Is Skateboarding Like Surfing?

Skateboarding and surfing look exactly the same. In both sports, the rider has a board on which they ride. But is skateboarding like surfing? There are many people who are wondering about this.

Quick Answer! The answer is yes; skateboarding is like surfing. But it’s not exactly the same. Both sports share some similarities that we’ll examine in this article.

To learn everything in a good way, ensure you read this entire article to the end. We’ll get to our topic without being late.

Skateboarding VS Surfing/ Why They’re So Similar?

You must have thought, “How could two separate sports be so damn similar?” I mean, what’s the reasoning behind it? Let’s have a look at both of the sports and see why they look so identical.


As an action and active sport, skateboarding has become a hobby, a job, and a means of transportation. You’d be amazed to know that there are more than 18 million skateboarders in 75 countries across the globe. Sounds interesting, right? This huge number makes skateboarding a global active sport.

The reason why skateboarding came into this world was surfing. Yes, you heard that right. Since surfing is done in an ocean, you need perfect waves, timing, weather, and atmosphere to do it.

And these things would keep surfers from surfing in the ocean. Since they loved surfing so much, they couldn’t wait for the perfect time to surf. 

So, they started coming up with new ideas to surf on the road. To do so, they started making boards out of wood so that they could easily run on roads. And gradually, the skateboarding era started.

So, you see, skateboarding originated from surfing, and hence it’s called sidewalk surfing as well.

How Skateboarding is done?

Skateboarding involves skating on a wooden board with four wheels attached to the bottom, which is pushed forward by gravity and the force of the foot. 

There are also a lot of skateboarders who do tricks with skateboards. Skateboarders from different countries compete in skateboarding competitions to demonstrate their skills.


A person or surfer (or two surfers in tandem) uses a board to ride the front face of a wave of water. A surfer usually reaches the shoreline by the water.

People started surfing in 1909 when it became people’s entertainment. Surfing is a little hard to do as it depends on the weather and the ocean’s waves. It is impossible to surf in bad weather or when there are bad waves in the ocean.

This is why skateboarding came into this world; you already know that, right?

How is Surfing done?

On land, surfing consists of riding the front section or face of an elongated ocean wave that usually transports the surfer to the shoreline using boards.

Surfing waves can be found along beaches, but they can also be found in open ocean standing waves as well as in lakes and rivers where tidal bores form.

Skateboarding VS Surfing/ What are the differences?

Taking a look at skateboarding and surfing side by side will help you better understand the differences between them. Let’s find out what makes them different.

1) Location

The first and most obvious distinction between skateboarding and surfing is geography. Skateboarding is done on any type of surface, including rocky, harsh, rough, smooth, and so on. On the other hand, if you want to surf, you’ll have to go to the ocean or a beach. That’s so obvious!

2) Different Boards/ Skateboards VS Surfboards:

The second big difference that both of the sports have is their boards. Skateboards are made up of wood(usually) with 4 wheels attached underneath. Some skateboards are made up of plastic as well. Surfboards, however, are made from foam and wood, with reinforced plastic used for surfing.

3) Transportation

The best thing about skateboarding is that it’s a mode of transportation. Traveling between places is possible with it. Because surfing is done in water, you cannot travel normally. You can only surf when you have time or feel like it. You can’t surf just for traveling, in short!

4) Balance

Both sports require balance. Some people believe that balancing on a skateboard is easier than balancing on a surfboard. 

This is due to the fact that surfing takes place on the surface of the water, which is unstable compared to land. In addition, it’s more difficult to maintain balance on a surfboard, unlike skateboards.

5) Risks Of Skateboarding And Surfing

Whether you do skateboarding or surfing, both have some risks associated with them. That’s a sure thing. But what risks do they both have? Let’s find out!

Risks of Skateboarding!

The most common risk in skateboarding is the risk of falling at a very high speed. Since skateboards are too fast and require a lot of skills to control, the chances of injuries like scrapes, cuts, sprains, and bruises are very common. And with the evolving era, skateboards have become electric as well.

Now, there are electric skateboards that run from 18 to 28 mph, which is way more than regular skateboards. So, the chances of having more horrible injuries are always greater when skateboarding. To learn more about the dangers of Electric skateboards, you can check out my following posts.

Are Electric Skateboards Dangerous?

Risks Of Surfing!

The most common risk associated with surfing is getting attacked by aquatic animals such as whales, sharks, jellyfish, and many others. The risk of drawing is always there as well. Usually, people who’re new to surfing tend to have problems with their swimming. They can’t cope with big waves and then end up drowning.

Even though this risk can be prevented by learning to surf well, it’s still a big risk. And you should be prepared for it already. There is also the risk of colliding with a reef, sand bar, surfboard, or another surfer. This can cause cuts, bruises, lacerations, and, in extremely rare cases, death.

The risk here is not so much the wounds and bruises as it is the potential for infections. Additionally, surfers can be swept out to sea if riptides ensnare them. It is extremely challenging to swim back to shore because of the strong riptide currents. There is also a risk to the spinal cord, eyes, and ears.

Does Skateboarding Help With Surfing?

As you know, there are a lot of similarities between surfing and skateboarding, so can surfing help your skateboarding as well? The answer is yes. Because both sports are almost the same. Even the equipment used in both of them is quite similar. Other reasons skateboarding can help you surf well include: 

  • Stances on both sports are nearly the same, so it’d be easier for you to balance.
  • Flow is the main thing in surfing that you practice in skateboarding. So, this way, you get better at surfing as well.

Because of all these reasons, skateboarding can definitely help you surf. So, now you know the difference between skateboarding and surfing. Let me now answer a few questions you frequently ask. The post will be concluded after that. Okay, then? Let’s go!


1) What is the difference between surfing and skateboarding?

Nope, it’s not! Skateboarding is typically regarded as easier than surfing due to the difficulty of riding waves. To steer, you must position yourself at the top, paddle effectively into the wave, and pop up immediately before the drop.

2) Does skating help with surfing?

Despite skating’s closeness, surfing requires a very special kind of balance that’s hard to mimic on land. You’ll see a big improvement in your balance when you get back in the water by frequently skating.

3) Which is better: skateboarding or surfing?

There may be a simpler learning curve for skimboarding compared to surfing. Catching and riding the waves is harder than surfing. In most cases, skimboarding is more challenging than surfing. Skimboarding is not suitable for surfing.

Final Words:

Is skateboarding like surfing? In simple words, yes, it is. I’ve told you about all the differences and similarities between both active sports. Also, I’ve told you about their risks. Still, if you have any questions related to this topic, you can leave a comment below. I’d be there to help you out.

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