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Tail Pads: Does It Matter?

  • Written by News Company

The surfboard tail pads are called by many names; some call it traction pads, or deck grips. But, in spite of its many names. This piece of grippy foam is found in the majority of shortboards and a few longboards at the end of its deck.

Its purpose is to give your rear foot more grip on the boards that would allow you to pull complicated maneuvers without worrying about your wax being sticky or bumpy enough. Other tail pads have ridges on them so that the back of your foot has even more control on the boards when doing aerial maneuvers and harder snaps.

You can find different brands of tail pads available on the market. It can also come in different colors and designs and textures. Since it is just a piece of simple equipment, it is hard to go wrong. Here are other essential details that you should know about tail pads.

Tail pads have their unique advantages and disadvantages. But in the end, the best traction pads for most surfers are the one that lasts longer, provides high traction, and has no maintenance requirement. The design and colors of tail pads offer more than just traction but also character. You also don’t need to worry about what traction to use in different water temperatures and reapplying them.

Advantages of Using Tail Pads

  • You don’t need to re-apply them like surf wax

  • They are comfortable for the foot because they are made with foam

  • You will have different colors and designs to choose from

Disadvantages of Using Tail Pads

  • The position of your tail pad on the board is critical. If you positioned them at the wrong place, it would not serve its purpose

  • Tail pads need proper caring as it is hard to remove and change

How to Apply Tail Pads?

Applying traction pads on a pristine surfboard can be nerve-wracking, but you can do it seamlessly if you follow these instructions.

First, you need to make sure that your surfboard has no wax on it. For a new surfboard, wipe it thoroughly to remove the fiberglass dust. If it is old, pour hot water or leave the surfboard under the sun to soften it. You scrape the wax or use a wax remover to do it faster. It would be best if you had the surfboard to be free from the wax and wax remover before commencing the application.

  • Cut the plastic and remove the cardboard backing on the tail pads but let it stay in the plastic.

  • With the plastic still intact, place the tail pad on the board to see where you want to apply it.

  • Mark off its position using a pencil.

  • Remove the adhesive paper and place the entire tail pad on the marked position.

  • Press it down for a good 20-30 seconds and carefully peel the plastic packaging.

  • Wait for a day or two before using the surfboard in the water.

That is how simple it is to apply a tail pad. You can even apply it yourself.