Skateboards usually have different accessories that make the rising experience easier and more comfortable.
Shock pads and riser pads are two accessories with a similar purpose. Though both pads look and function similarly, some key differences separate the two.
Below, I have discussed the differences and seen which one would be more suitable for your skating style.
What are shock pads?
Shock pads are add-on accessories installed between the trucks and the deck of your skateboard. Here is why shock pads are used and how you can befit from installing them.
Why is it used in skateboards
As the name suggests, shock pads are installed to prevent your board from absorbing the shock from landing tricks.
While landing, your deck goes through extreme pressure and shock pads can help absorb that pressure and provide cushioned landing.
Benefits of using in skateboard
If you are doing tricks on your skateboard, it’ll take a heavy toll on your deck. Over time, the trucks attached to the deck generate stress marks on the wooden deck.
As a result, the deck appears to crack around the trucks. Shock pads come into play to prevent these stress marks.
The main benefit of shock pads is that it absorbs the shock from landing and provide a smooth riding experience. Shock pads are screwed between the trucks and the deck.
So, whatever pressure the trucks put on the deck while landing, shock pads minimize that pressure. As a result, you get a smooth landing without worrying about damaging the deck.
What are riser pads?
Riser pads are add-on skateboard accessories made out of plastic. Unlike the shock absorption of shock pads, riser pads are much thicker to provide necessary wheel clearance.
Why is it used in skateboards
Riser pads are used to lift your deck from the wheel. So creating that gap between the wheels and the truck might be unnecessary.
However, if you use those big 70 mm wheels for cruising around, that gap made by riser pads must avoid wheel bite.
Whether making a turn, landing a trick, riding on rough terrain, or grinding railing, wheel bits are very common among skaters.
Unfortunately, when you use larger wheels, the wheels stay very close to the deck, and that’s what causes the wheel bites.
Benefits of using in skateboard
As I mentioned earlier, riser pads are meant to lift your deck from the wheels. As a result, you get the necessary clearance to avoid wheel bite.
However, riser boards are not helpful if you plan to do tricks. The added height makes it more challenging to shove the tail to the ground for tricks.
But if you are planning on cruising around, riser pads can be beneficial for you. Riser pads prevent the wheels from scratching the deck, therefore not affecting the speed. Alongside preventing wheel bite, rise pads also work as a partial shock absorber.
So, you can try thinner riser pads and get the function of shock pads too.
Differences between shock pad & rider pad
Now that you know what shock and riser pads are and their benefits, let’s figure out their differences from various aspects.
Though shock and riser pads go into the same place and have similar functions, the materials are entirely different. A riser pad is made of hard plastic, as the job is to hold the deck higher from the wheels. Due to the sturdy plastic, riser pads never compress that much.
On the other hand, shock pads are made of rubber or dense plastic, as their main job is to provide cushioning by absorbing the shock.
Shock pads and riser pads have completely different thicknesses.
Most of the riser pads on the market are around half an inch and can even go up to one inch, depending on the height you need.
On the other hand, shock pads are much thinner, usually about 1/8 inch. They are thinner because riser pads are not meant for height but for cushioning and shock absorption.
Shock pads and rise pads have entirely different objectives. The point of riser pads is to raise the deck height so that you don’t get wheel bit and thrown off the board.
On the other hand, shock pads are meant for absorbing pressure. They work as a suspension between the deck and the trucks. Shock pads also reduce some speed in absorbing pressure, which is not the case for riser pads.
Shock pads are used where a shock is involved. For example, doing the trick or going over rough pavement shock pads can absorb the pressure. In short, these pads are most helpful if you are doing skateboard tricks.
On the other hand, riser pads lift the deck height, to prevent wheel bits from bigger wheels. Bigger wheels are primarily used for cruiser skateboards.
Do riser pads make a difference
Riser pads are one of the most helpful skateboard accessories. In specific riding scenarios, you have riser pads can make a lot of difference. Riser pads prevent your wheels from contacting the deck and throw you off the board.
In addition, the wheel bite can sometimes result in unwanted braking, which the rider pads prevent.
Do they help in doing tricks
Only the shock pads can help with the tricks between riser pads and shock pads. As I said, the landing trick puts massive pressure on the deck and the trucks.
Riser pads can simultaneously help a smooth landing and save your patio by absorbing the pressure.
That’s a wrap for today. I hope my article was helpful enough to figure out the differences between shock pads & riser pads. Typically, both pads have similar purposes and using any of them would be fine.
However, if you want to go by the book, remember that riser pads are for longboards while shock pads are usually for regular skateboards, and you should be fine.
Hi, this is Jerry, a skateboarder, who loves to talk about micro-mobility and future of that industry. Coming from motion engineering background, I am very enthusiast about speed, motion, balance and technology. I have taken a mission to carry the fuel free, environment friendly micro-mobile industry forward by educating people about micro-mobile products especially skateboards and longboards. I love skating around very much and encourage people to do so. Its a fun believe me.