How to Find the Best Surfboard for Intermediate Surfers?

Let’s start straightforward – How to find the best surfboard for intermediate surfers. First of all, surfing itself is an effort-based sport.

It takes days to master the tricks and years to become a master of surfing. The importance of the best surfboard for intermediate surfers is inevitable.

Because when you are just a beginner-level surfer, you know what you need. But when you progress through time, and you are no longer a beginner, you know these soft padded longboards won’t be enough for you. 

That’s when you need an upgrade to your surfboard. Professional surfers may know the difference between premium and average surfboards.

However, for intermediate surfers, too many options can often be confusing. Don’t get worried at all.

We are here to help you with finding the best surfboard for intermediate surfers. 

When Do You Need a New Surfboard?   

Let’s start with a story. I came across a surfer when I was researching for this article. He had been surfing for 15 years with shortboards.

Nonetheless, he always felt that he was missing the waves. It was as if there was never going to be any room for improvement for him. 

After moving to Las Vegas, and seeing other surfers with a variety of choices, he decided to change his surfboard. And guess what?

It was the most needed switch he ever had to make in his journey of surfing. 

I wrote down this story because most intermediate surfers often don’t realize when they need a change. 

Most of the time, the right time to get a new board passes away for them, and yet they won’t be aware of it.

This can greatly hamper their performance and cease further improvement. 

This is why it is important to switch your board at the right time. But when do you know you need a new board? 

It is when –

  • You are no longer a beginner and you can smoothly paddle out without professional help in a familiar place on the shore.
  • You can easily catch waves and ride on them to any specific front side or backside finish. 
  • A beginner surfer has learned to hold a complete wave. They have also figured out how to ride on the face of the wave. 
  • When you are no longer concerned about safety more than the new strategies you have started to adopt.  
  • But most importantly when you can carry out the three general turns of surfing. They are: bottom turn, top turn, and cut back. 

When you have mastered the basic skills of surfing and you are confident that you can perform them without any mistake, it is time for you to change your board. 

You will also feel your current level of skill is no longer confined to the basic surfboard. And it needs something more than that which can cope with your improving skills. 

How to Find the Best Surfboard for Intermediate Surfers?

In this time of the internet, nothing can remain out of sight. With proper knowledge and a little help from friends, you can get the best surfboard for your level. 

To help you with the process, here are some tips. 


It is never a waste of time when you invest your time to learn. Before you go to the shop and confirm your order, do research about the surfboard you are about to buy. 

There are several ways you can carry out your research. If you are an internet freak like me, you can carry out your search online. 

Start by searching for the best surfboards for intermediate surfers. However, do not get too influenced by online search results. It can always turn out quite the opposite for you. 

For example, suppose you are searching for intermediate surfers and what kind of surfboard they use. There is no guarantee that their surfboard will be a match for you.  

If you follow their suggestion blindly, you may end up with either a too shortboard or an advanced board for yourself.

Either short or pro, both of them are not good for surfing at your level. 

However, you can always carry out your online research to learn more about intermediate-level surfboards.

You may find any unique information that will come in handy in the long run. 

There is another way to know more about surfboards as well. In case you are not a fan of internet browsing, there are always other options for you. 

You can follow different surfing magazines. Yes, there are plenty of offline surfing magazines. T

hey regularly publish articles, recent updates on surfboards, best surfboard models, etc which will be very reasonable for your search.  

If you are a woman, you can check out the WSSM, Women’s Surf, and Style Magazine. Here, you can check out all the special surfboards and other accessories for intermediate surfer women.  

Take Professional Help

Take Professional Help

We know how hard it can be for you to take professional help at this stage. This is because you are not a beginner anymore but you are also not a professional either.  

Seeking professional help and taking regular classes or lessons from them can be tough at the beginning. However, if you try it out a little it can turn out to be fruitful for you.  

There are many professional coaching services you can find online. If you live in Australia, you can check out this online coaching service. They offer several packages for different levels of surfers. 

However, in case you are still not sure, check out school and college surfing clubs near your locality.

Many professional surfing coaches teach beginners, even supervise professionals’ moves for better skill development. And believe me, it is never too late to learn. 

They will guide you and monitor your every move. It is also very likely of them to suggest which surfboard is best suited for an intermediate surfer of your age. 

Even if you are stuck between 6’2″ and 6’4″, a professional coach will know how this slight difference in surfboard length can affect your overall performance and progressions. 

Never fill up the opportunity to learn more with ego. In the world of surfing, there is always room for more.  

Talk with Surfer Friends

The best option is always to start with your close circle. Intermediate surfers like you have been practicing for a long time.

You must have several friends who are beginner or professional surfers. They have had different experiences on their way of choosing the best surfboard as an intermediate surfer.

When they share their journey with surfboards, trust me, this piece of information is the most valuable one.  

Get one of your surfer friends out for a coffee break and share what’s bothering you. And hear their side of the story as well.

They will know which array width, nose-tail ratio, number of fins, depth of bottom foam, and thickness is best for an intermediate surfer; i.e when they have already passed the phase of a beginner level surfer. 

Surfboard Calculators

There was a time when the volume of surfboards was merely taken into account. It was only in the last decade when this property of surfboards was brought to light. 


The volume of a surfboard refers to the liters of foam over the board. It is measured in liters and indicates the right amount of foam for a surfer. 

Because foam plays an important role in the buoyancy of a surfboard. 

Too much foam will hamper quick moves like taking quick turns or cutting through the waves. On the contrary, the too-light foam will make it harder for you to float. 

However, let’s get to the point. There are many websites of official surfboard brands like Rusty Surfboards, JS Industries, and so on.

On these websites, you can find an additional option for a volume calculator. 

Here, you have to input your weight, height, skill level, frequency of surfing, and this kind of information.

They will take this info and deliver a result for the reasonable surfboard volume that you should get. 

Most of the time, this kind of calculator gives a possible result based on the given data. However, it is wise not to trust them blindly. 

Because my experience tells me, you will have different results in different calculators.

For example, if the volume calculator from one website shows that you need a surfboard with 38.8 liters, another calculator may suggest a volume of 29.1 liters.

This is why these kinds of results often create confusion in the mind. However, many surfers have claimed that they had the most precisive result with Rusty Surfboards.

Their given results match the real-life volume of the surfboards. You can check the online volume calculator for an approximate idea.

However, having the final purchase based on this data will not be a wise decision. 

Find A Shaper

Find A Shaper

Still, having problems looking for the best surfboard for intermediate surfers? You can always look for the root for better results. 

A shaper is a person who designs and makes surfboards, bodyboards, egg boards, etc. They know what beginners need and what kind of advancement to be brought in the surfboard for professionals.  

Similarly,  if you come across a shaper, they will know exactly what kind of surfboard you need as an intermediate surfer.  

However, it is best to inform them about your capabilities and weaknesses. They are shaper! There is nothing to hide from them.

They need to know exactly which wave you have to cut and which to avoid. Following that, they will suggest a board that will match the types of waves you ride on. 

You may end up getting a custom surfboard for yourself if you are too lucky. Yes! There are some shapers in Los Angeles who charge an extra $350 for custom-made surfboards. 

If you are too confident about getting a potential board for your level and spare money to lose, you can vouch for that. 

These are some of the major facts you need to keep in mind. Obviously, there is more to that. Learning about different parts of a surfboard and how they work will additionally help you get to the point.  

How to Find the Best Surfboard for Intermediate Surfers?

Frequently Asked Questions 

Q: What size waves are good for intermediate surfers? 

Ans: Intermediate surfers are somewhere between beginner and professional-level surfers. 

Flat waves are not an option for them and too-high waves (3.5ft or more) are not safe for them.  

The ideal waves for them should be 1.5-2 ft in length. However, if you are confident about your skills as an intermediate surfer, you can try for 3 ft waves as well. 

Q: How much volume does an intermediate surfer need? 

Ans: The volume of a surfboard is a property that depends on the weight of the surfers. 

If you weigh within 65-68 kilograms, and you are an intermediate surfer, you should get a surfboard with 25-26 liters of volume. 

For beginners, this number should be between 26.5-27.5 liters of volume. As for professionals, it will come down to 23.7-24.7 liters of volume. 

Q: How long does it take to become an intermediate surfer?

Ans: There are different levels of surfing. Beginners are considered from levels 1-3, while intermediate surfers share levels 4-6.

That’s how different surf academies measure surfers’ skill sets. To reach level 6 intermediate surfer from beginner level surfing (level-3), it will take 1-2 months. 

And to upgrade yourself from level 4-5 intermediate surfer to level 6, it will take 10-20 days. 

Read this article for a better idea – how long does it take to learn to surf

Last Words

Now that we are at the end of our article. Here’s some piece of advice for you. Clear your head and go through our article. Figure out which options suit you the best.

Truly, there’s more to that but keep researching and reading more about the best surfboard for intermediate surfers. 

Surely, fine research and the right knowledge can get you to the right surfboard at this stage of surfing.

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