There’s been a bunch happening with surf leashes lately (aka legropes if you’re a mad Aussie legend). FCS came out with their Freedom Leash, which is like a braided iPhone charger cord. Creatures responded with their own SUPERLITE collection, which is like a streamlined stealth bomber cord. The humble surf leashes haven’t seen this much action since we went from ropes with hankies tied to them (or Justin Cook promoted that leash which was supposed to reel in to avoid drag).

The thing about surf leashes is they do a pretty simple job. Essentially, they stop your board from getting too far away, so you can avoid going for a swim. In recent years, the safety element of leashes has come into play too, with people up for getting sued if a stray board hits a swimmer. Different reasons, but same idea. Board. Stay! If you can do that in a way that doesn’t slow down your surfing, doesn’t break, and is pretty comfortable to wear, you’ve won the game. Considering surfers deal with metal-corroding salt water and cog-jamming sand, things also need to stay within abounds of certain materials, while avoiding too many complex parts.

surf leashes - fcs freedom leash

Current leashes have already solved a lot of the problems of the days of yesterfar. They have mould injected joins to avoid the main breaking point between cuff and cord. They have swivels to stop things getting twisted. They have rail savers to avoid board damage. They have comfy cuffs to avoid chafing and/or slippage. Really, they do a pretty good job already.

The three existing pain points are –

*They still create some drag (pretty minimal on comp cords)
*Some can stretch out to be like limp spaghetti
*When stretched to their max, sometimes they make your board shoot back at you.

Aside from minor adjustments that can be made to the cut to streamline look and comfort, that’s kinda it. So, the question is, do the FCS Freedom Leash and Creature of Leisure Superlite solve those issues.

Let’s break it down one at a time.


The FCS website says the Freedom Leash is “thinner, lighter & stronger than any other cord on the market.”

It does look pretty epic with the braid, and while testing it I had a bunch of people say it looked cool and how did it go. If you’re searching for a conversation starter in the water, maybe that’s a plus, but not really in my personal criteria. I’ve also been told by people that they break more than other cords, which goes against the ‘stronger’ element, but I’ve tested mine in some pretty solid waves and had no issues so far.

The cuff is a touch comfier than other leashes I’ve used and it doesn’t slip or slide around. The moulded grab handle is pretty future-looking too, but not necessarily better than other existing options.

For me, the biggest positive of the Freedom Leash is it doesn’t spaghetti out like other options. The braid means it keeps its shape and is slightly quicker to get back to you after eating shit. This could mean the board springs back too fast, but again, I haven’t had that problem yet.

The big question is, does it reduce drag further? Not really. I couldn’t notice any real difference between it and the standard comp cord I used as a comparison.

Drawbacks are that it’s more expensive than other cords on the market, plus is harder to get seaweed off of when you get attacked by a kelp monster. Overall though, it’s a mild comfort improvement on other options, looks cool and keeps its shape better than anything else I’ve used.


The Creatures website says that the SUPERLITE Leash is “the lightest, most comfortable leash in the world specifically developed with custom materials for a ‘no leash feel’.”

Sensing a marketing theme here?

Again, it looks proper stealth. No major cord difference in aesthetics or feel like the Freedom Leash braided cord material, but super streamlined on the actual leg cuff. The cuff itself is also a mild improvement in the comfort stakes compared with the ‘control’ comp leash I used. It’s ultra thin, so easy to slide your wetty over it without too much leashdick bulge. Is that a thing?

Creatures of Leisure are known for their durable cords and this one is no exception. I took the comp version out in 6ft plus waves and bailed a bunch (to test, I swear!). It held up a treat, although did stretch out a bit.

Drag wise in the water, it’s on par with other options. Price wise, it’s really solid. You’re paying a little more for the adjustments, but not as much as the Freedom Leash. Overall, it’s a mild comfort improvement on other options, looks stealth and holds up in solid waves.


Basically, these two new surf leashes are slight improvements on existing tech, rather than wild revolutions. Yes, they’re comfier. They may offer a beesdick less drag. If you’re wanting to choose between the two, the Freedom Leash keeps its shape better, the Superlite keeps its price better. Both surf leashes are worth a look and are the best on the market, all things considered. 

Given the hype, I’m still patiently waiting for my zero drag option that feels like a summer breeze around my ankle. I do have some great ideas though. Think magnets that attract your board but repel sharks. I call it, The Leashless Leash. 

Creatures. FCS. Are you listening? Let’s talk prototypes.


If we’ve convinced to pony up for a new, state of the art leash then head over to the below links to make a choice, hand over some details and wait patiently for the postman to deliver:
*Buy the FCS Freedom Leash
*Buy the Creatures of Leisure Superlite Leash

Or just hit up your local surf shop – FCS dealers or Creatures Dealers.

Alternatively, if you’ve got other surf based product you’re thinking about buying we have buyers guides and product reviews over here, and here. First up though, it’s Spring – a good time to check out our Springsuits Buyers Guide.