Surfboard Leashes: "What Size Surfboard Leash do I Want?"

An Article By: Chris Hough, CEO: The Surfboard Warehouse
Originally Posted: 2/13/2017

Choosing a Surfboard Surfboard Leash isn't as difficult as one might think. It's a bit less subjective than some of the other surf accessories that we sell. Sure, you might have a certain brand of Surfboard Leash that you prefer, but other than that there's a few constants you want to keep in mind when you choose your next Leash. As with everything else we sell, all of our Surfboard Leashes have been hand picked by us as the best in the industry, so if you buy a Leash here at The Surfboard Warehouse, you know you're getting a solid product. That said, "What Size Surfboard Leash do you Want?"

As a general rule you want your Surfboard Leash AT LEAST as long as your surfboard, and going a bit longer is a non issue. There is a simple explanation for this, when you "wipe out" as we all do, your Leash will keep your surfboard from washing into shore. That said, when your Surfboard Leash gets pulled tight, it stretches and when that energy is released, your Leash recoils and your surfboard becomes a projectile, hurtling back towards you. If your Leash is shorter than your surfboard, your surfboard will inevitably hit you. I have seen some nasty gashes that could have been avoided if the surfer was simply using the right size Surfboard Leash, one at least as long as his surfboard.

Usually, the reason a surfer might think he wants a shorter Surfboard Leash is because of the "drag" the Leash creates in the water when being pulled behind you. I'm not going to downplay this argument, surfing, especially high performance surfing is best achieved by reducing drag. It makes no sense to me to spend a ton of time choosing a Surfboard and Surfboard Fins if you're going to counter act that entire process by not reducing as much drag as possible when it comes to your Surfboard Leash. Therefor, reducing the drag created from your Surfboard Leash is a good idea. However, don't go with a shorter Surfboard Leash, just purchase a Competitive, "Comp." Surfboard Leash instead. After all that's what they're made for, reducing drag.

A Comp. Leash is going to be 3/16 in. thick, but that can depend on the manufacturer. Where as a Regular "Reg." Leash is usually 1/4 in. When you do the math it's easy to see how switching to a Comp. Leash will significantly reduce drag. Let's do the math with a 6ft. Surfboard Leash as an example. Granted, we would actually be talking about the exact amount of Surfboard Leash touching the water, but for sake of argument, lets say the whole Leash is dragging behind you on the face of the wave.

Surface Area of a Surfboard Leash: A = 2πrh + 2πr²

Doing the math shows a Comp. Leash coming in at a surface area of 42.47in. and a Reg. Leash coming in at at a surface area of 56.65in. Creating 14.18 more inches of Surfboard Leash dragging underwater with a Reg. Leash. vs a Comp. Leash! So, there's no need to go shorter and jeopardize your safety, just get a comp. leash instead.

Past the size of your Leash there are a few more, things to consider. If you're in a "big wave" situation, go with a Big Wave Leash. Yes, theoretically the "drag" discussion still applies and since a Big Wave Leash is 5/16 thick, so you can still make that argument. However, if you're surfing big waves one would assume at that point you're way more concerned about safety than speed. Trust me, go with a big wave Leash. Other than that, double swivels are key to keeping your Surfboard Leash untangled with any size Leash. Which most, if not all of the Surfboard Leashes we sell have double swivels.

Yes, Surfboard Leashes also come in a variety of colors and with different ankle cuff types, but this is beginning to become much more about preference and aesthetics than anything else. However, I would suggest trying a few different Surfboard Leashes throughout your surfing "career". You'll be surprised how a small change in your Surfboard Leash can make a huge impact with regards to your surfing. At the end of the day, if you're more comfortable with your equipment you're going to surf better and that includes your Surfboard Leash.

At The Surfboard Warehouse we all surf, we care and we want you to get the right Surfboard Leash for your needs. You're a surfer, we're an ACTUAL surf shop that understands The Surfboard Leashes we sell. At The Surfboard Warehouse, on this very page, you'll see the largest selection of Surfboard Leashes in the world, made by reputable manufactures, at great prices. Not sure which Surfboard Leash you need? Call us, we're here and we'll help. Thank you for considering The Surfboard Warehouse.

Surfboard Leashes From: Creatures, Destination, Famous, FCS, Komunity Project, OAM, Stay Covered, Dakine, Gorilla, Prolite, Ocean & Earth, Sticky Bumps

Contact Info:
The Surfboard Warehouse, Inc.
Also available during regular business hours VIA our Live Chat.
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