Installing a bodyboard leash is a basic skill every bodyboarder should have. It might seem a bit difficult to gain at first. But, with proper guidance, anyone can install a bodyboard leash and plug. Usually, new bodyboards do not come with leash plug installation. A few proper instructions, some simple tools at hand, and BOOM! your bodyboard is ready for riding.
Plugging your bodyboard is a safe and effortless process. You are new at surfing. You have bought a new bodyboard without leash plug. Do not want to wander around YouTube materials and get more confused? Need a precise and easy guideline to follow? No need to panic. All you need to do is focus and follow the next steps of this article. All it will take is 5 minutes of your precious time at most.
A leash plug is a plastic screw that contains two parts: a male and a female part. The male part goes to the top of the board. The female part goes to the bottom of the bodyboard. The easiest way to plug your bodyboard is by unscrewing the plug to pull out slides. Punch a hole on the bodyboard with a heated screwdriver in the pre-marked position you want your leash to be. Take the top piece of the leash. Jam it into the hole. Now attach the bottom part of the leash on the other side. At last, tighten the screw and attach your leash with the plug.
This article will guide you through each step of installing your bodyboard leash and plug safe and thorough.
Installing leash to bodyboards with preinstalled plug:
There are diverse types of bodyboards. In most cases, an entry-level board comes with a preinstalled plug in the center of the board. The plug might or might not have a string attached to it. You need no extra tools for the leash installment process of this kind of bodyboard.
For preinstalled plug without a string contains a leash along with the board. The leash includes a loop of string at the edge. All you need to do is take that loop part and thread it beneath the bar of the plug. Pull it to the other side. Take the entire leash all the way through the loop of string,
To install a leash, or plug that contains a string, first attach the string to the plug. Take one edge of the string and enter it beneath the bar. Make a loop by tying the knots on the two sides of the string. Make sure it is a light knot that does not come off. Now, your leash also comes with a loop of string like the plug. Same way as before, feed the leash into the string loop and install the leash into the plug.
Leash installment on bodyboards without a plug:
- Screwdriver (you can use a drill as well if it is convenient for you)
- A marker/ pencil
- Open flame. In this case, a gaslit burner if you are using a screwdriver. If you use a drill, you will not need any gaslit burner
- 50-piece coin.
Most bodyboards with better qualities may not have a plug installed.
Where a leash usually goes?
There are three basic positions of bodyboard leash plugs as we know of. We can categorize these positions by the rider’s preference.
For right-handed surfers, the leash goes to the right side of the board. Because it is easier and much more comfortable to ride if you connect the leash cuff to your right arm.
In the case of drop knee stance, then for regular foot drop knee riders, leash placement goes on the right side.
For left-handed surfers, you can install the plug on the left side. Those who prefer their right knee dropped can install the leash on the left side of the board.
If you are comfortable both ways you can plug the leash into the center of the board. Make sure, you install the plug on the top center of the board. Otherwise, there is a probability for your leash chords to get tangled up with your legs while riding.
- Step 1:
First, mark the area you want to plug your leash. Mark the place with a pencil or a pen. Steer clear of the stringers on the board. Stringers are stiffening rod that gives the bodyboard balance on the water. If you plug through the stringers, it may damage the bodyboard. In that case, you might not get the warranty back for this action.
Sometimes they put stickers to mark the numbers of the stringers on a bodyboard.
In a double stringer board, stringers are about halfway between the center and the sides of the board. In that case, you should plug the leash in the middle of the board, upper middle
Single stringer boards always have the stringer placed in the middle. Mark at least 6-7 inches down from the nose. An effortless way to determine where to plug the hole, you can apply a trick. Make an “L” shaped gesture with your hand. Place your thumb on the edge of the board (right/left edge depending on the position where you want your leash to go). Now see where your index finger reaches. Mark that place. Or you can use a ruler to measure.
- Step 2:
Put your bodyboard on the floor or any flattened area like a table or another board. This will help you to plug the hole straight. Otherwise, you might end up plugging in an angle. You will not want to ruin your marked leash plug position.
If you use a drill to plug, make sure the drill bit is smaller or the same diameter as the screw. Otherwise, it can make the hole too big which can result in the screw being loose after plugging.
In case of using a screwdriver, heat it up on the burner to prevent damage to the board. Heat will seal up the side of the hole as the screwdriver enters the board. Thus, it will protect the board from water damage later.
- Step 3:
Push the drill or heated screwdriver straight through the board to the other side. Pull the drill /screwdriver out of the board with cautiousness. You may need to rotate or give a little extra force to pull the drill out of the board. Your bodyboard is now ready for the leash plug to be installed.
- Step 4:
Separate the male and female parts of the plug. Push the male part of the plug on the top of the board through the hole. Use your palm to give extra pressure on the push so that the piece correctly attaches to the board. On the other side, at the bottom attaches the female part of the plug. Sometimes, if your bodyboard is thin, the female screw could be longer for attachment. In that case, use the plier to cut the screw to fit the size of the other part of the plug.
- Step 5:
Use a flattened screwdriver or a 50-piece coin to tighten up the screw on both sides. Twist it a couple of times. Make sure the screw is not loose. Attach the leash to the plug on the top side. Your bodyboard is ready for surfing.
Attach your leash to the top end of the plug and you are ready to rip.
Easy and simple, isn’t it? Of course, if you still do not have enough confidence to install the leash plug on your own, call a professional. Bring it to a store and take the help of a professional to plug your bodyboard and install the leash.
Types of bodyboard leashes:
There are usually two types of bodyboard leashes.
- Wrist leashes: They are known as the most common type of leashes. You attach wrist leashes to your wrist. Entry-level bodyboards contain straight wrist leashes. These are not suitable for good bodyboarding. From basic model to high quality, from cheaper to expensive price, wrist leashes vary in type. You might get tangled up with these longer cord leashes while facing larger waves. These leashes are not fit if your target is to be a skilled bodyboarder.
- Bicep Leashes: Bicep leashes are most suitable for a good surfing experience. These leashes connect the bodyboard to your bicep. Using bicep muscles while paddling is much recommended for surfing. Bicep leashes might be more expensive than wrist leashes. Yet these are quite effective to reach the goal as a pro surfer. These leashes are shorter which eliminates the risk of getting tangled up.
Parts of a leash:
- Leash Plug: The plug is the screw that you attach to the bodyboard. It has two components: a male part and a female part. The male part goes on the top side of the board and the female part attaches to the bottom side of the board.
- Cord: A cord is a coil-shaped long string attached to the cuff and the plug. Before, they used to make straight cords. Coil shaped cord helps the bodyboarder not to get tangled up. It ensures a smooth bodyboarding experience.
- Cuff: Cuff is the component that you attach to your arm. It wraps up your wrist/arm and relates to the cord through a swivel. The cord connects the plug which goes into the bodyboard.
- Swivel: A swivel is a stainless steel or brass that attaches a cord to the cuff.
Best bodyboard leashes to buy:
Spending around 20$-30$ can get you a superior quality leash. Among the best leashes, Buckle Velcro cuff and Wider cuffs are popular. Other bestselling bodyboard leashes include Storm Coiled Pro Bodyboard Leash, Coiled Bicep leash, Surf Leash Iron Black, etc. You can buy best qualities leashes on amazon and Walmart along with Surf more, BPS, TAGVO, etc. online stores.
Maintenance of bodyboard and the leash:
Clean your leash regularly. Saltwater and sand can easily damage your leash. Thoroughly rinse to give it a proper wash.
Clean your bodyboard the same way.
While carrying the bodyboard bag, make sure you keep the leash and the bodyboard separately. This way, you will not damage your bodyboard or the leash by crushing the board against the leash. It will protect the deck from getting damaged or dented.
Few facts about bodyboards:
Bodyboard core types:
Bodyboards come in three kinds of cores.
- EPS: It is the cheapest type of core. The full meaning of EPS is extruded Polystyrene.
- Polypropylene Core (PP): Polypropylene is the best type of bodyboarding core known. PP is lightweight and solid. These cores come with 1-2 stringer and foam beading. It makes the bodyboard more water-resistant and balanced.
- Polyethylene Core (PE): These cores were first manufactured in the mid-1970s.
Bodyboard vs boogieboard
Boogieboard is usually used to ride smaller waves. Whereas bodyboarding is to ride larger waves. Expert bodyboarder uses bodyboarding for skilled surfing. Novice learners use boogieboards to learn surfing.
There are different branded boogieboards in the market. Amazon sells the best boogie board. In 1971, Tom Morey invented the most fun way of riding by surfing on a boogieboard. According to his name, the market launched the Morey boogie board. Morey March 7 boogieboard is one of the best-selling boogieboards on amazon in 2022. Among others, Thurs. Surf Quill, Go Plus, South Bay Onda are named the top-selling boogie boards this year.
A leash keeps you attached to the board while surfing. It is the safety equipment of your bodyboard. Your leash can save you from drowning. If you lose your bodyboard somehow while riding larger waves your leash can save your life. Thus, installing the leash and plugging it the proper way into the board is essential while riding the mighty sea.
- Is Bodyboarding easier than Surfing?
Bodyboarding is simpler than surfing. One of the many reasons is the stance position on the board. Surfers require to stand on the board whereas a bodyboarder can lie down on the board. In comparison, this posture gives the boarder to take more control of the water. Both bodyboarding and surfing aim for riding and catching waves. It is easier to perform this action lying on a bodyboard than standing on a surfing board. In the case of bodyboarding vs surfing, I would prefer bodyboarding as it is easier.
- Does a bodyboard require a leash?
Yes, for your own safety a bodyboard comes with a leash. For risky conditions, like riding on bigger waves away from the shore the stringer can come in handy. It can save your life if you lose the board somehow while bodyboarding.
- What side do you wear a leash on a bodyboard?
Leash placement is especially important in bodyboarding. Usually, the leash and board plugging should be on the same side. If you plug your bodyboard to the right side, your leash placement should be on the right-hand side too. For left-handed people, and vice versa. In some cases, you may choose to wear your leash at the center near your nose.
- Is bodyboarding a good exercise?
Bodyboarding is an excellent workout. Not only it is an immense cardio exercise it is also a major source of building slender muscles. While facing larger waves, your arms, and legs both works together as you paddle and kick. This action factors in providing good fitness and great posture.
- What size board should I get for bodyboarding?
Bodyboard’s size depends on his/her height. You should get a board that reaches your belly button when standing on the ground. It should be as tall as your knees to your chin when it is held in a vertical position in front of you