Skateboarding has undergone many evolutions. The basic design came from shaped planks that looked like mini surfboards. The development of the designs resulted in the skateboard with two kick-tails that we see today. But still there are several types of skateboards aside from the aforementioned design. There are mini-cruisers, old school designs, off-road skateboards and the longboard.
Longboards are skateboards designed to go downhill or cruise efficiently in smooth or rough terrain. Compared to regular skateboards, longboards are faster, longer and heavier. The general consensus is that it’s easier to ride on a longboard than a skateboard. They normally have no kick-tail but there are some versions which have them. Usually, longboards go downhill only, like how the early skateboards did. Their tricks are purely flatland unlike those on regular skateboards that can do flips, grinds, airs and drops. But there are also several longboarders who can do mini airs using pools and ramps, wall rides and manuals and even grind ledges. Some longbarders can even flip their boards, but the method is different from those on skateboard tricks.
A longboard with kick-tails can have popping tricks and grinds similar to what a skateboard can. Although skateboard tricks on longboards can be done, the main specialty still revolves around speed. The boards are faster than a skateboard because they have a longer and wider base and most of all, and they have bigger wheels. Most skateboards use polyurethane wheels, a material that is tough and light. It has enough grip but also offers a bit of slide on any surface. Another thing that separates them the most is the layout of the trucks. Longboards are more maneuverable thanks to their reverse truck layout, while the design of the skateboard truck hasn’t changed since the early days. Most skateboards are made from Canadian maple, but longboards can be produced from fiberglass, carbon fiber, bamboo plies and other materials.
Longboards are made to last longer than skateboards and because of this, they are also priced significantly more. When compared, the two can be very different, but what they evolved from was the same. They both came from skateboards that were made to go downhill.