10 Essential Tips for Buying Adult Beginner Skateboard: A Complete Guide

Explore 10 vital tips to choose your first adult skateboard, a beginner-friendly guide to kickstart your skating journey. Read on to learn more!

Skateboarding is not just for the young and fearless! You’ve come to the right place if you’re an adult beginner eager to embark on this thrilling journey. This guide will share valuable tips to help you make the best choice when buying your first skateboard. We’ll be shredding through insights on everything from stability and balance to the important factors when choosing your deck, bearings, wheels, and… Yes, even spacers. Whether you’re seeking a smooth ride for cruising or gearing up for tricks, our expert advice will steer you in the right direction. Let’s roll!

What is a skateboard?

A skateboard is specialized recreational and sports equipment designed for riding and performing tricks on flat surfaces, ramps, skate parks, and streets. It typically consists of several key components:

Image of a male and female trying to learn skateboarding. Source: pexels
Image of a male and female trying to learn skateboarding. Source: pexels
  • Deck: The deck is the flat, rectangular, and often concave platform a skateboarder stands on.
  • Trucks: Trucks are the metal components mounted underneath the deck that holds the wheels and allows the skateboard to turn.
  • Wheels: Skateboard wheels are typically polyurethane and come in various sizes and hardness levels (durometer).
  • Bearings: Bearings are small, circular components that fit inside the wheels and enable them to spin smoothly.
  • Grip Tape: Grip tape is a rough, sandpaper-like material applied to the deck’s top surface.

Skateboards can vary in size, shape, and configuration, catering to different styles of skateboarding. For example, standard skateboards are used for street tricks, longboards are designed for cruising and downhill riding, and cruiser boards are used for urban transportation.

Skateboarding is a versatile and dynamic sport, with riders using their boards to perform various tricks, flips, and maneuvers. It has gained popularity worldwide as both a recreational activity and a competitive sport, with skateboarding competitions and events taking place in various locations.

My favorite complete skateboard (at the moment):

Enjoi Whitey Panda Complete Skateboard

10 essential tips for buying adult beginner skateboard: a complete guide | 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.

Should adult beginners opt for assembled skateboards or custom builds?

The choice between assembled skateboards and custom builds for adult beginners largely depends on individual preferences and priorities. An assembled skateboard can be a good choice if you’re an adult beginner looking for a straightforward, budget-friendly option with minimal decision-making.

However, if you want a personalized, high-quality setup that matches your unique preferences and are willing to invest time and research, a custom build can be a rewarding option in the long run. Ultimately, the decision should align with your goals, budget, and comfort level with assembling and customizing skateboards.

Ten tips when buying skateboards adult beginners

Jumping into the world of skateboarding might feel akin to diving headfirst into a rabbit hole of unlimited choices. The diversity of skateboard decks, wheels, and trucks can be overwhelming, but don’t panic! Here, we’ll break down ten key points you should stick to when buying your first skateboard as an adult.

1. Stability and balance

Riding a skateboard fundamentally boils down to two major tenets: stability and balance. If you’re an older skater like me, you’ll probably feel a noticeable difference between a narrower and a wider skateboard deck. For beginners, I’m a big fan of recommending wider decks. Not only because they seem to provide more stability, you might just feel more confident on a wider deck.

But hey, don’t sweat over it too much. Feel free to explore an 8” deck; ensure the trucks align well with your deck size. A good pick would be between 8.25 and 8.5 if you’re just starting. Onward to mastering the basics, you can always shift to a narrower deck. Remember, skateboarding is more about your comfort and style than rigid rules!

2. Deck length

Choosing the length of your deck typically isn’t something to lose sleep over. The logic is pretty straightforward for all intents and purposes: just grab a regular deck, and you’re good to go! Skating isn’t chocolate; one size fits the majority (if not all).

However, if you’re gravitating towards a longer board, you might want to consider a longboard. But hey, hold your horses; today’s topic isn’t longboards. So, let’s not get diverted and stay on track, shall we?

3. Picking the right width

Choosing the width of your skateboard is relatively important, especially when you’re still getting your bearings (yes, skate pun intended). As I mentioned, a wider deck provides better balance for beginners, which is crucial when learning the ropes.

You might not vigorously nod over it, but an 8.25″ skateboard tends to provide slightly better stability than an 8. It’s a solid choice for novice skaters, but again, the ultimate truth lies in your comfort. If an 8″ feels better, by all means, go for it!

4. Choosing the right concave

Concave is the curve across a skateboard deck’s y-axis. More concave? Your deck flips faster, but your ride becomes less stable. The just-right bowl of porridge for beginners? Opt for a mellow or medium concave.

Skateboarding, in its essence, is more about control than speeding through. Hence, a less steep concave can give you the needed control, especially when attempting to learn trick moves. Once you’re a pro in bending it like Beckham, or in this instance, skating it like Tony Hawk, you can switch to a steeper concave.

5. Picking the right wheels

Wheels can really make or break your skateboarding experience. As a newcomer, your best bet is to go for medium-hard wheels. The more flexible the wheel, the more versatile it is on a diversified blend of terrains. Harder wheels are ideal for technical skateboarding, while softer wheels will better handle your cruising sessions.

So, for all you street shredders and park riders eagerly wanting to pull off those insane tricks, get the wheels that best complement your style. For the full scoop on wheels and to learn the ins and outs, check out this killer post about the wonders of skateboard wheels.

Those were some fundamentals to consider when choosing your first adult skateboard. Remember to stay safe, keep practicing, and, most importantly, have a blast skating.

Image of a male adult learning to ride a skateboard. Source: wiki commons
Image of a male adult learning to ride a skateboard. Source: pexels

6. Choosing the right bearings

Bearings play a crucial role in determining your speed when you’re cruising on your skateboard. As beginners, you might often feel tempted to go all out on top-notch Swiss bearings, but take a step back! You don’t need to break the bank here.

Some decent bearings say, regular Bones Reds bearings, would serve you well for quite a while. And keep a safe distance from those cheap Chinese knock-offs that invade online stores. Want a detailed lowdown on bearings? Check this dedicated post we’ve put together on the subject!

7. Importance of spacers

This might seem like a minor detail, but spacers are quite important to safeguard your bearings. When you attach the nut to the truck axle, these small tubes fit between your bearings and protect them from damage.

Most wheelsets do include them, but make sure to check before you buy. Spacers are cheap, but their contribution in terms of performance isn’t!

8. Budgeting right

In the euphoria of beginning your skateboarding journey, you might feel driven to splurge on your gear. But here’s some sage advice: don’t! Start with a solid basic skateboard with a decent deck, some fitting trucks, bearings, and wheels, and you are all set.

As you progress and understand what you need more of, tweak your gear accordingly. Because in skateboarding, it’s less about the gadgets and more about your skills!

9. Correct size

Size matters…in skateboarding, sorta. But it is not just the size of your gear; your physical dimensions also matter. Adult skaters (like yours truly) often benefit from wider skateboards since these offer better balance and comfort. A narrower board may suit you better if you’re a petite skater. The ultimate goal is to find a board that doesn’t make you do a full split while riding or executing tricks.

10. Personal preference

In the end, personal preference is your guiding star. No matter how premium or perfect it might be on paper, it’s less likely to help you progress if you’re uncomfortable on your skateboard. Try different options if needed, but stick with a skateboard that aligns with your needs, comfort, and style!

My opinion

I’ve had my fair share of trials and triumphs as an adult beginner skater. I remember how I thought boarding was all about coolness and stunts. But you know what? It’s so much more than that. Sure, the stunts are thrilling, but the lessons you learn are even more fantastic!

“Remember, it’s not about how fast you learn, it’s about how much you enjoy the ride. You’ve got a sidewalk to conquer!”

I learned the value of patience, the joy of small achievements, and the importance of stepping out of the comfort zone (or, in my case, cruising out!). Remember, it’s not about how fast you learn but how much you enjoy the ride. So, are you too old to learn skateboarding? Definitely not! It’s not just about the tricks or the speed; it’s about the incredible journey that molds you into a perpetual student of life!

If you are a visual learner, check out the video below from YouTube.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Stepping into the world of skateboarding, particularly as an adult beginner, often comes with a flurry of questions. Let’s tackle some of those burning queries to make your skating journey smoother.

Can you use a bike helmet for skateboarding?

While it might be tempting to repurpose your bike helmet for skateboarding, it’s not always the safest choice. Skateboarding helmets are specifically designed to offer complete coverage and protection for your head, which is vital when practicing tricks or traveling at high speeds. Check out this article for more information on this topic.

How often should you replace your skateboard?

While there’s no hard and fast rule for when to replace your skateboard, it’s vital to monitor its condition regularly. When you notice excessive wear and tear or your skateboard seems less responsive, it may be time for a new one. Find out more about this in our detailed post on when to replace your skateboard.

Is it possible to learn skateboarding in just a day?

While you can definitely get started and learn some basics in a day, mastering skateboarding requires practice and patience. Becoming proficient will take time, so don’t rush. A helpful read would be this article, which discusses overcoming skating difficulties.

Is it too dangerous to learn skateboarding as an adult?

While skateboarding has risks, these can be significantly minimized with the right safety gear and practices. Is skateboarding dangerous? Sure, it could be, but so is every sport. But with careful practice and a focus on learning the basics, skateboarding can be a thrilling and safe activity even for adults.

Final thoughts

Each journey begins with a single step, or in this case, a single roll. Skateboarding can feel a bit much at first, but with the right start and consistent practice, it’s a joyride like none other. Remember, it’s not about the fancy gear or the high-speed stunts; it’s about the lessons this journey teaches you – patience, persistence, and a ‘never say die’ attitude.

What is your biggest concern as an adult beginner to skateboarding? 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 a friend and check out my full blog for more tips and tricks on mastering skateboarding. Thanks for reading, and keep rolling!

Key takeaways

This article covered the top tips for buying your first skateboard as an adult beginner – a daunting yet thrilling task. Here are some key takeaways:

  • Stability and balance are crucial for novice skaters. Wider decks could prove to be a better pick.
  • Don’t fret too much over the length of your deck or concave. They matter, but not as much when you’re just starting.
  • Choose the right set of wheels and bearings. They determine your ride’s smoothness and speed.
  • Keep your budget in check. Start with a basic, sturdy skateboard, and you’re good to roll.
  • Personal preference takes priority. It’s about your comfort and style more than anything else.

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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