10 Best Surfboard Traction Pads | 2021 Reviews (Dakine, Punt)

Flo Farmer
Written by
Last update:

There are plenty of factors to consider when figuring out which traction pad is best for you, so we have done the hard work for you and tested the top-selling pads available.

Our research shows that there’s not one single traction pad that meets all our needs and preferences, so we’ve examined everything from pad thickness to padding firmness and analysed each pad on an individual basis.

In the end, our team decided that two products are the best in their category — the Dakine Hybrid Dualz Pad and the Dakine Phantom Pad as the best traction pads available in 2019.

We hope you’ll find our reviews helpful.

NameCategoryProduct
Ho Stevie! Premium Surfboard Traction PadBest OverallHo Stevie! Premium Surfboard Traction Pad
PUNT SURF Surfboard Traction PadBudget PickPUNT SURF Surfboard Traction Pad
RSPro Hexatraction Waxless Surfboard Deck GripUpgrade PickRSPro Hexatraction Waxless Surfboard Deck Grip

1. Ho Stevie! Premium Surfboard Traction Pad

Our rating: 9 / 10

Ho Stevie! Premium Surfboard Traction Pad

Check Price on Amazon

Most surfers own expensive surfboards, so why would you risk damaging it by standing on the edge with your bare feet? The thing is that most surfboards have a smooth surface and your feet will slip easily outwards when you stand on an edge or the nose of the surfboard. This traction pad will ensure that you stand securely to enjoy a thrilling ride. Most clients might not like the thought of covering their surfboards with some sort of material but if you take one thing from this article, this is what you should know about traction pads.

These pads will make sure that you enjoy riding your surfboard without slipping off due to the high-quality material and no-slip surface.

2. BPS 8-Piece 'Anti-Slip' Pad

Our rating: 8 / 10

BPS 8-Piece 'Anti-Slip' Pad

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Great traction and improved padded comfort
  • Provides a tight grip to the board
  • No more slipping!
  • It doesn’t take much time to get the pads installed
  • This product may fit some boards better
  • Good value for the price

Cons:

  • Not ideal for the smaller boards
  • If you’re looking to replace a lost pad, this set isn’t for that

The BPS is one of the best traction pads you can find on the market. The combination of grooved surface and 3M adhesive makes this pad unique. They’re just not for the SUPs, but you can also use them for other boards. The grooves will prevent your feet from sliding and will also prevent the board from slipping.

3. Abahub 12 Piece Surf SUP Deck Traction Pad Premium EVA

Our rating: 8 / 10

Abahub 12 Piece Surf SUP Deck Traction Pad Premium EVA

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Good fit – the pad is wide enough to prevent slipping and the pad stays in place securely
  • Simple – the pads come with a sticker that you peel off and then stick to the board
  • Easy to stick – you just peel off the adhesive cover and stick them on
  • Not too thick and do not get in the way of your feet

Cons:

  • The pads have a funky smell that can be off putting
  • The adhesive could be more sticky, as the pads have come off the board when I pick the board
  • They are not very durable and one fell off when I sheltered the board against the side of my car

Taking a paddle out is more relaxing now that I’ve got these traction pads to make sure the board doesn’t slip on the roof rack.

My brother has a SUP and that has a very big deck, and I have a longboard. I really like the black pads, because they’re the most subtle, and since I have a longboard the black pads don’t stand out very much. The pads do look cheap, but I think they’re worth it.

4. PUNT SURF Surfboard Traction Pad

Our rating: 8 / 10

PUNT SURF Surfboard Traction Pad

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Includes high-quality 3M adhesive that allows for both easy application and removal of the traction pad.
  • Sticks seamlessly to boards during surfing.
  • Adheres to a range of different types of boards.
  • Supports a user’s weight.

Cons:

  • Adhesive may be susceptible to removal.

5. RSPro Hexatraction Waxless Surfboard Deck Grip

Our rating: 7 / 10

RSPro Hexatraction Waxless Surfboard Deck Grip

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Waxless grip
  • Superior traction
  • Will not go dry
  • Doesn’t wear down your surfboard
  • Comes with a lifetime warranty
  • The setup is really easy and takes only a few minutes
  • Recommended for all surfboard sizes

Cons:

  • You need to use a heat gun
  • Doesn’t stick to every surfboard
  • Some people prefer using wax
  • If you don’t give it enough time to set, it won’t stick

The RSPro Hexatraction waxless surfboard deck grip is a patented grip system created by surfers for surfers. This innovative, patent-pending grip uses a unique chemical bonding process to create a long lasting, waxless grip system that won’t go dry in your surfboard.

This product comes with a lifetime warranty for the original owner and is designed to extend the life of your surfboard and increase your ability to do tricks and cutbacks.

6. Dakine Surf Andy Irons Pro Pad

Our rating: 6 / 10

Dakine Surf Andy Irons Pro Pad

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Infused fiberglass & resin reinforcement
  • Rocker and concave for added traction
  • Grip rails to keep down your pad
  • Excellent traction
  • Backed by six year limited warranty
  • Fairly smooth ride
  • Well-built and sturdy
  • Functional

Cons:

  • Doesn’t grip well on wet surfaces
  • Pad is too hard and too inflexible to use properly
  • You’ll have to modify your fins to get the most traction
  • Very expensive compared to similar products

The Dakine Surf Andy Irons Pro Pad is an excellent option for surfers who want a high-performance pad without spending a ton of money. This product comes with a layered fiberglass and resin construction. You also get a grip rail design for extra security.

This pad attaches securely to your foot thanks to Dakine’s patented Grip-Tech rails. It also has a contoured heel pad, making it easy for you to attach your foot securely. The fiberglass-reinforced foam pad also has a slight concave design that gives you a nice rocker for added traction on your board.

7. DAKINE John John Florence Pro Surf Traction Pad

Our rating: 6 / 10

DAKINE John John Florence Pro Surf Traction Pad

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Won’t come off or slide under your foot
  • Wide, strong grip, even when wet
  • Doesn’t curl or break
  • Large surface area

The traction pad measures a full 9” x 31” and supports the wearer’s ankle and most of their foot. It is made of a stretchy, rubberized material that can stretch a little to fit larger foot sizes. It is still best to wear these in a mid-size boot or shoe.

It’s always a good idea to rinse them and let them dry before storing, as salt from ocean water can damage them.

8. Surf Squared Surfboard Traction Pad

Our rating: 6 / 10

Surf Squared Surfboard Traction Pad

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Large surface area
  • Soft yet firm texture
  • Does not leave water marks on your board

The Dakine Surf Squared is a great traction pad that works well for any type of board. It has a high-density polyester top (16 by 20 inches), which leaves surfaces clean. The pad won’t turn into a slip and slide during a wax session.

This pad provides great traction, which helps you maintain your board. It has a velcro design at the corners, which allows you to position it as you please on your board. It will enable you to get a great grip.

9. Dakine Surf Andy Irons Pro Pad

Our rating: 6 / 10

Dakine Surf Andy Irons Pro Pad

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Infused fiberglass & resin reinforcement
  • Rocker and concave for added traction
  • Grip rails to keep down your pad
  • Excellent traction
  • Backed by six year limited warranty
  • Fairly smooth ride
  • Well-built and sturdy
  • Functional

Cons:

  • Doesn’t grip well on wet surfaces
  • Pad is too hard and too inflexible to use properly
  • You’ll have to modify your fins to get the most traction
  • Very expensive compared to similar products

The Dakine Surf Andy Irons Pro Pad is an excellent option for surfers who want a high-performance pad without spending a ton of money. This product comes with a layered fiberglass and resin construction. You also get a grip rail design for extra security.

This pad attaches securely to your foot thanks to Dakine’s patented Grip-Tech rails. It also has a contoured heel pad, making it easy for you to attach your foot securely. The fiberglass-reinforced foam pad also has a slight concave design that gives you a nice rocker for added traction on your board.

10. DAKINE John John Florence Pro Surf Traction Pad

Our rating: 6 / 10

DAKINE John John Florence Pro Surf Traction Pad

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Won’t come off or slide under your foot
  • Wide, strong grip, even when wet
  • Doesn’t curl or break
  • Large surface area

The traction pad measures a full 9” x 31” and supports the wearer’s ankle and most of their foot. It is made of a stretchy, rubberized material that can stretch a little to fit larger foot sizes. It is still best to wear these in a mid-size boot or shoe.

It’s always a good idea to rinse them and let them dry before storing, as salt from ocean water can damage them.

11. Astrodeck 124 OG Archy Traction

Our rating: 6 / 10

Astrodeck 124 OG Archy Traction

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Multi-purpose custom traction pad
  • Soft foam top provides comfort and grip
  • Black stitching adds to the board's appeal

Cons:

  • Some people don't like the fat pad
  • Cut through rather easily

We all know that feeling–the stress of preparing our surfboards for our next big session. Whether we need to wax it, drill soft rails or even repair scratches, doing so can take up a substantial amount of time, on top of the time it takes to simply get to the beach. Astrodeck created the Archy Traction Pad to give us a reliable solution to our problems, and it does just that!

This multi-purpose traction pad is soft enough to be a comfortable layer of protection between you and your board but thick enough to provide a solid grip. The pad is also flexible enough for you to be able to get a good amount of grip on the rails of your board while still maintaining maneuverability.

12. Surf Squared Surfboard Traction Pad

Our rating: 5 / 10

Surf Squared Surfboard Traction Pad

Check Price on Amazon

Pros:

  • Large surface area
  • Soft yet firm texture
  • Does not leave water marks on your board

The Dakine Surf Squared is a great traction pad that works well for any type of board. It has a high-density polyester top (16 by 20 inches), which leaves surfaces clean. The pad won’t turn into a slip and slide during a wax session.

This pad provides great traction, which helps you maintain your board. It has a velcro design at the corners, which allows you to position it as you please on your board. It will enable you to get a great grip.

13. Dakine Unisex Superlite Surf Traction Pad

Our rating: 4 / 10

Dakine Unisex Superlite Surf Traction Pad

Check Price on Amazon

Dakine Unisex is another good pad to consider. It comes in several different colors. The sizing is accurate. This pad has a very good traction that is easy to clean. It also comes at an affordable price. On the downside, this pad is not very thick so it can wear out fairly quickly.

Traction Pads are surfboard traction pads that are cut from EVA foam in a variety of thicknesses and lengths to fit the unique contours of individual surfboards. Made of high density closed-cell foam, the traction pads compress to fit multiple shapes. They stay put and do not shift in position. Some pads are pre-cut into letters and logos for easy identification. Traction pads will extend the life of the deck, reduce the amount of wax needed, and provide a quicker transition from rail to rail. You can use them on just about every surfboard size from short boards up to long boards.

Punt Quad Traction Pads in 4 thicknesses. All their traction pads are made of thee high-quality virgin EVA foam. Pads come with an adhesive on the back for permanent/temporary attachment. Like most traction pads on the market, it is machine washable.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Do surfboards need traction pads?

Yes. Surfboard traction pads are a must-have for snowboarders, skateboarders, and skaters who want to skateboard on surfboards. The soft rubber traction pads help to prevent slipping and keep your feet safely attached to the board.

Should you put a traction pad on a fish?

For many years, the standard in traction pads was a blue belt of nonskid material that wound around a surfboard. These pads are still commonly used today because they can be easily trimmed to fit any size board, and few other traction options are as inexpensive. However, there are several problems with nonskid materials, besides the fact that they wear out quickly. A colorful nonskid surface often masks areas that are slick and can pose an added safety risk to your feet. Perhaps you have already experienced the discomfort of a hard nonskid dot rubbing your bare foot and drawing blood.

Can you put a traction pad on a foam surfboard?

Yes! Foam surfboards mainly have traction pads made of recycled tires and their purpose is to increase traction on the board and keep the feet together in a straighter line for more control.

Though, traction pads are usually used with wooden surfboards, they also work with surfboards made of foam, aluminum, or fiberglass.

Traction pads are very easy to attach. They come with all the necessary accessories and step-by-step instructions in their package.

For help with putting on traction pads, you can watch step-by-step instructions on Youtube and get recommendations from fellow surfers on what type of traction pad works best for your needs.

What surfboard is best for small waves?

Shortboards are built to perform best in faster, more powerful conditions. As a result they're also better in waves which are larger in size. Having a shortboard on your next surf trip will ensure more time spent surfing.

Generally speaking, you’ll want to avoid purchasing any surfboard under 6 ft. This means you’ll want to be looking at a shortboard. Even a surfer of average height can pick up a shortboard and have a great time, while a surfer on a longboard would have a tough time paddling out and catching waves.

Surfer height and leg length usually plays a factor in the size board that’s best for you. However, you don’t want to sacrifice nose length, or you’ll sacrifice the maneuverability of your board.

Conclusion

These are the top-rated Surfboard Traction Pads (aka: wax/hand warmer) in the market today. These products are currently available on the market. We’ve compared them based on the most important factors to help you choose the best product.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Ho Stevie! Premium Surfboard Traction PadBest OverallHo Stevie! Premium Surfboard Traction Pad
PUNT SURF Surfboard Traction PadBudget PickPUNT SURF Surfboard Traction Pad
RSPro Hexatraction Waxless Surfboard Deck GripUpgrade PickRSPro Hexatraction Waxless Surfboard Deck Grip