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THE DIFFERENT STYLES OF LONGBOARDING

Before you splash out on a new longboard, try and find out which style suits you the most. Not all longboards are alike – different shapes are better for different styles. Shorter boards with kicktails are the most fun to cruise about on, while longer boards with a symmetrical twin shape are ideal for downhill demons with acrobatic tendencies. The longest boards are generally used for dancing and boardwalking and bend slightly thanks to their soft flex.

CRUISING AND CARVING

Cruising and carving longboards from Loaded for men
Photo: Marion Verdier

If you prefer to ride flat land or gentle inclines cruiser and carving longboards are the best choice for you. They’re the perfect mix of longboard and skateboard. These boards are pretty similar to skateboards but come with softer wheels and trucks and are ideal for beginners and chillers alike.

DOWNHILL: HIT THE VALLEY AT SPEED

Downhill longboard from Arbor for men
Photo: Arbor

Downhill longboards are designed for high stability at high speeds. This sort of longboard is best suited to advanced/expert riders as the risk of injury for less advanced riders is extremely high. It’s not unheard of for downhill riders to use slides to slow them down.

FREERIDE: SLIDE YOUR WAY AROUND CORNERS
Freeride longboards from Loaded for women
Photo: Loaded

Freeriding is all about riding down a hill at moderate speed, adding in slides and curb hops wherever you see fit. The amount of board control required at these sorts of speeds is pretty demanding, even for experts.

 

FREESTYLE: DANCING AND BOARDWALKING

Freestyle longboards from Loaded for men
Photo: Christian Rossilo

Freestyle is the general term for anything you do with your board, whether it’s tricks, slides or dancing. A freestyle longboard is perfect for beginners looking to get used to the feel of a board under their feet. That said, more advanced riders also love the freedom these kinds of boards give them. Moving around on your board, a bit like you would when surfing a longboard, is known as “boardwalking” or “dancing”.