Best surfskates for surfers: Complete 2024 List

Last updated on: January 14, 2024
Best Surfskates for surf training

There are a lot of surf skateboards on the market these days. So, how do you know which surfskate to buy? Fortunately, we’ve tested a bunch of different products this year to make the decision easy for you.

In this article, we’ll discuss what makes our selections so good and who they are best suited for. Then, with any luck, you’ll have a better idea of which surf skate is right for you.

Let’s skate!

What to know before buying a surf skateboard

Before you rush out and buy the best-looking surfskate in the shop, there are a few things you should know.

Firstly, it is important to understand that surf skateboards are not traditional skateboards. They’re designed to mimic the feeling of surfing on a wave and so they tend to be a bit different in terms of their shape, size, and construction.

They’re also made up of a number of different components that all have their own individual functions, but the main difference between a surf skateboard and a regular skateboard is the trucks.

Surfskate trucks: What makes them so different?

Surfskate trucks are totally dissimilar to standard skateboard trucks in the sense that they’re designed to facilitate more of a pivot and carve action, rather than the traditional lean-and-turn action of a skateboard.

This is due to something called a surf adapter, which allows the front trucks to move more dynamically. This adapter comes either built-in as part of your surfskate or as a separate attachment for standard boards.

With this adapter, you needn’t push off the ground with one foot in order to generate momentum. Instead, you can propel yourself forward simply by moving from rail to rail using your front foot while the back of the board provides control by remaining static (much like the rear fins of a surfboard).

This gives you a greater range of motion and allows you to ride a surf skateboard almost exactly like you would a surfboard – pumping to go faster, pushing your turns and snapping the board in radical sections.

Surfskates: Are they suitable for beginners?

Wondering whether you can ride a surfskate if you’ve never skated or surfed before? Well, good news! Surf skates are actually a great option for beginners.

This is because they can be customised so that they’re stable and easy to control. Surfskate boards are also small and lightweight, which makes them easy to carry around.

Finally, a surf skateboard is very intuitive and able to be used on any flat paved surface, so there’s no need for a skatepark or half pipe. You can just get out there and start skating!

Surfskate or cruiser: Which one is right for me?

As you browse through the different types of surfskates, you’ll probably come across two main types: the elongated cruiser and the more compact surfskate.

Both have their own unique set of features that make them stand out from the rest. However, if you want to emulate the sharp or carving manoeuvres of a surfer, then you’ll want to go for a surfskate. If you simply want to roll around town or check the surf in style, then a cruiser is the best option for you.

Ultimately, the surf skateboard style that you chose will also come down to personal preference. Just remember that surfskates are more performance-oriented and cruisers are best for doing exactly that – cruising!

The 14 Best surfskates for surf training: Beginner to advanced

Now that you know a little bit about surf skateboards, you can begin to narrow down your choices for the best one. Here is a list of our favourite surfskates so far in 2023.

Best overall choice for Surfers

  • Deck: Matt Black
  • Trucks: Black Trucks
  • Size: 34″ (surfers around the 5″6′ (167cm) to 6″ (182cm) in height)
  • Deck Tail Width: 26cm
  • Bearings: ABEC 7
  • Thruster Type: Black SmoothStar Thruster

SmoothStar is regarded as the world’s best on-land surf trainer by surf coaches worldwide. The 34″ Toledo 77 model, developed in collaboration with professional surfer Filipe Toledo, is the best choice for anyone serious about their surf training.

The board has a deeper concave in the deck and wider wheels at the back, perfect for improving your turns and carves, as it will hold rail turns without sliding out.

The 34″ Toledo 77 surf skate will allow you to practice much more powerful maneuvers on land that translate into your surfing in the ocean. The all-black design gives it a minimal and exclusive look.

Best Choice For Female Surfers

  • Deck: Teal & White
  • Trucks: Polished Aluminium
  • Size: 32.5″ (hight over 155cm and under 181cm)
  • Deck Tail Width: 26cm
  • Bearings: ABEC 7
  • Thruster Type: SmoothStar Thruster I (as standard)

On the women’s side of things, SmoothStar has partnered up with Pro-surfer Johanne Defay, to create this epic signature board. The focus of the development was to create a board that mimics her powerful carving turns.

Just like Toledo’s model, this board is perfect for perfecting your surfing maneuvers like: roundhouse turns, drawn-out carves, and grab rail turns.

The 32.5″ Johanne Defay model has the deepest concave of all of the smaller high-performance boards under 33″, so it will really allow you to hold the rail more while maintaining compression through the turn, just like surfing. Choose this board if you’re intermediate to advanced and want to take your surfing skills to the next level.

Unique Collab With Surfboard Shaper

  • Trucks: YOW 9.0″ Standard/Silver
  • Wheels: YOW URA 66x51mm 80A RAW White
  • Size: 33.5″ x 9.85″ x 17″ WB
  • YOW System: Meraki (S5)
  • Concave: Medium
  • Rocker: Tail Rocker

YOW has partnered up with different surfboard Shapers in the development process of some of their board collections. That includes Christenson, Pukas, and Pyzel.

We love this model from YOW as the surf skateboard mimics the shape of a Pyzel Shadow surfboard. You get Jon Pyzel’s knowledge about surfboard design and YOW’s knowledge about surfskates, packed in a unique format that will boost your surfing skills.

The Shadow surfboard from Pyzel is one of Jon’s most popular models, loved and used by pro-surfers like John John Florence.

Perfect For The Bowl

  • Size: 34″x 10.25″x 18″ WB
  • Deck: 7 PLY MAPLE
  • Trucks: SLIDE
  • Wheels: 70mm, 78A

Slide is another brand known for making some epic surfskates for beginners. The Evo-Lution Bandana model is well suited for those who prefer to take their surfskating to the bowl.

Slide surfskate has a lot of boards with cool prints and unique designs. This particular board is one of their best-selling shapes.

The expanded Gussie adds dimension and extra stability. It provides a lot of stability with its expanded Gussie size, large wheelbase, wider nose, and 70mm wheels. The perfect surfskate for beginners.

Best Value For Money

  • Deck: 7-ply maple
  • Trucks: Flow Surf Trucks

The Flow Wedge is a great all-around surfskate for beginners.

With the distinct blunt nose, kick tail and short 18-inch wheelbase, you can skate the nose or execute your first on-land cutback with ease. This board is both fun and adaptable because of the adjustable truck spring tension. It’s also well priced for people who want to dip their toes into the surfskate world without going overboard.

Cool Retro 80's Vibe

  • Length: 31 1/8″
  • Width: 10 1/2″
  • Wheelbase: 17 1/4″
  • Nose: 3″
  • Tail: 6 1/2″

Carver is another brand that has created some unique partnerships with surfboard shapers. We particularly like this Rad Ripper model that came to life in a collaboration with Lost Surfboards by Mayhem.

The board has a good shape that provides stability for a smooth ride. The design gives us a retro 80’s vibe with its rainbow rails, tail wings, and classic Mayhem logo.

Good choice for intermediates

  • Deck: Black stained wood
  • Trucks: Free motion SwellTech trucks

Flat spells won’t trouble you anymore with the Italo Pro Tube model from SwellTech.

Inspired by the board Italo rode to gold in the 2020 Olympics, this mid-length setup has a flexible and snappy feel with a premium front axle for smoother rotations and deeper carves. The deck is also narrower than other SwellTech boards, however, almost anyone can shred on this board regardless of their size or abilities

Best choice for The Groms

  • Deck: Blue fish scale deck
  • Trucks: Polished Aluminium
  • Size: 30″ (up to max height 135cm)
  • Deck Tail Width: 20cm
  • Bearings: ABEC 7
  • Thruster Type: SmoothStar Thruster I (as standard)

Here is a model for the young surfing groms! A fun little versatile ripper to get the kids started with surfskating and use it as a practice for surf training. It’s a perfect toy for when the ocean decides to go flat!

The Barracuda surfskate from SmoothStar is a super responsive and tight turning board, perfect for kids to learn and refine their surf carving technique. The form factor is compact, and the price point is reasonable.

Pure versatility

  • Size: 31″x 10.25″x 17″WB
  • Deck: 7 PLY MAPLE
  • Trucks: SLIDE TRUCKS
  • Wheels: 70mm, 78A WHEELS (BLUE)

This beautiful board from Slide offers a lot of versatility, so it’s a good all-around board that allows you to cruise around, perform powerful carves, and skate in the bowl.

The Slide CMC Performance offers a new board shape from Slide. It came to life in collaboration with their team rider from Barcelona, Carlos Martin Cazorla. The versatility of this board allows Carlos to combine wide open lines with sharp turns.

While it might be very versatile, Slide categorize it for high performance riders.

Good All-Rounder

  • Deck: 7-ply organic oak
  • Trucks: CX trucks

Regarded as one of the most grippy boards on the market, the J.O.B. Blue Tiger is all about replicating the feeling of surfing the perfect wave.

Push your whole body into your carves without skidding out and bottom turn like a pro. With patented CX trucks for precision plus Carver’s Hyperspoon mould that assists with control, this is the best surfskate for bowl riding. Try one today and go big on land – just like Jamie O’Brien in the water!

Shortboard Surf Vibes

  • Length: 30 3/4″
  • Width: 9 3/4″
  • Wheelbase: 16 3/4″
  • Nose: 3 1/2″
  • Tail: 6 3/8″

Another surf skateboard worthy of a spot among the best surfskates is this high-performance shortboard from Carver.

A special collab with Channel Islands Surfboards, where the design filosofy behind their popular “CI PRO” and “Two Happy” surfboard models, is converted into an epic and powerful surf skateboard.

Good choice for advanced

  • Deck: 7-ply hardrock maple
  • Trucks: YOW signature trucks in silver

Seeking a classic board with a stylish silhouette? The Pipe from Yow is one of the most popular surfskates for all skill levels.

It has a long wheelbase that assists with stability plus a medium concave to keep your feet in place. Throw in Ura wheels and a lightning bolt decal a la Gerry Lopez and it’s easy to see why this precise and reliable board is a best seller amongst more advanced surfskate riders.

Best choice for beginners

  • Deck: 7-ply Canadian maple
  • Trucks: Standard Decathlon

Don’t be fooled by the Oxelo’s price tag – this is a functional surf skateboard for beginners that’s fun to ride and the best budget surfskate on the market.

Enjoy the adjustable wheelbase that allows for a wide variety of stances plus a tail grip/deck grip combo that gives it a real surfboard aesthetic. Of course, at this price it won’t do everything you ask of it, but for a surfskate that won’t break the bank, it’s hard to beat.

Best choice for The Mini Groms

  • Deck: Green & White with natural Timber finish deck
  • Trucks: Polished Aluminium
  • Size: 26″ (For children between 3 to 8 years)
  • Deck Tail Width: 18.5cm
  • Bearings: ABEC 5
  • Thruster Type: Mini Grom Thruster

Last but not least, we need a surf skateboard for the mini groms, so they can get started early! While it can be difficult to get some proper surf sessions in, at the age of 3-8, a surfskate will allow your kid to learn the basic techniques and improve their balance, stance, and body movement.

The surfskate will boost their surfing development so that the learning curve in the ocean becomes much smoother when they grow a bit older.

The 26″ Mini Grom Cuttlefish is an ideal board to introduce surfing to your kids in a fun, controlled, and on-land environment.

Final toughts

Clearly, there are heaps of good contenders for the best surf skateboards in 2023 – nailing down just one is impossible!

Our advice though is to consider both your budget and your skill level. An entry-level board is appropriate for those starting out, but if you have some extra cash to spend and consider yourself an intermediate or advanced rider, then go ahead and invest in a premium board.

Either way, you’ll probably trade up sooner or later as you progress and better models are released.

The most important thing is that you get out there and start skating!

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