A longboard is a longer version of a typical skateboard, which is generally 90-120cm / 35-47 inches long. Longboards are perfect for cruising, racing, downhill, or just for transportation. A longboard delivers a smoother riding experience than a skateboard and carving integrates elements from surfing, and provides a surf-like feeling. That is why it is sometimes referred to as asphalt surfing.
There are several longboard shapes on the market, each for a certain use. Characteristics are deck design, flex pattern and assembling of the trucks. In general, these are the following types of longboards:
Cruiser longboards are often designed in surfboard shapes like a pintail and they are great for surfy rides and smooth cruising. We recommend a cruiser or carving longboard if you are a beginner or you just want to cruise with style.
Downhill longboard decks have a stiff construction for maximum stability. There is a range of board types, including drop decks, top mounts and drop throughs. The drop deck has a low center of gravity, which provides more stability, but less maneuverability. The top mount is a simple design, where the deck is mounted on top of the trucks, just as it is on a street skateboard. The drop through has cut outs on the deck, that allow the trucks to go through the deck, thus lowering it and providing more stability. When racing downhill, it is important to use all relevant safety equipment because of the potential high speeds. Actually, motorcycle protection equipment is common gear for downhill racing. A downhill longboard is right for anybody who wants to bomb the hills and slide down steep roads or for anybody who wants a stiff board with a lot of stability.
A freestyle longboard is, alike a downhill board, often shaped as a twintip and very technical, but it comes with a softer flex pattern. Freestyle boards are designed for tricks and slides on plain surfaces. SkatePro recommends a freestyle longboard if you are looking for the trickster within the longboard.
Dancers are very long longboards, especially designed for boardwalks. The boards are called dancers because you can walk around and make spinning moves on the board while riding. This kind of “dancing” on a longboard is inspired by the moves of the riders on a long surfboard especially around the 1950's. The dancer is a very nice board if you want to explore the experience of dancing while riding and for training your balance. The boards are also suited for longer trips.