Should you get a longboard or a cruiser board?

Is bigger always better? Maybe. But not all the time! When you’re deciding between a longboard or a cruiser board, there are more aspects you have to consider apart from the size difference. In this blog, you’ll learn whether a longboard or a cruiser board suits you better. With that, you’ll finally be able to make the right purchase.

We’ll be assuming you’re referring to a mini-cruiser in this case. From here on, we’ll cover aspects such as the size, stability, portability of each board and what kinds of tricks you can execute on them. Ask yourself what you wish to have in your board for each aspect - and soon you’ll know which board suits you better.

Deck size

longboard skateboard and cruiser board
Left to right: Cruiser board, skateboard and longboard

Here’s the most obvious difference. Longboards range between 32 to 59 inches. On the other hand. Cruiser boards can range between 22 to 30 inches. The drastic difference in size creates many differences between the two boards. Let's take a look at them in detail.

Stability

Overall, a longboard is more stable than a cruiser board. A longboard has a longer deck (and hence a longer wheelbase), larger wheels, and wider trucks. This provides added room for feet placement and higher shock absorption when rolling over cracks and crevices. 

Additionally, most longboards come with a degree of flex. Flex is a measure of how “bendy” a longboard deck is. Flex is an additional factor which makes your long cruises more comfortable compared to a cruiser board.

longboard flex
Look at that flex... Mmmmm

On the other hand, cruiser boards have close to zero flex in it. Given that these cruisers are significantly smaller, it’ll be dangerous to incorporate too much flex into the deck as this sacrifices stability. 

One last comparison in this aspect is the turning radius. With wider trucks and a longer deck, longboards will, of course, have a wider turning radius. However, with the significantly better stability, you’ll be able to lean in on your turns further. Conversely, since cruiser boards have narrower trucks, their turning radius is much smaller.

kick turn skateboard
You can do kick turns on both longboards and cruiser boards

To conclude this aspect: If you’re planning on long cruising trips and will encounter several downhills, a longboard will be your best friend. But if you’re only looking to commute within the city which takes a short time, cruiser boards may be more suitable.

Portability

Given the larger deck, a longboard is definitely heavier than a cruiser board. Both its weight and size makes it less portable than a cruiser board. A cruiser board weighs around 2.5kg, while a longboard typically ranges above 4.5kg. 

 

For this aspect, if you’re looking to only commute, a cruiser board will suit you better. For example, if you’re planning to skate from point to point in your campus, a cruiser board will be better. I’m sure you don’t want to be lugging around a large longboard to your class no matter how sick the design is! 

Tricks you can do

The shape of your deck largely determines what kind of tricks you can do. For freestyle/dance longboards like our Nahoa Longboard, you have kicktails on both ends. This lets you pop your deck to execute tricks like the Tiger Claw or 180 No Comply. With the wider deck, you’ll also be able to dance on it, moving up and down the deck performing tricks such as the Peter Pan or Cross Step. Ultimately, longboards enable you to perform more than just cruising around. 

On the flip side, cruiser boards aren’t really meant for tricks - they're meant for getting around short distances. While most cruiser boards come with a kicktail, you can’t do as many tricks given the small deck size and the lack of a nose. You can still pop an ollie on some cruiser board decks though!  

So which is better?

In my personal opinion, a longboard is better if you’re a beginner for various reasons. Firstly, it’s more stable. This gives you more confidence to solidify your foundations and build up to learn more tricks. Secondly, you won’t really be commuting in the city until you’re comfortable with skating. Jumping straight into a mini cruiser for this purpose will be dangerous. Lastly, with a longboard you’ll be able to experiment with different styles of skating before deciding what you really want to specialize in. With a cruiser board, you won’t be able to do many things other than cruise around.

If you’re already comfortable with skating around, a cruiser board will definitely be a good addition to your arsenal of skateboards! After all, it’s essentially a smaller deck jam packed with performance for you to explore your surroundings and commute.

So, if you’ve made up your mind, it’s time check out our longboard buying guide and cruiser board buying guide! Stay stoked everyone!