How to Skimboard
So, you want to learn how to skimboard. There are three basic kinds of skimming: sand skimming, wave skimming, and flatland skimming. Read on to see each type defined and explained.
Sand skimming involves running parallel along the shore and dropping the skimboard into the shallow water where it meets the sand. Then the rider runs onto the board and rides it along the shore. Since riders are in very shallow water the ability to swim is unnecessary. Balance is the primary skill required, so if you have good balance you’ll probably be good at sand skimming. Long, flat beaches are best for sand skimming.
The following video shows how to get on and off a skimboard using examples of both sand and wave skimming:
Wave skimming involves running into the water from the beach. Instead of running parallel to the shore, the wave skimmer runs perpendicular to the shore still dropping the skimboard where the water meets the sand. Then you run onto the board, but instead of riding it along the shore you ride it out to the breaking waves, turn the board, and ride the wave back into shore similar to surfing or boogie boarding. Beaches with a steep slope before the shore break are best for wave skimming.
The following video demonstrates expert wave skimboarding:
Flatland skimming involves performing skateboard-like tricks where the water meets the shore. People who enjoy skateboarding and/or snowboarding usually enjoy flatland skimming because of the similar skills required. Many skate and snow boarders prefer learning flatland skimming first because sand and water are more forgiving if you fall.
The following video shows some expert flatland skimmers:
Note: These videos aren’t an endorsement for any particular product, store or brand.
Skimboards are made out of wood, foam, fiberglass, carbon, or a composite of those materials. In general, wood boards are the least expensive.
In addition to the skimboard, other equipment you may want is wax for traction, traction pads and arch bars (may or may not come with the traction pad) also for traction, and a bag to protect the skimboard from damage.
I hope this introduction to skimboarding inspires you to try one or all of the different types of skimboarding.
To many joyful beach experiences!
— Lisa Dworkin