So you decided to pick up surfing? Fantastic! It’s such a rewarding activity. You get to enjoy the sun, beaches, and the blue ocean. Not to mention that spectacular surfer body you may get after a while. We are guessing that you already had a couple of first surfing lessons and loved riding the waves. Now it’s time to up your game and search through the best surfboards for beginners to get your first equipment.
Choosing the right surfing equipment is often a challenging process. The market is full of great products. But how to get the one that suits your current needs? Nobody is born a pro. You will suck at surfing, at least at first, if not for your entire ocean adventure. But it’s always better to suck on the right board. It’ll help you get better faster, and you won’t risk injuries. You’ll also have a lot more fun. Check our list of 13 best surfboards for beginners to understand your options. Oh, and, if you want to record your endeavors, take a look at our selection of best GoPro accessories and GoPro alternatives.
How to Choose the Best Surfboard for Beginners
Buying a surfboard that fits your surfing level can save you from a world of frustration over the lack of progress. But what features should you pay attention to, to get the right product?
Volume measures the total amount of space occupied by the surfboard. It’s usually given in cubic liters and varies significantly depending on the board’s size. The number of cubic liters gives us a realistic idea of how floatable your surfboard will be. More “buoyant” boards float better, giving novice surfers a very much needed extra stability. The best surfboards for beginners always come with a large volume. This is because inexperienced surfers need an extra push to steadily float on water. As a general rule, a beginner should be looking for a volume that is similar to their body weight. In other words, if you weigh 170 lbs, you should be getting a surfboard with a capacity of around 70 liters. More advanced surfers can quickly lower that limit, though.
Surfboards’ length usually varies from 6′ to 9′. An average adult should start from 8′ or 9.’ A child or an adult on a smaller side can begin with 6′. Generally, the longer the board, the easier it’s to catch waves. Large boards are wide and come with a rounded nose and tail. It’s easier to stand on them and paddle through the water. They also make it easier to smaller, weak waves that are the best for the beginners.
In general, volume corresponds with the length. The longer the board the higher volume. Knowing that will save you a lot of time when buying a surfboard online. Contrary to length, the volume isn’t always provided as a measurement. But once you understand the correlation, you’ll be able to judge the board just by seeing how long it is.
Most novice surfers hesitate between buying a foam surfboard and a “hard” fiberglass board. Most professional and advanced surfers use the fiberglass boards. They do that for a variety of reasons, including the size of the board, its performance, and esthetics. On the other hand, foamies are usually recommended for novices.
Foam surfboards are made from high-density foam with a slick plastic base. They often have plastic fins, which are softer than regular surfboard fins. Contrary to hardboards, they are stable, lighter, and less prone to injure people. They also don’t need regular waxing for traction and are cheaper. Still, it doesn’t mean you should completely reject the idea of buying a hardboard. After all, they are very cool. And surfers were using them long before anyone came out with an idea of foamie. You just need to know what you are signing up for.
We won’t tell you how much you should spend on your surfboard. But surfing isn’t a cheap hobby, to begin with, and gets more expensive as you upgrade your equipment. Keep in mind that you are just starting your adventure with surfing. You’ll be making mistakes, and your equipment will pay for them. The best surfboards for beginners are fine-quality products that won’t ruin your budget. Those boards aren’t meant to stay with you forever. After all, you will stop being a novice at some point.
Wavestorm is one of the recognized soft surfboard brands in the United States. It’s a perfect beginner board – lightweight and buoyant. Novice surfers find it stable and secure in the water. It’s also very affordable. You can get a new one for around $200. Not to mention that it comes in a variety of vibrant colors.
Wavestorm fits nicely in the category of long, wide, foam boards. It’s very floatable, easy to paddle, and catch waves. The main body has an EPS core with a 3-stringer system for additional stiffness and durability. It comes with three plastic fins and a traction pad at the tail. The board weighs barely 11.5 pounds and has a large volume of 86 liters. At the 22.4”, it’s also quite broad, which is perfect if you are just learning how to get on your feet.
What We Love
You can’t go wrong with Wavestorm. It’s a perfect first board, and nobody will blame you for buying it. It will help you to learn the ropes without straining yourself or your budget.
- Well-recognized brand tested by generations of surfers
- Affordable and can be bought on the second-hand market, too
- Fits very nicely in the category of long, wide boards perfect for first-timers
- Light and durable with tail pad for extra traction
- It’s a beginner board and everyone around you will know that.
Rock-It 8′ Big Softy Surfboard
Rock-It Big Softy is an 8’ foamie that perfectly follows the rules of being broad, long, and floatable. Its core comprises an EPS foam surrounded with fiberglass for enhanced durability. Two stringers add extra stiffness, while the soft top layer ensures safety.
Rock-It truly has all features of the best board for beginners. At the volume of 81 liters and the width of 22.7’’, the board is easy to paddle and stand on. Well-shaped and buoyant, this product makes it very easy for you to catch small gentle waves perfect for novices. In addition, it comes in an array of colors from bright yellow to light blue. Oh! And you can get some of the models with “sea camo” stripes to deter sharks.
What We Love
Rock-It Big Softy is environmentally friendly. The whole core is recyclable in an effort to make surfing sustainable.
- Floatable and easy to navigate on smaller waves
- Has a soft-top which makes it safer in case you get hit by your board
- Quite affordable – can be bought for approximately $300
- Recyclable and environment-friendly
- As with most of large beginners boards, Big Softy might be difficult to transport.
South Bay Board Co. Premium Surfboards for Beginners (404)
South Bay Board makes high – quality products for beginner surfers. They are easily found on Amazon, where they sell a wide range of surfing-related goods. Their Entry-Level Series of Soft Top Surfboards is one of the novices’ best choices. The boards are durable, large, and have an extra-wide tail to add stability. There is also a rubber tip at the very back to hold on.
The board has a volume of 86 liters and can support riders up to 260 lbs. It has a double concave bottom deck that helps to direct the water to the fins. You also get a basic rocker to prevent pearling. The board’s core is made of EPS foam and has three stringers for maximum stiffness.
What We Love
South Bay boards are a solid product for beginners. It comes with everything you need to start surfing on your own.
- A big, wide foamie that has all a novice may need
- Comes with an extra tip at the tail to hold on
- Comes in an array of colors
- You can get a new one for approximately $300-350, which is affordable for surfboard
- Might be difficult to transport if you don’t own a car.
BIC Sport G-Board EVO (CU)
You must have already noticed that the best surfboards for beginners tend to be unfashionable. Well, G-Board EVO, is a rare exception. While it may not be as cool as some more advanced boards, it comes in a trendy array of colors and exciting design.
But G-Board EVO is more than just a stylish look. This 8’ board is very floatable and soft. At 69 liters, its volume is high enough to carry you easily. The board’s rocker is a tad stronger than in other foam boards. It allows you to better and quicker execute maneuvers. On top of that, EVO’s foam is reinforced with two stringers. It makes the product sturdy but a tad lighter than the ones with a three-stringer system.
What We Love
Simple, buoyant, and stylish – this board has it all.
- It’s a comfortable broad 8′ with a large volume
- Stylish for a novice surfboard
- 2-stringer system makes the product comparatively lighter
- Comes with thruster three fins for maneuverability and stability
- It’s on the pricier side with cost getting closer to $400
Surftech Softop L2S (CU)
Surftech Softop is another unusual among the best surfboards for beginners. It comes from a well-known producer, and despite its name, it’s almost a hardboard. Layers of polyester resin and fiberglass cloth surround Softop’s foam core. But it has an extra soft outer layer. Because of that, the board performs like a regular surfboard. But, it’s safer during a collision and more durable.
With a sturdy, maneuverable construction comes an array of colors and sizes. The boards are available from 7’6″ to 12’0″ in length. You shouldn’t have any problems with finding one that suits your weight and esthetics. Oh, and since the board has a soft top, you will never have to worry about waxing.
What We Love
You get the safety and comfort of a soft board combined with the hard board performance.
- Multiple sizes and color
- The structure that combines qualities of hard boards and soft boards
- Extra durability
- No need for waxing
- Comes with fins ready to surf
- At $700-800, this is lovely board might be too expensive for first-timers.
Giantex 6′ Surfboard
At 6’, Giantex soft board is smaller than what we have been recommending. Because of that, it won’t work out for most adult first-timers. But it’s a fantastic product for children learning to surf. The board is light, sturdy, and comes with thruster fins. Since it’s made of foam, it also protects children well from any potential injuries.
Giantex 6’ has vivid design blending yellow and blue patterns. The board has a traction pad at the tail to provide extra stability. You also get a free leash and removable fins, which saves you plenty of time figuring how to fit the board in the car. Just follow the attached instruction to learn how to connect them correctly.
What We Love
This lovable foamie is a great product for children who often physically cannot handle longer boards.
- Great for lighter surfers and children
- Comes with a free leash
- Removable thruster fins and smaller size make it easier to transport
- Very affordable
- Has charming colorful design
- Larger beginners may have problems floating on this board.
California Board Company Surfboard 8′
It’s hard to describe this board other than beautiful! Spectacular wood graphics make it look like an old school wooden surfboard. But in reality, it’s a foam top perfect for novice surfers! Its design can trick almost everyone.
California Surfboard 8’ comes with a removable thruster system. It also has a traction pad and IXPE/XPE deck skin for better stability. You won’t have problems to stand firmly on this product while catching your first waves. And think about who stylish you will look doing that!
What We Love
There’s no way you won’t fell in love with the way this surfboard looks.
- A large volume that can support up to 225 lbs
- Comes with removable fins
- You get a free leash
- Traction pad and special dec skins give you a better grip
- Affordable at around $300
- It’s a large board so even with removable fins, you may have problems transporting it.
Liquid Shredder 70 FSE Soft Surf Board
If you seek something smaller than a classic longboard, this wide 7’ foamie will be perfect for you. Liquid Shredder 70 FSE is is one of the best surfboards for beginners available on Amazon. This hand-shaped board can carry up to 140 lbs and is ideal for light novice surfers and children.
To ensure safety, 70 FSE comes with an outside layer of soft, colorful foam. It’s there to protect you and people around you from injuries in case of collision. The board also has an anti-slip texture for the so-needed extra grip. Besides, since it’s made of foam, you won’t have to worry about waxing. You just need to store the product correctly, and it’ll stay with you for a long time.
What We Love
The surfboard comes it an pink/red color. If you plan to buy it for your kids, it will make them well noticeable on water.
- Comes with removable thrusher fin system
- Perfect for lighter beginners
- EZ-Seal rubber fin system seals prevent water from entering the board
- Comes with a 90 Day non-Commercial use Warranty
- You have to buy a safety leash separately.
South Bay Board Co. Beginner Surfboard 8′ Guppy
Guppy is another great surfboard from South Bay Board. It has the shape of an 8’ longboard that can float users up to 180 lbs. The board comes in quirky blue & white stripes on top and white bottom. You can also get a pink version.
Gappy is 3” thick and reinforced with two wooden stringers. It gives novice surfer more reliable support and makes pudding easier. Moreover, 3’’ rounded rails make the board very floatable and extra stable on small waves. This feature is exactly what you for your first days of surfing.
What We Love
This board will give you a very solid feeling under your fit. You will feel safe and comfortable while catching your first waves.
- Comes with an 8′ long leash
- Extra handle for easy carry
- Removable thruster system for better transportation
- Strip pattern is great for kids, but older surfers won’t find it very stylish.
Wave Bandit EZ Rider Surfboard (CU)
This fabulous 7’ surfboard comes with rounded rails that make it steady and secure on the small waves. Foam core ensures that the board is light but also safe during collisions. Two maple wood stringers reinforce the skeleton, adding extra durability and stability. In other words, EZ Rider has everything you need from the best surfboard for beginners.
Not only novice surfers appreciate the quality of EZ. The board is a favorite of Ben “Gravy” Graeff. This well – recognized surfer, vlogger, guitarist knows his way around the waves. If he enjoys using EZ Rider, so will you.
What We Love
EZ Rider’s design hides a quirky surprise. The top of the board comes in elegant if slightly dull white. But once you turn the board around? Pineapples! Dozens of sunglasses-wearing pineapples. That’s what you call radical graphic!
- Comes with a large volume of 76 liters
- Removable thruster fin system
- Extreme bottom skin graphic
- Doesn’t require a tail pad for extra grip
- You’ll need to put on the board some wax for surfing.
Paragon Surfboards Retro Noserider Longboard
This sleek 8’ surfboard comes in a retro shape resembling the longboards of the 1960s. With its 50/50 rails and wide square tail, the board effortlessly yet steadily glides across the waves. A single bottom concave for extra speed. At the same time, the chic design grants that you are the most fashionable first-timer on the beach.
Retro Noserider is very durable yet lightweight. A 60oz fiberglass cloth surrounds its core to provide strength, flex, and waterproofing. The board is very buoyant and can float up to 250 lbs. This should be enough for most surfers. But if 8’ is too small for you, you can always buy Paragon Surfboards 9’ version.
What We Love
Retro Noserider features everything a long board needs for a fraction of the price other producers offer.
- Durable and stable
- A real hardboard with a stylish design
- Comes with 9″ center fin
- A large volume good for novices and heavier surfers
- Affordable for a longboard
- It’s not a foamie so being hit by it may hurt.
Wavestorm 7ft Classic PINLINE Surfboard (CU)
Here is another excellent product from Wavestorm. The 7′ Classic Pinline Surfboard is a very affordable solution for novice surfers. It features an EPS core reinforced with three stringers. The top of the board is covered with foam for extra softness and safety. You get it with a completed fin system and an additional traction pad for a better grip. It has everything the best surfboards for beginners need.
Like it’s bigger, 8′, sister, the 7′ classic surfboard is one of the best-selling & performing boards in the US. It’s light, soft, and easy to handle. But contrary to 8′, this product has less volume and is better suited for lighter surfers. It’ll help them to enjoy the ocean in a way a more massive board never could.
What We Love
At $200 you get a high-quality board for a very affordable price.
- Perfect for lighter surfers at the volume of 70 liters
- Durable, sturdy, and soft
- Comes ready to surf with fins, traction pad, and a leash.
- No need to wax
- Beginner surfers on the heavier side might need to look for something else.
THURSO SURF Aero Surfboard
Last but not least, on our list of best surfboards for beginners is THURSO SURF Aero Surfboard. This 7’ foamie will be excellent for any novice surfer who looks to get into the water fully equipped. Aero comes with an adjustable thrusher system and recyclable leash. If you suddenly fall off the board, its outside foam layer will protect you from injuries. Reinforced EPS core grants stability and durability. You’ll find getting to your feet on this board very easy.
Aero Surf has been highly praised for the easiness with which it catches the waves. It’s almost effortless and saved more than one beginner from an ocean of frustration. Despite having a foam top, the board features a traction pad to improve your hold. But, you may also need to add a bit of wax now and then since the slick top doesn’t always provide enough grip.
What We Love
To make you feel even more comfortable and safer, THURSO SURF guarantees 100 percent satisfaction. If you have any issues with their board, they are ready to refund you or replace the product for free.
- Comes equipped with the removable tri-fin system, a traction pad, and leash
- Floatable and well balanced
- Foam top reduces the risk of injuries
- Comes with 100 percent warranty
Needs to be waxed occasionally for better traction.