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How to Choose a Wakesurf Board & Wakesurf Size Chart

Wakesurfing has blown up in recent years, providing another awesome way to play on the water. With slower speeds than wakeboarding, wakesurfing is often more beginner-friendly, and doesn't require that picture-perfect glassy water either. With a new sport comes a new board, with tons of options available for all different types of riders. From surf style to skim style, legth option and shapes - choosing the right wakesurf board can be a imposing task. That's why we've broken it down to the basics, helping you choose the board that will help you have the most fun on the water. 

Shapes of Wakesurf Boards

Wakesurfers span a wide array of shapes in order to accomodate for different riding styles and ability levels. In general, wakesurf board shapes come from the surf and skimboard worlds, and tend to fall into 3 general categories: thruster style surf shapes, skim board style shapes, and "hybrid" shapes that combine the two.

Surf Shape Wakesurf Boards

These shapes are often reminiscent of surf shortboards but in a smaller package, with a directional shape and fish or square tail (but not always). These boards come in a wide variety of materials, lengths, and configurations. Surf style wakesurf boards are usually the largest in size and total volume. Surf style boards often have a lot of fin options, helping riders tighten up the on-water feel and to generate power and speed to pump the wave. The added volume of surf style boards helps them stay fast and on the surface.

Skim Shape Wakesurf Boards

Smaller in size and with less buoyancy, skim style wakesurf boards are made to be more playful in the water. They also have smaller fins and fewer bottom (hull) features, creating a board that is slippery and borderline rowdy on the water. Unlike surf style boards that track up and down the face of the wave, a skim board wants to spin, slide, and do anything but stay on the straight and narrow!

Hybrid Shape Wakesurf Boards

Just what you might imagine: a mix between surf and skim. There are a huge variety of hybrid shapes, but skim style shapes equipped with surf fins and surf style shapes with smaller skim fins fall into this category, too. The goal of these boards is to combine the playfulness of a skim board with the power of a surf board.

How to Choose the Right Size Wakesurf Board?

Wakesurfers are measured in feet and inches like surfboards. There are no strict length recommendations, however, rider weight and wake size offer good guidelines. Other factors that influence size are the shape of the board, rocker, and nose & tail shapes. Below is some information that will help you decide between sizes.

Bigger wakesurfers have more surface area and more float, which means they work well for heavier riders. If you are riding behind a boat that throws a smaller wake, choose a bigger board. Larger wakesurfers move more slowly through the water and are easier for beginners to learn on.

Smaller wakesurfers are more maneuverable, spry and faster on the wave. These are an excellent choice for more advanced riders and lighter weight riders. Big wakes will support use of a smaller wakesurfer.

Wakesurf Board Size Chart

Click your board size to shop

 Rider Weight Surf Style Skim Style Hybrid Style 
 Up to 110 lbs Up to 4'  Up to 4'  Up to 4'
 100 - 170 lbs 4' - 4'8" 4' - 4'4" 3' 9" - 4' 8"
 150 - 200 lbs 4'8" - 5' 4'4" - 4'10" 4' 8" - 5' 3"
 190 - 250+ lbs 5'+ 4'10"+ 5'+

Wakesurf Board Rocker

Wakesurf board rocker
By setting the board on a flat surface, looking at the side of the board, you can see that the tip and tail will rise off of that surface - this is rocker. Rocker on a wakesurfer is similar to on wakeboards or skis and snowboards. More rocker will make your wakesurf board to be slower and tend to plow through the water but react more dramatically with the wave. Less rocker makes the board faster on the wake and give you a smoother feel.

Wakesurf Board Rails

The rails are the edges of your wakesurf board. The design and shape of the rails affect the way that the board moves through the water, and how it turns. Thinner rails bite into the wave more, offering turning precision - they are quicker and less forgiving. Thicker rails are slower and more forgiving. Wakesurf board rails

Wakesurf board rails can be "hard, "soft" or "blended." Hard rails mean that the board has an abrupt edge. This gives the board more responsiveness and speed, which is great for more advanced riders. Soft rails, meanwhile, have a somewhat rounded edge. This is also sometimes called a full rail. This makes the board more consistent and stable, great for beginners. Blended rails incorporate both.

Wakesurfing Boat Setup

Now that you've picked out the perfect wakesurf board, it's time to go out and shred! If you're not sure what your next steps are, check out our guide to wakesurfing boat setup and towing speed.

This is evo. We are a ski, snowboard, wake, skate, bike, surf, camp, and clothing online retailer with physical stores in SeattlePortlandDenver, Salt Lake City, Whistler, and Snoqualmie Pass. Our goal is to provide you with great information to make both your purchase and upkeep easy.

evo also likes to travel to remote places across the globe in search of world-class powder turns, epic waves, or legendary mountain biking locations through evoTrip Adventure Travel Trips. Or, if you prefer to travel on your own, check out our ski & snowboard resort travel guides and mountain bike trail guides.


Still have questions? Please call our customer care team at 1.866.386.1590 during Customer Care Hours. They can help you find the right setup to fit your needs.