Penny boards are a compact, retro-style skate board that anyone can enjoy. If you’re looking for one, this article will point you in the right direction so can find the best Penny board for beginners.
Most people have seen a Penny board, but few people actually know their name. They resemble a mini-skate board and look somewhat funny.
Never-mind their appearance, Penny boards are an easy-to-learn and fun way to play in the park, commute to work, and exercise. They are also a perfect beach skateboard, with a style made popular in the 1970s on the Southern Californian beach boardwalks.
The sections below provide an overview of the boards as well as important aspects of the Penny board that beginners need to ensure their safety and enjoyment. Let’s ride!
Things To Know: Beginner Penny Boarders
At first glance, a Penny board might look like a kids board, or an imitation of a traditional skate board. Don’t be confused, good brands offer quality boards and the often use a plastic deck.
One of the most significant things you’ll notice on a Penny board is the plastic deck. It’s quite the difference from a longer and wider skateboard. This keeps the board lightweight, making it easier to carry!
These boards look simple, because they’re supposed to be simple! It’s a cruising board, not a board for tricks.
Penny boards come in two main sizes, 22 and 27 inches (you can also buy cruisers at 32 and 36 inches). Remember, the smaller the size, the easier it is to carry around.
If you’re looking to make it big with tricks and speed, the Penny board is not for you.
The board’s main function is to get you from one location to another, and usually for shorter distances).
A few examples:
- The board is perfect for a college kid who rides from a dormitory to a class on campus.
- A penny board is great for a lifeguard getting from a beach house to a lifeguard tower
- It is a board works well to avoid traffic on a short commute in the city.
Deck – We’ve already discussed how a Penny board deck is made of plastic. Plastic may not seem like a “quality” material, but it the perfect material for this board. Plastic is strong and flexible.
Flexibility is important on a small board so it can make sharp turns, and plastic allows for a sharper turn than a wood deck. Decks come in a variety of colors and styles.
Most beginner Penny boarders like the colorful options available because a board should look cool when cruisng the beach!
Griptape – Griptape is fastened to the top of a board and provides grip to the rider. Some people can do without but a little extra grip helps, especially when riding barefoot (barefoot is how a penny should be ridden).
Wheels – Another easily identifiable characteristic of a Penny board is the wheels. They aren’t small like conventional skateboards.
Penny boards have large, soft wheels that are perfect for cruising and absorbing shock. Broad wheels also make for a smoother ride on a Penny
Trucks – The best Penny board for beginners will be cast aluminum and they will connect the wheels to the bearings, to the board.
On each truck, the kingpin bolt can be adjusted to provide a range of turning and stability.
The style of board (plastic and short) has been around since the 1970. Early brands included “Globe”, “Crooked”, and “Stereo”. These boards have had a cult like following over the decades.
Well, the term “Penny” is actually the brand. There are plenty of brands that now sell a similar product, but if you’re a beginner and want a penny board, they you should stay true to the Australian brand.
The name got it’s start when its Australian founder began selling them door-to-door. This was not too long ago in 2010.
Since then, Penny boards have taken the world by storm and the colorful, stylish boards can be found on beaches, in cities, and on college campuses everywhere.
7 Best Penny Boards For Beginners In 2020
Limited Edition Penny Board – Ralp (Simpsons)
Everyone loves the Simpsons! Penny boards have teamed up with the show to create several limited edition boards. This option is a great light blue color and has a cute picture of Ralph on the bottom. It is a unisex board.
This is a mid-size board (27”) and a solid Penny board for beginners. The blue deck matches well with Ralphs blue shirt and the oversized black wheels provide a cool contrast of colors when cruising down the road (view details on Amazon).Highlights:
- 27” plastic deck
- Aluminum trucks that are 4 inches
- Abec7 stainless steel bearings
- Deck bolts match the board’s color
- Weighs 6lbs and approximately 6 inches wide
Buyers have confirmed it easily holds 200lbs. The deck has a slight upward trajectory on the back end, which helps with riding posture and to lift the front tires off the ground.
Because it’s a limited-edition board, it comes at a price. If you plan on impressing your friends and enjoy talking about the Simpsons, this board is the one for you.
Penny Sharkbomber 27”
The Sharkbomber is a board made for the beach and it provides a Penny boarding beginner style and comfort.
The 22” inch boards are easier to carry, but the larger boards are slightly easier to ride (in my opinion). Its size, makes the Sharkbomber a good beginner option.
I like the camoflauge and blue/green color combination. It’s a darker colored board, which should hold up better with dirt and wear.
What’s just as cool is that you can see some of the camoflauge on the side of the board when it’s being ridden. The board is stylish with a theme perfect for the beach (check it out on Amazon).Highlights:
- Multicolor board with camo
- 27” length, good for beginners
- Raised back end for comfort and changing direction
- Lifetime manufactures warranty
- 59mm 83A wheels to move you smoothly
- Strong yet flexible plastic deck
I like this board for it’s versatility, but keep in mind this is best for the beach. Camoflauge never looks bad and you can’t beat Penny’s warranty!
Penny 27” Drift
Penny’s Drift board is a pretty option for both guys and gals (though the gals would look better riding this one). The light blue board is a popular color for Penny boards, likely because it looks great.
The backside of the board shows a surfer catching a wave, but the picture isn’t bold, and it takes a moment to figure out what it is. Reminds me of a scene from a Gorillaz music video. What I really like about this board is the color contrast with the wheels, which are clear (more information on Amazon).Highlights:
- Tapered rear
- Clear yellow wheels with blue/white/yellow color
- Lifetime warranty
- 59mm 83A wheels
- Plastic deck
- 5.5 lbs
I like this longer board and the tapered rear. As a 27” it provides a little more to work with than the 22” boards. However, other than the color the board is similar to other options on this list.
Penny Classic – Blackout – 22”
I love this board, but it’s not for the faint of heart. If you’re the “ride or die” type, this blackout Penny is your cure for boring days in the sun.
The color, all black from deck to truck, will hold up well with dirt and general wear and tear. Plus, you’ll be riding in stealth mode (although everyone will still be checking you out) (view board on Amazon).Highlights:
- Tapered rear
- Black from head to toe (wheels, trucks, deck)
- Simple yet sleek belly
- 83A durometer wheels
- Lifetime warranty
- Weight limit 320 lbs
This baby may be stealth, but it holds big guys and gals. If you’re in the 300 lbs range, rest assured that the thick wheels will support your muscle. Of course, you’ll get the standard warranty regardless.
Save some gas, jump on this board. It’s lightweight, easy to carry in the office and it hides well too (in a backpack or under a desk).
Penny Board Nickel 27”
Need a clean Penny board for beginners? This one looks great in white. Although you may want to keep a rag handy so it stays clean.
A white deck with black tires creates the tuxedo for penny boarders! That’s right, this is the board for date night on the beach boardwalk (view on Amazon).
The color is actually called “casper” which is clever!Highlights:
- 27” length
- 59mm 83A wheels
- Color matching stainless steel bearings
- Waffle top for extra grip
- Lifetime warranty
Top side of the deck has a handy waffle top and the bottom has a simple pattern that assists with the flexion of the deck. Rumor has it, this Casper board glows in the dark, but you’ll have to verify if it’s true!
Green Penny Board 27”
If you’re into the retro look, this is the best Penny board for beginners. It radiates the 1970s not only in its compact size, but also in its color.
This taupe green shade looks like the color of a kitchen, bathroom, or lamp from the disco era (as it is supposed to). Other than the color, the board resembles Penny quality, just like the others on our list (view details on Amazon).Highlights:
- 27” deck with elevated tail
- Retro taupe green color (wheels, trucks, deck)
- 4” aluminum trucks
- 83A and 59mm wheels
- Same great warranty
This board comes at a discount to a few of the others on our list, but don’t get it wrong, this board is the same high quality as the others. It’s neutral color so a perfect unisex option and its darker color will hold up well with dirt, dust, and rain.
Penny Skateboard – Blackout 27”
Look no further for a beginner penny board. This is another all-black board. Jet black is a popular option these days and this one is actually a deeper black than the Penny board that’s also on our list (it’s actually the same just a different size).
This black Penny board is the next size up, and listed at 27”. It has a tapered tail and good looking waffletop to ensure your bare feet stay on the board.
Cruising is recommened for this board (although I think it’s recommended for all). The thick wheels and Abec7 stainless steel ball bearings will make it a smooth ride, even over rough asphalt (check out the board on Amazon).Highlights:
- 27” from nose to tail
- Blackout board (all components)
- Waffletop to avoid slippage
- Abec7 stainless ball bearings
- 59mm and 83A wheels
If it’s my choice, I’m going with this Blackout Penny board. I’m not a beginner, but it doesn’t matter, this board works just as well with experienced penny boarders.
So we’ll save the best for last, this is the best Penny board for beginners (unless you prefer something more colorful)
Where Should Penny Board Beginners Learn To Ride
The number one rule of Penny boarding is: don’t take your Penny board to the skate park. Penny boarders and traditional skateboarders don’t always get along.
In addition, it’s pretty tough to pull off Penny board tricks in a skatepark (virtually impossible to do an ollie).
If you’re a beginner, start at a park or at home on your driveway. Practice turning, accelerating, and stopping. Because the board is small and narrow, balance can be tricky to develop.
Once you’ve got the hand of things take your Penny on the road as a city commute. It’s not uncommon to see Penny board carried on the metro and subway.
Once you’re ready to show off your skills, take your Penny board to the beach and cruise the boardwalk.
Be ready to dart in and out of passersby and keep the board off the sand (sand can find its way into bearings and affect the boards performance).
List of best places for beginners to ride a Penny board:
- Home (road and driveway)
- Road (commute to work)
- Hills (away from traffic)
- Farmers Markets
Finding the best Penny board for beginners isn’t a difficult task. The reason is because inexperienced riders should be using the same boards as experienced boarders.
The skill of riding takes time and it’s mostly about balance. Once you find your footing and learn the basics of starting and stopping, riding a penny board becomes a fun and simple activity.
In this article we shared the 7 best Penny boards for beginners. Penny boards actually come from a single company, so you don’t have to worry about one brand versus another.
Penny boards got their start in Australia, but the concept of a short skateboard was first developed in Southern California by surfers and skaters who needed a commuter board that was functional for getting from place to place.
It’s not a flashy board, but it’s certainly fun and Penny has perfect the style and optionality that people look for in a board. Penny boards are made for beginners because they are a casual board with cruising in mind.
Find a board that suits your style and dimensions and you’ll find your groove on the road!