Penny Board vs Longboard: Which Is Better?

Your close buddies have been skating for a while, which piqued your interest in skating, making you eager to give it a trial. But then, you’re having difficulties choosing the right kind of skateboard.

Your skating pals advised you to purchase a penny board because it is compact, practical, and appropriate for beginners. On the other hand, your other pals suggested that since a longboard is more stable to ride, you should start your skateboarding career with one.

If this describes you, keep reading because we’ll discuss the differences between the penny and longboards and which is better for your skateboarding experience.

What is a Longboard?

As the name implies, these are skateboards with long and broad decks. They are usually made with flat woods and measure between 33 to 59inches long, and the deck width of most longboards falls within 8 to 10 inches wide.

Longboard
Longboard

One distinguishing feature of longboards is the utterly flat deck. Longboards do not have an upended tail or nose, unlike most skateboards and cruisers. Thus, if you see a board 50 inches in size and having a curved tail and nose, don’t be quick to assume it’s a longboard simply because of the size. It could be a giant cruiser board or skateboard.

Because of its size, which provides a broader deck for riders to stand comfortably, a longboard is fantastic for commuting and cruising long distances. It’s also very stable and durable and would be best for heavy or tall skaters with big feet. However, one downside to longboards is that they’re heavy and, thus, can’t be used to perform tricks. 

Pros
  • It offers a smooth and stable ride
  • It’s durable
  • Tall or heavy skaters can comfortably stand on the wide deck
  • Suitable for long-distance rides
Cons
  • It’s a bit pricey
  • Not suitable for advanced tricks and stunts
  • Difficult to maneuver in tight spaces
  • It’s heavy and can be challenging to carry around.

What is a Penny Board?

Penny boards are the complete opposite of longboards. They’re usually the general name for small-sized skateboards, and they’re also plastic-made. Most Penny Board decks can measure as small as 22 inches, but some can extend to 36 inches; these kinds are referred to as the longboard Penny board. 

However, Penny board, a skateboard brand, refers to boards with a concave shape, upward-curving tail, and waffle-like top surface. This surface texture provides its riders a firm grip on the deck, more reason why most skaters can comfortably ride a penny board barefoot. Because it’s made from plastic, it’s usually lightweight and handy and can be fitted into a bag pack.

Penny Board
Penny Board

Penny Boards are suitable for children skaters just beginning their skateboarding experience. Also, teen skaters can ride a penny board with a larger deck size. Additionally, their small size allows the skater to maneuver tight corners and places with them easily. 

However, just like longboards, they can’t be used to perform advanced stunts. But experienced skaters can use a penny board to practice simple street tricks. You can’t use a penny board to ride long distances because the small deck size won’t provide you with the comfort and stability needed for long rides.

Pros
  • It’s affordable
  • It’s lightweight and handy
  • Suitable for beginners
  • Allows for easy flexibility and tricks
  • It’s compact-sized and can be stored easily
  • Allows for barefoot skating
Cons
  • Penny boards are not usually durable
  • They’re not stable and can’t withstand heavyweight skaters
  • Not suitable for long-distance rides

Differences Between Penny Boards and Longboards

Differences Between Penny Boards and Longboards

Now that you know what a penny board and longboard are, let’s examine some significant distinctions between these two widely used boards. This would enable you to make a better-informed purchase decision.

Deck
Wheels
Bearings
Trucks
Purpose
Speed
Price
Penny board
Penny board decks are made of plastic, which makes them lightweight and compact. They’re also small-sized and can range from 22 to 36inches. However, because of the plastic-based material, the decks are not that durable, and the small size makes them unsuitable for long rides.
Penny board wheels are made from polyurethane, which ensures the rider has a smooth and stable ride. However, the wheel sizes are usually between 59 to 69mm, depending on the board. This small size causes the wheels to move slowly and is unsuitable for hill sliding.
The bearings for penny boards are cheaply constructed and inferior. They are not suitable for someone looking for a fun skating experience because they are extremely slow.
Penny boards have significantly smaller trucks, making them simpler to maneuver.

The trucks also have a reduced turning radius, which makes them excellent for learning tricks and weaving through traffic, crowds, or constrained locations.
Penny boards are suitable for beginners because they are lightweight, compact, and handy. This makes them easy to maneuver in tight and crowded spaces. They are not ideal for long-distance movements but can be used to commute from one park to another. They can also be used to perform simple tricks.
Penny boards are somewhat slower because they have smaller wheels that lack the momentum to move at a more incredible speed. Furthermore, their bearings are usually low quality and unsuitable for fast movement. Due to its lightweight nature, it can easily be blown off by heavy winds.
Penny boards are relatively cheap and inexpensive to purchase. With a budget of $50 to $100, you can get a quality penny board, depending on the brand.
longboard
Longboards are long broad boards with deck sizes measuring up to 59 inches. They are made from wood, such as maple, bamboo, or fiberglass, which confers their durability. The large deck size makes them more suitable and comfortable for long distances.
Longboard wheels are also made from polyurethane, providing riders with a comfortable ride along the street. The wheels are always large, measuring 64 to 80mm, and the largeness creates more momentum and stability while riding.
Longboard bearings are designed expressly for skating and are significantly faster and stronger. Some are even better for skating because they have enhanced parts like speed rings and spacers.
Longboard trucks are much more stable. This is due to the longboard truck’s reverse kingpins, which are far more stable at high and low speeds. This makes longboarding simpler to learn and use for beginners.

Longboard trucks offer more stability and can tolerate faster speeds, making them better for riding downhill, and this is because of the longer axle.
Longboards are your best choice if you desire a skateboard for commuting and cruising around your neighborhood. It allows you to ride comfortably on the board for long hours. You can also use them for downhill riding, but they can’t be used to perform tricks due to their weight.
The bearings and large wheels of longboards make them faster, and the large wheels create more momentum and maintain speed while riding. Thus, if you’re looking for a skateboard that allows you to ride at a fast pace, then the longboards would be your best bet.
Longboards might cost more because of their size and the materials used. To purchase a longboard, you should budget around $150 to $400, depending on the brand and quality.

Note: When purchasing the bearings for your board, it’s best to use the ABEC ratings as they indicate their tolerance and quality. However, it would be best if you also kept in mind that the ABEC ratings cannot tell you the lifespan of the bearings and the impact resistance.

Suppose you’re still undecided on what type of board to purchase for your skateboarding experience. In that case, you can watch this video to learn more about these two widely used skateboards.

FAQs

Is a Penny Board Easier Than a Longboard?

While a penny board might be an excellent choice for a child beginner, an average-sized beginner might find it difficult to ride comfortably on a penny board. The small deck won’t offer enough space to place the foot and ride for long hours. 

Therefore, a longboard would be easier to ride for a mature beginner as it’s broader and offers a more smooth and more stable ride.

Are Penny Boards Good for Beginners?

Penny boards are generally suitable for beginners, especially if you go for the bigger size penny board of 30 to 36 inches. Penny board’s weight and compact size enable the rider to maneuver the boards quickly. Furthermore, because the deck surface is similar to a waffle top, beginners have more grip on the deck. This way, they can ride barefoot–which can’t be done on other skateboards.

Should I Get A Penny Board or A Longboard?

This all comes down to your choice, abilities, and reason for buying. If you’re looking for a board that allows you to be more flexible, penny boards are your best bet. On the other hand, longboards would be better for experts who want to cruise around town with their skateboards. Additionally, longboards offer more stability on rougher surfaces.

Conclusion on Penny Board vs Longboard

Your ability to skateboard as a beginner might be impacted by choosing the right skateboard. As a result, it’s crucial to conduct a thorough study before selecting any board.

Beginners are frequently encouraged to use a penny board since it gives them more flexibility in learning the fundamentals of skating. However, as they gain experience, they can buy longboards, letting them go on extended journeys. 

Furthermore, having more than one type of skateboard is advised since they’re needful for different purposes. Thus, you can purchase both boards if you are not on a tight budget.

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