Equipment Guide

Equipment Guide

Campers must come to camp with their own equipment – it’s much easier to learn and be comfortable when you use gear you’re familiar with, and gear that properly fits! This is important for all skill levels: beginner, intermediate, and advanced.

Safety Gear

At Evolve, all campers required to the appropriate safety gear. For Summer Sports: Helmets, Knee Pads, Elbow Pads & Wrist Guards are required for all camper’s 13 and younger. Older campers are only required to wear a Helmet and use wrist guard’s (Knee and Elbow pads are optional). If you’re unsure about the type of safety gear to buy you can follow the guidelines below. You can purchase all safety gear from our Camp Store.

01. Helmets

Evolve Campers require a Skateboard Helmets at camp. Skateboarding helmets provide full coverage to the back of the head and usually have less ventilation than bicycling helmets. Skateboard helmets are designed to take multiple blows before being replaced. Bicycle helmets are designed to take extreme force from one impact, as in a catastrophic collision with a motor vehicle, and should be replaced after one accident. look for a helmet certified to CPSC standards for Skateboarding

To protect your head, ensure that you have a properly measured your head for the perfect fitting skateboard helmet. Regardless of the helmet brand you choose, well-fitting skateboard helmets should include protective padding, not shift around while skateboarding, and fit snugly and low across your forehead.

Properly measuring your head for a skateboard helmet

  1. Take a soft tape measurer and wrap it around your forehead. It should rest just over your ears and eyebrows, as your helmet will rest low on your forehead. Keep the measure level from the front to back of your head. Don’t wrap it too tight or too loose.
  2. If you can’t find a tape measure, repeat the above steps using string. Once you have it wrapped properly around your head, mark it and measure it against a ruler.
  3. If for some reason you can’t measure your head, you should be able to find your head size using hat size. Check the tag on your favourite well-fitting hat–it will give you a rough estimate of the correct helmet size
02. Wrist Guards

Skateboard wrist guards are worn to support and protect your wrists when skateboarding, which are very susceptible to injury if you wipeout. These skateboard pads offer shock absorption during impact. Wrist guards are fully padded on all sides, and their wrap-around Velcro makes them easy to adjust. Skaters of all levels wear wrist guards to protect themselves from beginners to those learning risky new stunts and skate tricks.

Properly measuring for skateboard wrist guards

While most wrist guards are adjustable, it is still very important to accurately measure your hand and knuckles to guarantee a solid fit. To measure your hands when buying wrist guards, use a soft tape measure to measure around the four knuckles at the widest point, excluding the thumb.

Consult the sizing chart below to find the best fit for you.

03. Elbow Pads

Skateboard elbow pads are adjustable skateboard pads designed to protect your bones during falls or wipeouts. Elbow pads can be made of soft, dense foam designed to cushion your elbow during impact, or feature a hard shell of plastic to protect against damage. Today’s elbow pads are lightweight and flexible, allowing you to be safe and comfortable even in high-octane skateboarding. Elbow pads are particularly important when skateboarding. Elbow pads are sold in sets of two, but are often also sold in combo packs that feature knee pads and wrist pads as well.

Properly measuring for elbow pads

Well-fitting skateboard elbow pads should not restrict your range of motion, which is why it is important to purchase the right size elbow pads. Elbow pads that are too tight will be uncomfortable and will limit your ability to bend your arm. To ensure that you get the perfect elbow pads, follow the stops below to properly measure your arms:

  1. Wrap a soft tape measure around the center of your elbow. Measure around your outstretched arm, either at the middle of your elbow (C), at the top (A) or at the bottom of your arm where the pad will rest (B).
  2. If you do not have a flexible tape measure, try marking a string and measuring it against a ruler.

Consult the sizing chart below to find the best fit for you.

04. Knee Pads

Skateboard knee pads are crucial to protecting you during wipeouts or falls. Knee damage is one of the most common skateboard-related injuries, which is why knee pads are one of the most important types of skateboard pads. Skateboard knee pads are made of stretchy cloth material that attaches around the back of your knee with adjustable Velcro. The cap of the knee pad features either foam or a hard plastic shell to shield your knee from impact. Riders of all ages and experience levels should invest in knee pads to avoid wrecking their knees. Knee pads are sold in sets of two, but are often also sold in combo packs that feature elbow pads and wrist pads.

Properly measuring for knee pads

Well-fitting skateboard knee pads should not restrict your range of motion, which is why it is important to buy the right size knee pads. Knee pads that are too tight will be uncomfortable and will limit your ability to bend at the knee. To make sure you buy the perfect knee pads, follow the stops below to properly measure your legs:

  1. Wrap a soft tape measure around the center of your knee. Measure around your outstretched leg, either at the middle of your knee (C), at the top (A) or at the bottom of your leg where the pad will rest (B).
  2. If you do not have a flexible tape measure, try marking a string and measuring it against a ruler.

Consult the sizing chart below to find the best fit for you.

Equipment – Safety:
Item
Junior
Small
Medium
Large
Helmet
20.1" - 20.5"
20.9" - 21.3"
21.7" - 22.0"
22.4"- 22.8"
Wrist Guards
Fits Junior Size
5" - 6"
6" - 7.5"
7.5" - 9"
Knee Pads
Fits Junior Size
12" - 14"
14" - 16"
16" - 17"
Elbow Pads
Fits Junior Size
7" - 8"
9" - 10"
11" - 12"

Skateboarding

At Evolve we skate “street” and “vert” style of skateboarding so the gear we recommend relates to that style of skating. We recommend a Modern or New School Shape of boards.

A skateboard has three major parts: the deck, the truck, and the wheels. If you are unsure about the type of board to buy you can follow the guidelines below. You can purchase skateboards from our Camp Store as pre-assembled complete boards; or you can purchase individual items from a local store to customize a skateboard of choice. Most skaters choose to customize their own board.

01. Skateboard Deck

The classic skateboard deck is made from 7 plys of wood, usually maple, laminated together.

Decks are often decorated with graphics from the brand that makes them. Brands don’t really matter until you’re more of an advanced skater. Some companies have different shapes and “feel different” for different skaters. At most skate shops you will be able to find ‘blank” decks that are super cheap. These decks are usually made in the same factory as the branded boards. You can then put any sticker you want on the board.

The important thing about the deck is it’s shape:

Width

We generally recommend a board that’s 7.75-8.00 for our style of skateboarding. The wider the board, generally the more stability. However, like anything else this is all about personal preference. It doesn’t have too much to do with the height or weight of the skater.

Concave

This is the curve that starts at either end of the board and continues through the middle of the deck. This allows you to grip the board to perform tricks. The easiest thing to do is step on the deck at the shop (without trucks or wheels on it); so you get to feel how the board feels under your feet.

Other styles of decks like pool boards, long boards, or ‘old school boards’ are super cool. Sometimes these shapes will be okay at camp, but to get the most out of our program, we recommend the New School shapes discussed above. Skateboards are generally not chosen based on size or weight of the individual – it is all about personal preference. Nevertheless, we have outlined some size ranges here for our younger campers.

02. Wheels

Skateboard wheels have two classifications: Hardness (Durometer – measured by an a-scale) and Size (Diameter – measured in mm). The harder the wheel the higher the number on the a-scale.

At camp we mostly ride vert and street:

  • Vert Rriding involves steep bowls, curves and inclines
  • Street Riding involves urban obstacles to perform tricks on or over.

For Vert

Campers want larger wheels that roll a lot faster. Try 55-65mm wheels with a hardness of 95-100a.

For Street

Campers will want smaller wheels that are a little bit softer. To start we recommend 50-55m wheels that are 97-101a.

03. Trucks

The truck should be made with aluminum alloy. The three important parts of the trucks are the baseplate, the hanger and the bushings. The bushing is the rubber pivot point where the truck turns the skateboard. There is a screw or kingpin that connects the pieces. The tighter the kingpin, the tighter the truck. The tighter the truck, the more stability.

The width of the truck should be fitted to the width of the deck. This is usually the same width or slightly smaller. Trucks that are too big can make doing tricks difficult. Trucks that are too small can limit your stability.

Sizing a Skateboard
Deck Size
7.75
7.75
8.00
8.00-8.25
Camper Height
Under 3’4″ (~102cm)
3’5″ to 4’4″ (~102-130cm)
4’5″ to 5’2″ (~130-160cm)
5’3″ (~160 cm)+
Age
5 years or younger
6-8 years
9-12 years
13 years or older
Shoe Size
3 or smaller
4 to 6
7 to 8
9+

Scootering

Campers can use a scooter of any size, but that doesn’t mean it will be safe and fun. You should never choose a larger scooter, hoping your child will grow into it. A large scooter will hinder your child’s progression and at times it can also lead to unnecessary accidents. You’ll want to make sure your child is comfortable on their scooter – take it for a quick cruise around the shop and see if it’s easy to control get on, off etc.

Big No, No

Whatever you do, do not buy a scooter that folds into two. We don’t recommend these scooters: they can be quite dangerous. For cruising around on your driveway or street they are ok. For camp these scooters are not recommended.

How Do You Know Which Scooter to Buy?

There are several variable when choosing your child’s scooter for camp.

01. Scooter Bars

As a rule of thumb scooter bars should sit around hip to waist height when standing on the deck flat footed. If bars come up above waist height then the rider will have more difficulty in controlling the scooter and could ultimately lose control.

Types of Bars

  • Steel Bar

    Stronger compared to aluminum bars, but also weigh more.

  • Aluminum Bar

    Lightweight construction, and depending on the quality, pretty durable too.

Diameter

Please note if the outer diameter of your bar is oversized or standard, as this will determine what clamp will fit. You should also note the inner diameter to determine which fork will fit, e.g. with or without HIC.

Width of Bars

Scooter riders have different preferences when choosing a width. A good hint is to choose a bar with the same width as your shoulders. If you`re mostly into technical tricks like barspins, choose a narrow bar. And if you`re more a big air and no hands tricks rider, then choose a wider bar. (Remember you can always choose a wide bar and cut it to your preference! )

Height

Stunt scooters are usually lower than standard scooters. Choosing a height is also a matter of preference. Skilled riders often choose lower bars to gain stability and better control. A tip when choosing the right height is to make sure the bar reaches somewhere between your thighs and hip. Avoid making your bar wider than its height as this is considered unstylish by skilled riders and can be uncomfortable for transportation.

Thread

If choosing a bar with thread you should also have a fork with thread. Most bars without thread will fit on forks with & without thread. Most new bars are without thread for added compatibility.

SCS

You cannot use a bar with a cutout with SCS, since the SCS clamp will have nothing to tighten around. You can cut your bar, this will however void warranty. If a bar is without the cutout, we call it SCS-ready.

02. Scooter Wheels

The more basic scooters come with 100mm or 110mm wheels for a low, stable center of gravity, pro riders tend to ride with 110mm. Most Scooters are made of similar materials to each other and have similar design and construction.

Wheel hardness is measured in durometers. Lower numbers indicate a softer wheel and higher numbers indicate a harder wheel. Durometer is denoted by the suffix “A” (example – 82A). The typical Scooter wheel is 82A. The hardness of Scooter wheels are most suited to indoor riding and outdoor, providing they are used on a smooth surface.

Bearings

Bearings are the seven or eight balls at the center of each wheel. Each bearing has an ABEC rating that indicates the precision of their manufacturing.
The general ABEC range is ABEC-1, ABEC-3, ABEC-5 although bearings are not always measured in ABEC’s. Bearings don’t need to be cleaned after every use, but if they become wet, they should be cleaned and dried. Never lubricate the outside of a bearing because that will attract dirt and contaminants.

Deck

This is where you stand and balance yourself while riding your pro scooter. Most decks have a measurement of 4″- 4.5” wide by 19″ – 21” long. Be sure to choose the right size of deck for your scooter. Generally the smaller the rider, the smaller the deck within the above sizing parameters.

03. Pricing

A decent to advanced scooters range from $99 to $450+. Price will range depending on brand, and level. In most cases you will get to choose from intro, intermediate and advanced.

Snowboarding

The cost of our snowboard programs does not include snowboard equipment for your camper. For those of you who don’t have equipment for your camper, there are 3 main options that we recommend:

01. Purchasing Used Equipment - $

This is likely your least costly option. We always encourage parents not to rent but to purchase all of the equipment that they need for the season. You can easily find all of the equipment that your camper will need second-hand from another parent that is selling their child’s gently used equipment. We suggest starting your search online on sites like Kijiji or Facebook Marketplace. Additionally, there are many ‘Ski Swaps’ that you can visit where people bring their used equipment to sell.

02. Purchasing New Equipment - $$

This is a more costly version than purchasing used equipment, but probably still less expensive than renting all season. If you would like to purchase new gear, we recommend visiting our friends over at The Sign of the Skier (2794 Yonge Street, Toronto ON). They are super knowledgeable and they might even give you a deal if you mention that your child is an Evolve Snow Camps camper this winter.

03. Renting - $$$

This is probably your most costly option as it will be up to $45 per Saturday for the skis/snowboard & boots, along with $14 per Saturday if your camper also needs to rent a helmet (see rental prices at MSLM and Mt. Norquay). Along with the cost, we do not recommend this option as your child would also have to go with their coach to get their equipment every Saturday morning, which will mean they will miss a lot of riding time.

Skiing

The cost of our ski programs does not include ski equipment for your camper. For those of you who don’t have equipment for your camper, there are 3 main options that we recommend:

01. Purchasing Used Equipment - $

This is likely your least costly option. We always encourage parents not to rent but to purchase all of the equipment that they need for the season. You can easily find all of the equipment that your camper will need second-hand from another parent that is selling their child’s gently used equipment. We suggest starting your search online on sites like Kijiji or Facebook Marketplace. Additionally, there are many ‘Ski Swaps’ that you can visit where people bring their used equipment to sell.

02. Purchasing New Equipment - $$

This is a more costly version than purchasing used equipment, but probably still less expensive than renting all season. If you would like to purchase new gear, we recommend visiting our friends over at The Sign of the Skier (2794 Yonge Street, Toronto ON). They are super knowledgeable and they might even give you a deal if you mention that your child is an Evolve Snow Camps camper this winter.

03. Renting - $$$

This is probably your most costly option as it will be up to $45 per Saturday for the skis/snowboard & boots, along with $14 per Saturday if your camper also needs to rent a helmet (see rental prices at MSLM and Mt. Norquay). Along with the cost, we do not recommend this option as your child would also have to go with their coach to get their equipment every Saturday morning, which will mean they will miss a lot of riding time.

Biking (BMX)

How do you know which bicycle to buy?

There are several variables when choosing your child’s bicycle for camp: build material, tire size, intended terrain, bicycle usage, etc… Consider the appropriate bicycle for the program you are looking to attend.

01. What type of bike can I bring to camp?

For spring/summer 2017 we are focusing on the launch of our BMX cycling program. For this program a 16″-24″ jumping designed bicycle outlined in our bicycle classification guide will be suitable.

We are working on expanding our programming into MTB cross-country trail and downhill riding for our campers.

02. How do we choose the right size bicycle?

Campers can use any bicycle that meets standards and is appropriate for the chosen program, but that doesn’t mean it will be safe, fun or progressive for them. Choosing the wrong equipment can be hazardous and may hinder your child’s progression or lead to unnecessary accidents.

You want to make sure your child is comfortable on their bicycle to maintain balance and be able to touch the ground with their feet. The seat should be set at an appropriate height for the rider. Handlebars should be the right height and width and set at the right angle for the rider and bikes geometry. (Bike set-up will be addressed for each rider on their first day of camp.)

03. Type of Construction Material

There are a few materials bicycle frames can be made of, some more suitable then the other for certain applications. Mainly the materials used are steel, aluminum and chromoly.

Steel

Your less expensive entry level frames are usually made of mild steel. This keeps material costs down and provides a affordable baseline for entry level aggressive type riding. It’s limits are usually exceeded by the time the rider is entering the intermediate levels. And should be inspected occasionally for stress and cracks at the welded joints.

Aluminum

Frames of this material are made for reduced weight and rigidness. Aluminum is a much lighter material then steel or chromoly. Cost of these aluminum frames are generally higher. Their general purpose aimed at the flatland, dirt and track racing industry. They are designed for these specific applications and are made lightweight and stiff for smooth, fast responsive riding. This material should be inspected often for stress and cracks.

*Multiple impacts sustained in a skatepark setting will eventually exceed the durability expectations of aluminum resulting in material failure. If this is the chosen focus another material would be suggested.

Chromoly

Heat treated chromoly is the ideal choice for durability and life expectancy in the bicycle world, whether riding skatepark, dirt jumping or track racing. Chromoly is much stronger then steel and aluminum at a very competitive cost. Has a higher strength to weight ratio, and high tensile strength which means less material without sacrificing durability. “Heat treating” is a process used to add hardness, strength, ductility and elasticity to the metals after bending and/or welding. Choosing a frame of this material will provide a long lasting, quality built bicycle ready for all styles of riding for years to come.

*All materials can reach a point of failure — always inspect your equipment, especially around bends and welds.

04. Wheel and Frame Size

Generally speaking BMX bikes traditionally are all a 20″ wheel size, no matter what the height and size of the rider. Instead the bike frames geometry and top tube length are sized for the riders height. Frames can also be chosen with a specific riding style or discipline in mind. Handlebar selection is also a factor used to adjust for height. A 20″ wheel size will generally suit a rider from introduction to the sport, on into their later riding years. With most BMX riders traditionally riding a 20″ wheel size throughout their riding lifetime. Most of today’s modern, complete 20″ BMX bikes offered will be a suitable geometry and offer adequate sizing for most children to youths. Not sure? Contact us and we will help direct you in the right direction.

With that said, in recent years a small handful of companies marketed BMX bicycles offered in untraditional size ranges, from smaller 16″ and 18″, to larger 22″ and 24″ wheel sizes with correspondingly sized frames. Built to the same quality durability standards, with smaller, early starters and taller older riders in mind. And will be allowed at camp, provided they are up to the standards for the type of activity.

Please keep in mind, flat and/or blown tires or tubes can happen frequently, especially when starting out. While 20″ tubes are readily available at local department, hardware and bicycle shops everywhere, tubes and tires for these particular untraditionally sized bikes are generally harder to source and not always as readily available. Sending your child to camp with an extra tire and a few tubes may maximizes their experience, if riding one of these specialized sizes.

05. Pricing

A decent complete, entry level bicycle suited for this type of activity start around $350+. Price will vary depending on brand, materials and design level. In most cases you will get to choose from Intro, intermediate and advanced.