My favorite pass time at the beach is bodyboarding. It’s so relaxing to flow with those waves. But, can you imagine bodyboarding without having a bodyboard? Absolutely NOT. It’s great that you intend to step into bodyboarding or thinking of replacing your old bodyboard with a new one. But, you can’t just go into a shop and place an order for a bodyboard. You need to know the proper size chart of a bodyboard according to your requirement.
Many think that a bodyboard of any size would be enough for bodyboarding. But let me tell you very clearly that a bodyboard that does not fit your body height and weight is entirely useless. Let alone progressing in bodyboarding, you can’t even ride with the board. That’s why it’s crucial to know the right size of bodyboard that suits you.
Bodyboards are available in various shapes and sizes according to your requirement. As there are lots of options, one can get confused easily about which size bodyboard he needs. If you are also struggling with choosing the bodyboard for you, no need to worry at all as I will help you. You will find each and every detail you will need to know before determining the bodyboard size for you.
Before proceeding to the size chart, let me clear a fact for you which will help you buying bodyboards. People usually find two types of bodyboards at the bodyboard stores, and these are ‘bodyboards’ and ‘boogie boards’. Most of the time, people, specifically beginners, get confused about which one should be better and the difference between them. The actual fact is, boogie boards and bodyboards are the same things with no difference. However, some think that bodyboards have high quality and much expensive than boogie boards. Next time you visit the stores, I hope you won’t get confused about the difference between body boards and boogie boards.
WHAT SIZE BODYBOARD SHOULD I GET?
Whether you are buying the first bodyboard or replacing your old one, you need to consider three factors before purchasing a bodyboard. These three factors are the rider’s height, weight, and riding skill. These variables directly affect the size of the bodyboards. Before buying a bodyboard, you must have a clear idea of your height, weight, and riding style. Then only you can determine the best size of the bodyboard. Once you know all these three factors, you can check the following table and find out which bodyboard size will suit you perfectly.
|Less than 30”||60-99||13-20|
|46” or more||190-220||85-145|
I have used kilograms for weight and centimeters for height measurement. Note that 1 kilogram is equivalent to 2.2 pounds (lbs), and 1 meter stands to 3.3 feet. You can convert kilogram to pound and calculate your weight and height.
The rider’s weight and height are essential for calculating the body board’s size. Not everyone’s body shape is the same. So, everyone has their specific requirements regarding bodyboards. If we talk about taller people, they will need a longer board to compare to less tall people. Similarly, a shorter person can not ride a long bodyboard with ease. If your bodyboard isn’t compatible with your height, you will face trouble controlling and having a balance over the waves.
Weight is also an essential variable as height, which shouldn’t be overlooked. The bodyboard you would buy will have to be able to bear your weight and float over the waves. Not all boards can bear every weight. Two persons having similar height can have different weights. For this weight difference, they need to use different sized bodyboards. Usually, people with heavyweight should go for a lengthier and wider board than ordinary people. I recommend you go for a bodyboard of 1-2 inches from the table above if you have a bulky body shape. On the other hand, people with lighter bodyweight should buy a bodyboard 1-2 inches less. It will help them to balance and have a great time riding.
Another consideration while choosing the body bard size is your riding style. Many of us ignore this factor, but it ultimately leads to facing troubles and nothing else. That’s why I suggest you evaluate your riding style before purchasing a bodyboard. Generally, there are two types of bodyboard riders, and they are: drop knee riders and prone riders. Wider and long boards are the right choice for drop knee riders, while prone riders can ride with the comparatively smaller and narrower board with ease.
FURTHER CONSIDERATIONS WHEN CHOOSING YOUR BODYBOARD SIZE
You have known three factors for choosing your bodyboard size. But, there is another essential variable for determining proper bodyboard size, and that is the wave type. The wave type you are going to ride on also affects the dimensions of the bodyboard.
Well, you will get to ride on two types of waves. When you are riding o beaches that have smaller, mushy, and less aggressive waves, you should think about riding on a longer and thicker board. Some boards are manufactured specifically for smaller waves. These boards are longer and comparatively have a thicker core than other boards. The longevity and thickness of the board allow you to float effortlessly over those small waves. Also, these longer boards will give you more buoyancy and stability in the water.
As for the opposite scenario, if you are riding on a beach that has bigger and aggressive waves, it would be better if you ride with a smaller and lighter body board. Smaller and lighter body boards are not so good for floating though, it will help you quickly getting control of the board and ride more comfortably with those big and scary waves. You will get more control in the water.
Generally, a longer board is always suggested to the people who are starting this sport recently. Obviously, you can choose a board of your preference. But riding in a longer board makes it so much easier to learn balancing, technical tricks, and many more. When you feel that you have reached an advanced level and swatch your riding style from smaller waves to more giant waves, you can switch to a smaller board and practice with that.
The Easy Way
You can find the right bodyboard size with several methods. If you do not know your exact height or weight and feel lazy enough to not measure these, you can try other methods of determining body board size. These methods are very traditional, and almost every physical store follows these methods before making a body board deal with customers.
You will need to stand up and place the bodyboard end to your chin for the first method. If the board ends at your knees, then this choice would be right for you. Make sure that you are standing straight while doing this practice. The length of the bodyboard should be from your chin to your knee. This is the sign of an accurately sized body board.
In the second method, we have to put the bodyboard on the ground vertically parallel to our body. The right sized body board would end at our belly button. That means this length will be from the floor to our belly button.
These two methods are easy and lazy ways of measuring the right size of bodyboard we need. If you notice, you can’t make a purchase online if you want to follow these methods as you have to physically present at the store and measure the boards. Most importantly, the measurement comes from these two methods are not always accurate. You can have a wrong measurement, and you will realize it at the time of riding. That’s why the best way to find the correct body board size is not to take a shortcut and follow the table I have given above.
Bodyboards for Beginners and Kids
Bodyboards are slightly manufactured differently for beginners and advanced skilled riders. Also, kids have different options for choosing their body boards. These differences are mainly in the various parts of a body board. Usually, the size of the body boards, characteristics, core material, slick, and the deck has significant differences between beginner and advanced riders.
The size of a bodyboard is significant while choosing your body board- especially when you are a beginner. As you need to learn and practice with the board, you should buy the right size body board after having a clear concept of what size actually will suit you most. I already mentioned above that longer sized body boards would be the best choice for beginners. Larger body boards offer less control with better-floating features. As a beginner, with a broader and thicker body board, you can learn to getto control the board for larger waves.
Make sure the body board you are looking forward to is beginner-friendly or not. Because it doesn’t matter how much money you spend on a body board if the characteristics are not compatible with you. For the core part, it would be better if you can find an EPS core board. EPS core boards provide you enough flex as well as great buoyancy and strength. Beginners usually have a complaint during body boarding that their elbow and hip area get irritated while riding. But, the EPS core has cushioning extruded polyester foam that gently relief tensions from these areas. Moreover, EPS cores are water-resistant enough to prevent any damage due to the long time remaining in the water. As for the beginners, I would highly recommend you spend a quality amount on finding this type of body board, and you won’t regret it in the long run.
Bodyboards for Intermediates and Advanced
Choices of bodyboards for intermediates and advanced are quite different from beginners. I have discussed suitable body boards for beginners in the previous section. If you have spent quite quality time in body boarding, learned technical tricks, know how to tackle down those big waves, you are definitely in the intermediate or advanced level. As you have so much experience in your bag, you have to practice them regularly and make more progress. For that, you have to switch your body board with an upgraded and professional one.
By now, you may have known which size of body board suits you perfectly. But there are other things which you should concern about before replacing your board.
It would be helpful for you to take things to the the next level if you pay more attention of a bboard’s coreoard before purchasing one. The core often helps the rider to develop their technical tricks and riding. The core made with polyethylene foam (PE) or polypropylene foam (PP) can be your next choice for your body board. These core based boards provide more flexibility, projection, and over-all performance in cold water, although warm water can soften polyethylene foam-based boards and increase their flex. Polypropylene foam-based cores are stiffer than polyethylene foam-based cores. However, any of both core-based boards will be the right choice for advanced or intermediates as they allow you to carry out more technical maneuvers.
As for the slicks, most advanced riders have a preference for Surlyn slick over an HDPE deck. Surlyn slicks can amazingly bring back the original shape of the board once the rider removes the pressure. So, riders prefer this slick for its superior responsiveness and flexibility.
Lastly, when you found all the basic facts of choosing the right bodyboard size, don’t forget to try some waves with the new board to check if this actually suits you or not. Notice thoroughly if you are entirely comfortable while riding with the board or not. If no issue is found, you can surely stick with the body board until you feel the need for a new one.