Bodyboards for Beginners – All Things Clearly for You

Bodyboards for beginners are specially designed foam boards. They’re a great option for individuals who are new to the sport of bodyboarding or have limited experience in wave riding.

These boards are designed with features that make them easier to handle, more stable, and more forgiving for those who are just starting out.

Here are some common characteristics of bodyboards for beginners:

Soft-Top Construction: Beginner bodyboards often have a soft foam deck (top) that provides comfort and traction for riders. This is especially useful for new riders who might not have the same level of control and balance as more experienced riders.

Wide and Stable Shape: Beginner bodyboards typically have a wider shape with ample buoyancy. This design provides greater stability, making it easier for beginners to maintain balance and ride waves.

Slick Bottom: The bottom of the bodyboard, known as the slick, is usually made from a harder, slicker material such as high-density polyethylene (HDPE). This helps the board glide smoothly on the water and enhances speed.

Leash Attachment: A leash attachment is often included on beginner bodyboards. The leash helps keep the board attached to the rider’s wrist, preventing it from drifting away in the waves.

Crescent Tail: Many beginner bodyboards have a crescent-shaped tail, which provides better control and maneuverability. This tail shape allows riders to turn and steer the board more easily.

Entry-Level Price: Beginner bodyboards are generally more affordable than high-performance models, making them a cost-effective option for individuals who are just starting out.

Soft Rails: The edges of the board, known as rails, are often made softer on beginner boards. This helps prevent beginners from accidentally catching the rail in the water, which can lead to instability.

Different Sizes: Beginner bodyboards are available in various sizes to accommodate different heights and weights. Choosing the right size ensures a comfortable and stable riding experience.

Best Bodyboards for Beginners of 2024

How do I pick the right bodyboard?

Picking the right bodyboard involves considering various factors to ensure that you choose a board that suits your skill level, body size, riding preferences, and the conditions of the waves you’ll be riding. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you pick the right bodyboard:

Determine Your Skill Level:

If you’re a beginner, look for a board with beginner-friendly features like a wide shape, soft top, and stable design.

If you’re an intermediate or advanced rider, you might want to explore boards with more specialized features for better performance.

Consider Your Body Size:

Bodyboards come in different sizes to accommodate various heights and weights. Choose a size that matches your body type for better buoyancy and control.

Identify Your Riding Preferences:

Determine whether you prefer prone riding (lying on your stomach) or drop-knee riding (using one knee for balance).

Decide if you want to focus on wave tricks, speed, control, or a combination of these factors.

Understand Wave Conditions:

Consider the type of waves you’ll be riding most often. Smaller waves require different board characteristics compared to larger waves.

If you’re going to ride in different wave conditions, consider a versatile board that performs well in various scenarios.

Check Construction Materials:

Bodyboards are made from various foam cores, such as polyethylene (PE) or polypropylene (PP), each offering different levels of performance and flexibility.

The bottom (slick) material is usually high-density polyethylene (HDPE) for speed and smooth gliding.

Tail Shape:

The tail shape affects maneuverability. A crescent tail is versatile and suitable for various riding styles.


Rails influence how the board grips the water. Soft rails are forgiving, while hard rails offer more control. Consider your skill level and riding style.

Leash Attachment:

A leash attachment is essential to prevent the board from drifting away. Most beginner boards come with a leash.

Price Range:

Set a budget for your bodyboard. Beginner-friendly boards are often more affordable than high-performance models.

Try Before Buying:

If possible, try out different boards at a surf shop or rental facility to get a feel for how they perform in the water.

Read Reviews and Seek Advice:

Read reviews from other bodyboarders to learn about their experiences with specific models.

Seek advice from experienced bodyboarders, instructors, or local surf shops to get recommendations based on your skill level and preferences.

Brand Reputation:

Research reputable bodyboard brands known for producing high-quality boards.

Remember that finding the right bodyboard might require some trial and error. Your preferences may evolve as you gain experience, so don’t hesitate to upgrade or adjust your choice as needed. The goal is to find a board that enhances your enjoyment and performance in the water.

show me bodyboard size chart?

Keep in mind that these size recommendations can vary slightly depending on different factors such as your body type, riding style, and personal preferences.

Here’s a basic bodyboard size chart based on rider weight:

< 75 lbs (34 kg): 33″ – 37″ bodyboard

75 – 125 lbs (34 – 57 kg): 37″ – 40″ bodyboard

125 – 150 lbs (57 – 68 kg): 40″ – 41″ bodyboard

150 – 175 lbs (68 – 79 kg): 41″ – 42″ bodyboard

175 – 200 lbs (79 – 91 kg): 42″ – 43″ bodyboard

> 200 lbs (91 kg): 43″ and above bodyboard

Remember, this is a rough guideline. It’s important to consider other factors like your height, riding style, and the type of waves you’ll be riding. If possible, consult with experienced bodyboarders, instructors, or surf shops for more tailored advice based on your specific needs.

Additionally, bodyboard brands often provide their own size charts on their websites, so it’s a good idea to refer to those resources for more accurate information.

What’s the difference between a bodyboard and a boogie board?

“Bodyboard” and “boogie board” are terms often used interchangeably, but there are some nuanced differences between the two:


The term “bodyboard” is the more technically accurate term for the equipment used in the water sport of bodyboarding.

A bodyboard is a smaller, foam-based board designed for riding waves while lying on your stomach, often referred to as “prone riding.”

Bodyboards come in various sizes, shapes, and materials to cater to different riding styles and wave conditions.

The sport of bodyboarding involves performing various maneuvers and tricks on a bodyboard while riding waves.

Boogie Board:

“Boogie board” is a colloquial term often used to refer to the same type of equipment as a bodyboard, but it’s more commonly used by casual beachgoers and those less familiar with the sport.

The term “boogie board” has been popularized by the brand Morey Boogie, which played a significant role in introducing foam bodyboards to the market.

Boogie boards are generally associated with recreational wave riding, lounging in the water, or playing in the surf zone. They are not typically associated with advanced wave riding maneuvers like bodyboarding.

In summary, while both terms essentially refer to the same type of equipment—a foam board used for wave riding—the term “bodyboard” is more specific to the sport of bodyboarding and the associated maneuvers performed by experienced riders. “Boogie board” is a more casual term that’s often used by people who may not be familiar with the technical aspects of the sport.

Can I bodyboard without fins?

Yes, you can bodyboard without fins, but using fins (also known as flippers) can significantly enhance your experience and performance in the water. Fins provide several benefits for bodyboarding:

Increased Speed: Fins allow you to generate more speed while paddling, making it easier to catch waves and ride them for longer distances.

Better Maneuverability: Fins give you better control and maneuverability in the water, allowing you to turn more effectively and navigate through waves.

Reduced Fatigue: Fins help you use less energy when paddling, reducing fatigue and allowing you to stay in the water longer.

Enhanced Safety: Fins can help you navigate through stronger currents and get out of potentially hazardous situations more easily.

Deeper Duck Dives: Fins can help you dive under waves more efficiently, which is especially important when paddling out through larger surf.

More Fun: Fins make it easier to catch waves and perform tricks, making your bodyboarding experience more enjoyable.

While it’s possible to bodyboard without fins, especially in calm and small-wave conditions, using fins is generally recommended for a better overall experience. If you’re just starting out, using fins can help you build confidence in catching waves and maneuvering the board. As you gain more experience and skill, you might find that fins become an essential part of your bodyboarding gear.