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The Best Beginner Surfboard is the FunBoard

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Mother father and son in sea with bodyboard
Peter Cade/iconica/Getty Images
It seems that buying a beginner surfboard is the most perplexing issue for new surfers, more so than the act of learning to surf itself. That said, let’s discuss this beginner surfboard concept further. To start, the board you learn on will dictate the progress of your learning curve in the coming months. A board that is too short, too thin, or too narrow will negatively affect how many waves you catch waves and how far you can ride the wave. In addition, it will make balancing on your feet much more difficult.

With that in mind, you want a board with some length and girth. However, too much of these attributes will make your beginner board too big and difficult to handle in the water and even on the beach. So let’s take a look at how a surfer can choose a beginner surfboard that excludes the afore-mentioned negatives and includes only the most beneficial attributes to make your early sessions the best they can be. It’s easier than you think.

The Funboard

Point blank: a Funboard is the best choice for beginning surfers. A funboard includes a round, wide nose like a long board. This makes the board less apt to catch the nose in and under the water which will cause the rider to fall while turning or nose dive when taking off. Further, funboards are thick and wide like a longboard, so they will catch waves easily, stay afloat on the wave face for easier balance and longer rides. However, funboards are still short enough to offer maneuverability as you begin to improve.

Fun boards work exceptionally well in small waves and medium waves. However, as conditions become larger and more critical, funboards become, well, less fun. They are not designed for the vertical curve of heavier waves or the power of big surf.

How to Buy a Funboard

As you are looking for a beginner funboard, here are the basics you need to keep in mind. A funboard will run from:

7 to 8 feet in length

2 ½ to 3 inches in thickness

21 to 22 inches in width

Here’s some handy information to keep in mind (Write it down before you go to the surf shop to buy your board):

If you weigh 100 to 175 pounds, look for a board that is 7’ to 7’2” in length, 21” in width, and around 2 1/2 “ in thickness.

If you weigh 150 to 200 pounds, look for a board that is 7’6” to 7’8” in length, 21 1/2” in width, and around 3” in thickness.

If you weigh 175 to 225 pounds, look for a board that is 7’10” + in length, 21 3/4”to 22” in width, and around 3+ “ in thickness.

In terms of length, try to choose a board that is AT LEAST a head taller then you.

If you are buying from a surf shop, tell the salesperson that you are a beginner and you are looking for a USED fun board. Write down the dimensions you need and stay as close as possible. Why used? A used board will be much cheaper and you won’t feel as bad when you beat the heck out of it in the water and on the sand. You will be surprised at all the possible hazards that await a board even in your own house when you are not used to handling a surfboard.

Epoxy or Polyester?

If you have a choice between epoxy or polyester resin, go for epoxy! Epoxy surfboards are laminated with epoxy resin which is stronger and lighter than polyester resin, the resin used most commonly in the surfboard industry. While epoxy boards are known to be better for the environment, they are generally more expensive. However, you will find them lighter and stronger than standard polyester.

Final Thoughts

This is a quick and dirty approach to buying a beginner surfboard. There are many other aspects to consider once you advance, but as a beginner, you should only concern yourself with performance, durability, and price (always important really). You want a board that works for what you are trying to achieve. Therefore, the funboard is a functional choice. Once you get a look at all the surfboard choices, you will find much sexier looking options, but don’t be allured by their beauty and superficial thrills. They are built for more advanced surfers and will not work for you yet. You’ll be stoked you made the choice. Now go rip!

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