To buy a board, go to a skate shop. Your local skate shop will have the products and expertise to guide you on the whole process. Steer clear of the malls and toy stores such as Walmart, Target, and Amazon that sell crude versions of skateboards because that will be a much lower quality board. In fact, purchasing a skateboard outside of a skate shop can be dangerous. Here are a few reasons why you want to stay clear of Amazon, Target, Walmart or any other toy store:
1. Turning ability. The trucks will not react with your body weight when trying to navigate around around a skatepark. You are most likely to fall at faster speeds when you have the inability to turn.
2. Weak Trucks. The trucks are usually a low quality metal or plastic. These trucks will break and fall apart as you ride on different concrete surfaces, because they are not made to withstand the vibrations.
3. Bad Wheels. Most wheels we’ve seen at Target and Walmart are plastic and have low quality bearings. These wheels can stop at any time when skating. I’ve personally seen people ride up a ramp and come to an abrupt stop while on the transition. Most often when your mind prepares your body for a trick/maneuver, but suddenly your skateboard comes to an abrupt stop , you will fall.
4. Wrong board shape. Most often, toy stores will have low quality longboards, penny boards, scooter/skateboard, rip-stick or some other non-traditional skateboard. To many people starting out, these non-traditional skateboards may look cool and fun to ride. However, stay clear of them. They are not made for skateboarding on ramps, and you will struggle and fall much more then you should.
5. Slippery griptape. The griptape is the top sandpaper-like surface you stand on. Within only a few sessions of skating, the griptape will 100% rub off. I’ve seen some griptape rub off within one hour after purchasing it. When this happens, the skateboard is very difficult to ride because your feet will slide around, making it easy to fall and twist your ankle.
6. Heavy and Squishy Deck. The skateboard deck is the wooden part you stand on. On low quality skateboards, the deck is usually thicker and heavier, making it hard to maneuver. Also, within a short period of time the skateboard will feel soft and squishy which will have a negative impact on your ability to ollie (jump).