As for new adventure sports, longboarding keeps rapidly evolving. The original longboard stemmed off the skateboard in order for the rider to be more stable. Due to the greater size both in length and width, it allows a stronger balance for the rider. Think about a longboard surfboard vs a shortboard. If you have ever surfed, you know that getting up on a longboard is much easier and stable. Having lived on the big island for years, I love the Kahuna Creation boards. Each have their own story from the artwork and the quality of craftsmanship. Longboarding is closer to surfing or standup paddle boarding. They even invented a land paddle board. The longboard can be used for transportation from one place to the next and is perfect for carving down a hill at high speeds.
What type of longboard do I need?
Well that all depends on what type of riding you plan on doing. If you see yourself longboarding to work or around town, then you might want a medium size board. If you see yourself capturing your need for speed on long downhill runs, then you will need another style board.
You got to start somewhere so just get yourself on the board. Now bend your knees and crouch down. Get use to moving your feet back and forth and establishing your balance without stepping off the board. Feet should be a little wider then your shoulders with the front foot pointed at a diagonal 45 degree angle and the back foot pointed out.
Another skill to acquire is the ability to jump off the board as it is moving. As a beginner, it is advised not to get going faster than you can run off the board. In time you will become more comfortable with the board and your skills will improve everyday.