Shock pads are rectangular-shaped washers that are placed between the trucks and deck of a skateboard.
Shock pads aren’t necessarily a crucial component, but they can be quite helpful in solving some common problems. Here you can learn the benefits of shock and riser pads.
Shock pads are made of polyurethane, a type of plastic. There are available in both hard and soft, more flexible designs.
Furthermore, you’ll learn about the different heights of shock pads.
Normally, shock pads are 1/8″ (about 3.2mm) tall. Any shock pad 1/4 “(about 6.4mm) tall or higher is referred to as a riser pad.
Why use shock pads?
2. Why use shock pads at your skateboard in the first place?
Short summary for the lazy reader:
Shock pads reduce the vibrations when skating and reduce the amount of shock on the deck.
They also increase the distance between your deck and wheels, preventing wheel bites.
In principle, shock pads have multiple functions. Firstly, they dampen vibrations during skating, and secondly they protect the deck from shock. Furthermore, they increase the distance between the wheels and the deck, which helps to prevent wheel bites. Additionally, there are so-called angled riser pads, which change the angle of your trucks.
Using shock pads for dampening
The rougher and more irregular the ground is on which you’re skating, the more vibrations are transmitted through your trucks and to your deck. This is because the hanger doesn’t sit completely fixed into the base plate, and is constantly in movement when skating on a rough surface. This creates a kind of shaking which is carried through to the deck and thusly to your feet and legs.
Shock pads come into play for this exact reason. The plastic pads dampen and absorb some of the resulting vibrations.
What’s more, is that shock pads reduce the risk of breaking your board. The area of your deck on which your trucks are mounted is considered the most fragile area of the deck. When landing tricks, the entire impact energy is transferred from the trucks to the deck, making it weaker and causing it to break over time.
In doing so, shock pads reduce the forces that are transmitted from the trucks to the deck and thus inhibit fractures or splintering (so-called pressure cracks).
Using Shock & Riser Pads to prevent wheel bites
A wheel bite is the result of your deck coming into contact with your wheels.
If you skate with large wheels or low trucks, the distance between the wheels and the deck is smaller.
Landing tricks and hard turns can create this unpleasant meeting of deck and wheel, leading to a very abrupt and likely painful stop.
Through the use of pads you increase the distance between your deck and wheels, impeding annoying wheel bites. With standard skateboard wheels up to a diameter up to 54mm, you probably won’t need shock pads.
Should you however use larger wheels or prefer very soft steering, shock pads can be a huge help.
When searching for shock pads in the skatedeluxe online Skate Shop, you’ll also find angled pads. These are what we call Angled Riser Pads. However, this type of riser pad is generally used for longboards and cruisers. They change the angle at which your trucks are mounted on the deck, thus altering the steering behaviour of your skateboard. You can learn more about that in our longboard section.
1. Standard Shock Pad / Riser Pad
2. Angled Riser Pad
Shock Pads: The right bolt length
3. The right bolts to use with shock and riserpads
If you do choose to skate with shock or riser pads, you should ensure that the bolts in your mounting kit are the appropriate length. If your shock pads are 1/8” or higher, we recommend a 1” bolt pack. The higher your shock pads, the longer your bolts should be.