Anatomy Of A Skateboard

Understanding the anatomy of a skateboard gives you insight into the safety and skill level required for any skateboard you might consider purchasing. If you’re stumped on which skateboard to buy, you’ve come to the right place. Here, we break down the anatomy of a skateboard, so you can consider all you need to know before buying your first shredder. 

Getting Back to Basics 

Polyurethane skateboard wheels are classified by size and durometer. The size of the wheel determines:

  • the speed range while skateboarding 
  • the distance covered while skateboarding 

The durometer represents how soft or firm the wheel is. Soft and hard wheels serve the following purposes: 

  • Soft wheels offer the rider a more substantial grip over rough terrain. 
  • Hard wheels give more control for landing purposes. 

The wheels are of no use without skateboard bearings, which allow the wheels to rotate and make the skateboard move. Skateboard bearings are:

  • made from steel and sized to fit the internal diameter of the wheels 
  • usually one-size-fits-all, making it easier for you to adjust your wheels as needed 

Decks, Griptape, and Trucks 

Next up is the skateboard deck. The deck is composed of woodpiles that form to make the board itself. Based on your personal preferences, board sizes and shapes vary to meet your needs. 

Next in line, we have the griptape; this is the material responsible for allowing the rider to gain substantial traction to the deck. Traction is necessary to complete tricks like ollies safely. Griptape is made from silicon carbide or aluminum oxide. The latter is cheaper as it maintains a shorter grip life. 

Equally as important are skateboard trucks, those funky metal objects located at the bottom of the board. The aluminum metal trucks make it possible to turn while keeping the wheels connected. 

Let’s not forget the riser pads, the plastic or rubber pads that create space between the deck and the trucks. Why put space between them? Extra space is necessary to prevent wheel bite and to lessen the impact, avoiding pressure cracks. 

Handy Dandy Hardware

Lastly, we have the skateboard hardware. The hardware is composed of nuts and bolts that put everything together to form the skateboard itself. These miscellaneous pieces align the trucks and riser pads to the deck. 

The next time you’re in the market for a skateboard, look to this anatomy lesson to guide you in your search for the perfect skateboard. 

Leave a comment