Are you on the hunt for wheel toys that target both functionality and recreation? If you were given only two choices – a skateboard or a bicycle – which would you choose? It is a bit hard to decide since the two can be used as a means of transportation and are great as a leisure activity.
It is easyto understand why some people are interested to learn both, be it for traveling, extreme sports or just a hobby. Of course, you can always learn both if you have the time and money to spend. But if you are to choose which one to learn first, what would it be? Let’s describe both and compare.
A skateboard is a board or sports equipment used for skateboarding. It is usually made of layers of hardwood like maple wood and has trucks, bearings, and wheels underneath.
There are two kinds of boards: longboards and shortboards. Longboards are usually used for cruising, commuting, and racing as they are usually faster compared to shortboards. However, shortboards are better at riding in skate parks and performing tricks.
Skateboards also come in different sizes and shapes. The concave of the board is also important as it helps in doing tricks. Over the years, skateboards had evolved and today there are now electric skateboards available in the market.
A bicycle or bike is a type of vehicle that has two wheels, one in front and the other at the back that is attached to a frame. It was initially used as a means of transportation but over the years, it had evolved and some use it for recreation, racing, physical fitness, and a lot more.
Initially, bikes are human-powered but today there are now motor-powered and electronic bikes or what they call e-bikes. It also comes in different types, depending on where and how you’ll use it. Some of the common bicycle types are mountain bikes, utility bikes, racing bicycles, hybrid bikes, racing bicycles, and BMX or sports bikes.
Like skateboards, they also come in different sizes, there are tall and low bikes, foldable, and bicycles intended for smaller and younger children. Bikes for kids usually have training or learner wheels.
Now that we have defined them both, it is time for their face-off. Are you ready to find out which is better or which is more suitable for you?
Skateboard Vs Bike
Which is easier to learn? If you look around, you’ll probably see more people on a bicycle than on a skateboard. This may only mean one thing – bikes are easier to learn compared to skateboards. You can even see small children riding their bicycles, although most of the time with learner wheels. But that’s the point, most people start learning how to ride a bike at a very early age.
Skateboards, on the other hand, are a different story. You don’t normally see a 5-year-old kid trying to learn how to ride a skateboard. Skateboarding requires a lot of patience, practice, balancing, and it involves a lot of skills. You need to learn how to balance both on a steady and a moving board, learn to balance on one foot while pushing, how to turn, carve, slide, foot brake, and a lot more.
With biking, you only need to learn how to balance while moving and shift the handlebars in the direction where you need to go. You don’t also need special skills when you need to stop because all you need to do is hold the brake.
While both are entertaining, skateboarding is a lot more fun and cooler. How many times have you come across a skater and thought to yourself “look how cool she/he is”? Probably, each time you see one. It is likely because it’s not every day you see someone on a skateboard, while you always see someone on a bike.
There are also more things you can do with your skateboard than on a bike. Even when roaming around campus or on the street, each ride can be different. You can always change your course and even perform some tricks while riding.
As for biking, it can be monotonous at times especially if you’re commuting. You tread the same paths every day with little to no challenge at all. Although it can be relaxing and pleasurable at times, there’s not much you can do while biking to and from work or school. Unless you get to hit dirt roads or climb hills on the way, which is a different story.
As part of your workout
Biking or skateboarding is a great way to exercise. They don’t just help you stay fit but they are also fun compared to other workout routines. Plus, they are more time-efficient if you use them as a means to commute. You get to where you want to be and you get to exercise at the same time. Now, isn’t that a win-win?
Biking can be an excellent leg and cardio workout especially if you are riding fast, long distances, and uphill. As for skateboards, it may look like you’re not burning any calories from them but you actually are. Aside from that, almost all parts of your body are moving and not just your legs. Both can also make you sweat hard depending on how extreme your ride is.
When it comes to terrain, the bike has the upper hand. It is more adaptable to almost any kind of ground or landform. Whether it’s rough, steep, downhill, uphill, or even muddy or slippery, your bike can withstand it.
Skateboards are not too flexible when it comes to terrain. It would be hard to skate on rough or uneven grounds, unless you are a professional. But even experts will find it difficult because of the small wheels. You would need a smooth pavement in order to skate properly and safely. Even a small rock may throw you off your board especially if you are a newbie.
Convenience & portability
Both are portable and easy to use. However, a skateboard is handier than a bicycle. You can easily carry a skateboard anywhere and you do not really need to find a space to park your skateboard, which is very convenient especially if you are running late. All you need to do is tuck it under your arm and you can go and bring it even inside a building.
As for bikes, you can’t just leave them outside a building. You need to find a spot where you can lock your bike. It is also more prone to getting stolen. However, it is more convenient to ride a bike than a skateboard. You can carry stuff on your bike and even put a lot of things on your backpack and still ride smoothly.
The things you can carry while riding on your skateboard are very limited. You can’t put stuff on your skateboard like you can on a bike. Plus, even if you can carry your backpack with you, it’s got to be light as it may cause you to lose your balance.
Another plus point for bikes is you can wear your school or work clothes while riding. You do not need a change of clothes, not unless it’s a long-distance ride and you’ll be all sweaty. Though you don’t really need a change of clothes while skateboarding, you definitely need to change shoes. With biking, you can wear almost any kind of shoes; with a skateboard, it has to be skateboard-friendly.
Clearly, bikes are more expensive than skateboards or even longboards. Bicycles are bigger and have more parts compared to skateboards. You’ll need to have at least $200 for a decent or entry-level bike but the price can go as high as $600 or even more.
With only $80 you can already own a decent skateboard complete or if you want a high-end skateboard, you can find something at around $200, which is still cheaper than a high-end bicycle. Even with a limited budget, you can easily afford a working skateboard.
There is no doubt that bikes are harder to maintain compared to skateboards. First, a bike has bigger and more parts that are also more expensive than skateboard parts. Bike tires alone can be very costly to repair or change.
Also, you need to wash or clean it more often than a skateboard. Each time you use it, you also need to check if the brake is working, the tires are not flat, and the chains and gears are well greased or oiled.
With skateboards, it does not need much maintenance. Cleaning the bearings once in a while will do. Also, in case you need to change parts, the cost for each part is still cheaper than bike parts.
It is wiser to use a bike when traveling long distances. It is far less tiring riding a bike even in any kind of terrain and length of distance. With cycling, you usually just use your legs but with a skateboard, you use more body parts. It can very exhausting, especially if it is not a downhill ride. All the foot braking and pushing can be physically draining.
Since both can be dangerous and are prone to accidents, both require safety gear. When it comes to the number of gear you need to wear, it’s usually a tie between skateboard and bike.
The most common safety equipment you need to wear for both are helmets, knee pads, gloves, and elbow pads. You may need more or less safety gear depending on your skill level and whether you are in a race or competition and doing extreme stunts and tricks.
However, you may need more protection if you are a beginner in skateboard than a newbie biker. If you are new to biking, you technically just need a helmet, knee pads, gloves, and elbow pads. A newbie skater may need more. Aside from those, you may also need wrist guards, hip pads, and sometimes a spine protector.
Both can be dangerous especially for beginners, which is why it is always important to wear safety gear. Depending on how and where you’ll use your bike or skateboard, there will always be a chance of an accident if you are not careful.
One advantage of bikes over skateboards is that bicycles have brakes, unlike skateboards or longboards. It is easier to stop abruptly when needed. As for skateboards, you need to use your foot to stop or you can run or roll over the side which you can’t always do especially if you are on a road full of cars.
When it comes to extreme sports, well that’s a different story. However, there are more dangerous tricks you can perform on a bike and some are done off-road. Both can be extremely dangerous and should only be done by professionals. If you are training to become one, don’t forget to always make safety the priority.
Speaking of sports, both are also considered extreme sports. But which is more extreme? Well, it would probably be biking or what they call BMX or Biking Motocross. This kind of sport requires a specialized bicycle. You cannot use your regular bike for this.
Off-road sports bikes or BMX bikes are used for this sport. This sport does not only include executing biking tricks but also racing and stunt riding. It’s usually done at transitions, vents, and race tracks.
Same with biking motocross, skateboard tricks are also performed on vents and transitions that you can find in skate parks. There are more tricks and exhibitions that you can do with BMX bikes than on a skateboard. However, some of the tricks are almost similar.
Now, have you decided which sport to try first? Before you make the choice, you need to determine your purpose for wanting to learn how to ride a bike or skateboard. If it’s for commuting or traveling long distances with some hills, then biking might be the right one for you. But if you want to look cooler and prefer a mode of transportation that you can bring anywhere and do some simple tricks at the same time, then go for a skateboard.