Choosing A Beginners Surfboard
Choosing your first board or one for your wife or kids can be a bit overwhelming, but it doesn't need to be!
The choice of beginner surfboards for kids depends largely on age, start kids up to 12 years old on a soft surfboard because it's soft it doesn't hurt (so much) when they fall on it or it bumps them in the surf. This helps build confidence and makes them feel more comfortable in the sea. Soft surfboards or foamie surfboards (as they are also known) are sized for 5ft 6 upwards and we recommend something around 7ft for kids of average size up to 12 years old. As they improve they might want to come down to something around 6ft 6 or 6ft 2 in a fish shape, which is easier to turn and so aids progression. It's important that the board you choose has enough float to make paddling and surfing fun but is not too big that it’s hard to control in the white water, plus, being relatively easy to carry always helps! Our top sellers for kids are the CBC (California Board Company) 7ft boards, or at a more affordable price, the Hold Fast 7’ foamie and for improving or really confident kids it’s the 6ft Alder Delta boards. Soft surfboards generally come with a leash and are ready to surf, our soft surfboard packages add in a boardbag, wax and a leash where applicable at a subsidised price.
The price varies largely between this style of board due to the quality of construction and the materials used. As with all things, the more you pay, the more you get... but rest assured we don’t sell any boards that our own kids haven’t fully tried and tested to the extreme!
If you're looking for the next step up for your kids then a more solid board is the answer. The epoxy or moulded boards from Bic, Cortez and Torq surfboards, respectively give a more positive ride and are a step up to riding the face of the wave and starting to turn the board. We list the suitability of each size to the weight of the surfer on each product so you can easily work out what's suitable. After that it's all about budget and colours.
The right choice of first surfboards for adults depends on a number of factors: weight, height, fitness and how often you're likely to go surfing. Without this info it's hard to give an accurate guide!
We list the weight ranges on each of the boards on our website to help you narrow the choice! These are guides however, and there is always room for a little variation. The tough part is finding the balance between a board giving enough volume that it helps you float, makes paddling and wave catching relatively easy, all without getting it so big, you have no hope of turning it or potentially even carrying it!. 90% of people fit into the size range of mini mal (round nosed) boards from 7ft 2 to 8ft 6. Go any shorter than this and paddling will be hard work... Any bigger and you'll be exhausted by the time you get to the water. A typical example is someone who is 13 stone, 5ft 10, not as fit as he once was but not bad, the kind of person who will get in the surf for 2 weeks on summer holiday and then probably every 6 weeks or so outside this period. We'd recommend something in the 7ft 6 to 8ft range. The best value for money is the Bic range, best seller being the Bic 7ft 9 natural surf surfboards. As you move onto the other brands, Cortez and Torq you pay more for a more refined shape and lighter construction which equals easier progression. Again, getting what you pay for.
How much should I spend?
Entry level moulded boards from BIC surfboards (in particular the Bic mini mal surfboards are the biggest sellers largely due to price) the CORTEZ mini mal surfboards and TORQ fun board surfboards in epoxy construction are a more refined shape and construction meaning they're lighter and offer a greater chance for progression (epoxy is a hard outer shell around a foam core that is machine produced). Upward from there are the BLUEDOT surfboard range of PU boards (PU means polyester construction, a foam core layer of glass and sealed with resin) a really good option. These are a step up from the CORTEZ and TORQ boards again offering far more refined shapes and construction alongside further potential to advance your wave riding. Moulded and Epoxy boards are undoubtedly hard wearing and tougher than PU boards but the compromise is always durability versus performance.
Hopefully that helps with your decision on beginner boards !
Any questions please email us on firstname.lastname@example.org
or call on 01243 674250 for more in depth info.