Best Skimboard Traction Pads Reviewed & Rated for Quality
It can be really difficult to stay on the board when you take it out over the waves. The reasons are obvious, but not often talked about. All that water going over a surface makes it really easy for it to become so slippery that it feels almost impossible to stay on top of your skimboard or surfboard. Lucky for you, there are more than a few solutions that you can implement to make it easier to stay on board. The first is that you can make small mountains of wax on the board for your feet to rest against. This is much less effective than people claim it is.
The other option is the easy way, and probably the reasons you are here in the first place. Buy yourself a set of skimboard traction pads that will make it much easier for you to really slice through the waves.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 14 hrs of research
Very comfortable on knees
Lots of ways to set up
Simple, but great, style
10 Best Skimboard Traction Pads
1. Ho Stevie!
Very comfortable on knees
Lots of ways to set up
Simple, but great, style
There are lots of brands of skimboard traction pad on the market, but this is really the one that people think of first. They are great in every way imaginable.
The name isn't the only thing that is great about these traction pads. They are designed in such a novel and ideal way that they make it so simple to get a bit more grip on your board. They are a larger pad that comes in three segments, which means that you can choose how wide the grip on your board's tail should be.
The Ho Stevie! pads are great for tons of other reasons, too. They are made so that you will have an easy time getting them on, and then never need to worry about them coming off again. They are as simple as a quick stick, and then you don't need to worry about them being removed by any amount of water the ocean throws at you.
Cost and Value
The Ho Stevie! pads are great because they can be stylized and applied in all the ways that you could think of. It means that you can really make your board out to be the way that you want it to be. They cost a little more than some other options, but it will last for so long that you won't even need to worry about ever buying a second set.
2. Victoria Skimboards
Good grip on kick pad
Easy to size yourself
Priced for the pros
This is a simpler styled option that you can choose if you want something spongy and comfortable for all your gripping needs.
Victoria comes along with some of its own great design principles. It is also made of three pieces that you can arrange how you like, but two of them are much larger than the middle piece. This gives you more room to place your back foot so that you can keep a really good grip on the board.
There are lots of things to love about this option besides the interesting design. It is made out of EVA foam, which means that the comfort of resting your feet on this board is much higher than a lot of other options you are going to find here. It also has a raised edge at the back to really avoid your foot falling off the back of the board.
Cost and Value
This is a really advanced option that you can look into buying for yourself. The big thing stopping this one from being an automatic purchase is that it costs quite a bit more than a lot of the other options. This option is better for those who already know what they are looking for in their surfboard, and want a serious upgrade for their work on the water.
3. Punt Surf
Comes with lots of useful pieces
Good profile for gripping
Can place how you like
Front pieces are a bit higher than some like
The Punt Surf is a kit that comes with everything that you could need to make sure that you always have a good grip on your board.
The Punt Surf kit comes with multiple pieces that you can use to add some grip to your skimboard. This includes the three pieces that you can place back at the tail, but it also comes with a few other pieces for the front of the board. They are designed to have a perfect place to plant your front feet as you go.
The Punt Surf kit comes with a few other things that make it worth your time. That includes something like the EVA foam construction that makes up the whole thing. It means that you will have an easy time keeping your feet planted on the board properly. The pieces are also very light, which means you don't need to worry about weighing yourself down.
Cost and Value
This is a really good deal for anyone looking for a bit of extra coverage for the grips they want to lay down on their board. It means that you will feel confident while riding your board. All the pieces are really well-designed, which makes it easy for you to feel confident while using them.
4. Abahub 9 Piece
Lots of pieces to use
Can ride it for hours
Too much for a skimboard
This is a great choice if you are looking for something that will really give you the maximum amount of coverage possible. The Abahub comes with a whopping nine pieces of grip.
The Abahub comes with tons of pieces that you can use to cover your skimboard or surfboard in lots of grip and gear. It makes it easy to choose exactly how much of your board that you want to cover. It does a great job of making it much easier for you to get just the right amount of grip on your board.
There are a few other things about this option that you will definitely enjoy. It is made so you will have an easy time installing all the different pieces of gear onto the board. The pieces are easily distinguished from each other, and even easier to place in a sensible pattern.
Cost and Value
This is another really good deal that you are going to find here. The EVA foam is designed ion a comfortable way that means you will always feel fresh when riding your board, and the nine pieces of pads can be bought at a cheaper price than many of the other options on this list. These are perfect for the dedicated beachcomber.
5. Punt Surf Non-Slip Grip Mat
Can choose how to place it
Easy to mold the foam
Very comfortable on the feet
Not a very large amount of material
This is the simplest version of a traction pad that you are going to find on this list. It is designed as a mat that you can shape and place whatever way you want.
Keep it Simple
Punt Surf comes in with another option that does a great job of making it all up to you when it comes to how you want your traction pad to look on your board. This is a pretty small option, but it can easily be trimmed into whatever shape that you want so you get the most out of what you get.
The Grip Mat has some other cool things going for it. It is thirteen inches one way, and then six inches the other. This makes it perfect for being placed at the back of a board wholesale, or for being cut into smaller pieces that you can pattern across the board as a sort of art project.
Cost and Value
This is one of the cheapest options on the list, for obvious reasons. The comfortable EVA foam leaves nothing to be desired, but it also comes with tons of custom options that you can take onto yourself. The size makes it perfect for those who just want to touch up the grip on their skimboard.
6. Surf Squared
Very light design
Can place anywhere
Good grip on the whole thing
High profile can be uncomfortable
Surf Squared has brought in a really interesting style to their mat that makes it great for making sure that you have a good deal of grip on your board.
The Surf Squared is a cool option because it has a really well thought out texture to it. It has lots of raised portions on each of the pieces that come with it so you always have a good place to put your foot with confidence. This makes it easy to plant yourself anywhere on the tail, and not have to worry about falling off.
There are tons of other things going for the Surf Squared. This includes all the different pieces of the mat. They are designed in such a way that you will have an easy time attaching them to the board in any configuration that you would like. They are also incredibly light, which is great for not creating extra drag on the board.
Cost and Value
Another cool thing about the Surf Squared is that it costs a bit less than a lot of its competitors. It is designed very well to make sure that you always have a good footing on your board, and it does it without adding extra weight to the board. The high profile might not be for everyone, but it does make sure you always have a good grip.
7. Hammer Traction Skimboard Kit
Very light pieces
Comes with a full set of pads
The color will last for a long time
Good profile to pads
Bit pricier than others
This is a full kit of pads that you can use to keep your entire board ready for long times out on the water. You won't be falling off any time soon.
This option comes with lots of pieces so you can completely cover your board in grippy pieces of safety and fun. It comes with a three-piece tail that you can make as wide as you want. It also comes with two arch bars to line up along the middle of the front of your board. This means that you'll always have a place to place your feet.
The Hammer kit has lots of other little features to sway you to give it a shot. It is made up of very light pieces that you can easily take advantage of when you are sliding through the waves. Each piece only weighs three ounces, which means you won't notice any difference, at all. Another great thing is that they are treated with a material that means the color is going to last for an exceptionally long time without fading.
Cost and Value
The Hammer kit is a great option if you are looking for something that is very professionally made and will last you for the long haul. Everything is made in the States, which does mean that it costs a little bit extra when you buy it, but the amount of quality is quite apparent.
8. Channel Islands
Very lightweight pieces
Water runs over it well
Low profile design
Good price point
Too low profile for those seeking comfort
Lightweight and aired out, the Channel Islands option does a great job at making sure that you are ready for getting out there on the water in the most freeing way possible.
This option is a cool choice because it puts a lot of effort into making sure that you have something low profile and lightweight when you are using it. The mats are quite thin, which gives you a lower profile, and an enhanced ability to cut through the water. It does have a stomp pad at the tail, but it is also quite low profile.
There are a few other design decisions that go towards making sure that the Channel Islands remains as lightweight as possible. The pieces themselves are very small and light. This means that you don't need to worry about being weighed down by the mats as you board. They also have strips cut out of the middle of them to increase the weight loss of the mats and to give the water somewhere to run.
Cost and Value
The Channel Islands option is great for tons of reasons. One of the things that are great about it is that it comes in at a mid-range price that places it between the two camps of traction pads. It is perfect for those looking for something lightweight that won't throw them off from the usual feeling of their board.
9. Own the Wave
Flat for most of the mat
Feels comfortable and grippy
Own the Wave comes in with an option that does a good job of giving you lots of space to plant your back foot.
Wide and High
The incline up into the stomp pad is much more pronounced with this option, which makes for something that is much higher than lots of other options. This gives you lots of space to plant your heel when you are out fighting the water.
This option comes with tons of other things to love, too. Despite the high heel, the Own the Waves has a very low profile among the rest of its design. That makes it a good time for those looking for something that is designed to be a little flatter.
Cost and Value
The Own the Waves is a great option for those looking for something with large extremes. It goes from a flat valley in the main part of the board to a high peak in the back. It is three pieces of mat that you can place however you like, and it can be bought for a really low and reasonable price.
Simple and effective style
Doesn't affect your natural boarding motion you've established
Not enough of a difference
The SYMPL is a stylish and simple option that is great for those looking for something that won't interrupt the flow they have already established.
The SYMPL is a great option if you want something that will inspire you to take your board out to the beach. It uses a minimalist build and design that looks really great in almost every respect. It does a great job at making it easy for you to slap it on your board and then be ready to hit the waves.
The SYMPL is great for a few other reasons, too. It is built to have a low profile, but also has a really good grip to go along with it. The grooves are quite pronounced, and that makes it easy for you to keep your feet attached to it. It also does a good job of keeping the weight down as much as you need to.
Cost and Value
The SYMPL is a great choice for those looking for something simple that works. It doesn't affect the geometry of your board too much, but it brings just enough grip to really push you over the edge when it comes to making sure that you're ready to work. It comes at a reasonable price and can be bought in tons of different styles.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Ease of Use
One of the best things about traction pads is how easy they are to install on your board. You want to look for something that can be easily placed down on the board and then forgotten about. Lucky for you, that is exactly what this list is trying to bring to you with this criteria. The higher the rating, the less you need to worry about if you are going to get it right. Installing things can be hard and these pads make it easy.
Something useful to think about is that many of the pads here are designed in an interlocking design with the other pads they come with. This makes it much easier for you to find something that you can measure each pad against before you put it down. Another thing that makes these so good is that you can easily forget about the pad after it is put down, thanks to the miraculous adhesives that they use.
One thing you want to be sure of when you put your pads down on your board is that they are not going to go around unsticking themselves any time soon. This is important to think about when you are out on the water, due to the fact that this is one of the most solvent surfaces that you are going to find out there. The fact that these adhesives do such a good job in that environment is a huge testament to the quality of these products you are going to find here. The more likely that your pads are going to stay on the board, the higher the rating in this category.
It is also important to think of the foam itself. It is designed to do a good job of keeping you from falling off the board, but the foam will often have a higher profile. That means that there is a chance of collapse. The foam will usually do a good job, but it is something to think about when considering general wear and tear.
It is easy to realize how important it is that the pads do a good job of fitting on the board. This has to do with how well you will feel attached to the board. The whole point of these pads is that you want something that you can easily keep attached to while you are smashing through the roughest waves of the high seas. This category is here to let you know who you can put your confidence in.
The mats are usually made of some kind plastic foam. It is usually EVA foam, which is the same material that you will often find in some shoes. It means that you will find support, but still enough rigidity to keep yourself stable. The pattern and profile are the two big things that are going to keep you on the mat. You want your feet to have lots of ridges to keep themselves attached to, and also somewhere to rest the heel of your back foot. There should also be somewhere to place the arch of your front foot if you feel that you want that too.
You are going to be spending a lot of your time out there on those waves. That means that you will hopefully also be spending a lot of time on the mats, too. Of course, you are going to be spending a lot of time thrown into the water, but at least you can control the comfort that your feet will be feeling. This is another important factor to consider. All mats are usually made of the same material, but there are still lots of factors that affect how comfortable they truly are. This category is here to let you know how comfortable you can expect to be.
It is all about the design of the mats that will affect how comfortable you are. You want ridges in all the right places, and then some nicely placed arches in there for good measure. The foam itself can often have different levels of sponginess, too. It is somewhat like a bed, where you need to think about the level of support that you need. Think about how you like your shoes, and then apply that here. The higher the rating, the more support that you will find.
This category is here to let you know just how far your dollar is going with the purchase that you are sitting here and thinking about making. It makes it much easier for you to start with this category, and move on up from there.
There are lots of different dollar values associated with these kits. It often has to do with what you are getting in terms of the number of pieces. It also has to do with if the mats are designed for professional use or not. Think about buying something to your liking in these two areas, first. Not everyone needs an arch bar, but why not if you think that you want some extra grip for your front foot.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
One of the cool things about buying yourself some traction pads is that you can choose exactly how they are going to be placed on the board. You have to do the work, but you also get to pick just the right angles and distances for yourself. Look up a video of how to do it, and then tweak it for your own weird feet.
There are lots of different styles that you can choose from when it comes to looking for traction pads. Many of their physical designs are similar, so if you find something that works for you, then it is totally fine to look for something that suits your sense of style. There are lots of options here, so find something that fits your personality.
Other Factors to Consider
If there's anything to know about skimming and surfing, it is the fact that the style is an important part of the expression of the sport. That means that you need to think about what you are trying to go for in terms of looks when you bring out your board. It makes it much easier for you to ride those waves and make a mark if the board looks just the way that you want it. So go on and make the impression that you want.
There are often lots of different options that you can choose from when it comes to choosing the style of your board. It makes it an easy process of choosing the color that is right for you. Most companies will offer tons of different styles for all their options, which means that you don't need to sacrifice the structure you want for the style that you want.
This is another important element of traction pads that you need to think about. The size is going to determine lots of different things. The first to think about is the technical aspect of making sure that you are getting mats that will fit on the board at all. They often come in chunks that are meant to be spaced apart from each other. The amount of space doesn't matter too much, but there does need to be enough for the water to run between the mats. It makes it easier for your board to move without drag. The best way to make sure that this is going to occur the way that you want is to find a board that is the right size for the mats that you are buying. Another thing that lots of people do is cut down the mats to the size that they want. This is more difficult with the options that have specifically placed pieces of higher-profile design, but if you buy something flat you can choose the size yourself.
The profile is an important consideration to make when you are buying yourself some new grip for your board. All the options on this list have done different things to the profile of the mat. It means that you have to choose where the spacing is when you are using the mat. It makes it difficult to choose what option is best for you. There are two major spots where some added height is almost always a good idea.
The first is the options with stomp pads, which are raised ends of the mats at the very tail of the board. This is great for making sure that you have somewhere to rest your heel. It makes sure you won't slide off the board. The other option that is important to think about is if you want an arch bar for yourself. These are rectangular pieces that are placed in the front of the board. They are ridged so you have somewhere to put the arch of your front foot.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: Of skimboard traction pads vs wax, which is better?
There are certain advantages to both these styles of traction, but it is important to think about what you want to get out of your board. The thing with wax is that it doesn't do as good a job of keeping you on the board. It is much more slippery, which is great for making sure that you aren't building up any drag while you are riding through the waves, but if you are doing something a little more extreme, then the extra grip from a traction pad is going to be the difference-maker in carrying you through the water.
Honestly, both of these methods should be used together. The wax is great for the other parts of the board and works well when placed at the front of the board where there is less weight put down. It makes it easier for you to cruise through the waves without needing to worry about if you are going to be causing too much drag with too many pieces of traction.
q: Do the traction pads leave marks on your skimboard when you take them off?
The 3M adhesives that you will often find on almost all the option on this list are incredibly sticky. It means that there is sometimes a real worry that the board might be damaged when trying to take off. If you just rip it right off, then there is a chance that it could come off. The reality is that the adhesive is so powerful that it is incredibly difficult to do it this way, anyway.
What you are supposed to do is find something that will break down the adhesive. It is going to take a little time, but try to use something like turpentine or vinegar, and then let it soak over the pad for a good amount of time. It will break down the adhesive. You want to use something acidic to do this. The stronger it is, the shorter the amount of time that you will have to wait. It should make it easier to peel the adhesive off without any damage.
q: Are there good kid's skimboard traction pads?
There are tons of options that you can use when you are thinking about something to put on a board. These pads are incredibly useful when you are a bit younger and having trouble staying on top of the board. There are lots of options for children. A lot of the options here can be changed from one option to another without much in the way of needing to look around too much at online stores.
Another thing that you can do is find one of the options made of thinner material, and cut it down to sizes that work better for your children. Only do this if you think that you can handle some arts and crafts, but it is the simplest way to find something that works just right.