Bodyboards: discover the ultimate guide to buying bodyboards | Photo: Shutterstock

Are you buying a bodyboard? Do you need to be familiar with the world's leading bodyboard manufacturers? Are you unsure about which board model will suit your needs? Check out the ultimate guide to buying bodyboards.

Buying a new bodyboard is always an emotional moment. You want to get the right board for the right waves. Ultimately, it all comes down to the fun factor. You want your new board to glide you through dream waves.

If you're unsure about how your height and weight affect your bodyboard buying decision, check the bodyboard size chart. Nevertheless, and as a rule of thumb, the ideal boogie board is the one whose nose is leveled with your belly button.

If you buy a very long bodyboard, it will be harder to control in challenging conditions, and you may struggle to paddle into waves. On the opposite side, small bodyboards have low flotation, and may feel too loose at times.

Modern bodyboards offer multiple shapes, and are manufactured using a wide variety of core materials including beaded cores, extruded polystyrene foam (XPS), extruded polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP) and arcel.

When you buy a bodyboard, it comes flat and relatively stiff. It will only become more flexible with time, after a few dozens of tricks and maneuvers in the waves.

A cheap bodyboard - usually under $100 - is never the way forward. If your goal is to spend a few spring, summer, and autumn weekends improving your bodyboarding, get a quality board. A high-end bodyboard will help you evolve and, with proper care, it will last forever.

Science Bodyboards is Mike Stewart's bodyboard company. The brand developed "Style LTD," a universal design board shaped to fulfill all wave conditions, and types of riding. The "Pocket PP" is a bodyboard for those who privilege rail to rail transitions in the critical energy zone of the wave. The "Hybrid" is Science's board for Drop-Knee riders who sometimes ride prone.

Hubboards is a joint-venture between multiple-time world champion brothers Dave and Jeff Hubbard. They've developed "Hub Quad Core CT," a bodyboard with two cores in one that will work well if you're into airs. The "Dubb PP Pro CT," with its double SSS stringer, is a model for Drop-Knee enthusiasts.

Pride Bodyboards, a French company born in Biarritz, markets the "Royal Flush PP," a board for prone riding a with a slightly higher wide point than a traditional template. "Heartbreaker PP" is a fast bodyboard for experienced riders, and it was idealized by Pierre-Louis Costes. "The Stereo" is the perfect entry level board. The "Combo PE" is a durable mid-range polyethylene bodyboard featuring deck contours for extra comfort and control, an HD slick, channels, and a crescent tail.

NMD Board Co. was founded in New Zealand in 1999. They sell the "Ben Player PP," an all-around bodyboard which combines 55/45 double rails, graduated channels, bull slick grips, and a stringer. The "Jase Finlay PP" is a best-selling model with an excellent flotation formula.

Empire Bodyboards is a Californian bodyboarding company founded in 2006. Their "Andre Botha" model was designed by the two-time world champion with the same name. The "Maxx" board is ready for larger riders.

No. 6 is a 21st-century bodyboard brand founded by Mark Dale and Chris Wellington in Glendora, California. The "Covenant V3 Prime PP" is a long-standing template that is on continuous improvement, year after year. The "Deuce PP CT" is a popular, all-around model for both prone and DK riders, offering crisp clean rails with faded channel bottom.

Manta is Australia's first bodyboard brand. The "TFX" promises to offer the best flex to drive ratio. The center of the board is quite stiff, and it is balanced by flexible rails.

BZ was founded by Bobby Szabad, a former factory worker at Tom Morey's Morey Boogie. The brand still produces the "Fundamental" via Wham-O. The board features a polypropylene core and double rails for added rigidity and traction.

Morey is the oldest bodyboard company in the world. It was founded by Tom Morey in the 1970s. The "Mach 7" is one of the most popular models of all time, and it is known for its versatility and durability.

Custom X is a firm from Oceanside, California. They sell the "Matrix," a bodyboard with high-density PE core, deck/rail skins and and a durable HDPE slick bottom. The "XPE" features a tight cell deck material and double rails at 60/40 for high-performance prone riding.

The bodyboard buyer's guide and review has been updated on May 22, 2018.