“Skateboards are for tricks. Longboards are for cruising, downhill racing, and freeriding. Surfskates are for surfing the street.”
SkateboardsThe primary purpose of a skateboard is to perform tricks. Skateboards are much shorter than longboards and have smaller wheels than either longboards or surfskates. Because their main purpose is to perform tricks, they have a more flexible deck, with more spring for jumps.
Skateboard trucks also only allow one range of movement: back and forth on the kingpin access. This means that skateboards have a much more limited range of motion than surfskate trucks.
Besides tricks, skateboards are mainly used for cruising because they require constant pushing wih your foot to maintain momentum.
LongboardsCompared to skateboards and surfskates, longboards are typically longer, have a stiffer deck and bigger wheels. Longboards are designed primarily for one of three styles of riding: cruising, downhill racing and freeriding (doing tricks/dancing).
They are similar to surfskates in that aspect, except they don’t have the unique front truck that surfskates do. They can only carve on flat areas in a larger arc, and don’t give the same “surfing feel”.
SurfskatesSurfskates are made to “surf on land”. What sets surfskates apart from skateboards and longboards is the special surfskate truck system.
Surfskates trucks allow the front truck to swivel from side to side, which gives riders an added range of motion, and that unique surfing feel. When riding a surfskate, you can make tight, sharp, and smooth turns that can’t be replicated on a skateboard or longboard.
The experience is similar to riding a hoverboard, where a slight shift in weight maneuvers the board, which means you don’t have to push the ground with your foot to gain momentum or turn. In addition to tighter carving, surfskates also allow you to propel the board by pumping the nose side to side.