I’ve alternated between my Onewheel and electric skateboards for the past few years.
I was always curious about how they compared to each other, so in this post, I’ll share my experience.
I won’t make a blanket statement saying one is “better” because it just depends on your riding style. Instead, I’ll share the differences I noticed so you can get a clearer picture.
Let’s start with the…
Obviously, it’s different from an electric skateboard because it has “one” wheel.
I don’t think it’s surprising that the onewheel thrives offroad. I love how seamlessly you can go from the pavement to the grass. You don’t have to worry about rough terrain as much as you do with most electric skateboards.
You can achieve similar versatility with electric skateboards with air-based tires (pneumatics). But I’m talking from the perspective of urethane wheel setups. You’ll most likely have more clearance with a Onewheel because of its height.
The Onewheel doesn’t need a remote. You control it with your body weight via the pad sensors. Once you get the hang of it, it’s straightforward to control. It almost feels like an extension of yourself, which is an incredible feeling.
I love that I don’t need to hold something in my hand and can focus on riding.
Great Phone App
Onewheel put a ton of resources into developing a great iPhone & Android App. You can dim the headlights, check the mileage, earn badges, and compete on leaderboards. It’s the most impressive electric riding app I’ve used.
So, if having a beautifully polished phone app is important to you, Onewheel has it.
Most of my childhood was spent on a skateboard/longboard.
Why do I bring this up?
Well, because I’m familiar with a board that has four wheels. It’s more wobbly when you perform deep toeside/heelside carves on a Onewheel than an electric skateboard.
What do I mean exactly?
When you shift your weight to one side, the Onewheel tire is rounder than skateboard wheels. As a result, it feels more wobbly, and you can’t carve as deep. This is one of the main reasons I use my electric skateboard more than my Onewheel.
The hardest part for me was learning how to get off the Onewheel safely. You can either lift your front heel or hop off. For a while, I couldn’t figure out how to lift my heel long enough to turn it off, which can get sketchy.
So, I would always hop off.
But it was sketchy because if you don’t jump off with both feet simultaneously, the Onewheel could accelerate to one side. Watch this TikTok to see what I mean.
High off the ground
Because Onewheel uses a tire, it sits much higher off the ground than most electric skateboards. While it’s a positive for clearance purposes, it’s a longer fall to the ground.
Now, I’ll cover my thoughts on electric skateboards.
Most electric skateboards will top out at a higher speed than the Onewheel. The Onewheel probably isn’t for you if you’re all about speed. However, I will say that its top speed is plenty fast. I was concerned about it not being fast enough, but it’s enough for only having one wheel. Trust me.
As I described above, the Onewheel can get sketchy when doing deeper carves. This is why I prefer riding my electric skateboards on the pavement. Having four urethane wheels making contact with the ground versus one tire makes for a more enjoyable deep carving experience.
Again, as I said above, holding an extra piece of equipment to shred isn’t my favorite. I love the easiness of having no remote in my hand while riding my Onewheel. I’d consider this a downside of electric skateboards, but you might not.
I grew up skateboarding and longboarding, so electric skateboards feel the most natural to me.
While I love riding my Onewheel for off-road trail adventures, riding it on the pavement doesn’t speak to my soul.
But remember, all of this stuff is subjective, and it comes down to your riding preference.