My kid is (as of this writing) 7 years old and I got him a great skateboard so we can ride together. He started out on a wider board but I soon realized he would be better off with a narrow board. I got him a smaller one and he improved quickly, the short answer here is:
The best skateboard for a 7-year-old depends on your kids’ height and shoe size. If your kid is between 4’5″ to 5’2″ tall and has shoe size 6 to 8, you need a skateboard that is between 7.0″ and 7.25″ wide. Make sure the trucks match the skateboard decks width and get proper fitting protective gear.
This is only when you follow it to the exact rule. I can imagine you don’t want to buy a new board each year so anything between 7.25″ and 7.5″ will work. Once they get older and you notice their feet sticking out too much, consider a new setup.
So let’s dive into what you need, I’ll recommend a couple of boards and guide you on how to pick custom parts. I’ll also explain a bit about the jargon as I don’t want you to leave this page without understanding the basics.
What Size Skateboard for 7-Year-Old?
You don’t really need a kid-sized skateboard but they do have a couple of benefits. My kid started out on a regular-sized 8.0″ deck and did fine but I noticed his back foot often came into contact with the deck and wheels while pushing. It made him stumble and fall, good thing he’s wearing protective stuff. So the general width I advise is between 7.25″ and 7.5″.
A narrow board makes a difference but to be fair, I learned skateboarding on a much wider board as a kid. Nowadays there are many options out there for kids so I decided to buy a smaller board.
So why not a standard size? A standard 8.0″ is wider and longer which means kids need has to compensate by bending their knees and almost skate in a crouch-like position (lower center of gravity). You often see this in skate parks and in general kids don’t really mind. A smaller board makes it easier to learn the basics.
Recommended Skateboards for 7-Year-Olds
This website is all about regular skateboards, also called popsicles. There are other types of skateboards which I will address shortly. I realize most people are on a budget so I made sure to pick skateboards that start at 50 bucks. Anything below is just unsafe and frustrating to ride.
I listed a couple of boards that I and my son ride and picked skateboards that are safe and reliable. They all went through 14 stages of quality control and are checked throughout the manufacturing process by a reputable woodshop.
The problem with the cheaper skateboards is that components like trucks and bearings can break. This results in blocking wheels and the board coming to a sudden stop. Low-quality boards delaminate and chip fairly easy, not to mention that they quickly develop a sharp tail, also known as razor tail.
Further down I’ll guide you in buying parts separately if you want the best quality stuff available. I also will go a bit into the jargon used because I can imagine it can be confusing.
Remember that all the parts can be replaced, you don’t have to be a new skateboard if parts are showing signs of wear and tear.
Santa Cruz is one of the most reliable and oldest skateboard brands and has decades of experience building skateboards. Founded in 1973 by NHS, they are still very popular to this day.
Santa Cruz builds quality skateboards that are reliable and safe, the offer a wide range for kids of every age. This is the exact skateboard my kid rides and he’s having a blast. I really like that it doesn’t make much noise and can deal with rough surfaces and cracks. The wheels are quite soft and roll over small rocks without any issues, you don’t want the wheels to block and proper wheels really make a difference.
The deck is made of the highest quality maple wood and produced by Dwindle (DSM), a woodshop known for its quality boards. They stand for their quality control and their decks are constantly monitored and tested during production.
The maple deck consist of 7 layers of wood held together by epoxy resin and are single pressed. It has a medium concave, which is the curvature across the deck’s surface and helps to maintain grip when moving your feet around.
The trucks perfectly match the width of the deck, so no wheels sticking out and no risk of your kid’s back foot coming into contact with the wheels when pushing the board forward. Bullet trucks are reasonably good trucks, they are checked for any deformation and don’t cause a skateboard to steer in one direction. Low-quality trucks on cheap skateboards are often deformed which can lead to less balance and unpredictable behavior.
The OJ slimeball wheels are great for skating streets and skate parks. The hardness is around 97a which makes them grippy and less noisy. The diameter is 53mm which is exactly right for a skateboard this size. No risk of the deck coming into contact with the wheels on sharp turns.
Standard ABEC 3 rated bearings, hardware and grip tape.
CCS is known for its affordable skateboards and has one of the best skateboards under 80 bucks. These boards come in all sorts of sizes and consist of a quality deck, reasonable bearings, and acceptable trucks. The wheels are a bit hard though.
I think this is the best reliable board you can buy for a kid on a budget. I personally bought this skateboard to check why skaters always recommend this board if you’re on a budget. After skating it for a bit I can confirm this board lives up to its reputation. I’m not a huge fan of the wheels and bearings but you can’t expect to get high-quality components at this price range.
It’s a very impressive deck, it’s just as good as any of the top brands though it doesn’t have a fancy graphic. They come in different colors and sizes, going from 7″ wide to 8.5″. You can always slap a few stickers on the bottom or make a custom painting to make it look more appealing, but in my opinion, it already looks fine.
It consists of the classic 7-layers of Maple wood, has a mellow concave and I couldn’t find any deformations.
This complete comes with CCS trucks, in fact, almost all the parts are CCS branded. I wouldn’t recommend CCS trucks to hardcore street skaters but they are fine for kids. My opinion is that the trucks are great for beginners who don’t perform technical tricks.
They are very loose because of the soft bushings, some people like loose trucks and others don’t. Heavier skaters often need harder bushings but this isn’t a problem for kids. Trucks can be replaced (like most parts on a skateboard) eventually and you can tweak them by tightening the trucks’ nuts on the kingpin.
The wheels are hard but still perform well on slick surfaces. They provide enough grip, can deal with small cracks but might block when coming into contact with pebbles and twigs. They aren’t very comfortable on rough roads and make more noise compared to softer wheels.
SkateXS is specialized in kid’s skateboards age 5 to 12 and provides top-quality parts depending on the board you pick. They offer several graphics suitable for both girls and boys like panda’s, unicorns, pirates, and stars (nothing inappropriate).
They can be a bit more expensive but you get a great setup and they even have an option add your kids’ name. Their boards are made of bamboo, making it a sustainable and environmentally-friendly choice.
SkateXS only offers kid-sized skateboards to make it easier to balance and maneuver. The cheapest model has lesser components but are still fine for a beginner. The more expensive skateboards consist of the best wheels, trucks and bearings and offer a smooth and comfortable ride.
They are skate-ready, right out of the box. You can tweak the trucks a bit to make them tighter or looser depending on what your kid prefers. I suggest experimenting a bit after your kid skated for a few hours.
This is a very popular board for kids. I think they did a great job with the wheels, they are perfect for riding rougher streets and don’t make a lot of noise. It comes with Mini Logo trucks and 90a mini logo wheels. 90a stands for the hardness or durometer which basically means they are soft and grippy.
This is a good choice for beginners and kids but if you can, spend 30 bucks more and get a skateboard from a reputable brand like Santa Cruz. It’s a decent board but not as great as the other ones listed. A great choice for a 7-year-old though. Make sure to inspect the board when it arrives.
Check if the deck isn’t twister or deformed, make sure the wheels spin properly and inspect the trucks for deformation.
Don’t forget to buy at least a helmet but I also recommend knee pads, elbow pads, and wrist guards. Not only will it keep you kid in one piece, often kids get demotivated when they hurt themselves and there’s a big chance they’ll give up.
There are a couple of protective sets available at a reasonable price, you don’t need anything heavy-duty as kids don’t weigh that much. The most important thing is that it fits properly and won’t shift (avoid the cheapest stuff). I found some protective gear that does the job perfectly without feeling too restrictive. My kid loves it and it even looks great, you can check it out at this page.
Confused About Jargon?
I’m aware that I mention terms like bushings, kingpin, durometer (hardness) and other jargon that you might not be familiar with so I added a diagram that explains all the technical stuff.
As for wheels. In general, softer and bigger wheels are better for cruising and harder wheels are great for tricks. Harder wheels make a lot of noise and vibrate more compared to softer wheels. Wheels are often measured by the durometer scale where 100A is the hardest wheel available.
Some brands use the B-scale which is more accurate at the end of the scale (there is a difference between 100A from brand X compared to 100A wheels from brand Y). The image could be used as a general guide if you want to assemble a skateboard yourself. Note that some brands advertise their wheels as 101A or even 104A but this is more a marketing thing. 101A is actually 81B and 104A should be labeled 84B.
If you want to pick the parts yourself make sure that the trucks’ axle width matches the width of a skateboard deck. So a 7.0″ deck should have trucks that are about 7″ wide.
Don’t pick wheels bigger than 53mm, anything above is (arguably) more suitable for older kids and wider skateboards. Softer wheels provide a smoother ride and help to balance on a skateboard. Harder wheels (100A) are great for slick surfaces like tennis/BB courts and skate parks.
What About Cheap Skateboards?
In general, I advise against them. They are usually a lot cheaper but your kid will have a harder time learning to ride properly. Cheap skateboards are often unsafe and consist of low-quality components. They are heavy and require a lot of effort to push around. My biggest concern is that they often break causing nasty falls.
It’s up to you of course, but there’s a big chance you’ll return the board because of broken bearings, slippery wheels or deformed decks. I also would stay away from those cheap plastic skateboards. Sure, only 30 bucks sounds like a good deal, but they are unstable and don’t have grip tape on the top making them slippery.
There are many options these days for 7-year-olds aspiring skateboarders. Avoid the cheap skateboards as they are frustrating to ride and often delaminate. For a bit extra you get something that lasts for years if you maintain it properly.
While a kid-sized skateboard isn’t always necessary, they are easier to ride and keep your child motivated. Sure your kid can ride a wider board, it just takes a bit longer to get the basics down and requires a different stance and posture compared to a kids-sized skateboard.
Please consider protective gear, at least get a decent helmet.