Wake Surfing

Different Types of Wake Surf Boards

Woman holding a white and orange Brigade board

Every person is different and when it comes to wake surfing it’s no exception. So why would you be content to use the old standard board that everybody else uses? If you have considered purchasing a wake surf board make sure you choose the right board for you. To make it easy we have laid out some general board distinctions to keep in mind. 

2 Basic Styles

Surf: This is the most common board you will find and that is simply due to its high level of control. This board resembles what you might see on the beach only smaller. It grabs onto the wave easily and gives good acceleration. Of course, this board is not capable of everything and you may find that many tricks are limited by this selection. 

Skim: This board has less control and is much sleeker. As you might have guessed, many tricks are capable on this board. Skim boards are typically smaller in size than surf boards and are favored among tricksters.  

These are the two basic group however there are plenty of hybrid boards that are, well, hybrids! 

Once you have decided on your style, the next step is choosing a fin set up. While you may be tempted to skip this step, its an important factor in the stability and control of your board. Fin setups can range from 1 fin to 5, although fins are often removable giving you the option to experiment and figure out your preferences. 

Another important consideration is the tail shape. There is too many tail shape variation to review but the general rule is this: 

Wider tails: The wider tail will catch the wave more easily and provide more “push” or acceleration. 

Narrow tails: Narrow tails are more responsive to turns making them ideal for tricks and spin. 

The last consideration is Rale Design. Rail design refers to the way your board curves on the edges. This affects the way the water flows past your board. There are two major categories in rale design. 

  1. Full Rail: This is the most common rail design because it is the most user-friendly. A full rail means all the edges are on a completed curve. 
  2. Hard Rail: This design is similar to the full rail except that the curve is interrupted halfway in with a sharp line. Most commonly found on skim boards, the hard rail increases speed and allows easy breaks making tricks easier. 
  3. Hybrid: Much like the board style there exists a middle ground between these rale designs. 

Whatever board you decide to go with, remember to have fun and stay safe!