How to choose your surfboard Part 2 – Choosing your surfboard as a beginner.
Surfing can change lives, it's a sport that has no equivalent. It is in my opinion one of the hardest sports to learn, but also the most exciting and, one that you could always improve and have fun in every step of the process. It is teaching lessons about life and helping to understand our world, enjoy nature and think about the present moment. It’s not about being a pro surfer, but about feeling that you enjoy the ride and having fun improving constantly. As a beginner surfer, it is typical to overlook the importance of choosing the right surfboard. However, choosing the right board is crucial for your success in the water at all levels. Understanding floatation, paddle power, and the stability of the board are key elements for choosing a surfboard that will enhance and improve your experience as a beginner. In this blog post, we will guide you through the process of selecting a surfboard that suits your needs as a beginner surfer.
The first step in choosing a surfboard for beginners is understanding the importance of floatation. Floatation is the board's ability to support the weight of the rider when the surfer’s not moving. The floatation of the surfboard is mostly dictated by the volume of it. Volume is the quantity of liters that would fit in a surfboard if you could fill it. As a beginner you won’t have great paddle efficiency to generate a lot of speed while paddling and volume will be very important at this step in your process. You would need a board that is big; long, large and thick. Every surfboard is different and there is no one formula for volume, but as a beginner you could get a board liters that is at least 1/3 of your weight in pounds.
For example, if you weight 200lbs look for something in the 66 liters range or more to get started.
Paddle power is another critical factor to consider when selecting a surfboard. Paddle power refers to the board's ability to move through the water efficiently. A board with a low rocker and wide nose will allow you to paddle with ease, making it easier to catch waves. Because it will sit more on top of water, a longer board, such as a longboard or a mid length, will provide increased paddle power, making it easier to catch waves, and helping you to build your confidence.
In addition to floatation and paddle power, stability is essential for beginners who are just starting to learn how to surf. A stable board will allow you to maintain balance and control while stepping up and riding the waves. A board with a wide surface provides greater stability, so it's important to choose a wide board that will be stable. A wide and straight outline will make harder to roll the board rail to rail, but will offer a lot of stability due to the increased volume and surface far from the center of the surfboard. Wide boards are usually between 20” and 23” wide.
Rails: As discussed in the previews blog post (alchimiesurf.com/blogs), for beginners you want rails that are thick and round, giving you stability and forgiveness. We will go further in rails design on another blog post soon.
Last but not least, the fins. Too often overlooked, the fins are a major piece of equipment that should be considered for beginner to expert. I’m not saying that you absolutely need the top-of-the-line 200$ fin setup, but at least get the right size for your weight and board. Bigger fins will generally be more stable and help you to stand with confidence on your board, but will be harder to turn and slide. One thing at a time. Du to the complexity of fins setup, board type and fit, we won't cover all options in this blog, but feel free to reach to get more specific information: https://www.instagram.com/alchimie_surfboards/
That been said, there are a couple boards type you can choose that will give you the proper floatation, paddle power and stability for your beginner’s journey. The usual way to start getting on waves is to use a longboard or a “Foamy”. Also called a soft top, a “Foamy” is great for beginners because it is durable and soft if you fall on it or get hit by the board. The disadvantage with this type of surfboard is that when you get better, this board gets soon boring to ride and it’s not great to progress in your surfing.
The longboard is stylish and can be great for beginners to advance surfers, if selected right, this could be the first board you ride and still having fun over time and progress on it in this style.
The Fish type of surfboard is also a great option to get started. I would say it might be harder to progress in the beginning, but if you plan to surf often, you will learn to surf it and this board will be your go-to in small waves for as long as you want.
Mid length surfboards are a good option, if you get your dimentions right. They are fun to ride and there is an infinite number of sick options for every type of rider!
Choosing the right surfboard as a beginner is essential to your success and enjoyment in the water. Understanding floatation, paddle power, board type and stability will help you choose a board that suits your needs as a beginner surfer. Remember to consider the type of waves you will be surfing and select a board that provides the stability and buoyancy you need to build your skills and confidence. Don’t hesitate to reach us on instagram or on our contact form to get more info about board selection and design. With the right board and a bit of practice, you'll be catching waves and having a blast!