I’m going to break down the skateboard into its each component and look at it more detail, starting with the deck.
The skateboard deck (or board) is made of wood, usually Canadian Maple, but other woods are sometimes used as well. There are even boards made from processed bamboo these days which are surprisingly strong and light.
Decks usually range in length from 31.5 inches to about 32.25 inches and 7.7 inches to 8.25 inches in width. You do get boards which fall out of these ranges and dimensions, but they are less common and are more suited to specific skate disciplines as opposed to a more general, all round functional board.
At the moment I’m riding a board which is 7.75 inches wide by 31.75 inches long. I feel it is well-suited to my size and the type of skating I enjoy, but a lot comes down to personal preference.
Boards also differ in concave depths, and the length and steepness of the nose and tail. Basically a deep concave serves to strengthen a board and add a certain dynamic, while a shallower concave in usually more comfortable.
There are different pros and cons to how steep the nose and tail are. Generally a steeper nose and tail helps a person to get more pop (comfortably airborne) and can certainly aid in the performing/executing of certain tricks. However a shallower nose and tail seems to require less effort in hitting down the nose and tail toward the ground and certainly makes many tricks easier, especially flip tricks. In saying this, it is important to remember that it all comes down to timing and what you get used to. If you are comfortable and are used to your board then you can perform most tricks regardless of the steepness of your nose and tail.
I prefer “in-betweens” usually, or boards slightly on the flatter side, a board with a medium to shallow concave and a medium to mellow nose and tail.
I like to feel comfortable on my board and would certainly recommend a mellower deck for those starting out.
Check out this skateboarding video of me and a few buddies.
Next week I’ll look at some of the other components, starting with the skateboard trucks.
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