Are you thinking of buying your first board? If you have already started and want to continue practicing, it is normal that you want to buy one. What happens is that now, surely, you will ask yourself the question “what are the right surfboard sizes for me?”. And don’t worry, it’s normal!
In this sport, as in many others, there is a lot of specific jargon that you are certainly already learning. And the same happens with the boards, which have their different parts and each has a meaning and a name. Although we have already told you how to choose a surfboard with 5 key factors, today we want to make a more specific mention on a recurring topic: the measures of the board.
What is the size of the surfboard I need? 4 key factors to consider
To answer your question about “what is the size of the surfboard I need” we cannot stop only at the general principles, so we want to talk to you about the 4 determining factors that will help you to find the most suitable board for you, are you ready.
Surely this is what you were looking for when you asked yourself that question, how long my board should be? The length goes from the “nose” to the “tail” and it is measured in feet and inches.
One foot equals to 30.48 centimetres and one inch is 2.54 centimetres, however, don’t worry, you can quickly find a converter on internet to find out how many centimetres equal the board you are looking at.
Now, once you know what it’s measured in, you need to take into account that you will have to consider your height in order to choose the length of the right board for you. The taller you are, as a general rule, the more length you need, although other factors need to be considered and we’ll talk about them later on.
The length of the board greatly influences its buoyancy, keep in mind that the longer it is, the more contact surface with the water is, and consequently it will help you to maintain stability. On the other hand, however, the longer it is, the less manoeuvrable it will be.
As mentioned above, this factor is important but must be taken into consideration together with other elements, so if you want to answer your doubts about “what is the dimension of the board I need”, read on!
This measure refers to the distance from one edge of the board to the other (it is measured mainly in the center of the board) and works similarly to the length. In other words, the more width has, the more buoyancy will have and consequently less manoeuvrability. Conversely, the smaller width has, the better handling will have and consequently less buoyancy.
Therefore, as we have already mentioned on previous occasions, if you have just started, it’s better to choose a large board so you can take as many waves as possible, thanks to stability and buoyancy, and later with more experience you can switch to a less wide one.
This refers to the distance between the upper part of the board (“deck”) and the lower part (“bottom”) or the thickness of the edge of the board. It is important to consider at this point that most boards vary in thickness when they approach the “nose” and the “tail”, therefore the main reference is usually the thickest part of the board that normally is located in the center of it.
In the beginner level boards, edges always maintain the same thickness since this affects its buoyancy and therefore stability. As we advance in level, the thickness will decrease in general but especially in the tail and nose area in order to increase manoeuvrability.
The volume of a board is measured in liters and, of course, indicates the volume that the board occupies, in particular if we immersed it in a tank full of water, the volume of the board would be the number of liters that will come out.
The point is that with the new modeling software it is not necessary to go around filling the tanks, the programs themselves tell you and the manufacturers indicate it. This feature has an important effect on buoyancy, so a board with more volume will have better buoyancy.
What size of surfboard do I need based on my characteristics
Now we could say that you already know the metrics that influence your decision on “what is the size of the board I need”, and they all are refer to the board itself, so now you just have to consider the other important part, yourself!
1. My height
This factor has a reference to the fact that the higher you are, as a general rule, the longer the board should be for reasons related to buoyancy and stability. When we start surfing, the board should be enough higher than we are in order to catch as many waves as possible and practice on a more stable surface. Normally, an 8 feets board (about 240 cm) is used as a board for adult beginners.
As you start to progress, the height of your board may decrease, but it will always have a certain correlation with your height and which type of waves you want to surf. For example, an advanced surfer’s standard (everyday) board is normally 2-4 inches (5 to 10 cm) taller than he is.
2. My weight
This relationship is also very simple, the more weight you have, the more width and volume your board must have. Regardless of your weight, the latter is relevant only in order to choose a board suited to your characteristics and your level. So you can catch more waves easily and are able to practice more because more waves mean faster progress.
3. My level
Of course, this is very important, especially because if you ask yourself “what size of surfboard do you need” you could take your first steps in this world. Don’t deceive yourself, choose a board suited to your level.
The first ones will be longer, wider and with more volume, because what matters is being able to catch as many waves as possible to practice at your best and then, with time and experience, you can decrease the size and find the most suitable ones for your new level.
Do you want to start surfing? Are you looking to improve your level and want to choose a suitable board? Come and practice here in Fuerteventura, our team at surfintrip.com is waiting for you. And while you decide on your ideal board, you will learn and have fun!