Shortboards are short surfboards recognizable with their pointed nose, and often equipped with thruster, 3 fins. Small and easy to handle, they allow a great freedom on the wave when they are mastered. We advise you not to start with a shortboard, it will prevent you from evolving quickly, and will be more a handicap than anything else. Its small volume is very hard to take in hand. But it is this difficulty which makes all its beauty.
Many brands present boards with different characteristics and shapes. To get the perfect shotboard, these surf brands often collaborate with the most renowned shapers.
We will see together all the sub-categories of shortboards. We'll see which brands and shapers you should know. And to finish, you will be able to follow our advice to choose the board which will suit you best.
Even if they are in the same category, not all shortboards are the same. They differ by their vertical or crusing approach, their difficulty to be used, or by the type of wave to surf. We can therefore find four distinct styles of shortboards.
We will present them by size of the ideal wave to surf so that you have a better vision of their utility.
Grovellers are the best in small waves. Between 35cm and 1m of wave, the groveller shortboard is unbeatable. Shorter than a classic shortboard, it offers a better flotation. You will have less trouble keeping speed in the soft sections.
The hybrid surfboard is the perfect intermediary between high performance shortboards and boards that excel in small waves. It can be used in just about any condition, from 65cm to 2m waves. You'll be able to paddle easily, while remaining efficient in the calmer sections.
And finally, the step up shortboard is certainly the most difficult to master. It is necessary to use it on powerful waves, because it is conceived to control its speed and not to take some.
It gets its name from its utility. Step ups are used to take surfing and wave riding to the next level. The size is slightly larger than a regular shortboard, which results in a simpler paddle and a more powerful drive in committed turns.
There are countless brands of shortboards. However, a few brands stand out for their quality/price ratio, their finishing or their aesthetics. In addition to the brands, independent shapers are renowned for their work. Here is our selection of the brands and shapers we like best:
Catch surf is a company created by Goerge Arsenate. Its history is unusual. The first board was designed to be able to surf despite very crowded waters. George had the idea to make a foam board without fins. This famous board is called the "Beater" and works in all wave conditions.
More recent models are characterized by a price defying any competition while keeping a rather good quality. The "Odysea" series of shortboards is a reference for beginners.
In the mid-range, Dhd surfboards dominates. With simple and effective visuals, the brand is all about performance. The Australian Darren Handley is the founder. He has dedicated his entire life to making boards that are always more optimized. He is a true quality shaper who has made his mark as a leader in shortboards. He is one of the most influential people in the surfing world. The Pro Series collection from Dhd Surfboards is the culmination of one man's experience.
With Bing surfboards, we're getting into the high-end. With boards that can reach several thousand euros, the brand is certainly one of the best in the world. The longboard nose rider Bing "Nuhiwa" is considered the best of all time.
The creator of the brand is Bing Copeland, who started shaping in 1959. He worked with many other talented shapers. Among them are Dick Brewer and Donald Takayama. More recently, Bing has collaborated with Matt Calvani who continues to honor the brand. The flagship models are the Sunfish and the Dharma 2.0, two exceptional shortboards.
The choice of a shortboard is not to be taken lightly. Being intended for experienced surfers, it is essential to pay attention to every detail. To make the right choice, you must first have a goal.
Nowadays, there is a multitude of shortboards for all types of waves and all levels. Finding the right board can be difficult and frustrating. We present here our advice to you in order not to make a mistake when buying your board.
First of all, you need to know yourself. You have to find your ideal volume. This one is calculated according to various criteria. Your weight, your level, your age and your personal preferences will allow you to have a more precise idea of the ideal board.
To find out what your ideal volume is, we recommend that you look at other surfers with the same build, age and ability. This step provides key information when buying a shortboard.
After finding your ideal size, you need to identify the type of wave you want to ride. Each board is designed for a specific condition. For example, a wide tail will perform well in soft sections while a thin tail will take advantage of hollow waves. Try to gauge your level. Go for longer boards with a wide tail if you are not yet very good at surfing.
So many factors come into play when choosing your surfboard that it's best to talk to professionals, especially for shortboards which are more technical than other types of boards.
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