If you haven’t been surfing before, buying a surfboard can be a pretty difficult task. There are lots of factors to consider and it can take some time before you begin to learn how to ride properly. There are certain boards available that are better to learn how to ride on than others, and we want to help new surfers like you find those boards.
- Top 7 Best Foam Surfboards for Beginners (2018)
- What To Consider Before Buying
- Types of Boards
- Our Picks: Surfboard Reviews
Top 7 Best Foam Surfboards for Beginners (2018)
What To Consider Before Buying
In order to help you come up with a good surfboard, we have come up with a buyer’s guide to go over the various factors that you should consider and then we have also compiled a list of beginner surfboard reviews that you can check out in order to get an idea as to some of the options that are available on the market.
Determining your level of experience is the first step that you should take after deciding on some kind of a budget for yourself to stick to. Generally an inexperienced surfer will have the hardest time maintaining their balance, getting the proper stance in order to surf properly and getting used to things like grip, where to stand and how to paddle a unit. For this reason a longer board of at least 8-ft is generally better as it will allow you to be able to slow things down while you get used to and master your techniques. If you have some experience behind you, then one of the things you may want to do is get a board that allows you to be able to turn more sharply and put more power behind you. An advanced surfer will want a board with a high range of motion and the ability to travel in a straight line.
If you are brand new to surfing and don’t know what makes a board different from another board, one of the main things that is different from board to board is the volume. If you are a beginner, a board with more volume is probably something that you may want to look for. A board that has more surface area is going to float better on the water and it is going to be much easier to maintain your balance on. The nice thing about a board that has a lot of volume, is that the board is generally capable of riding in all sorts of different wave conditions with relative ease. The easiest way to get board volume is to find something that is nice and thick in size or to find something with a lot of length to it.
When you are looking for a surfboard, you should always take a look at the finer details. Some small aspects of a board can really change your surfing experience. A board that has a leash for example; will allow you to be able to stay attached to your board, regardless of how bad of a wipeout you have while you are riding it. Another thing that can make it more difficult for you to fall off, is a quality grip pad located on the top portion of the board. It is important to note that grip does add to the weight of the board, but it does allow you to be able to stand on the board much easier and can even teach you the proper location to stand on the board when you are surfing. Depending on the location that you are surfing, another accessory that you might find that comes with your board is a wet suit. If the water in your area is really cold a wet suit can allow you to be able to surf without feeling super chilly and is a nice thing to have so that you can surf regardless of the weather conditions unless there is a thunderstorm out.
There are various amounts of fins on a surfboard each serving various purposes. To put it in general terms, the more fins you have, the more drag that will occur. Drag will make a board more difficult to use in slower water conditions. In order to explain what each of the designs are good for, we have created a list below:
- Single: This type of a fin design is best for learning the basics of surfing on. Unlike the other boards that are available, these types of boards you have to rely on your rails in order to be able to turn the board rather than the fin.
- Dual: If you want to be able to maneuver your board with ease, then a dual fin board is the best option for you. The fins will help you be able to turn and you won’t have to rely on your rails in order to be able to turn the board which some people prefer.
- Thruster: The most common type of setup that you will find in a surfboard is a design that has three fins built into it. These designs allow for a pretty good balance between speed and stability which is largely why they are so popular.
- Quad: If you want to be able to hold your ground through heavy waves, then a four fin design may be the best option for you. A four fin design will allow you to be able to manauevre your board with ease and if you get a board that has adjustable and removable fins then you should be able to change to other designs that you like or want to try out, which is certainly something that you may want to consider.
Types of Boards
If you don’t know anything about the types of surfboards on the market; there are a lot of options available and they can really range in price as well as quality depending on the amount of money that you spend on a unit. If you are brand new to surfing, it can be difficult to determine how often you are going to use your board. Generally speaking you can at least determine how often you go swimming in order to get a general idea as to how much time you will spend in and around the water. If you only go a few times a year, you should may consider getting yourself a cheaper lower quality board so that you aren’t wasting your money on something you don’t use. If you go to the beach every once in a while you may want to have a mid-size budget for a board. If you are there all of the time then you should maybe consider a bit of a larger or mid-size budget as well. Below, we have broken down the many types of boards available in order to give you an idea as to the quality of the different materials and types available.
- Foam Board: If you are looking to learn or you just want a cheap board to mess around on, then a foam board is probably going to be your best option. These types of boards are extremely light weight in design which makes them extremely easy to transport. These boards float extremely easily which is nice if you want something stable. You should always make sure to check the weight limit of the board as some of these types of boards are specifically built for kids.
- Mini Mals: This type of a board is basically a shorter version of a longboard. These boards offer a lot of control and a decent amount of stability since they maintain the shape of a longboard.
- Funboards: These types of boards generally fall somewhere in size between the mini mals and the shortboards on the market. The boards offer very good maneuverability and have pointy noses which allow the user to be able to duck dive down and under waves in order to hit the ones that they want to with relative ease.
- Fish Surfboards: If you want something that is pretty wide and offers a good amount of stability on the water, then this could be a good option for you. This board is easy to turn even if you are riding it at low speeds and on small waves.
- Shortboards: These boards generally range from five to seven feet in length and generally requires a fairly experienced surfer in order to be able to ride the board properly. These types of boards are the best for slow waves or waves that have a fast barrel to them. The boards generally have three fins in their design, but can normally adapt to your preferences.
- Longboards: If you are looking for traditional then a longboard is the way to go. This style of board is used by experienced surfers and new surfers alike. The longboard has a large surface area and is quite buoyant allowing you to be able to maintain your balance relatively easily and stay on the board for a longer period of time, even in rough wave conditions.
Our Picks: Surfboard Reviews
BIC Sport DURA-TEC Surfboard Review
If you are looking to get a surfboard in the mid to low price range then this board could be a good option for you. This board is available in six different color options in order to suit your needs and it is also available in sizes that range from five foot ten inches all the way to nine feet in length when they are in stock. This board is generally meant to be used by beginner or amateur surfers due to the fact that it is fairly wide and it is designed to be fairly easy to ride.
- Three fin design of this board is easy to ride
- Available in a wide variety of colors and a wide variety of size options
- Traction pad on the surface of the board will allow you to be able to maintain grip with ease
- Pretty reasonable price tag on the unit appeals to a broad range of people
- Doesn’t come with any accessories at the checkout
So long as you aren’t looking to buy yourself a ton of accessories and you just want a quality surfboard then this could be a good option for you. You will be able to choose the size as well as the color that you like at the checkout. Overall, a very good board for the price tag that should meet the satisfaction of both beginner and amateur surfers thanks to the three fin design of the unit and a high quality board offering good grip and a variety of size options.
Body Glove Soft Surfboard Review
If you are looking to get yourself something for a pretty reasonable price tag and want something that is of a decent size then this board could be a good option for you. This board has a very slick design and has the standard three fin system so that this board is easy to use for someone with a bit of experience behind them. The board is made out of foam, but it has a hard plastic shell on the bottom which helps to increase the overall durability of the unit.
- Three fin system is common and easy to learn on, but also good for experienced riders as well
- Slick bottom of the board helps it to be able to skim across the water with ease and travel at a fast speed
- The length of this board makes it quite stable on the water
- Light weight design of this board makes it easy to transport and easy to carry around wherever you need to go
- This is a foam board so it is a little bit more prone to breaking
- The eight foot design can make this board a little bit more difficult to maneuver around tighter turns
So long as you are willing to get a foam board, this board is high quality. The three fin design allows the board to be able to travel at fast speeds on the water, but it doesn’t get rid of all of the maneuverability and take away your balance.
Gold Coast Surfboards 5’3” Casper Pro Series Review
If you want to get quality, but you only have a low budget then it is likely that you are going to get stuck with a foam board. The best thing about this board is that it is a 2016 model. It is important to note that this board is mainly meant for kids as it does have a 150 lb weight limit on the unit if you are a beginner, or a 200 lb weight limit on the board if you are a more experienced rider.
- Leash and fins are available with your purchase so that you don’t end up losing your board when you wipe out in the water, or you can remove them from the purchase if you desire
- Quad fin design allows you to remain stable even in really wavy conditions
- Made out of fiberglass and filled with EPS foam
- Light weight seven pound board is very easy to transport and carry around with you
- There could definitely be a more creative design located on the top of the board
So long as you aren’t particular about the design of a board, then this quad fin design could be a good option for you. This design is meant to be durable thanks to its fiberglass construction and you will have a good amount of maneuverability while on this board thanks to its small size. It is quite nice that the leash and the fins can be removed from the purchase, especially if you are an experienced surfer and have these types of materials as it can save you some money at the checkout. Just make sure that you’re under the weight limit before purchasing this unit, you wouldn’t want to break it by accident.
Gold Coast Surfboards 8′ Verve Surfboard Review
If you want to get a decent size board available for an average price, then this beginner board could be a good option for you. This board is available in three different color options in order to suit the personal tastes of a lot of potential buyers. The board comes with a three fin system that weighs fifteen pounds, meaning it isn’t too difficult to carry around. The board has a recommended rider weight of 180 lbs for a beginner user and has a 220 pound weight limit for a more experienced rider.
- 23 inch wide width allows you to maintain stability with relative ease when combined with the eight foot length of the board
- Multiple color options to choose from
- Soft foam coated in a fiberglass construction is quite a durable design
- Has a leash plug screw in case you want to attach a leash to the product
- Three fin system is easy for beginners to use and works for intermediate and experienced riders as well
- Comes with both a high end leash and fins
- Some people may want to get themselves a smaller surfboard in exchange for more maneuverability
If you want a board that is pretty stable on the water and you don’t mind a foam filled design, then this board could be a good option for you. This board is quite durable for a foam board as it has a nice fiberglass coating on the unit. The board is pretty easy to use for beginners and experts alike thanks to its large surface area and its three fin design which appeals to a lot of people.
BIC Sport G-Board EVO Soft Surfboard Review
If you want a bit of a more expensive board then this could be a good option for you. This board is orange in color and comes in a 6, 8 and a 9 foot length in order to suit your needs. The board is light weight in design which helps to make it fairly easy to maneuver around. The board comes in the standard three fin design meaning that you should be able to travel around at a decent speed while you are using this board and it can also keep you stable when you are out on some harsher waves. There is a logo on the top of this unit in order to try and spice up the design, but it is a very bright colored board that may not appeal to everyone.
- Soft deck on the top of the unit makes it easy for you to grip and keep your stability even in harsh wave conditions
- Three fin design offers a good balance of speed and stability
- Deck offers a good amount of traction for the user
- The single orange color option of this product may not appeal to everyone
- Doesn’t come with any features at the checkout in order to sweeten the deal
So long as you don’t mind the orange color that this board comes in, this is a quality board that comes in numerous size options in order to suit your surfing needs. The familiar three fin design allows beginners and people who have more experience to be able to use this board with ease. The board is easy to stand on top of and it offers pretty good durability for its price tag.
Hopefully after reading the buyer’s guide as well as the list of reviews you now feel as though you have a better grasp as to the features you may want on your own surfboard. There are plenty of options available and it is important to make sure that you set a budget that is both reasonable for how much you plan on using the board, as well as what is reasonable for your financial situation. It is always a good idea to try and remember to check into the return policy of the board that you plan on purchasing and it is a good idea to check into the warranty as well, in order to see both how much the manufacturer trusts their product as well as to see how long you can expect it to last. Best of luck in your search and hope that you find yourself an awesome surfboard!
top image license: DepositPhotos