You can never underestimate the importance of longboard sliding, especially if your longboarding routes involve hilly terrain.
While it’s possible to come to a stop by air braking, sliding on a longboard offers an easier way to come to a halt.
But keeping you in control of your speed and letting you come to a halt quickly is more than safety -it’s also about convenience.
Boards for sliding lets you ride comfortably in more environments, particularly the urban environments with lots of downhill pavements.
This is not to mention it improves your balance naturally as sliding requires the rider to maintain position from various angles.
Of course, experienced riders will often tell you that you can slide on just about anything, which is true if you’ve the right skills.
However, a nice setup consisting of the right sliding longboard will make it easier for you to progress.
Just like your car benefits from a good braking system, longboarding enthusiasts stand to benefit from longboards designed specifically to slide.
But as with any other longboarding trick, it takes a while to get to grips with proper sliding techniques. You’ll definitely have a couple of crashes along the way, but the temporary injuries are worth it.
Now, if you need a board that will help you progress aster in your sliding, we’ve prepared a guide for you.
Here, we shall review the best longboards for sliding in the market.
Table of Contents
The Best Longboards for Sliding For The Money
#1 VOLADOR 42” Freeride Longboard - EDITOR'S CHOICE
If you’re an admirer of awesome designs, you can’t resist the Volador Longboard.
But if you think it’s the only thing it puts on the table, you’re mistaken because you’ve no idea of what it has in store for you.
The longboard is an intriguing option for downhill streets and roads-use, thanks to favorable length, adjustable trucks, and generous deck.
But of course, you can also use it for day-to-day commute and treading as well.
Features and Benefits
Our first observation on the Volador is the cambered deck.
Sporting an 8-ply hard maple construction, it feels quite solid but with a fair amount of flex.
It can take a good beating, and I like to use it in different environments as it absorbs shock well. I don’t have to worry about jolting if I roll over a stone, for instance.
For my weight (200 pounds), I thought I would have problems with the board, but none of it happened as it rides just fine.
While you could definitely use it for dancing, it feels ridged, and you won’t get the full effects of dancing-we to find it more qualified for sliding and freeriding.
From any angle, the deck escapes any wheel bite and lest you take extreme turns, thanks to the wonderful wheel flares. Users find it perfect for riding it downhill as well as cruising it along the boardwalk.
Volador’s 42-inch deck makes the longboard a great partner on hilly highways.
The deck is long enough to offer much-needed stability and support while riding downhill.
While old hands can manage with any longboard, beginners will find the Volador an easy way to get into longboarding because it’s more forgiving and easier to stay on the board without tipping.
As for the width, the 9-inch deck gives users enough room to rest their feet, so you never have to worry about losing your footing.
Trucks and Wheels
In our opinion, Volador’s greatest feature is the adjustable truck.
The reverse kingpin trucks, crafted from genuine aluminum, offer fantastic maneuverability, especially when turning on steep and curved roads.
Even better, the trucks are adjustable, so you’ve the total freedom of improving maneuverability.
At 50-degree, the board performs well when taking corners, but at 45-degrees, it promotes better shock-absorbent performance.
Team Volador has done a fabulous job for the wheels by getting the 70 by 51 wheels with a 78A durometer hardness.
They amass tons of smoothness, and while they may not be ideal for picking up speed, they smoothen the rough roads. And if you’re a beginner, you can get a lot from this piece without having to make much of an effort.
#2 Atom 41” Longboard - Best for Beginners
Since its founding in 2005, Atom Longboards has come a long way to build a name for themselves.
They’ve an array of quality products on their stable, but in our roundup post today, we shall review the Atom 41”.
It captured our attention for its quality, durability, ease of use, and customizable design.
Most riders wanting to get into longboarding will also find the Atom an intriguing option as it’s pretty straightforward, easy to use, and inexpensive.
But does it have what it takes for sliding and freeriding?
Features and Benefits
Atom’s deck is pretty unique, with something that isn’t common in many boards.
I’m referring to the Drop-Through Deck.
If you’re unfamiliar with the design, it’s a popular design among cruiser boards, as it approves this style of riding. The design is particularly useful for downhill riding as it’s stable and less restrictive to the feet than the drop-downs.
While the drop-through designs are not structurally strong, they offer more flexibility, perfect for riding in the not-so-good terrain.
However, it’s not to mean Atom’s deck is flimsy-far from that.
With a full maple laminate, the deck is robust and doesn’t come apart even after hitting a few bumps on the road.
I’ve hit a few curbs and stuff, but this board seems very durable and has not shown any signs of real wear yet, only minor dents on the very edge, so no complaints there.
Down to Earth- High Stability
If we’ve not emphasized this, drop-through boards it low on the ground, hence stable.
With the close-to-ground position, the Atom has an ultra-low riding experience, reducing the chances of you losing balance even if you’re trying to perform the craziest tricks. It’s also perfect for carving downhill.
Since the board is positioned so close to the ground, it’s easier to push. Your foot won’t have to go far to push the board, so you’re less likely to tire as it exerts less pressure on your calf and leg muscles. It’s an excellent option for long-distance travel.
A fair share of the stability goes to the deck as well.
And make no mistake; the 41” deck isn’t done with its magic on stability alone.
It offers all the sturdiness and comfort you would need while taking a tour around the city or even sliding downhill.
On the other hand, the 41-inch-wide deck is generous enough to provide a secure platform for placing your feet.
Wheels and Trucks
Atom 41 flaunts Wide-Lip 70mmx51mm super high rebound (SHR) urethane wheels.
These rounded wheels are not only stable but highly flexible. They offer a smooth riding experience and a super high rebound.
As for maneuverability, the Reverse Kingpin Truck ensures you can maneuver the board effortlessly. The RKP makes it easier to ride and make sharp turns around trees, rocks, and other obstacles without even fazing.
#3 Slendor 42 inches Drop Through Longboard - Best for Freestyle
Third on our list of the best longboards for sliding is an aesthetically pleasing longboard built for speed, downhill, and freestyle riding featuring a wide turning radius.
Slendor is a versatile pick, perfect for those who need a board for downhill racing or freestyle sliding across town.
Features and Benefits
We rarely mention design when describing boards, but we couldn’t resist Slendor’s design,
Slendor’s creators definitely know how to maintain style across every feature of the board.
We were particularly impressed by the skeleton head theme, which is charming, and at the same time, provocative.
All Slendor’s components and hardware are forged from high-quality materials that allow you to explore the board’s potential.
For instance, the deck flaunts cold-press 9-ply hard-rock maple wood. It’s super sturdy and will take on a beating without compromising on its integrity.
Riding the board over rough patches on the road does little to no harm and is less likely to chip or deform.
Despite the sturdiness, it also has some level of flex. Not so much to cause trouble for beginners but just the right amount to absorb the shocks and vibrations on the road.
However, heavy riders, especially those close to the weight limit, might experience a bit of bending.
Nevertheless, the deck’s construction reduces the overall stiffness, so users will find it easier to manage the board, even when performing tricks or carving downhill.
A board’s dimensions are critical to comfort, ease of use, and performance.
Luckily, Slendor doesn’t fail at this department.
It comes with a long deck of 42 inches for starters, enhancing the overall stability of your ride. Beginners will appreciate the length as they’re less likely to tip even at high speeds.
Secondly, the 9-inch-wide deck is large enough to provide a surface to place your legs when performing the tricks or even when powering through the turns.
The greatest feature is the camber design that “locks” your feet on both ends when pushing sideways.
Wheels and Trucks
The PU wheels are designed for a Cadillac smooth riding experience. They even minimize the rolling resistance so you can enjoy your ride to the fullest.
As for maneuverability, Slendor comes with high-speed chrome bearings with 180 genuine 7-inch aluminum trucks.
Combined, the wheels and trucks give users better controllability of the board, even in the darndest conditions.
#4 Santa Cruz Lion God Rasta Drop Thru - Best Rated
The Santa Cruz Lion is among the most highly regarded longboards in the market.
The 40-inch-long board looks not only amazing but also has awesome performance. In particular, it offers unmatched stability and ease in riding,
All the parts used in crafting the longboard are top-notch, quality parts that will serve you for a long period.
Features and Benefits
Lion’s God maple deck is as sturdy as it gets.
Users love how the deck takes on a beating without chipping or even deforming.
It’s not rigid either but has some level of flex, which is critical when riding at high speeds and on patchy roads.
The deck doesn’t transfer the road’s vibrations, yet it’s not bouncy to cause problems when performing tricks or carving.
It also comes with grip tapes, and while they’re a standard in almost every board, these are quite different.
Contrary to the usual pure black grip tape standard on most boards, Santa Cruz uses Rasta Stripes.
They add character to the deck, and their vibrant colors make the deck even more lively. Overall, they add a hint of aesthetic appeal and make the board eye-catching.
Drop Through Design
Santa Cruz has carved a name for itself in the drop-through market.
For those unfamiliar with the design, drop-throughs are popular because of stability, making them great for cruising and sliding.
The Santa Cruz has a deck positioned closer to the ground, thus lowering the center of gravity for improved stability even when carving at high speeds.
Another benefit of the design is they make pushing easier. Since the board is closer to the ground, your foot won’t have to travel long to push, so your calves are more likely to be relaxed even for long distances.
Another observation I made with the Lion God is its cambered profile with a taco concave.
It’s of great importance to sliders because it provides extra control.
By “locking” onto your feet on both ends, the concave design provides riders with a smooth balance of heel-to-toe energy transfer. This is usually evident when imitating turns.
Lion’s God dimensions also play a huge role in enhancing the board’s stability.
For instance, while the 40-inches length may not be ideal for picking up speeds, it contributes immensely to the overall stability.
The 10” width, on the other hand, provides a generous platform to place your legs without the risk of tipping or slipping when performing your tricks.
ABEC-9 Rated Bearings
The Lion God utilizes ABEC-9 rated bearings, which are on the higher side of the ABEC rating.
Simply put, the bearings have high tolerance levels and are less likely to crack due to excess friction heat.
Tolerance aside, these bearings have high-speed lubricants, which reduce friction between ball bearings and prevents them from heating too much.
#5 Arbor Axis 40 BC Longboard - Best Value
Our final pick on our review list of the best longboards for sliding is a fantastic choice for users looking to get into sliding with their longboards.
Arbor Axis has many great features and will definitely provide you with good value for your money.
It sports a symmetrical profile, encouraging a speedy experience and a drop-through escalating, ensuring you get more ergonomic thrust and acquire power through twists and slides.
Features and Benefits
Design & Material
The Arbor Axis was supposedly designed through the inspiration of snowboarding, but having used the Axis, it feels more like your standard run-of-the-mill skateboard.
It won’t replicate the exact feeling, but it’s the closest thing you get to the snowboarding experience on hard surfaces.
As for the choice of material, you shouldn’t dismiss it simply because it’s composed of different woods. It’ll take on a beating and handle the rough patches on the road without chipping or deforming. It performs well on paved surfaces, and this is accentuated more when going downhill.
The design is also aesthetically pleasing, with the vivid colors on the bottom and the custom style finish giving it a premium look.
The Arbor Axis, with a length of 40 inches, is perfect for cruising and sliding.
Its shape allows it to adjust very well to wherever you shit your body weight to, while the length helps with the overall stability.
On the other hand, the 10-inch-wide deck offers a generous footing when performing your tricks.
Trucks and Wheels
Arbor’s bearings and wheels provide an ultra-smooth ride out of the box.
The 78a wheels, though, are about the hardness a light person would like to slide but may feel a bit mushy to a heavier person.
For those wanting to push for long distances, I would suggest they fit the larger diameter wheel they can. Of course, this will vary depending on your weight as well as the bushing setup.
Best Longboards for Sliding Buying Guide
When discussing the best longboarding gear for sliding, the first thing that comes across is the choice of wheels.
Wheels are essential for a longboard for sliding, though not the only one.
A common question is, which is better for sliding, softer wheels or harder wheels? The answer is not cut-and-dry, and here’s why.
Soft Wheels= more control, less speed
Softer wheels deform more and tend to grip on the road, killing more speed in a slide than the harder wheels.
On the other hand, harder wheels are easier to break into a high-speed slide but don’t shed as much speed as softer wheels as they deform less and hence grip less.
Therefore, harder wheels offer less control at higher speeds than softer wheels.
On the flip side, the harder wheels can be useful at lower speeds as they help you kick into the slide more easily while maintaining your speed.
So, the durometer you choose will depend on the speed you want to go- which again depends on your sliding goals.
Other Wheel Sliding Characteristics
While the durometer is the key to a longboard’s sliding ability, other critical elements are considered, such as shape, lip, contact path, and core placement.
For instance, two wheels with the same duro but with different sliding formulas may have different sliding behaviors.
When sliding, your longboard trucks go sideways, hence subjected to immense pressure.
The two common styles of trucks are the TKP and RKP. The difference between these two is the turn vs. lens, turn pattern, and truck height.
As for the truck angle, trucks with higher angles are less stable but slide more. On the other hand, trucks with lower angles are stable but harder to slide.
The rule of thumb is to stick to a standard 50-degree angle for a balanced feel.
Best longboard setup for sliding
Sliding Deck Size and Shape
Sliding longboards are available in different shapes and sizes.
For instance, freeride boards are typically 38” to 42” and 8.5-10” wide, with a wheelbase of anywhere from 24 to 30 inches.
Downhill boards tend to be shorter and are more agile. Longer boards, on the other hand, are stable.
We recommend the symmetrical decks for technical sliding and freeride as they allow users to do up to 180-to-360-degree slide maneuvers.
Most of these boards also have one or two kicks for better control and mix turns and tricks.
They’re opposite of the pure downhill speed boards, which are typically directional with a bullet-like shape.
Concave and rocker are essential for a sliding board as they create foot pockets for secure foot lock-in when pushing sideways.
Sliding Longboards Mount Type
There’s a long debate on whether the drop-through or top-mount decks are best for sliding.
There’s no clear-cut answer to this, as it all depends on the rider’s skills and the type of sliding.
However, it’s generally easy to initiate slides on dropped decks as the deck sits lower to the ground compared to a top mount.
On the plus side, it’s easier to hold a slide longer on a top mount because of better leverage over the trucks since your feet sit right over them. Consequently, top mounts offer a more responsive feel and control over when and how long your slide.
Drop-through decks are typically longer than top mounts, making them stable and easier to initiate slides on.
However, top mounts have a shorter wheelbase, so they offer faster transitions between the feet for more technical slides.
Seasoned longboarders prefer top mount for the effective foot platform and the resulting responsiveness.
Wrap Up: Our Choice
Our winner for the best sliding longboard is the VOLADOR 42” Freeride Longboard.
It’s a reliable and performance-oriented board that comes with everything you need for a successful sliding experience.
In particular, the camber design plays a critical role in escaping any wheel bite and lets you take extreme turns when sliding downhill.
It’s also long enough to offer ultra-stability, and the generous deck will ensure you’ve a sure footing when performing tricks.