Longboarding also known as street surfing originated in Hawaii in the late 1950s. Longboarding is a mixture of both surfing and skateboarding. How did longboarding begin? What is the difference between longboarding, skateboarding, and surfing? All will be revealed as the history of longboarding is brought to light.
Table of Contents
- 1 The Very Beginning
- 2 Initial Conceptualization
- 3 Age of Downhill and Street Surfing
- 4 Primary Development
- 5 Fall of Popularity
- 6 More Improvement in the 1970s
- 7 Individual Identity
- 8 Development in the 1980s
- 9 In 1990s the Great Improvement
- 10 Diversity of Use
- 11 Age of Mass Popularity
- 12 Current Age of Longboarding
- 13 Final Verdict
The Very Beginning
The History of Longboarding initiated in the period of 1959s. This sporting concept conceived in the womb of the surfers in Hawaii. In that time, the surfers of the Hawaii have to depend on waves and weather for surfing their board. But every day they did not find such types waves. So they want to practice something like surfing while wave does not work. This kind of thought helps them to invent the longboard.
They wanted to surf like game on the surface and from this desire the longboarding got its appearance through the formation of the skateboard. In this sense, previously the skateboard has come to the form, and then it converted into the longboard.
For getting a better understanding about the longboarding, here we are describing the step by step development of it;
In the last period of 1950 decade skateboard were considered like a kid’s toy. So they decide the skateboard must need some adjustment to make a perfect road rider.
The initial conceptualization regarding the longboard has been made by a group of surfers in Hawaii 1959-1965s. They made the smaller version of the surfing board by a piece of thick plywood and attached the truck and wheel to the wooden deck with screws. By such a piece of the small wooden pieces, they go out on the small hilly road and started their first skateboarding.
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Age of Downhill and Street Surfing
In the initial stage, when the surfers could not surf in the sea due to the rough weather or there were no waves in the sea, they wanted to surf on the street. The riders have started with downhill skateboarding first. Such way the skateboarding became popular to the surfers in Hawaii and California.
In this age, the street surfing and downhill riding were the main activities by this initial skateboard. Gradually, they developed the construction of the skateboard for better roll over the street and started to get the better experience on the street surfing and downhill riding.
Progressively, the skateboarding was popular to the surfers. In that time short skateboard like Penny Boards was so popular. In the 1960s, some companies have started the manufacturing of the skateboard as the demand created on the market because of the popularity of it in the California coastline.
In this way, the first exhibition of the skateboard was held in 1963 in California and a TV show for promoting these boards. From that time, the board became more popular to the surfers for tricks making. Now they can ride it on the ground surface. They don’t need to wait for wave or weather. Day by day it becomes extreme sports instrument among the America‘s youth.
Fall of Popularity
The users were so glad about the skateboard, as they are able to do the street surfing. However, the boards came with metal and clay wheel as well as not so stable one. Even such kind of wheel was not safe for the surfers. Many riders injured by the skateboard when they were trying to do some tricks or willing to go fast riding.
These kinds of initial skateboards were not strong enough and durable. Kid’s parents were preventing their child from a ride on it. Due to such demerits, they have lost the popularity for the time being in the sixties’.
More Improvement in the 1970s
The 1970s were the remarkable age for developing the skateboard and longboard. In this period, a group of longboard riders improves their technique to produce boards you can drive them easily. Some like-minded board riders improved the technique of producing skateboard and longboard. They also were highlighted in the Skateboarder magazine entitled ‘Cult of the Longboard’ in 1978.
Here, they referred the longboarding as the form of self-expression. They invented the polyurethane wheel in this stage for the betterment of the skateboard and longboard. Though this period was the so important for improvement of the skateboard and the board has got the improved quality, the popularity was not reached to the peak.
The longboard and skateboard have got their own identity in the period of 1970s. Because of the polyurethane, the wheel comes with the skateboard; it provides more traction and performance. In this period, the boards were produced as long one than the small size skateboard.
Such a size transformed the skateboard into the longboard; subsequently, both the boards have got their own identity as skateboard and longboard. At that time, the purpose of the longboard was to ride on the street and cruising. On the other hand, the major purpose of the skateboard was the tricks making.
Development in the 1980s
In this age, the skateboard and longboard have been running side by side with different purposes. The longboard of this period is quite different downhill longboard that was initiated at beginning. Here, the board is individual in respect of size and shape. Though the longboard of the 80s are different and have the own identity, they are around the same in size and shape of the skateboard of the same period.
However, the longboard was with the big size wheel of polyurethane that made the cruising more smooth and comfortable. This longboard was like a mini longboard within the size of 55 to 76 cm. The users did like this longboard because of smaller size as it was easy to carry and suitable for keeping in the locker. They can also carry the longboard easily due to the lightweight and tiny size when they do not use.
In 1990s the Great Improvement
The longboard has got the most remarkable up-gradation in the 1990s. Before the company Sector 9, no longboard was produced in full of commercial basis. It was mid-1990s, the Sector 9 started the producing the longboard commercially. So, the longboard has got the huge popularity and extensively use of it.
In this period, a revolution has happened in respect of the longboard as the company introduced the reverse kingpin truck for the longboard. This kind of truck has made the longboard more responsive and maneuverable. Users can easily control the board and get stability from that time.
The age of online has initiated another landmark in regard to the longboard in the 90s and that is the community making. There were various communities of the longboard users have created through the Internet, and they started to share the views regarding this carrier.
They exchange the tricks, parts, and material quality as well as the ideas of manufacturing the longboard. By this process, the longboarding has got the more popularity and developed extensively in the age of 90s. So, in this period, history of longboarding hugely enriched with all its aspects.
Diversity of Use
The riding style of the longboarding has improved day by day. At the beginning, the longboard was used in the limited field of downhill and cruising. In 2000s the longboard is wide popular and well-accepted riding equipment among the young and sport lover peoples. Gradually, the longboard has used for the diversified purpose. Now different types of riding style are natural with the longboard.
Besides the downhill and cruising, the longboard has been using for carving, free riding, sliding, freestyle riding, etc. You can also make various tricks by a longboard. The Ollie and flipkick are the most popular tricks you can do by a longboard. In this way, the longboard is very much diversified sporting item today.
Age of Mass Popularity
In 2010, the longboard is mass popular. People have been using this apparatus for various purposes. The city touring by a longboard is quite popular. Users were easily traveled from one place to another in the city easily and comfortably as the alternative of the natural transport.
Using for college commuting is another field of using the longboard in this period. The young adults made different tricks in the college ground by a longboard. They use to partake in the race with this carrier, and this is the most prevalent riding in 2010s. So, in this period, the longboard is used for traveling and cruising as well as amusement purpose.
Current Age of Longboarding
The longboard popularity is wide spreading in the current age. Now it is technically more advanced. All finest quality materials are used in the longboard today. The electronic longboard is also available on the current marketplaces. There are huge diversifications in the use of longboard. The popularity and acceptance of the longboard have dramatically increased in this age.
Most of the young adults have been spending their time with a longboard for amusement, sports or cruising. A very big professional class has been made in respect of riding the longboard. Day by day, it is increasing the new users. Today manufacturing longboard is the huge industry. Business and marketing in the longboard industry are running in a big competition.
Now it is widely appearing in the sports and leisure magazine as well as broadcasted on the television. As a result of more exposing, many new people are engaging every day in this industry. So, among the current generation, longboarding is a quite natural amusement and the recreational event today.
In conclusion, the term history of longboarding is an academic topic today, as the use of longboard is widely spreading among the young generation. Because of the increasing demand of longboard, its technical aspects are improving rapidly. Now users can choose the longboard from a huge variety of stock. The manufacturers have been upgrading its various technological features along with the good-quality deck and truck materials. The wheel and bearing are supplying more riding capabilities and smoothness. In this regard, the history of longboarding is glorious today.