Are Lighter Surfboards Better? Exploring the Pros and Cons

Surfing has always been a sport that thrives on innovation and pushing the boundaries of what’s possible on a wave. One particular area of exploration that’s gained significant attention in recent years is the weight of surfboards. The question of whether lighter surfboards are better has sparked much debate among surfers, manufacturers, and enthusiasts alike. While some argue that a lighter board allows for increased maneuverability and better performance, others caution that reducing weight may compromise the board's strength and durability. This trade-off between weight and strength has prompted a closer look at the materials and construction techniques used in surfboard manufacturing. Board makers, like Appletree Surfboards, advocate for the significance of a heavier board as it generally translates to enhanced robustness. By prioritizing strength over weight, they believe in creating boards that can withstand the rigors of intense surfing sessions, offering reliability and longevity in the face of the mighty ocean. As surfing continues to evolve, the ongoing discussion surrounding the optimal weight of surfboards remains an intriguing aspect of the sport's progression.

What Are the Advantages of a Lower Volume Surfboard?

A lower volume surfboard offers several advantages to the rider. Firstly, a lower volume board is easier to maneuver in the water. With less volume, the board becomes more responsive to the riders movements, allowing for quick turns and sharp maneuvers. This increased maneuverability is especially beneficial in steep, powerful waves where quick reactions are necessary.

This is particularly advantageous for advanced surfers who seek precision and control in their maneuvers.

This lighter weight helps to enhance the boards performance, allowing for easier acceleration and increased speed on the wave.

It’s important for surfers to consider these factors and choose a board that aligns with their individual needs and abilities.

When it comes to surfing, the length of your board can greatly impact your experience in the water. Longer surfboards, known as longboards, have several advantages that make them ideal for beginners and those who prefer a more relaxed style of surfing. Longboards offer increased stability and forgiveness, allowing beginners to find their balance and develop their skills with greater ease. Whether you’re just starting out or enjoy the grace of longboard surfing, opting for a longer board can be a wise choice.

Is It Easier to Ride a Long or Short Surfboard?

The debate between riding a long or short surfboard is subjective and largely depends on an individuals skill level and personal preferences. However, for beginners or those who enjoy the fluidity and elegance of longboarding, longer boards have distinct advantages. Longboards, whether it be in the realm of skateboarding or surfing, are characterized by their extended decks and wheelbases, larger and softer wheels, and often lower riding height compared to their shorter counterparts.

Furthermore, longboards are renowned for their ability to catch smaller waves with greater ease. The increased buoyancy offered by their larger surface area allows for better wave-catching potential, making them ideal for beginners who’re still mastering the art of reading and catching waves. In contrast, shorter boards often require more skill and precision in wave selection and paddling technique.

The extra length grants the rider more glide, enabling them to maintain momentum even in less powerful surf conditions.

Moreover, the larger size of longboards offers ample real estate for foot placement, facilitating easy weight distribution and control. This allows surfers to perform classic maneuvers such as cross-stepping and nose-riding, showcasing their style and finesse on the waves. Longboarders often appreciate the ability to walk up and down the board freely, experimenting with different foot positions while maintaining control.

Each type of board offers a unique experience and challenges, and the choice should be based on what best aligns with ones skills and desired style of surfing.

Pros and Cons of Using a Longboard for Experienced Surfers

A longboard can be a great choice for experienced surfers due to it’s stability and ability to catch smaller waves. It allows for smooth riding and effortless gliding across the water. However, some disadvantages include the difficulty of maneuvering sharp turns and performing more advanced tricks. Despite these drawbacks, longboards can still provide a fun and enjoyable surfing experience for experienced surfers who prioritize a more relaxed and mellow style of riding.

Now, let’s delve into the different types of performance surfboards available in the market and explore their unique features, designs, and benefits. Whether you’re a beginner looking to progress or an experienced surfer seeking to push the limits, we’ve got you covered. So, let’s dive in and discover the perfect board that will elevate your surfing experience to new heights.

What Is a Performance Surfboard?

A performance surfboard is an essential tool for surfers looking to elevate their skills and push their limits on the waves. These boards are tailored to allow surfers to make quick and tight turns, generate and maintain speed, and navigate challenging sections that would be impossible with other types of boards.

The main characteristics of a performance surfboard include a narrower outline, refined rails, and a more pronounced rocker. These features contribute to increased responsiveness and agility, allowing surfers to make faster and sharper turns. The narrower outline reduces the boards overall volume, enhancing maneuverability and control. The refined rails also add to the boards ability to grip the wave face and maintain stability during high-speed maneuvers.

Additionally, performance surfboards often feature a more pronounced rocker. The rocker refers to the curvature of the board from nose to tail. A more pronounced rocker helps to prevent the board from pearling (nose diving) and allows surfers to smoothly transition from bottom turns to top turns. It also facilitates tighter and more vertical snaps off the lip.

Performance surfboards are typically made from high-quality materials, such as epoxy or carbon fiber, which provide enhanced strength and durability.

Maintenance and Care Tips for Keeping Performance Surfboards in Top Condition

Surfboards require regular maintenance and care to keep them in optimal condition and ensure their performance remains top-notch. Here are a few tips to help you take care of your performance surfboard:

1. Rinse After Use: Always rinse your surfboard with freshwater after each use. This will remove any salt, sand, or debris that may have accumulated during your session. Pay special attention to the deck and tail areas.

2. Keep it Dry: Allow your surfboard to dry completely before storing it. Avoid leaving it in direct sunlight for extended periods as excessive heat can cause damage to the board. Proper ventilation is key to avoid moisture build-up and potential delamination.

3. Wax Regularly: Apply a fresh coat of surfboard wax regularly. This helps provide traction and grip while you’re riding the waves. Remove any old wax using a wax comb and ensure the surface is clean before applying a new layer.

4. Repair Dings Promptly: Small dings and cracks are inevitable, but it’s important to address them promptly to prevent further damage. Use a suitable repair kit to fix any minor dings yourself or seek professional help for more significant damages.

5. Avoid Extreme Temperatures: Avoid exposing your surfboard to extreme temperatures, whether it’s excessive heat or freezing cold. Drastic temperature changes can weaken the board’s structure and compromise it’s performance.

6. Store Properly: Store your surfboard in a cool, dry place where it won’t be exposed to direct sunlight or extreme temperature variations. Ideally, use a board bag or rack specifically designed for surfboards to protect them from unnecessary damage.

By following these maintenance and care tips, you can ensure that your performance surfboard remains in top condition, allowing you to enjoy exhilarating rides on the waves for years to come.

Wider or thicker? This perennial debate among surfers revolves around the fundamentals of stability versus performance. The width of a surfboard, measured from rail to rail at it’s widest point, plays a crucial role in determining it’s characteristics. Broadly speaking, wider surfboards offer enhanced stability, making them well-suited for beginners or those tackling lackluster waves. Conversely, narrower boards thrive in terms of speed and overall performance. Now, let’s delve deeper into the nuances of width and discover which path suits your surfing style.

Should Surfboard Be Wider or Thicker?

However, there’s also an argument for having a thicker surfboard. The thickness of a surfboard affects it’s buoyancy and stability in the water. This is especially beneficial for beginners who’re still learning to balance on the board.

The extra thickness adds strength to the board, allowing it to withstand the forces of the wave and giving the surfer more control.

It’s worth mentioning that modern surfboard designs have incorporated various combinations of width and thickness to provide a balance of stability, speed, and performance. Some surfboard models have wider midsections for increased stability, while tapering towards the tail for better maneuverability.

In addition to being stored indoors, it’s important to avoid stacking surfboards.

Is It Bad to Leave Surfboard Outside?

Surfboards, being delicate and sensitive to the environment, should always be kept indoors, away from the harsh elements. Prolonged exposure to the suns UV rays can have detrimental effects on a surfboards structural integrity. The intense heat can cause the fiberglass to weaken, resulting in discolored patches and even potential delamination. Additionally, the suns rays can cause the foam core of the surfboard to expand and warp, ultimately rendering it unusable.

Rainfall can also be detrimental to surfboards left outside. The water seeping into the porous foam core can cause it to become waterlogged, resulting in a much heavier and less buoyant board. Furthermore, the constant exposure to moisture can lead to the growth of molds and fungi, which can eat away at the materials and compromise the overall strength of the surfboard.

Even the morning dew can have negative effects on a surfboard left outside overnight. The moisture from the dew can seep into the foam core, causing it to become waterlogged and creating potential damage. It’s crucial to remember that surfboards are designed to be immersed in water during their use, but they aren’t intended to be constantly exposed to moisture when not in use.

It’s also important to avoid stacking surfboards, as this can lead to unnecessary pressure points and potential damage. The weight of one surfboard on top of another can cause indentations and cracks, especially if left unattended for a prolonged period. Therefore, it’s advisable to store surfboards in a secure and upright position to prevent any unintended damage.

This will help to preserve their longevity and ensure they remain in optimal condition for your next thrilling ride.

Source: How to Care for Your Surfboard –


However, it’s important to consider that there’s a delicate balance between weight reduction and structural integrity. A surfboard that’s been constantly stripped down to achieve a lighter weight will inevitably result in a weakened structure.

Scroll to Top