A skimboard is used in a sport called skimboarding, also known as skiffle boarding or skimming. The board looks similar to a surfboard only smaller. It is used to skim across the water much like surfing.
These boards can differ in a number of ways such as thickness, length, type of nose lift and the material from which they are made. These materials can be fiberglass, wood, kevlar, foam and carbon. Those boards that are used inland are usually made from wood as they tend to be withstand encounters with shells, rocks and other debris better.
Those boards that are made for high performance use tend to be layered. The most commonly used material for the shell is fiberglass as it is least expensive. High-density foam is most commonly used for the core. The exterior will be glazed with an epoxy resin.
Skimboards normally have a nose lift or rocker, which can typically be found in three varieties. The traditional rocker has just a small amount of curve at the nose and the rest is flat. The nose is curved up so that it will keep from digging into the sand.
Another type is called a constant rocker. This type has a curve that is constant from the nose to the tail. These give the skimboarder better control when the waves are bigger.
The most popular rocker, however, is the hybrid. This has a curve through 3/4 or so of the length of the board. The rest of the board, usually the tail, will be flat.
The kind of boarder you are will influence which skimboard is best for you. Manufacturers keep experimenting with different materials, so new ones may be on the way. This is a growing market which leads to more competition and, therefore, more options for people who go skimboarding.