How to Choose a Surfboard Leash

A surfboard leash is a modern-day revelation in the surfing industry. While it sounds like an odd concept to attach a leash to a surfboard – it has become an almost essential part of the surfing experience. No, you won’t be walking a board like a dog – this nifty little rope does help keep control of your board, though. We’ll explain a little about a surfboard leash and how to choose one for you.

What is a Surfboard Leash?

The surfboard leash is a leg rope attached to your board, with a foot holding that wraps around the surfer’s ankle. It keeps the board attached to a person – so when you fall off, you won’t need to go chasing it. The leash is also made for the personal safety of surfers and those around. It will stop the board from harming if it goes rogue.

The device was invented in the 1970s. It helped solve the problem of surfers burning a lot of energy to retrieve their boards. Since the development of new surfboards and surfing styles – the leash has evolved with it. There are now many different leashes that can be attached to surfboards – some more suited than others. Choosing the right leash is now considered essential to getting the best surfing experience.

man holding wood surfboard and leash

Choosing the Right Surfboard Leash

Many factors can help you choose the right leash for your surfboard. Professionals may look at the finer details of each cord. In general, however, there are 3 main areas to consider. They are the length of the leash, its thickness, and what your surfing skill is like. A little bit of detail on each can be found below.


Surfboard leashes come in many different lengths, which can be overwhelming in choosing the correct one. The general rule is that leashes should be just about as long as your board. This is to allow enough space between you and the board – so that it’s always nearby and not in harm’s way.

Surfing Skill

The thickness and length are the essentials when choosing a surfboard leash – but your skill matters too. If you are of beginner skill – thicker leashes would also be more beneficial, so you have more control. If you are more advanced, lighter leashes with shorter lengths allow more maneuverability and speed.


The thickness of the leash matters according to your surf environments. If you are expecting some bigger and tougher waves – a thicker surfboard leash is recommended. This ensures that the rope does not snap during the more strenuous sessions and always stays attached.

Lose Your Worries, Not Your Board

Once you have the right surfboard leash, all you need to do is attached it to your board. Then away you go into the wide blue yonder, taking away any worries of losing your board. Your safety and others will be secure – you’ll just need to worry about catching the perfect wave. We’re lucky to have this marvelous surfboard invention to keep us riding the waters!

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