Beginner’s Advice: Buyer’s Guide (Part of an Ongoing Series)
Buying a Skateboard
There are two options when buying a new skateboard, a “complete” which is fully assembled for you with stock parts or a “custom” board which is built from parts you choose yourself.
A complete board is usually cheaper with parts that fit and are designed to work together. It’s pre-built which means you can get rolling straight away. We advise not buying a complete board from a toy shop as they are usually of a poor quality and will make learning much harder. Cheap boards are often made by companies that mass produce their boards with little concern for the quality of the board and parts.
Custom boards are more expensive but are of a higher quality. They allow you to customise the board to your exact requirements and have a wider choice of parts and brands that you wouldn’t find with a complete.
If you don’t own, or plan to buy a board, we offer free rental of all equipment for all our lessons.
Buying Safety Gear
When choosing a size for your protective gear (elbow/knee pads, wrist guard or helmets) it is imperative that they fit correctly. When they’re too small or too much of a tight fit, they will restrict easy movement and become uncomfortable very quickly.
At the same time if they’re even slightly too big they will be unable to provide the right protection against knocks and falls. Skate helmets in particular should never cover your line of vision, not wobble when you are skating and should have adjustable straps that buckle under your chin.
Pads are just the same, they’re usually pulled over knees and elbows but can also be strapped on with the aid of adjustable Velcro straps. Whichever form of skating pads or skate equipment appeals to you, it is advisable that you make sure your skate pads are thick and that they fit snugly, without cutting off your circulation. Skating pads need to be comfortable otherwise you won’t want to wear them.
Most protective skating gear is adjustable; just make sure that they’re always altered to the correct sizing before use. Whilst wanting to look good with your protective gear, safety is always the highest priority.