5 Best Skateboards for Beginners We’ve Actually Tested

Discover the top 5 skateboards for beginners. Dive into our ultimate guide to find the perfect board for a smooth start on your skating journey.

Stoked to start skateboarding but not sure which board to choose? Don’t worry. I’ve got you covered. In this guide, you’ll get the skinny on the best skateboards for beginners, straight from a street, park, and vert skateboarding enthusiast who was once a beginner too. You’ll learn why a complete skateboard from Santa Cruz might be your best bet or why Birdhouse is a solid choice for those on a budget. So, let’s dive in and help you snag that perfect beginner’s board!

What are the best skateboards for beginners?

Choosing your very first skateboard might make you feel like you have a world of options in front of you and need to make the right call. You definitely want to save your money and invest it wisely on a board that will stand by you as you learn those sick moves. Without further ado, let’s break down our top five beginner skateboard picks:

Image of skateboards hanging on a rack of a skate shop. Source: pexels
Image of skateboards hanging on a rack of a skate shop. Source: pexels

1. Santa Cruz complete skateboard

Go for a wheelie-good time with a Santa Cruz Skateboard. This brand holds immense street cred as the oldest in the world. Watching the wheels go round and round on this one, with the right balance of soft and hard (95A/54mm), is like watching the climax scene of every good superhero movie—exciting! Plus, the low-to-mellow concave deck offers extra stability, which is vital for beginners.

However, the deck in question is made of birch, which is a bit of a party pooper, considering its less poppy nature. Nevertheless, I believe that beginners who are so excited to get on the board will appreciate the solid control this skateboard offers. It’ll probably last you at least two seasons, given how often you skate, solidifying it as one kickflip of an investment!

2. Element complete

Get ready to do an ollie over the rainbow with the Element Complete Skateboard. If aesthetics stir your soul and prepare you to shred the streets, this board covers you. Sporting cool graphics that should make anyone stoked to ride—we’re talking about visually appealing masterpieces.

When paired with either 95A All Terrain wheels or 99A street/park wheels, this board offers a visual treat and functional opulence. However, the trucks come loose, and you might need some tweaking. Still, its laudable appeal and performance make this a solid choice for budding skateboarders. It’s like owning an iPod shuffle back in the day—functional, aesthetically pleasing, and boasting just the right amount of street cred.

3. Birdhouse complete

Shred with confidence with the Birdhouse Complete Skateboard. Known for its durability, it is the Thor’s hammer in the world of skateboards. Add to that, the trucks on this board handle abuse and turn well.

The catch? The bushings need a bit of breaking in, so expect a slightly loose feel initially. Nevertheless, the balance and adjustments you can make depending on your weight can mold this board to your liking, making it a friendly bird on our list. The 100A wheels, with a decent contact patch for extra grip and stability, also tip the scales in its favor.

4. Magneto complete skateboard for beginners

Children 6 years old or younger are recommended to opt for a 7.5-inch-wide skateboard with soft wheels. And if they want to cruise, cruiser boards typically measure between 27 and 33 inches. A Magneto board is durable and just right for children learning to skate. The 7.75-inch deck provides ample space for the entire foot, and its ABEC-5 bearings meet the needs of recreational skaters.

5. CCS complete

Last but not least, we have a CCS complete skateboard. It shines as a budget-friendly option at around $70 USD. While not premium, it’s suitable for beginners and offers good performance. However, its trucks, made of lower-grade material, might wear out with extensive curb grinding.

Tailored for skateparks with its hard, compact 100a, 52mm wheels, it’s best on smooth surfaces. Those keen on cruising might want to explore other options. The bearings are durable but basic. Available in sizes from 7.0″ to 8.25″, with narrower boards for younger kids and wider ones for stability. The bushings are rigid, but adjusting the trucks can help

My favorite complete skateboard (at the moment):

Enjoi Whitey Panda Complete Skateboard

5 best skateboards for beginners we've actually tested | 61vn95mf7ql. Ac sl1184 | skateboard salad
My favorite complete skateboard (at the moment):

Enjoi Whitey Panda Complete Skateboard

I had my board stolen a few years ago and was forced to quickly replace it with a complete. I got one with an Enjoi deck and loved it so much that I still buy the Whitey Panda deck each time I need a new deck. This complete with budget-friendly, beginner-friendly parts, but I still swear by it.

Why is choosing the right beginner’s skateboard essential?

A beginner’s skateboard is specially designed with features that enhance stability and control, aspects most needed when you’re still learning how to balance on a rolling piece of wood. They usually come with softer wheels, like the Santa Cruz Skateboard’s 95A hardness, that cushion your ride across various terrains and help you make fewer face-to-pavement introductions.

Picking the right skateboard as a beginner is the first step in your skateboarding journey, which can be an awesome, liberating way of expressing yourself and challenging your limits. Quality gear can seriously influence your safety, overall experience, and progress, and that’s why it’s so important!

Dos and don’ts of choosing your first skateboard

When embarking on the dope journey of skateboarding, you’d be wise to follow a few dos and don’ts to grab your perfect ride.

Consider the type of skating you want to do (street, park, vert?)Buy the first board you see; take time to find the right one
Try multiple boards at a skate shop to get a feel for themSkip safety gear like helmets and guards
Ask experts or skateboard communities for recommendationsJust go for aesthetics, the functionality of the board should be a priority
Choose a skateboard tailored for beginnersUnderestimate the value of personal comfort; if it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t
Basic Dos and Don’ts for Choosing your first Skateboard

What else should you know as a beginner skater?

You’re stoked about choosing your first skateboard but remember, having a dope board is just the start. Here are some extra bits to keep in mind to get the most out of your skateboarding experience:

Image of a skater holding a yellow skateboard. Source: pexels
5 best skateboards for beginners we've actually tested | image of a skater holding a yellow skateboard pexels | skateboard salad
  • Don’t forget safety equipment. Your head isn’t a skateboard. Wearing a helmet, knee, and elbow pads can really save your skin.
  • Practice balancing before you start rolling. It can be a game-changer!
  • Learn and master the basics before attempting the sick tricks your favorite skaters landed in the latest Street League.
  • Keep your board maintained. General upkeep can make a massive difference.
  • Hopping over to how to carve can help you better understand the dynamism of riding a skateboard.

How I chose my first skateboard

When I was 14, my hand-me-down board from my cousin finally gave out. With savings from my part-time job, I headed to the downtown skate shop, a place I revered. Rob, the seasoned owner, recommended a popsicle deck for its versatility. My eyes landed on a limited edition board with neon-colored, cyberpunk graphics. It was love at first sight. Rob set me up with matching components, and assembling it in the shop felt like a rite of passage. Rolling out with my new board, I felt the promise of endless skating adventures ahead.

:I knew I was holding not just a piece of wood and wheels, but a ticket to freedom, to mastering tricks, to endless summer days at the skatepark.”

Now, let’s take a peek at some cold, hard facts behind what price range you can expect when looking for a beginner’s skateboard. It isn’t as intimidating as it might sound!

Skateboard BrandAverage Price
Santa Cruz$100 – $150
Element$75 – $125
Birdhouse$60 – $110
Budget Skate Park Board$30 – $60
Customized Shop Deck$80 – $130
Approximate Price Range for Beginner Skateboards

For more tips, check out the video below from YouTube.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Curious about the skateboarding universe, or just got your first board and are itching to know more? Let’s roll through some commonly asked queries not covered in this blog:

What kind of gear do I need to start skateboarding?

Starting your skateboarding journey, you’ll need a board (obviously!), but also safety gear like a helmet, knee pads, elbow pads, and wrist guards. And don’t forget the skate shoes for a good grip on the board. They’re not just a stylish statement – they help protect your feet and provide a better feel of the board. For more on ensuring a smooth ride, check out our post on Best Skate Shoes.

Should I get a longboard or skateboard as a beginner?

Both longboards and skateboards have their own pros and cons. Longboards are fantastic for cruising and commuting, while skateboards are more agile, suitable for tricks, and can handle riding in parks or on ramps. The choice depends on what you’re planning to do. As for tricks and performance, our post of How to Skate a Vert Ramp might offer some insights.

What size skateboard should I get?

The size of your skateboard is very important. It can range from 7.5″ to 8.25″. For beginners, an 8″ size is usually a solid choice, but there are factors to consider like your shoe size, height, and what kind of skateboarding you plan to do.

Is skateboarding dangerous?

Like any sport, skateboarding carries its own risk of injury. That’s why it’s essential to use safety equipment and take the time to learn and practice your moves in a safe environment. Here’s a reality check on why safety shouldn’t be overlooked in our post, Is Skateboarding Dangerous?.

Final thoughts

Choosing the right gear, especially your first skateboard, creates a sturdy foundation for a sick skateboarding journey. Keep these insights in mind: look out for softer wheels, stability, and of course, your budget. Remember, it’s about the ride, not just the board. Whether it’s the Santa Cruz Complete Skateboard or getting a CSS complete, it should feel right for you.

Ready to make your first power slide? Or headed to the park to see how you roll? And did I cover everything you wanted to know? Let me know in the comments section below. I read and reply to every comment. If you found this article helpful, share it with your boarding buddies, and make sure to drop into my full blog for more skateboarding tips and tricks. Thanks for reading, and keep shredding!

Key takeaways

This article covered the best skateboards for beginners. Here are some key takeaways:

  • Santa Cruz offers a complete skateboard with ample stability for beginners.
  • Element Complete skateboards combine aesthetics with performance, ideal for starters.
  • Birdhouse provides a durable and economical choice for beginners.
  • Budget Skate Park Board is great for practicing tricks in a skate park.
  • Customized Shop Deck can be obtained from your local skate shop for personalization.
  • Skateboarding gear, including safety equipment, is essential to start skateboarding.
  • The size of the skateboard depends on personal factors like shoe size, height, and desired skateboarding type.
  • Skateboarding carries a risk of injuries but following proper safety measures can mitigate these risks.

Helpful resources

Steven Portrate
Written by Steven Sadder, Staff Writer

Hey! I'm Steven, a lifelong skater, and proud New Yorker. I’ve been skating since I was a teenager. I may be a bit older now, but I'm not slowing down. Follow me for skating tips and latest gear reviews.

Nick eggert.
Edited by Nick Eggert, Staff Editor

Nick is our staff editor and co-founder. He has a passion for writing, editing, and website development. His expertise lies in shaping content with precision and managing digital spaces with a keen eye for detail.

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