One of the most important parts of your outdoor rink build is the boards. In a sense they keep it all together. There are two main ways to go about your boards. You can use wood or you can go the pre-made route. They each have their pros and cons.
Wood boards allow you to customize how you see fit. Since you can cut the boards to any size you want to make your rink how you want. This is the more economical approach up front but over time you will have to replace your boards as they wear due to weather and what not. You can use certain wood boards with NiceRink brackets. NiceRink brackets allow you to use sheets of plywood with their bracket system. Your other option is to forgo buying pre-made brackets and build your own or use stakes.
Pre-made boards are a nice convenience. I haven’t personally used them but from what I have heard from others and read they seem sturdy and durable. NiceRInk make the most popular and they are thermoformed plastic boards that come in 4 foot lengths and 18 inches high.
No matter which method you go with, if you have a slope in your yard and you are holding back more than 12 inches of water you should look towards plywood with extra bracing to hold back the water. You can always read our article about measuring slope to learn more about that.
NiceRInk setup with plywood