So it’s time for your kids to start skating? The roads can always use a few more skaters and it's a great way to get outside!
Getting the right board for your kids can be tough when you don’t really know what to look for. Here’s our breakdown on what you’ll need to grab and why, so that your son/daughter can get out there safely and have a great time with their friends.
If your kids are anything like we are, expect them to wake up ready to get outside and shred every morning! It’s a great way to get kids away from the screens and out with friends.
You can choose to build a board from the ground up (costs more but will be a fully customized kids skateboard) or you can grab a complete setup and make it easy on yourself. Here are the key details to look for along with our recommendations for each category.
The best longboard types for kids
Cruising and carving longboards - The more mellow way to learn to longboard
These are the bread and butter boards. Perfect for rolling around on the street, learning to skate, and heading over to the friends house. These aren’t trick or park boards, and make the best board for starting out because they are so stable and smooth.
Street / Park / Kicktail Boards - Think Tony Hawk, but this genre is growing with new designs.
A park board is most commonly built with two kicktails (the ends turned up). This lets kids do tricks and skate street/park features like ramps, rails, and pools. It’s one of the most common styles.
There are also single kicktail longboards that work great for this type of skating and will be more stable around the neighborhood for learning.
The real purpose of these is a bit more advanced, but they are actually easiest to learn on because the drop through trucks allow the board to ride closer to the ground, much easier for kids! Because of the design it allows them to get more creative, and is a bit less carvy than a cruiser.
Features to look for in a longboard for kids
Length: Typically you want to stick with something somewhat proportional. Taller kids are going to be more stable and able to steer longer longboards. Shorter / Younger kids will want something easier to skate. Mini cruisers are ideal.
Height: Another consideration is how tall the board is. This is affected by wheel size. With a child sized longboard you’ll want smaller wheels, 65mm or less. Often called free ride wheels. The benefit here is that smaller wheels accelerate faster, which kids love, and have slower top speeds, which parents love. It’s a win-win situation.
Weight: Lighter boards are better for little hands to carry. If you go with a huge hardwood longboard it’s going to be too heavy.
Tips for skating with your toddler / small child
Getting a feel for the board can make it easier for kids to start skateboarding. A nice long board will make this work best. You’ll need to be a very confident rider so don’t try this if you aren’t, it ’s just too risky! Always put pads and a helmet on your kids!
Give a few pushes while holding your child under their arms and lower them onto the middle of the board between your legs. Carve a bit to give them the feeling, they will love the wind in their hair and the smooth ride.
Only do this on flat roads and in parking lots with no cars or traffic.
As they get a bit older and more solid on their feet, you can balance and support them under their arms and walk next to the board. This is a great way for them to gain balance.
Have fun and be careful, it’s such a fun way to play with your kids on a nice day.
Every kid should be rolling in a helmet. Pick a cool helmet that keeps them comfortable on hot days and that’s nice and light weight. It’s so important to make it clear that they can’t skate without one on, if they do they could be seriously injured. Here’s a few of our helmet recommendations.
Pads are great to start with as well, and learning to fall properly is key. Practice falling with the pads on into a pile of pillows to get a feel, if they fall hands out it can cause wrist and finger injuries. The tuck and roll method works best where as you fall you pull your arms in a bit and make sure to land on the edge of your arm or side and roll. This distributes the impact.
Knee pads are great and kids can learn to land in a knee slide so they don’t injure themselves. It’s fun to learn a knee slide and will save you and your kids from a lot of trips to the hospital!
Hopefully this helps you get the perfect board to get your kids longboarding! If you have any questions please feel free to contact us or leave a comment below and we are happy to help!