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Traction Pads

Surfboard Traction Pads / Deck Grips / Tailpads

Traction Pads 1

Surfboard traction pads, deck grips, tailpads. There are several names for this piece of grippy foam that most shortboards and a few longboards have on the end of the deck.

Put simply, traction pads give your rear foot a bit more grip on the board, allowing you to pull harder maneuvers without having to worry about whether or not your wax is sticky or bumpy enough. Some surfboard traction pads have ridges at the back that allow your foot even more control over the board for harder snaps and aerial maneuvers.

There are several brands of surfboard traction pads on the market, and it’s tough to go wrong since traction pads are a relatively simple piece of equipment.

I personally recommend DaKine tail pads, however Gorilla Grip and OAM produce good tail pads as well.

Color: This is up to you. One word of advice, however, don’t get a white traction pad. The guy at the shop said it wouldn’t get dirty, but it did. He was probably trying to get rid of it! Now it looks a little trashed, but it still works fine.

HOW TO APPLY A SURFBOARD TRACTION PAD

Applying a tail pad to your pristine surfboard can be a little nerve-wracking, but there is a very simple way to do it.

FIRST: Make sure there is NO wax on your board. If it’s brand new, take a cloth and wipe away any fiberglass dust that might be on the board from production. If you’ve had wax on it, leave it in the sun for a few minutes to soften the wax, or pour hot water on it. Then scrape away the wax from the area with a wax comb or other soft plastic edge (your old credit cards work well) and finish with a wax remover. If it’s winter, you can take a hairblower on a LOW setting and blow the wax until it is soft enough to remove. Make sure that you wipe away all the wax remover and bits of wax.

  • Cut the plastic around the edge of the tailpad and remove the cardboard backing—but leave the pad itself in the plastic so it stays together.
  • Put the tail pad on the board (still in the plastic) and figure out where you want it to go. Some surfers like to have the rear kick-up ridge positioned either directly over the front of the centermost fin, others like to have it right in front of the leash plug. If this is your first traction pad, a safe bet is to put the rear ridge over the center of the middle rear fin.
  • Mark off the position of the pad with a pencil. Use the stringer to make sure you’ve got your pad centered.
  • Peel off the adhesive paper on the pad, being careful not to let the glue stick to anything.
  • Take the entire pad and carefully place it onto the area marked with your pencil.
  • Press down firmly for about 20-30 seconds to bond the adhesive.
  • Carefully peel away the plastic packaging.
  • It’s advised to wait a day to use the board, but I’ve heard of people going in the water right away. It’s up to you, but I’d recommend waiting at least 12 hours.

That wasn’t so hard now, was it? Some people like to spread the pieces of their traction pad around wider or tighter than the factory “preset.” If you want to do this, just take a pencil and trace the different pieces individually. You can use a little piece of double stick tape so they don’t move around as you arrange them.

REMOVING A SURFBOARD TRACTION PAD

This is difficult, and is easier on epoxy boards than fiberglass boards. If you want to remove a tail pad from a fiberglass board you run the risk of delaminating the board, pulling the fiberglass away from the foam. This could ruin your board, so it’s not recommended.

If you MUST remove the pad, do it very, very slowly and carefully, a little at a time. If you’re going to put a new pad on, don’t worry about a little sticky adhesive left over. If you just want to get rid of the thing completely, a small amount of paint thinner on a rag or paper towel should take care of the adhesive.

Bestsellers According To Amazon

Bestseller No. 1
Abahub 3 Piece EVA Surfboard Deck Traction Pads with Kicker for Stomp Skimboards, Surf Boards, Funboard, Fish Board, Black
  • Premium Materials for High Performance: A-grade lightweight EVA with authentic green label 3M adhesive, this surfboard traction pad is designed for turns and cutbacks.
  • Fits All: the 3 piece surf traction ARCH pad design could fit for all surfboards, fishboards, skimboards, funboards and longboards.
  • Ultra Light: A-grade high density EVA foam, weighs just 3 oz, minimum added weight to the board for PRO performance
  • Beveled Tail Kick: 25mm thick steep tail kicker provides enhanced drive in surfing, specially designed for leashes to move smoothly without affecting performance
  • Superb Grip: the ultralight diamond grooved EVA foam is comfortable to stand on while strong enough to provide the support needed for all the movements in surfing.
Bestseller No. 2
Seafard 3 Piece EVA Surfboard Deck Traction Pads, Surf Traction Pad with Kicker for Stomp Skimboards, Surf Boards, Funboard, Fish Board, (Black)
  • 🏄 HIGH PERFORMANCE EVA FOAM: A-grade high density EVA foam with authentic green self-adhesive label, this surfboard traction pad is designed for turns and cutbacks.
  • 🏄 FITS All: You can place this 3 piece traction pad as you please. Spread the pieces out for wider boards, put the pieces together for narrower ones. Fit for all surfboards, fishboards, skimboards.
  • 🏄 ULTRA LIGHT: The 3 piece ARCH bar surf traction pad design, weighs just 3 oz, minimum added weight to the board for PRO performance.
  • 🏄 HIGH TAIL KICK: 25mm thick beveled tail kicker provides enhanced turning drive in surfing, specially designed for leashes to move smoothly without affecting performance.
  • 🏄 SUPER GRIP: the ultra lightweight diamond grooved EVA foam is comfortable to stand on while strong enough to provide the support needed for all the movements in surfing.
Bestseller No. 3
Ho Stevie! Premium Surfboard Traction Pad [Choose Color] 3 Piece, Full Size, Maximum Grip, 3M Adhesive, for Surfing or Skimboarding (Black)
  • 🥇 PREMIUM QUALITY - Other traction pads on Amazon claim to be high quality, but they are smaller and the adhesive is not as good. You know you are getting quality with Ho Stevie!
  • 🏄‍♂️ SUPER GRIPPY, yet soft on your knees if you surf in boardshorts.
  • 👣 FULL SIZE PAD - 12”x12” when all 3 pieces are laid side by side. Spread the pads apart if you prefer a wider grip on your tail.
  • 💪 POWERFUL 3M ADHESIVE provides maximum stick to your board. (Some cheaper products claim to use 3M adhesive, but you can check their reviews and see that the pads often come off the board)
  • 💯 100% SATISFACTION GUARANTEE: As with all of our products, if you are not completely satisfied for ANY reason, simply return it within 30 days for a full refund.
Bestseller No. 4
Dakine Launch Traction Pad - Shadow
  • Dakine Friendly Foam biodegradable EVA foam
  • A true leader in the world of bags, packs, and accessories, DaKine has a reputation for the best Surf Accessories in the biz. After celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2019, DaKine continues to pride itself on developing products for the top professionals in every board sport and building its reputation for innovation and quality for over a quarter of a century.
Bestseller No. 5
Dakine John John Florence Pro Surf Traction Pad, Black/Carbon (BLK/CRB), One Size
  • Triple cut Positraction grid pattern
  • A true leader in the world of bags, packs, and accessories, DaKine has a reputation for the best Surf Accessories in the biz. After celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2019, DaKine continues to pride itself on developing products for the top professionals in every board sport and building its reputation for innovation and quality for over a quarter of a century.
Bestseller No. 6
Santa Barbara Surfing SBS Front Traction Pad
  • DITCH WAX: Once you use the SBS front traction pad, you will never again want to mess with wax.
  • STICKY 3M ADHESIVE: Applied correctly our traction pad will stay on your board worry free.
  • DIMENSIONS: 15" x 15" - Four (4) 3.5" wide x 15" sections, which when spaced about 1/4" apart = 15x15.
  • LIGHT AND THIN: With a thickness of 2.5mm (1/10th of an inch) and vertical corduroy grooves, this pad is ideal for front traction.
  • ONE YEAR GUARANTEE: Should our traction pad let you down, we will replace or refund you. Just let us know and we will take care of it.
Bestseller No. 7
WOOWAVE Surfboard Traction Pads 3 Piece EVA Surfing Traction Pad Premium with 3M Adhesive and Tail Kicker for Surf Board Skimboard Longboard, Yellow
  • ☞【SUPERB GRIP WITH COMFORT】Premium lightweight EVA traction pads cut with small diamond grooves, hard brushed all over the surface provides ultimate grip and soft comfort to the feet, support needed for all the movements in surfing.
  • ☞【FIT ALL BOARDS】3-piece surf traction pads with general size of 12.4” x 11” (31.5 cm x 28 cm), the traction arch pad design fits almost all kinds of surfboards, skimboards, fishboards. Spread the pads apart if you prefer a wider grip on your tail.
  • ☞【PERFORMANCE DESIGN】The surfing traction pad is with 25mm thick beveled tail kicker to enhanced drive in surfing, specially designed for leashes to move smoothly without affecting performance.
  • ☞【POWERFUL 3M ADHESIVE】The 3M adhesive provides maximum stick to your board. Creates a powerful, permanent bond between the surfing traction pad and your board.
  • ☞【1-YEAR QUALITY WARRANTY】Your purchase includes a hassle-free Money Back Guarantee and a free replacement exchange one year. If the traction pads get damaged, just feel free to contact our customer service team with a photo, we are willing to replace it FOR FREE.
Bestseller No. 8
3 Piece Gray Stomp Pad Surfboard EVA Traction Pad with 3M Adhesive Professional Tail Pad/Applies All Boards - Surfboards, Shortboards, Longboards, Skimboards (sea Turtle)
  • 【Superb Grip】EVA Foam For Extra Grip when needed while slamming back on the tail Long Lasting Proper 3M Adhesive With Easy Peel n’ Stick Backing.
  • 【Fits All Boards】Exclusive and unique turtle pattern-Surfboards, Fishboards, Skimboards, Funboards and Longboards.
  • 【Size】length: 12.9"*12.9" (33*33cm)丨weight: 150g
  • 【Premium Materials for High Performance】A-grade lightweight EVA with authentic green label 3M adhesive
  • 【WARRANTY】As with all of our products, if you are not completely satisfied for any reason, simply return it within 30 days for a full refund.
Bestseller No. 9
FCS Julian Wilson Signature Surfboard Traction Pad Black/Charcoal
  • Double Square Groove
  • Designed in collaboration with the world's leading surf athletes and surfboard shapers, the FCS range offers a diverse range of surfboard accesories suited to a variety of board models, wave conditions and surfing styles. FCS fins are the preferred choice by the world’s best surfers and shapers.
Bestseller No. 10
Ho Stevie! Front Traction Pad for Surfboards and Skimboards [Choose Color] (Black)
  • 🕯 ELIMINATE THE NEED FOR WAX - When you add a front traction pad to your surfboard, you don’t need to use wax for grip. This means no messy melted wax on your car or at the beach when you leave your surfboard in the sun.
  • ⚖️ LIGHTWEIGHT - All four pieces of the front traction pad weigh a total of 3.7oz, which is likely less than the weight of wax on your surfboard.
  • 👣 FULL SIZE PAD - 16” tall and 14.5” wide when all 4 pieces are laid side by side. We recommend spreading the pads apart equally across the width of your surfboard, as shown in the pictures.
  • 🥇 PREMIUM QUALITY - Same material and pattern as our rear traction pads. Powerful 3M adhesive provides maximum stick to your board.
  • 💯 100% SATISFACTION GUARANTEE: As with all of our products, if you are not completely satisfied for ANY reason with your front traction pad, simply return it within 30 days for a full refund.

One Comment

  1. By far, I prefer white traction pads,… because they don’t get especially dirty unless you surf in dirty water.
    I surf in San Diego,…. and I don’t surf often, but I surf HPSB’s. Black/dark pads just don’t like right.

  2. wait 24 hours if you can!!!!! usually the leash pulls on my pad , usually tie my laces to longm but!!! pad will stick if you wait!!!! make sure you hold when it bonds! i am super impatient and surf my new boards as soon as the pad is on that is why they eventually will fall off. and i most certainly surf more than you. cuss your vagina probably hurts and they waves ‘arent good enough” . the waves are always good. you aint broke you just broken hearted <3 <3 mIm

  3. use a air dryer and heat the pad a little and make sure your board is at least 72 degrees Fahrenheit. then stick it on and press down all over it and especiallyt the edges.

  4. What can I do if the traction pad does not want to stick to the board? Can I stick it back on or something? If yes, what glue should I use? Thanks
    max

  5. Thanks Guys for the infos.
    The only problem I have with my traction pad(which came with the board) is that it does not stick too well to the board. What can I do, or with what can I stick it back on again? I have a TrenchTown TT Pro 6.0 if that should matter.

  6. Thanks for an informative article. Up until now i have been sitting here looking at my new traction pad and wondering where exactly I should put it lol. Just one question tho before i go ahead and stick it on, does the placement remain the same for longer boards? I have an 8′ minimal.

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