What is a Longboard Surfboard?

Greetings fellow surfers! Have you ever seen someone cruising on a longboard surfboard at your local surf break and wondered why they’re riding something that looks like a small boat? Well, wonder no more. Longboard surfboards have been a staple in surfing since its inception and continue to be a popular choice among beginners and experienced surfers alike.

But what makes a longboard surfboard so special? Is it the size, shape, or material? In this post

What is a Longboard Surfboard?

A longboard surfboard is a type of surfboard that is typically nine feet or longer in length and is characterized by its wide, round nose and large, single fin. Longboards are known for their ease of use and stability, making them a popular choice for beginners and experienced surfers looking for a more relaxed style of surfing. These boards are great for cruising on smaller waves and are often used for nose riding and other traditional longboard maneuvers.

What is a Longboard Surfboard?

Longboard surfboards are often one of the first boards beginners gravitate towards when learning to surf. These boards are stable, easy to paddle, and great for small waves. They are also popular for experienced surfers who want to cruise the waves and have some fun.

The History of Longboard Surfboards

The origins of longboard surfboards date back to the early days of surfing. Surfing was once only accessible to Hawaiian royalty who used solid wood boards 14-18 feet long. However, in the early 1900s, surfers began using shorter boards made of lighter materials like balsa wood, reducing the weight and increasing maneuverability. After World War II, fiberglass became a popular material for surfboards, allowing for stronger boards with thinner dimensions. By the 1960s, boards had become even shorter and thinner. But, there was still a market for longer and more stable boards, which were used for competitions.

The Anatomy of a Longboard Surfboard

Longboards are generally longer than other surfboards, ranging from 8 to 12 feet in length. They typically have a rounded nose and a wide, rounded tail section. The board’s thickness makes it buoyant, which makes it easier for the surfer to catch waves and suitable for small surf. The rails, or edges, of the board are rounded for stability, and usually have a softer, more forgiving curve.

Longboards usually come equipped with a large single fin, which provides stability and helps with steering. Some longboards have no side fins, while others have two side fins, commonly known as side bites, which give stability.

The Advantages of Riding a Longboard

One of the significant benefits of longboarding is stability. Because of their size, they are easier to balance on, which makes them an excellent choice for beginners. Additionally, longboards are easy to paddle and can catch waves without a lot of effort. This makes them ideal for small waves or slow breaks that might not be suitable for traditional shortboards. Finally, longboards are great boards for anyone looking for that classic surfing experience. You can hang ten or nose ride with one of these boards, truly experiencing the art of traditional surfing.

Different Styles of Longboard Surfboards

Longboard surfboards come in various designs and shapes, each with its advantages and disadvantages. Here are four types of longboards:

Mini-Malibu Longboards

Mini-Malibu longboards are typically between 7 and 8.5 feet long. They are shorter, more maneuverable, and easier to transport than traditional longboards. These boards are excellent for beginners and advanced surfers alike.

Classic Longboards

Classic longboards usually range from 9 to 10 feet, with a rounded nose and tail, and a single fin. These boards are excellent for small, slow waves and are also great for performing traditional surfing maneuvers, such as hanging ten or nose riding.

Performance Longboards

Performance longboards are usually around 8-9 feet long, with a more pointed nose, smaller fin, and thinner rails. These boards are more maneuverable than classic longboards and are best suited for experienced surfers who want to do tricks and ride faster waves.


Guns are longboards that are longer than ten feet and are designed for bigger waves. They often have a pointed nose, sharp rails, and three or more fins. Guns are not commonly used, and most surfers opt for standard longboards or shortboards in most conditions.

Tips for Buying a Longboard Surfboard

Buying a longboard surfboard is a significant investment. Here are a few tips to ensure you make the right purchase, and don’t end up needing to look for “used surfboards for sale” soon after:

Size and Shape

Determine the size and shape of the board you want according to your experience level. The bigger, wider, and thicker the board, the easier it is to ride.


Longboards can be made of different materials, including foam, epoxy, and fiberglass. Foam boards are cheaper and more resistant to dings, but they lack the performance of fiberglass boards. Epoxy boards have higher buoyancy, are more durable, and have better performance than foam boards.

Fin Setup

Decide on the fin setup that works best for where you intend to use the board. Single fins are great for small waves, while side bites work well for larger waves.


Price ranges for longboards vary significantly, and you should expect to pay more for higher quality boards. Check online for used surfboards for sale or local surf shops that offer discounts on previous year’s models.

Closing Thoughts

Longboarding is a timeless art form that dates back decades. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced surfer, a longboard surfboard is a great choice for anyone looking for a stable, easy to use board. So take your time to find the right longboard for you, and you’ll be catching waves in no time.

Longboard Surfboard Maintenance Tips

Longboard surfboards are an investment, and proper maintenance will ensure your board lasts for many years. After each surf session, rinse your board with fresh water and dry thoroughly. Wax your board regularly to ensure proper traction while surfing. Finally, be sure to store your board in a cool and dry place to prevent any warping or damage from the elements.

The Best Locations to Surf With a Longboard

Longboard surfboards are great for small, slow waves, which are prevalent in many destinations worldwide. Some of the best places to surf with a longboard include California, Hawaii, Australia, and Bali, where there are plenty of beaches with long and gradual waves. However, many other surf spots worldwide cater to longboard surfing, and a quick internet search will reveal the best destinations near you.

Longboard Surfboard Competitions

Longboard surfboard competitions are held worldwide and attract surfers of all levels. Typical events include nose riding contests and traditional surfing maneuver competitions. Competitors are often judged on the style and grace of their surfing, rather than solely on the number of waves caught or tricks performed. These events are a great way to meet fellow surfers and celebrate the art of longboarding.

The Longboard Surfboard Craze

In recent years, there has been a resurgence of interest in longboard surfing, and it’s not hard to understand why. Longboard surfboards offer a more relaxed, laid-back surfing style that is perfect for many surfers. The boards are also great for small, slow waves, which are common throughout the world’s beaches. You’ll often see people of all ages enjoying them, from kids to grandparents. So, if you’re looking for a new surfing experience, or if you want to go back to the roots of surfing, grab a longboard surfboard and hit the waves!


Longboard surfboards may be an old-school style of surfing, but they remain a popular choice among surfers worldwide. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced surfer, a longboard surfboard is the perfect board to have fun and enjoy the waves. With the right board, location, and maintenance, you can enjoy the art of surfing for many years to come.

FAQs about Longboard Surfboards

Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions about longboard surfboards:

1. How long is a longboard surfboard?

Longboards are typically between 8 and 12 feet in length, with the most common length being around nine feet.

2. Is it easier to surf on a longboard than a shortboard?

Yes, longboards are typically easier to surf on than shortboards because they provide more stability and are easier to balance on.

3. Can you do tricks on a longboard surfboard?

Yes, you can do tricks on a longboard surfboard. Some common tricks include hanging ten, nose riding, and cross-stepping.

4. What size longboard should I get?

The size of the longboard you should get depends on your experience level and the type of surfing you plan to do. For beginners, an eight to nine-foot board is a good choice.

5. What is the difference between a mini-malibu and a classic longboard?

A mini-malibu is typically between 7 and 8.5 feet long and is shorter and more maneuverable than a classic longboard, which averages around nine feet in length.

6. Can you surf big waves on a longboard surfboard?

Longboard surfboards can be surfed in big waves, although they are not the best choice for those conditions. A gun or a shorter board would be better suited for larger waves.

7. What is the best material for a longboard surfboard?

The best material for a longboard surfboard depends on your needs. Foam boards are cheaper and more resistant to dings, while epoxy boards have higher buoyancy and better performance than foam boards.

8. Do longboard surfboards have fins?

Yes, most longboard surfboards have at least one fin, usually a large single fin. Some boards have side bites as well, which provide additional stability.

9. How do I choose the right fin setup for my longboard surfboard?

The right fin setup for your longboard surfboard depends on the type of surfing you plan to do and the size of the waves. Single fins are best for small waves, while side bites work well for larger waves.

10. How do I take care of my longboard surfboard?

To take care of your longboard surfboard, rinse it with fresh water after each surf session and dry it thoroughly. Wax your board regularly for proper traction, and store your board in a cool and dry place to prevent warping.

11. What is a good location to learn how to surf on a longboard?

A good location to learn how to surf on a longboard is a beach with small waves, such as Waikiki Beach in Hawaii or Manly Beach in Australia.

12. What is the surf culture like for longboard surfers?