard recommendation is the wheels between 49 and 52 mm.
If speed is your top priority, then you should consider the wheels between 54 – 60mm. Thanks to their size, these wheels make it convenient to cover significant surface area, thus providing you more acceleration for a long jump and grab.
Skateboard bearings are the round metal pieces that can be found inside the skateboard’s wheels. The bearings connect the wheels to the axle.
Bearings are important in the sense that it will keep your wheels rolling smoothly. Usually, for starters, the bearings often come together with the wheels, so you don’t have to spend too much time choosing the right bearings.
However, pay a little bit of attention to the maintenance of bearings as the time goes on. The method for maintenance is to clean and lubricate them in a set schedule. You can ask for help at the local skateboard vendor if you need more assistance.
The truck size is dependant on your deck size. The rule of thumb is to make the axle length equal to the deck width. It is to ensure that once installed, the trucks will instantly match the width of your deck, without anything sticking in or out of size.
Make sure there is no misalignment between the trucks and the deck. Usually, the trucks for the common 8-inch decks should have the size of 149.
If you have keen eyes, you might notice the differences in the skateboard shapes. But to give you the answer straightforward, they often are indifferent and up to preferences.
For beginners, a normal board shape will make it easier to kick start your first ollie on the flat ground surface. But some skaters feel like the more concave the board shape is, the easier it is to perform a kickflip trick.
Once again, there is no ultimate right way or wrong way to pick out the shape for your first skateboard. An excellent way to choose the shape is merely to give it a try and see if the particular shape can give you a right feeling.
Go ahead and pick out your companion
You should now have a solid understanding of different components of the skateboard to choose from. Spend your budget wisely to select your first perfect skateboard. Pay attention to the small details can help you out in the long run, since skateboarding is the activity that requires a lot of practices.
Do not hesitate to get into the fun yet challenging learning process of skateboarding. The greatest adventure is waiting for you to embark on.