Longboarding has gotten extremely popular over the last decade so it’s time to make a list with interesting tidbits. From history to injury statistics, I picked out the most interesting longboarding facts. Or at least the most interesting longboarding facts to me.
1. Girls Get Injured More from Longboards Than Skateboards
18.8% of all longboarding injuries are women whereas only 10.7% of skateboarding injuries are women. Whoah! Honestly, this isn’t surprising considering that women longboard more frequently than skateboarding.
2. Longboarders Suffer Twice as Many Head Injuries Than Skateboarding
Longboarders suffer head and neck injuries at twice the rate of skateboarders (23.3% vs. 13.1%). This is interesting and somewhat scary. Head and neck injuries can lead to lifelong disabilities so please take safety seriously! Skaters are more likely to get injuries in their lower extremities.
3. The First Longboard Was Made in the 1940s
Preston Nichols invented the longboard in the 1940s and 1950s as an alternative to surfing. In this way, the boards themselves and skating styles resembled surfing maneuvers. From these heavily surfing-influenced boards, modern skateboarding also emerged. So in a sense, longboarding came before skateboarding.
Early longboarders would make dangerous and clunky improvised boards to skate.
4. Commercial Longboards Were Available From 1959
Makaha, Jack’s, and Hobie became the first professional longboard distributors in 1959. Of these three, Makaha was the first professional distributor. During this time, longboards were still clunky and extremely dangerous. Pads and safety gear weren’t widely available and longboard wheels themselves were clunky and easy to lose control of.
5. Someone Longboarded From Perth to Brisbane Australia
This was the original long-distance longboarding record as the distance is an incredible 3,638.26 miles. David Cornthwaite did this in 2006. Unfortunately, this record was beaten in 2008.
6. The Longest Longboard Journey is 7,555 Miles
This beat David Cornthwaite’s previous record of 3,628 miles in Australia. The longest journey was performed by Rob Thomson in 2008. He longboarded from Leysin, Switzerland to Shanghai, China over the course of 14 months.
This was actually only a smaller part of a round-the-world journey he was attempting. The transportation methods he used included longboarding, biking, and sailing. This distance is only the longboarding portion.
7. Longboards Weigh on Average 8-11 Lbs
This is just the average weight. Because size and other factors vary so much with longboards, the weight can too. Still, this is a pretty heavy board! Skateboards on average usually weigh between 7-10 lbs. I believe there is probably a bigger difference here so maybe Board and Wheels will need to do a little experiment 🙂
8. The Fastest Recorded Longboard Speed is 91.17 mph
This world record was set in 2017 by Peter Connolly. There is a video I’ll embed here so you can get an idea of how fast that really is.
Honestly, downhill longboarding is a bit terrifying. At that speed, a crash would surely be death. Amazing to watch, but I don’t want to try it myself.
9. The Biggest Longboards Can Be up to 60″ Long
Some longboards are massive and truly resemble surfboards with wheels. Mostly longboards are around 40″ in length, but there are some colossal longboards out there. I managed to find a 60 inch long longboard you can buy. That’s a big board. Rated for 280 lbs, you can find the board for sale here.
If you want to know about how to get started teaching yourself to longboard you can check out our guide here.
10. There Are 19 Different Types of Longboards
This number can be debated a bit as some of these “types” include very similar shapes of board. But still, there is a huge range of longboard types compared to say snowboarding or skateboarding. Longboards have different shapes depending on how you want to ride. There are boards for speed, carving, transport, and whatever style you want.
11. Cruisers and Longboards Have a Market Value of $112 and $105 million Annually
It has been estimated that the longboard market will increase about 28% in value by 2025 and be worth $135 million. This might be a little aggressive of a prediction, but who knows. Skateboarding is in the Olympics now.
Traditional street skateboards have the biggest share of the market currently value at $269 million. The entire longboarding market is just 40% of the size of the street skateboarding market! Wild to think about, but this might change in the future. Skaters are getting older on average and more will be looking to cruise.
12. The Best Selling Longboard is the Retrospec Zed Pintail Longboard
Everyone buys from Amazon. So naturally, we can find the best sellers of the market through Amazon sales data. It turns out that this Retrospec Zed longboard is the best seller. It is 41 inches long and rated for 220 lbs with a little flex.
The board is a throwback to the longboard styles in the 1950s when longboarding was meant to imitate surfing.
13. Electric Longboards May Be the Future
Electric longboards were first introduced in 2014 and the electric skateboard, cruiser, and longboard market has steadily risen since. The total industry is estimated to be valued at $2.4 billion by 2025, but this estimate seems a bit bullish to me. I expect the accelerated growth to taper off personally, but I’m not a market analyst. I just like boards.
14. Longboards Normally Go up to 55-60 MPH Downhill
So longboards are fast. In fact, the fastest speed recorded was 91 mph, which is insane. But, just normally longboards can reach speeds up to 55-60 mph when riding downhill. That’s normal.
When cruising longboard speeds are typically around 6 mph which is plenty fast for me. More power to the downhill longboarders.
15. Preston Nichols Invented the Longboard
Preston Nichols invented the longboard in the 1940s or 1950s in Hawaii. The actual year is slightly disputed. The longboard was just something to do when surfing was boring. The idea of longboards quickly spread through the surfing culture to California. And it is in southern California that longboarding and skating really came into its own.
16. Longboarding is a Sport
Longboarding is a sport and has different categories of competition just like skateboarding and surfing. The popular categories for longboarding competitions include downhill racing and freestyle competitions. There also are long-distance longboarders, but there are no formal competitions for this subculture of longboarding.
Unfortunately, the sport is still somewhat unknown. Skateboarding has hit the mainstream, and in a way, longboarding has too. But competitive longboarding is still largely unknown.
17. Longboarding is Illegal to Do in the Street
Bikes and longboards are not equal. Longboarding is legal to perform on the sidewalk, but it is illegal to do in the streets. Longboarders often do not have formalized laws surrounding the sport. Even if it is illegal to longboard in the street, this is rarely enforced by the police. At most you might get a warning.
18. Forty People Die a Year From Skateboarding and Longboarding
This is an average and combines both skateboarding and longboarding. I couldn’t find any split in the information so who knows which one is more deadly. My suspicion is that longboarding does some serious damage considering it is more likely to result in head and neck injuries.
19. Downhill Longboarding is not in the Olympics
Skateboarding in both street and park styles will be coming to the Olympics in 2021, but downhill longboarding is yet to be included. There is potential that it is included one day though as the sport is becoming more and more popular. Personally, I would love to see it show up as downhill longboarding is a lot like bobsledding which has been an Olympic staple forever.
20. Longboarding Burns 4-7 Calories a Minute
These numbers depend on the intensity of riding, body weight, and body composition. That being said this is super cool! It means that longboarding can be a cardio workout for some while they enjoy cruising through the city or along secluded roads.
Check out this article by Boards and Wheels if you want to read more about longboarding for exercise.
21. You Can Dance on a Longboard
Longboard dancing has caught the fascination of a small, yet dedicated and enthusiastic crowd. The freestyle type of longboarding incorporates technical board moves and skill with dance moves to choreograph music while on a longboard. This sounds intense and it kind of is. I love the aesthetic of it all and the longboard dancing videos are hard to put down.
22. You Can Ollie with a Longboard
While longboards are not designed for tricks that require popping the board, it is possible to do an ollie with a longboard. Typically, the traditional street (popsicle) style skateboards are needed for ollies and pop-based tricks. However, with enough pain and struggle, you too can manage a mediocre ollie on a longboard.
Honestly, I don’t think they are really worth the effort, but if you are interested, then check out a Braille tutorial here.
23. Longboarding is Very Popular in South Korea
Hyojoo is one of the earliest famous dancing longboarders. She lives in Seoul, Korea, and become something like an internet sensation. Because of this, longboarding has kind of shot up in popularity in South Korea. You can’t go to the Han River park without finding at least a couple of groups of longboarders (I’ve been living abroad in Seoul for the past couple years).
What is really cool is that there are so many female longboarders. I love seeing a good mix between genders.
24. The Smallest Longboards Can Be as Small as 28 Inches Long
After a bit of internet scouring and look for the smallest longboards available to buy, we found the smallest. We think. Introducing the Derringer 28″ longboard. This little guy is small and is encroaching into penny board size standards. I haven’t tried it personally, but want to. The small size looks perfect for commuting and carrying on buses or subways.
25. Longboards Can Be Expensive
If you are a beginner, you ought to buy a longboard in the $60-$250 price range. Yet, the nicer longboards can sell for up to $450. This is almost halfway to a thousand bucks! This may seem like a lot of money, but you really get what you pay for (usually). Once you get hooked on longboarding, then you can decide if the pricier longboard is for you.
So there are some fun longboarding statistics and facts for you guys. Some of these are surprising and others are outright terrifying like the fastest longboarding speed.
Honestly, many of these facts were hard to find. There really isn’t a list out there for the smallest, biggest, or most sold longboards. We had to do a little digging for the answer.
Either way, thanks for reading. Keep a lookout for more articles from Board and Wheels.
The following are the sources used for this article. Some site’s were checked for longboard listings that are not listed here.