Similar looking to a bodyboard or a wakeboard a skimboard has a flat bottom that makes them more difficult to learn. Popular for many years, Skimboarding is a popular activity in summer that can easily be done in a lake or ocean by a range of different age groups. When choosing a skimboard, think about your skill level, size, and where and how you will use the board.
Skimboards are made of different materials and coatings that help to determine what type of skimboarding that is best used for. Make sure you do your homework before you purchase a board to make sure you have the right tool for the right application and skill level. Here are a few tips on what to look for in the top skimboard and a few reviews to help you start shopping.
The Best Skimboards are as follows:
- Wave Zone Diamond – (Best Skimboard for Beginners)
- Victoria Woody XL – (Great Skimboard for Any Age Rider)
- Zap Lazer – (Great Skimboard for Kids)
- BPS Gator Skimboard – (Best Grip)
- Wave-Zone Package – (Great Skimboard for All Levels)
Top Skimboards Reviews
Here are the Top rated skimboards as reviewed by verified customers
1. Wave Zone Diamond – Best Skimboard for Beginners
A great beginner skimboard, the Wave-Zone Diamond gives you more speed and less drag with the diamond tip. For a less experienced user, this board is definitely more forgiving allowing you to glide across the water. Made in the United States, this skimboard is built to last and perform well.
Perfect for wave gliding and sand skimming, the Wave Zone Diamond lets you ride the water that is breaking on the shore. Made of high-quality fiberglass, it is handcrafted and features a gel coat. It also uses a Divinycell high-density foam core featuring dimensional stability and sports fracture toughness. The perfect beginner skimboard, it has a weight limit of 110 pounds.
All Wave-Zone include a note that is signed by the owner of Wave-Zone as well as stickers and surf wax. And, instead of getting a skimboard that is mass produced like many other boards on the market, you will enjoy the individualization of this handcrafted item. It is priced a little higher than other beginner to intermediate skimboards, but it will last you a lot longer as well. With the high quality workmanship of this handcrafted board, you will have the tools necessary to become more serious about skimboarding.
- Great price for a nice quality board
- Features a great design with beautiful graphics
- A nice quality board that is great for young kids
2. Victoria Skimboards Woody XL – Great Skimboard for Any Age Rider
Built in the United States, the Victoria Woody Xl is the original entry-level wood skimboard. Hand built, this classic board is perfect when learning the basics that will slide for long distance and let you crash on smaller waves. Constructed of Russian birch core, this wood skimboard can handle anything you throw at it.
The hand laid art ensures that each skimboard is unique. It also features a fiberglass bottom and is perfect for riding along the shoreline or on flatland. Unlike cheap skimboards that warp easily, the Woody XL is ready to give any beginner the longest possible slide.
- Great for kids and teens that are over six feet
- It is solid, made with quality wood
- Comes with a low rocker that lets you skim farther
- It is a little heavier than its competitors
- On the expensive side in comparison to its competitors
3. Zap Lazer Skimboard – Best Kids Skimboard
Available in assorted colors and designs, the Zap Lazer Skimboard is a great choice for any child just beginning to skimboard. A good value for what you get, the Lazer is designed specifically for sand sliding. Kids get an almost effortless ride with the rail contour, rocker, and shape of this board.
Made with lightweight materials, the Lazer is easier for kids to hold and handle in the water. Designed for a smaller rider up to eighty pounds, the Lazer is nice and stable when sand sliding but can also handle small waves. The pictures you see when you look at the board are only an example, your Lazer skimboard will have different graphics when it arrives.
- Great value for a nice quality board
- Glides really well
- A nice lightweight board that is the perfect size and weight for kids
4. BPS Gator Skimboard – Best Grip
Using an epoxy coating to stop water damage, the BPS Gator is made with a strong plywood construction and a substantial nose rocker. Each skimboard includes a layer of ‘GATOR GRIP’ or EVA foam that gives you good skimboarding grip when the board is wet. Meaning you never have to wax your skimboard. You can also get the skimboard in raw wood in case you prefer to apply wax or would like to customize the grip yourself.
The Gator is a nice lightweight board that you can carry or even run into the water with. Made for every type of user, this skimboard is created and tested in New Zealand to make sure that it works well before you receive it. You will also receive an E-Guide that includes easy-to-follow instructions for getting on the board and also how to do some basic tricks.
- Comes with great customer service
- Has a good grip and a shape
- Works really well in the water
- Skimboard tends to warp and peel after use
5. Wave Zone Skimboard Package – Great Skimboard for All Skill Levels
Perfect for advanced rides, the Wave Zone Skimboard Package gives you a higher weight limit and more buoyancy that anyone from a beginner through an intermediate rider can use. Giving you more float than other beginner skimboards, this is the perfect skimboard to trick ride at the shoreline and for sand skimming.
As with any Wave-Zone product, you get stickers, surf wax, and a signed note from the owner of Wave Zone. For a handcrafted and individualized skimboard, it is worth the extra cost for a skimboard that is better quality than its mass-produced competitors. And, even though this isn’t the cheapest skimboard on the market, you will definitely get a board that will last a long time that is also a great choice those that want to get serious about learning to skimboard.
With a weight limit of 130 pounds, the Skimboard Package is made of high-density level 2 PVC foam core and features double wrapped poly rails. Every board is handmade and has graphics that will have subtle variations from skimboard to skimboard making your board unique. You also get a Skimboard Bag and Hammer Surf Traction pad with each skimboard.
- Very lightweight and durable
- Fun graphics that hold up well structurally
- Has a great grip when you use it with sticky wax
- The finish starts to fall apart after continued use
Skimboard Buying Guide
What is Skimboarding?
What distinguishes skimboarding from surfing is that all the action is done near the shoreline. You start around twenty feet from the shoreline with the skimboarder waiting for a wave. When a wave is spotted, the skimboarder runs toward it. As you master skimboarding, you find that stability is key with the ability to go from sand to the ocean easily.
With skimboarding, the goal is to catch a wave and ride it back to shore, and this can happen in many different ways. As you watch some skimboarders, you may notice that they use skateboarding moves as they ride. Your skill level and the type of skimboarding you plan to do which can include hitting the waves, riding shallow water, or staying really close to shore, can determine the type of skim board you choose.
Below is a video that will help you better understand skimboarding and the great moves you can do
What to Look for in a Skimboard?
As you search for a skim board, you want to ensure that it is a durable and high-quality board that will last you a while. Here are a few questions to ask yourself before you start shopping:
- Can this board offer both balance and speed when I catch waves?
- Can the board handle the elements of the water without cracking or splitting?
- Will it last long enough to be worth the money I am spending?
When buying skimboards, always check the features of each board you are looking at taking into consideration the material, wrap, size, and design of the board. Also think about your skill, the type of beach you frequent, and as well as you weight and height. If you choose the right skimboard, it will give you many years of fun at the beach. It is also a good idea to choose the best rated skimboard brands that are known for the quality they put into their skimboards. Independant skimboard companies with a good background in the sport are also a good way to go.
Types of Skimboards
It helps if you have a basic understanding of the type of skimboards that are available before you start shopping. The following are the two main types of boards that are each used for a different type of skimboarding.
Wave Riding: Wave riding is typically what people are talking about when they discuss skimboarding. Most boards that are used by professional and amateurs in competition are wave riding skimboards. Typically, they have the same shape, but who they are created for and their actual features will differ a lot. Different options for wave riding skimboards include carbon fiber skimboards, fiberglass skimboards, and foam skim boards. All three of these boards require training and a special skill set to learn to use them well.
Flatland or Inland: Often called “woodies”, flatland or inland skimboards are typically made of wood, hence the name. Known for their toughness, they withstand obstacles like shells and rock with solid construction. Cruising skimboards and trick skimboards and the two main types of flatland or inland skimboards. Cruising skimboards are sometimes called pintails due to their curved shape and are similar to surfboard since they are ridden like a surfboard on the shoreline and riding in waves as they break.
Below is a link for more information on choosing the right skimboard.
Choosing The Best Skim Board
Manufacturers are always coming up with special designs to create the perfect mix of material and feel on the water. Which of these you should choose depends on your skill level and comfort on the skimboard.
What size skimboard do I need? Choosing the size of your skimboard should be based on how fast you want it to go in the water as well as your weight and height. Ideally, you want to find the lightest and smallest board that will fit your body since this will be the fastest skimboard to glide a good distance. Here is a good skimboard size chart to look at for proper skimboard dimensions relative to weight and size.
If you prefer to go a farther distance than worry about your speed, you want a board that is wider and longer. With the additional surface area, you can create more drag to slow down the skimboard, plus a longer and wider board will have more buoyancy that will keep the skimboard floating on the surface longer.
Your choice of skimboard should be based mostly on your weight. So, if you only weigh eighty pounds, you want a small board while those weighing 130 pounds will want a medium sized board. People weighing closer to 200 pounds will want a large size board and there are even extra-large skimmer boards for those weighing over 200 pounds.
Your skill level is another way to choose a skimboard depending on whether you are a beginner or you are advanced enough to do skimboarding tricks in the water. Needing a high degree of skill, a small board will be more flexible. Larger boards are good for those just starting out but as your skills grow you will want a smaller board. Having a smaller foot area will make it hard to control and stand on but it makes it easier to do spins and tricks. Designed for beginners, large boards are easier to control and stand on but they are also heavier and harder to spin.
How large the waves you will be skimboarding in are an important consideration in the type of skimboard you choose. On the West Coast, winds cause waves to be larger than those you will encounter on the East Coast. Along with your weight, the wave size will help to determine what type of board to get. For the shallow water and sand on the East Coast, you will want to choose a wood board. On the West Coast, foam skimboards let you easily skim across large waves and strong currents. Getting a good skimboarding session depends a lot on the waves you encounter.
The more flexible the board, the more tricks and originality you add to your skimboarding. Those new to skimboarding may find that a flexible skimboard can work against you until you master the basics.
On a skimboard, there are different areas that are important to think about. On the head of your board, you will find a curve called a rocker that can have different degrees. If a skimboard has more of a rocker, it is a great choice for use in choppier water thanks to its large upward curve. If a skimboard has less of a curve than it becomes faster making it a good choice for calmer waters.
Similar in appearance, surfboards and skimboards differ on the bottom. Surfboards have skegs or steering fins and good skimboards are flat requiring a higher level of skill to master. Overall, an experienced skimmer is able to do a wider range of stunts than a typical surfer.
Basically the nose of the skimboard, the rocker will let you know how well you can stand up in when you are in the water. The nose’s shape will keep you up and out of the sand as they are typically thinner and more rounded than the rest of the skimboard. A rocker is typically measured from the body to the tip measuring about two or three inches. If a rocker has less of a curve, it will be faster in the water. Normally an expert level or moderate level skimboard will have that type of rocker.
Also referred to as a nose lift, the rocker is what lets you control the skimboard. There are three different types of rockers.
- Constant Rocker – This refers to the curve between the back and front of the skimboard staying the same. If you use your skimboard to catch waves, a constant rocker will let you have more control on those larger waves.
- Hybrid Rocker – This is the most common type of rocker. With the bottom of the skimboard typically flat, the front and center have a slight curve.
- Traditional Rocker – The last type of rocker features a curve on the very tip of the skimboard while the rest of the skimboard stays flat.
The type of skimboarding you choose to do will decide on the type of rocker you need. Constant rockers are good for big waves while traditional rockers are good for the shoreline and hybrid rocker are good for both.
When using a skimboard on the East Coast, you should be fine with a board that has a two-inch rocker as long as you are in water that is calmer. On the West Coast, you will need a skimboard with a 3-inch rocker.
Skimboards also come equipped with pintails that can give better balance in the water or square or W-tails or square that make it easy to for you to do a range of moves and stunts due to the flexibility they provide.
On the end of your board you will find either a w-tail or pintail. Pintails are great for beginners giving them good balance when in the water. W-tails are a good choice for those that want to take their skimboarding skills to the next level by performing tricks.
Materials of A Skimboard
These boards are usually made with either wood or foam and then it is covered by traction pads or a wrap. Playing an important role in the durability and quality of your skimboard, the wrap material can be one of a couple of different kinds of material.
- Foam – The lightest material, foam skimboards or “foamie skimboards” are able to stay on the water’s surface longer. The biggest advantage of foam is that it is flexible and is a good choice when you are in choppy water.
- Wood – Stronger than foam, wood is also thinner. It easily skims over textures like sand making it versatile enough to use on land as well as along the Coast. A denser material, wood is also heavier than foam so it can break the water’s surface faster and sink easier than a foam board.
- Other Materials – Although most skimboards are made from either foam or wood, some specialty boards will use a higher end material like a fiberglass skimboard or carbon fiber skim board. This does significantly raise the cost of the skimboard in comparison to foam or wood, plus it may not have any additional features.
- E-glass – The most common material for a wrap, E-glass is also the weakest. Even though it is the least durable of the wrap material, it does have a looseness that gives you a lot of speed and flexibility. Plus, it also makes it a lot cheaper.
- S-glass or Texalium – Featured on moderately priced skimboards, S-glass comes with a lot of advantages. Giving you both speed and strength, these boards are perfect for users that go skimming on their boards often.
- Carbon – A carbon wrap is used on more expensive, high-end skimboards. Featuring a tight weave material, carbon makes the board stiff adding to its performance and speed. Carbon is also the strongest type of wrap and is perfect for use in Coastal waters.
Below are a few tips on choosing the right skim.
The winner of the roundup is the Wave Zone Diamond. Not only is it a great price , but it is also the perfect beginner board since it is more forgiving when you glide across the water. Made with high-quality fiberglass, this hand-crafted board comes with a gel coat and a high-density foam core giving you stability and toughness.
The Diamond is designed to give you more speed and less drag with the diamond tip that is perfect for wave gliding and sand skimming. Another cool skimboard feature kids will appreciate are the stickers and signed note from the owner that comes with each skimboard. With a 110-pound weight limit, the Wave-Zone Diamond is the definite winner of the Best Rated Skimboard roundup hands down.