My kids want to learn how to skateboard, what should I buy?

The title may seem a little misleading, but what I have to say to you next is very important for your pro skateboard journey! Now, as in all things, there are many different opinions, so the following will be my opinion of some essential gear that you should and shouldn't purchase before you get your shred on!

So, first things first, you should already have a sturdy helmet to protect that skull

of yours! Before you even think about stepping onto a skateboard, the first thing to practice is safety! A bike helmet can work as you begin, but as you excel, it would be wise to invest in a skateboard helmet that will protect the back of your head, as skateboards can send you flying onto your back. If your balance is to heavy on your back trucks, a head injury can ensue. Here is a link to a reasonably priced kid's skateboard helmet. Helmets do not usually come in a one size fits all shape. You must measure your child's head with a cloth ruler or measuring tape to find a helmet that is the right fit. You can learn how to measure your child's head here.


The next piece of gear is skateboard pads.

These pads are put over the elbows and knees to prevent scrapes when falling. I wear skateboard pads often, and they may look a little funny, but they preserve my body from scrapes and bruises, which allows me to skate more! I recommend that you buy a durable pair of skateboard pads, as the cheaper pads tend to fall apart faster. Here is a good pair of skateboard pads for kids.

Last but not least, it's time to talk about skateboards! First, is the skateboard's style.


  • Penny boards: penny boards are small boards with big spongy rubber

wheels. They are great for cruising around the neighborhood but might not be suitable for doing tricks like kickflips etc.



  • Street Skateboards: made popular when riders began

doing tricks on obstacles like stair rails and large staircases. Street skateboards are commonly found in sizes: 7.75, 8, and 8.25, which correlate to the width of the skateboard.



  • Longboards: longboards do not feature curves at both ends like a street board. Longboards are great for fast travel due to their huge wheels and smooth ride.

For our purposes, it is best to learn on a street board. Street boards usually range from 100-200 dollars in price, which can become a deterrent for anyone interested in riding a skateboard. As a recommendation, be careful about buying the cheapest board possible. Target and Walmart boards are not made with quality parts when buying a board make sure that the wheels are very hard and attached to trucks that are all metal. Most kids that buy these boards end up discouraged because these boards do not roll well and cause unnecessary injuries. To aid you, we found a great article on Bam Magera's website that gives a comprehensive list of beginner's skateboards with a range of prices to fit your budget.

I hope that this post answers some of your concerns before starting the Building Steam skateboard lesson. If you have any other questions, please feel free to drop me an email at dan@buildingsteamnow.com at any time.

(925) 470-6482

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