ASK Al: How Does Width Play a Role in Board?

  • 04.16.2021

Hi, I am wondering what role board width plays and how it can affect your surfing. Obviously when the surf is small some added width can help because of the added volume etc. But when its pumping can having a board that’s 20′ or 21′ wide possibly slip out on you or hinder your surfing in another way?

Thanks for your help.


Al Merrick responds,

The distribution of the width is more important than just the center width, as with small wave boards with wide tails, there is a lot of volume distributed all the way throughout the board. Volume control is one of the main factors of width distribution.

Many of our team riders have big wave guns that are 9 feet long with widths of 21 1/2 and thicknesses of 3 1/2. The width is not a problem in these boards because the curve is pulled back into a tight and thinned out pin tail. You actually need to have a lot of width in big wave boards in order to get the curve in the outline you are looking for.

Ask Al

  • 04.16.2021