At A Glance
The Monk has been a stalwart of the Shinn range for eight years now, with an extensive pedigree, and an army of fans around the world. It's an easy-to-ride freeride board with an emphasis on comfort. The board features a relatively simple design with wide square tips and a single progressive concave underneath.
Built around a Paulownia wood core to Shinn's incredibly high standards, the quality is plain to see the finish is sublime. Aimed at just about everyone out there who wants a fun board to ride that cuts through chop with ease. For sure you could get a stiffer more freestyle orientated stick, but where is the fun in that?
Shipping with a set of high visibility Bite fins and either the Sneaker 6 or Sneaker SRS footpads and straps the whole package is excellent. You also get a two-year warranty against any manufacturing defects too.
On The Water
If you've never ridden a Monk, then you are missing out. They have long been favourites of the test team, and the Monk Mental is no different. It's such an easy board to ride, and it's also packed with fun performance that will put a smile on the most discerning riders face.
The thin rails cut through the water and fly upwind with ease, and the clever flex pattern makes rough conditions seem buttery smooth. Load up the edge and those tips give a good spring for boosting tricks; the pop is impressive although a long way off dedicated freestyle levels.
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However, the fun factor is immense, and if freeriding and popping innovative old school tricks rather than the latest double handle pass are your thing, then the Monk Mental won't disappoint. A wide range of riders will love this board, from confident beginners to skilled intermediates, its got you covered.
A sublime finish, with the now-iconic gorilla graphic the Monk Mental rides as well as it looks, and that's saying something. In choppy conditions, you won't find a smoother board, and with some excellent performance too. Upwind is a breeze, tricks come easy, and this is one of those boards that makes kiteboarding easy and fun. Have a ride on one; you won't be disappointed!
This review was in Issue 77 of IKSURFMAG.For more information visit Shinn
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By Rou ChaterRou has been kiting since the sports inception and has been working as an editor and tester for magazines since 2004. He started IKSURFMAG with his brother in 2006 and has tested hundreds of different kites and travelled all over the world to kitesurf. He's a walking encyclopedia of all things kite and is just as passionate about the sport today as he was when he first started!