Ok, so the most common question we get in the shops is "Do we have second hand Mini Mals?" The answer is nearly always -No. They are always rare as the demand for second handers has always outweighed the supply. It is cheaper to buy a new one and sell it when you are finished and maybe lose $100 in two years surfing- That's cheap. It also means you get the right board for your body size and fitness level.
Why a Mini Mal I hear you ask?You want to ride Slater Semi Pro 6'1 don't you but woooo, hold your horses. These boards are suitable and fun only when you have done your time. You will find that a beginner needs a tank/ aircraft carrier and the reasons are their excellent flotation and stability. This means you catch more waves even when your timing is still developing and the added stability allows for your developing balance and footwork on a board.Below is a picture of a mini mal.
What size mini mal then?The length is related to your height so a typical 5'6 girl who is of average fitness would choose a 7 foot board. A typical guy 75kg to 85kg and 6foot tall would choose a 7'6 and a bigger guy and 8 foot board. The thicker and wider the board the more suitable it will be for heavier riders. Go by the feeling under the arm when you are carrying it.
Avoid 7 foot plus boards that are narrow ie 19" or less with narrow nose and tail like this one above
In addition most boards for good surfers have lots of rocker to make then turn sharply and handle hollow waves. You won't be doing this yet so avoid these boards, they will only slow your progress.