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Bodyboarding is the ideal way for kids to ease into swimming, surfing, and earning their water wings. If you’re in the market for a quality bodyboard, we’ve put together a list of the best bodyboards for kids. These boards have smaller profiles, brighter colors, and specific features for children.

When your kids are playing in the water, you want to make sure they have the most fun in the safest manner possible. The bodyboard gives them a platform to drop-knee surf, bodysurf, or float. Pair these kids’ bodyboards with a PFD in their size for extra peace of mind.

For more of our top surfing gear recommendations, check out the Best Bodyboards

 

Quick Answer - The Best Bodyboards for Kids

  1. Lucky Bums
  2. Wave Bandit Shred Sled
  3. GoPlus Super
  4. Own the Wave Beach Attack
  5. BLACK MARLIN
  6. THURSO SURF DuoSlider
  7. Morey Bodyboards Mini Boogie
  8. The Slyde Grom

 

Comparison Table - Best Bodyboard for Kids

PictureNameLengthTail ShapeSize LimitPriceRating
Lucky Bums33”, 37”, and 41”Crescent4’8” - 5’7” tall, 65-190 lbs$$3.2
Bo-Toys33”, and 41”Crescent40-180 lbs$3.8
GYMAX41”Crescentup to 145 lbs$5.0
Wave Bandit Shred Sled37”Rounded Square80-140 lbs$$4.9
GoPlus Super33”, 37”, and 41”Crescent4’-5’11” tall, 89-189 lbs$4.6
Own the Wave Beach Attack33”, 37”, and 41”Crescent2’-5’9” tall, 60-188 lbs$4.2
BLACK MARLIN37” and 41”Crescent145 lbs max$$4.0
THURSO SURF DuoSlider42”Crescent210 lbs max$$$4.8
Morey Bodyboards Mini Boogie21”CrescentFor Small Children$4.9
The Slyde Grom19”CrescentNone$$4.3
PictureNameLengthTail ShapeSize LimitPriceRating
Want to learn more about a technical term? Check out our Features Explained section below.

Need buying advice? Take a look at these Things to Consider.

Reviews - The Best Kids' Bodyboard

Lucky Bums

Specs
  • Length: 33”, 37”, and 41”
  • Tail Shape: Crescent
  • Size Limit: 4’8” - 5’7” tall, 65-190 lbs
Features
  • Slick Bottom (glides over waves)
  • Durable and Lightweight
  • Comes With a Leash and Wrist Strap (so they don’t lose their board)
  • Rear Channels, or Grooves (to keep consistent contact with the water’s surface)
  • 60/40 Rails (for better control on big waves)

BEST FOR: WATER FUN FOR BIG AND LITTLE KIDS

With multiple size and color options, there’s a Lucky Bum for every kid in your family (and the adults too). The lightweight board is easy enough for even little ones to carry and can endure a bit of a beating. The slick bottom surface glides easily over the water at the same time as the tail adds stability to the ride.

Bo-Toys

Specs
  • Length: 33”, and 41”
  • Tail Shape: Crescent
  • Size Limit: 40-180 lbs
Features
  • Lightweight and Impact Resistant
  • Comes with a Wristband and Leash (so your child won’t lose the board)
  • Super Slick Bottom with Channels (for maximum glide across the water)
  • 60/40 Rails (for sharpening your skills)

BEST FOR: BEACH VACATION WAVE-RIDING

If you’re looking for a new way for your little ones to experience the water, set them up with a Bo-Toys Bodyboard. They’ll have a blast riding over the top of the waves or pretending to surf. Either way, their hours on your beach vacation will be well spent. We apologize in advance for how hard it’s going to be to get them out of the water.

GYMAX

Specs
  • Length: 41”
  • Tail Shape: Crescent
  • Size Limit: up to 145 lbs
Features
  • Comes With Leash (so your child won’t lose the board)
  • Rear Channels (to keep consistent contact with the water’s surface)
  • Slick Bottom ( glides across the waves)
  • Lightweight and Durable

BEST FOR: TESTING THEIR DROP-KNEE SKILLS

Give your son or daughter a chance to develop their surfing skills by starting with a bodyboard. This maneuverable board gives them a quality surface to test their drop-knee and potentially standing skills before they graduate to more progressive surfing skills. One of the best features of this board, though, is the variety of designs available, including snakeskin and hibiscus patterns.

Wave Bandit Shred Sled

Specs
  • Length: 37”
  • Tail Shape: Rounded Square
  • Size Limit: 80-140 lbs
Features
  • Slick Bottom (that glides across the water)
  • Comes With an Attached Leash
  • Bodyboard and Surf-Friendly

BEST FOR: GROM SURFING PRACTICE

Part surfboard, part bodyboard, the mini Shred Sled will help your child gain confidence conquering waves at their own pace. They can start by just feeling out the waves, then progress to drop-knee surfing, and jump up onto their feet when they feel ready. This bodyboard supports stand-up surfing at a budget-friendly cost for the emerging thrill-seeker on your hands.

GoPlus Super

Specs
  • Length: 33”, 37”, and 41”
  • Tail Shape: Crescent
  • Size Limit: 4’-5’11” tall, 89-189 lbs
Features
  • Tropical Designer Patterns
  • Slick Bottom (glides across the water)
  • Resists Weather, Water, and Shock
  • 60/40 Rails (good control on large waves)
  • Includes a Leash and Wristband (so your child won’t lose the board)

BEST FOR: KIDS WITH A WATER FIXATION

Some kids just don’t want to come out of the water, no matter how blue their lips or wrinkled their toes. Nurture their love of water with a board that lets them familiarize themselves with the surf. Even in an indoor swimming pool, your child can learn how to paddle and keep his or her head above the water without intervention. This bodyboard is easy enough for them to carry on their own too.

Own the Wave Beach Attack

Specs
  • Length: 33”, 37”, and 41”
  • Tail Shape: Crescent
  • Size Limit: 2’-5’9” tall, 60-188 lbs
Features
  • Comes With a Leash and Fin Tethers (so the board won’t float away)
  • Slick Bottom (glides across the water)
  • Rear Bottom Channels (keeps more consistent contact with the surface)
  • 60/40 Rails (for better control on bigger waves)

BEST FOR: RIDING THE TIDE TO SHORE

If you want to spend more summer afternoons out on the water, then you should consider some new water toys like this kid-friendly boogie board. This bodyboard has hours (days!) of fun built into it, making good use of your free time. Kids love to try surfing and riding waves all the way to shore on this raft. To boot, the handy leash and fin tethers save parents of kids who are prone to losing things lots of grief.

 

BLACK MARLIN

Specs
  • Length: 37” and 41”
  • Tail Shape: Crescent
  • Size Limit: 145 lbs max
Features
  • Comes With a Leash and Wrist Strap (so your child won’t get separated from the board)
  • Slick Bottom Surface (glides across the water)
  • Rear Bottom Channels (to keep consistent contact with the water’s surface)
  • Made of Lightweight, Long-Lasting Material

BEST FOR: BIGGER KIDS AND YOUNG ADULTS

We know your kids are growing up too fast for you, and that’s why we’re giving you options like this Black Marlin for older kids and even small adults. This bodyboard provides major upgrades to your standard store-bought board such as its high-tech leash, slick plastic bottom, and double channels. Older kids don’t want to sit at the kid’s table–or ride the waves on a little kid’s board.

THURSO SURF DuoSlider

Specs
  • Length: 42”
  • Tail Shape: Crescent
  • Size Limit: 210 lbs max
Features
  • Two Sets of Handles and Two Leashes (for two riders)
  • Contoured Deck (for rider comfort)
  • Heat-Laminated Exterior (to extend lifespan)

BEST FOR: BODYBOARDING FOR TWO

If your small child isn’t ready to bodyboard on their own yet, you can get their feet wet (pun intended!) with this two-person board. Your child lays across the nose while you hold on behind them, giving you maximum control and your rider a prime view. Otherwise, your child can sit on top while you give them a twisty-twirly ride. You both get to indulge your sense of adventure in a more controlled environment with the DuoSlider.

Morey Bodyboards Mini Boogie

Specs
  • Length: 21”
  • Tail Shape: Crescent
  • Size Limit: For Small Children
Features
  • Foam Core (keeps the board lightweight and buoyant)
  • Slick Bottom (glides across the water)
  • Absorbs Impact Easily To Prevent Injury

BEST FOR: TINY TOT WATERPLAY

Just like your toddler, this mini bodyboard has all the features of a full-size model on a much smaller scale. While you probably won’t send your tiny tots out to catch waves, you can teach them water basics and build their confidence with this board. The mini Morey can also be used as a kickboard for beginner swimming lessons or a platform for action figures. You’re only limited by your imagination.

The Slyde Grom

Specs
  • Length: 19”
  • Tail Shape: Crescent
  • Size Limit: None
Features
  • Super Advanced Construction, Debuted on Shark Tank
  • Soft, Grippy Top (for enjoyable comfort)
  • Ultra-Slick Bottom Surface (slides down waves)
  • Secure Hand Strap
  • Ultra-Portable

BEST FOR: BODYSURFERS WITH BODYBOARDING INCLINATIONS

From the inventors of handboarding, the Slyde lets your brood try a new hybrid version of bodyboarding and bodysurfing. Instead of using just their body or a full-size board to ride waves, your kids can try gliding over the waves on their hands. And you don’t have to lug the kid-friendly handboards around like a full bodyboard or surfboard. They fit in your beach bag!

 

 

THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN BUYING BODYBOARDS FOR KIDS

PRICE

Bodyboards are usually quite inexpensive, especially compared to paddleboards and surfboards. The boards in this list all come in under $100, but typically cost more than your store-bought brand because of their high-tech features such as bottom slicks and leashes. Thankfully, children usually don’t need anything fancier than a board that floats to get them interested in water sports.

 

USE

You might want to ask yourself a few questions before choosing a bodyboard for your child such as: How serious is your kid about boarding? Will they use it for the swimming pool or the ocean? Will they use it all summer or only occasionally? More robust models are best for those who have more serious boarding ambitions in the open water while toy models are more appropriate for occasional backyard use.

 

CHILD SIZE

Bodyboards typically have height and weight limits, so you need to pay attention to those specifications to make sure you choose the right board for your child. Bodyboards don’t perform well if they’re weighed down and your kid may have a difficult time maneuvering a board that’s too wide for their wingspan. Use the manufacturer’s specifications to help you find the right size. Otherwise, use this chart to help you gauge size.

 

TAIL SHAPE

Most bodyboards have a tail that’s shaped like a crescent or bat wings. Children’s boards tend to carry the crescent shape since it’s more beginner-friendly and comfortable. The curved shape wraps nicely around the torso and makes it easier to climb aboard. You may see an occasional rounded square tail, like the Wave Bandit has, which makes it more functional and kid-friendly than your standard board.

 

 

FEATURES EXPLAINED

RAILS

The rails of a bodyboard refer its sides or thickness, and their design is usually listed as a percentage (i.e. 50/50, 60/40). The numbers refer to how much of the rail is dedicated to the top portion (which connects to the deck) and how much is dedicated to the bottom (which contacts the water). Professional bodyboarders pay close attention to these numbers (learn more here), but it typically doesn’t impact children very much.

LEASH

Like a dog leash, a bodyboard leash keeps your board within arm’s reach at all times. If you’re worried about your kids losing their boards when they fall or get distracted, then a leash is an important feature to have. That way, they never get separated from their board.

DECK

The deck is the top of the board, where your child rides. The deck usually has a straightforward foam construction, but some decks have additional features such as body contours and grippy surfaces to make the ride a little more comfortable.

FIN TETHERS

Fin tethers hold your child’s flippers to their ankles with a short leash so they don’t go missing either. Again, if your child tends to lose their belongings, fin tethers are a worthy investment.

CHANNELS

Channels are indents molded into the bottom of the board, which distribute weight over the water better than a flat surface. Channels help the board grip the wave and help move you in your intended direction.

SLICK

A slick is the material on the bottom of a bodyboard, which is usually slippery, reducing friction against the water. With less drag, super-slick bottoms allow you to gather more speed. The slick also lends support and durability to the board.

GROM

Short for grommet, grom is a term used to describe a young person who participates in extreme sports like surfing.

Learn more about the features of a body board here.

READ MORE

For more of our top surfing gear recommendations, check out these popular articles:

About The Author

Jessica Collins is a barefoot health and fitness writer and nature enthusiast who lives in rural Wisconsin with her husband and two kids. She's always scouting local hiking trails to go hiking and forest bathing on and streams for kayaking. She's also a certified personal trainer and teaches weekly fitness classes. You can find more of her fitness and forest bathing content on FlashFit Trainer (https://flashfittrainer.com/) and Forest Bathing Central (https://www.forestbathingcentral.com/).

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