Electric skateboards are becoming increasingly popular. They are undoubtedly a big hit among teens and adult recreational users. Even though the main usage of electric skateboards nowadays is for commuting purposes, there are many people who love using them for off-road adventures. According to user’s purposes, electric skateboards can be divided into urban style and off-road style (which can also be called mountain skateboards or all terrain skateboards).
Urban Skateboard & Off Road Skateboard
Urban skateboard has focused on delivering a game changing electric skateboard by creating an ultra light and compact mode of transportation. It’s easy for storage and transport. Considering most people use skateboards as a commuting transportation tool, lightweight and portable urban skateboards have obtained great popularity among crowd. Some urban skateboard design even allows riders to now travel onboard any aircraft with their board as a carry on. However, to achieve the portability, the wheels and decks are unable to survive strong vibration or bumpy ground. The ability to climb hills will decline as well. In spite of these downsides, urban skateboard is still a good option for those who are skateboard starters or just purchase electric skateboard for commuting purpose.
Off-road skateboard is a perfect match for all the people who want to bring their skating skills out of the streets and into the fields. Off-road skating in itself is amazing. It will allow you to conquer new terrain and explore where you’ve never gone before. They allow all the skating aficionados to enjoy nature and focus on technique rather than pushing the board. Off-road electric skateboarding is similar to other off-road activities. You're able to experience riding in rough environments and areas that are off the normal path. Let riders enjoy riding on gravel, sand, or grass. To adapt to different terrains and enhance skaters’ skateboarding experience, off-road skateboard normally have larger wheels and are able to dampen shock and vibration. Off-road skateboards are suitable for those who have more skating experience and higher skateboarding skills.
Urban Skateboard VS Off Road Skateboard
These twos styles of skateboards are used for different scenarios and that’s why they differ in the structure and performance. Here in this article we’re going to take a look at the difference between these two skateboard styles.
Urban: Mostly seen in campus, streets or flat roads.
Off-road: Mostly seen in mountain roads, bumpy roads, gravel, sand, or grass.
Urban: The size of most urban skateboards are less than 38 inches to make it easy and simple to carry around and store. And usually they have kicktails which is convenient to flip the board or make a turn.
Off-road: Compared with urban skateboards, off-road skateboards are normally more than 38 inches long. Since they are bigger, they can’t be easily put away after use.
Urban: Urban skateboards are made exclusively for concrete and asphalt, so the wheels can be stiff and they don’t have to be pneumatic rubber wheels. The wheels are much more smaller as there are not too much obstacles on campus or flat grounds.
Off-road: In order to traverse difficult terrains like grass, dirt and gravel off-road, wheels need to be bigger and hopefully feature pneumatic tires which provide extra grip and traction. Pneumatic rubber wheels won’t wear out as easily as plastic wheels and they are capable of rolling on all types of terrain with perfect ease.
Urban: For urban skateboards, single motor would be fine to provide sufficient power for the rider to reach the destination as there are less friction between the wheels and ground.
Off-road: Off-road or all-terrain skateboards are usually built with two or four powerful motors, which will easily take you up to top speed (depending on your weight too). The motors are key as they increase traction and distribute the driving force, allowing riders to tackle any hill as easily as if it were flat ground.
Urban: Relatively speaking, a single motor consumes the battery slowly, so the battery can last longer time after one full charging. And the charging time is shorter than off-road skateboards.
Off-road: Battery might not last as long since they have more powerful motors. Skateboards with bigger batteries have longer charging time.
Urban: In contrast to off-road skateboards, urban skateboards don’t need to go through strong vibrations or bumpy rides. Riders are less likely to fall off from the skateboards. Therefore, urban skateboards won’t have straps.
Off-road: The straps are always found in off-road skateboards. Straps will keep you locked in to make sure you don’t fall off of the skateboard during extremely bumpy rides and high speeds.
Urban: Owing to compact deck size, smaller wheels and trucks, as well as less motors, urban skateboard tend to be more lightweight and portable.
Off-road: Larger deck size, wheels and trucks, and more motors make the off-road skateboards heavier and relatively harder to carry around and store.
Urban: Less power provided by the motor means less speed of the skateboard, but do remember that the speed can be affected by many factor, such as the rider’s weight, road conditions, riding habits and so on.
Off-road: They come with a powerful motor that can easily propel you to speeds far beyond what could be reached on a traditional board, without forcing you to compromise comfort or control as you would face on urban skateboards.
Urban: The braking capability for urban skateboard is important but the braking requirement is less strict than off-road skateboards. If encountered emergency events, it’s possible to use foot braking.
Off-road: Tougher riding environment requires always-smooth braking system. The brakes apply gradually to guarantee a smooth stop every time. There are many unknown risks during off-road skateboarding, it’s extremely important to have good braking ability.
Urban: Urban skateboards have smaller wheels, the center of gravity is lower to the ground, it’s more stable and good for you to maintain balance.
Off-road: Larger wheels make for higher ground clearance. High clearance means that you will not be having problems on uneven terrain.
Urban: Since urban skateboards are usually used in urban environment and they are less susceptible to shock or vibration, the anti-vibration ability is weaker than off-road skateboards.
Off-road: The trucks are wide and springs are used to aid in absorbing some of the vibration and roughness of riding off-road. You could get thrown off your board if you’re going fast. Its shock absorption and suspension features help reduce bumpiness and keep your weight evenly distributed for maximum comfort while riding.
Urban boards with solid, non-pneumatic tires are best for those planning to use them in an urban environment. Its compact body makes it easy to transport – which is great because you’ll want to take it everywhere. Nothing worse than commuting or going around town on a heavy board. When you have to, it would be hard to carry it for even 5 minutes.
Off-road boards combines the speed and thrill of an electric skateboard. For many, they are a fun, environmentally conscious, and budget-friendly alternative to other modes of transportation. Off-road skateboards are perfect choice for those who enjoy speed and challenge. It’s not recommended for skateboard beginners to try off-road boards from the very beginning, which can be very dangerous.
It takes a little patience and research to find the one that is best for you, but all that effort is well worth it in the end. Unlike other regular sports, there are likely more potential risks of electric skateboards, especially for the off road skateboards. No matter which one you will choose, always keep safety in your mind. Remember to wear protective gear when riding; you’ll need a helmet at a minimum, but kneepads are also highly recommended.