How to stand on a skateboard (an ultimate guide).

How to stand on a skateboard

Skateboarding is a perfect example of an extreme sport that can be done with enough balance, dexterity, and control. Professional skaters pull complex moves and stunts that are quite unbelievable. But for you as a beginner, it’s important to stick closely to the fundamentals of skateboarding before cruising in the streets, ramps, and rails.

The question here is, what are the fundamentals of skateboarding? As simple as it may sound, knowing how to stand on a skateboard is considered as one of the essential factors every beginner must get acquainted with before making any further advancements. And once you get to understand the rudiment that governs this major move on a skateboard, standing planted on the board becomes pretty easy like A, B, C, and before long, you can advance to more complex stunts and skills that are more technical and impressive.

 

Learning How To Stand On A Skateboard

The first thing you want to do is decide what stance will work best for you. After that, you can proceed to practice our step by step guide on how to stand on a skateboard.

1. Getting Your Stance Right

Decide whether you would be more comfortable riding regular or goofy

Skateboarding has two basic stances: goofy and regular. In the goofy position, you are to place the right foot forward, whereas, in the regular stance, you need to put your left foot forward. You will need to spot out which of these stances makes you feel more comfortable, start by considering if you’re left or right-handed. Though most skater cruise with the regular stance, you will need to choose what works best for you.     

  • Try both stances to figure which works best for you. 
  • If you are not quite sure of a stance, imagine yourself cruising on a skateboard as you get closer to a ramp. While visualizing this idea, which of your foot was placed forward? 

Keep your feet shoulder-width apart

You will need a flat surface to start. You don’t need to worry about skating at this point. Position both feet in the direction of your shoulder and ensure a natural move. While in this position, make sure your body weight is evenly distributed. Once executed, it will help you gain enough balance and control while standing on the board. 

Learn how to adjust your pressure backward and forward in between your leg, and at the same time, ensure you position your body rightly while the head remains upright. Doing this will align you in a stable position. 

Bend your knees and sink your weight

This time you will need to take down your butt a bit and slant both knees a little bit forward. This will make sure your body weight is centered within your hips rather than on your upper part. You’re less likely to get off balance when your body is the center of gravity. 

  • Free yourself. When your body is rigid, correcting your posture becomes pretty difficult.
  • Try as much as possible not to sink or crouch too deep. All you need is to sustain a lower position that will help create enough base while you’re in motion.

 

Point your head in the direction you’ll be moving

Turn your head towards the direction of the skateboard. If you prefer the regular stance, this simply means you’re to face toward the direction of your motion. Try to focus your sight directly on the ground; this will help you spot obstacles.

It is normal to face downwards whenever you want to strike a balance. However, it is essential to keep in mind that your body will only travel in the direction of your head.

 

2. Staying Balanced  

Step onto the board carefully

Position one of your legs on the board and ensure you place it firmly. Then cautiously try to lift the other leg and put it down a bit closer to the first foot. Ensure both feet are apart with a width similar to that of your shoulder. 

Now that you’ve mounted the board successfully, congratulation! You’ve now overcome the hardest part of all the sticks and stunts you will need while skating. 

While in motion, try to maintain an optimum speed; this means you don’t move too slow or too fast, either.  

It is possible to fall once or twice when starting. But don’t give up. Remember, nothing good comes easy. And once you take a spill successfully, you will discover your fears fading off gradually.

Position your feet over the trucks

Standing right at the center of both trucks can be the golden rule for you as a beginner. Trucks are metal shaft that is positioned underneath the board; it has wheels attached to its deck.

  • Ensure to place each foot on the bolt that reflected over the skateboard.
  • The distance that exists between both of your feet should be approximate to the width of your shoulders. 

Keep your weight on the balls of your feet

Make sure you’re slightly lean forward until you become confident, placing a foot behind your toes. When skating, it is vital to get yourself used to all forms of reposition and shift; this helps you maintain enough balance whenever you maneuver an obstacle. Sustaining yourself directly over the ball is a sure way to make a slide, a lift or a pivot, and also allow your body to absorb and reduce shock using the muscles on the lower part of the leg. 

  • If you’re standing on a flat foot, this will most times feels very awkward since the formula takes off agility from the equation.
  • Letting your heels get off the skateboard or raising on tiptoe is yet another way to compromise your balance. It is crucial to maintain direct contact with the whole foot at the top of the skateboard, but most importantly, it matters a lot where your body weight is positioned.

Make small adjustments

Use slit movement of your ankles, hips, knees, and feet to regulate your body movement on the board. Tilt lean, and pump your legs in the right direction to maintain a balance. Most times, the waving of hands can also be another step to ensuring stability. While in motion, it is vital to make all necessary adjustments to keep yourself going as smoothly. With constant practice, you will get better.  

  • Try as much as you can not to sway too backward or forward. Doing this can lead to a fall or can even tip you overboard. 
  • Striking a balance on the skateboard is pretty similar to maintaining a balance on a rocking boat; this makes it essential to maintain a light feet balance.

3. Getting A Feel For The Board

Start on a soft surface

Position your board on grasses, or using a thick carpet can be a substitute to this too, ensure the wheels are not rolling, then you can advance and learn all the necessary steps, tricks, and techniques you can use to stand on the board. If you use a smooth surface, there is a high possibility of the board rolling out from you. So, the best you can do is to gain a bit of stability while maintaining a stationary balance before making any advancement to asphalt. 

Be careful when putting your weight over the wheels. 

Stepping up should be done one foot after another in a smooth, quick, and controlled manner. Take note and avoid rocking the board in both directions. Doing this can make you lose your center of gravity, and this can send you and the board flying off. 

  • Avoid leaning in a direction when you’re stepping up. 

Use the grip tape for traction. 

  • Get the basic off your skate, which is over the layer of tape used on the board. The type of adhesive used on a skateboard is the grip tape; it has a similar surface to that of sandpaper, and this is designed the help increase friction between your foot and the board.  
  • The traction helps you sustain enough control while in motion. It allows you the privilege to move on a faster pace without missing out on your foot.  
  • If your skate lacks a grip tape, you can improvise that by wearing grippy shoes, while you take movement with extreme caution. 

Avoid the tail and nose of the board. 

Most skateboards are designed with a slanted edge, which is most times referred to as “Nose” or “Tail.” You will need to stay away from this for now. As a beginner, additional weights on the nose or tail will only cause a lift on the board. In other words, risking this can, in turn, lead to lots of accidents, especially if you’re not yet a pro.

  • Make sure both feet are placed over the bolt that reflects overboard; this is a sure way to keep you from drifting from one end to another. 
  • Professionals use the tail and nose for stunts and other mind-blowing tricks.

Conclusion

If you just read through the above step-by-step guide, then you’re considered fit to give this tutorial a shot. I recommend a strict adherence and caution to all the rules since its one of the sure ways to keep you safe all through. And don’t forget the golden rule of skateboarding, “Practice! Practice!! Practice!!!” 

 

How Hard is it to Learn How to Skateboard? How to Start

How Hard is it to Learn How to Skateboard? How to Start

You ask how hard it is to learn how to skateboard? That’s easy.

Push. Skate. Slip. Repeat.

Skateboarding is fun. It’s a great exercise and expands your social circle. It’s a great sport altogether. But like any sport, it’s not so easy to master. There are some factors that will play into defining how good you can get at skateboarding. How much you’re willing to put in the effort, your persistence, your age, your fitness, and your guts into how quickly you can master skateboarding.

Like all professional sports, you have to start at the beginning. There’s no skipping steps, no cutting lines, and no dodging ropes. You have to learn the basics and build to the more technical styles. You can imagine tripping on your own board and still attempting to do a kickflip. You’ll just hurt yourself. So it’s paramount you take it slow.

 

How To Learn How To Skateboard

1. Take It Slow

A lot of people by default, are impatient. When they want something, they want it to happen now. You can’t possibly move from learning balance on your board to attempting to do an ollie. You won’t progress that way. Start from the beginning. Nurture your progress. Take it step by step.

The thrill of landing your first trick might want to push you into trying more technical stunts and when you fail at pulling them off, there’s a chance frustration will set in. Some skills will take you time to learn, and without properly understanding the basics, you can’t possibly pull them off.

You want to first learn what stance you’re partial to, goofy or regular. That’s step one. Then you want to proceed to learn balance. This is a step by step guide you should follow as a beginner.

  • Set up your board on a place where it won’t move. On the grass maybe
  • Become attuned to your board. Get a feel of it. Try tilting forward, backward and sideways to sense how your board reacts
  • Look for a safe spot or location where you can ride comfortably. A place without obstacles so you can avoid accidents.
  • Try your balancing again. And be sure to have gotten a hang of it before you proceed to ride
  • Use one foot to give your board a nudge. See how you feel being in motion. Once you see you’re in complete control, repeat pushing the board.

Practice frequently on riding your board. As much as possible even up to weeks. Then you can start checking out basic tricks you can practice doing. When you can master that, you can move on to the harder tricks.

 

2. Learn How To Fall

Do not assume it’s going to be smooth sailing all through. You’re going to “eat shit” at some point. There’s no escaping it. In fact, it’s one of the things you have to learn how to do. It seems funny, right? But it’s necessary. You don’t want to sustain bad injuries when you fall. It’s wise to prepare yourself for it and prevent any damages.

Essentially, you must try not to fall on your face. That’s obvious. What’s recommended is that you either slide or you roll, depending on whether you’re wearing knee pads or not. If you’re wearing knee pads, it’s better you slide and rolling when you’re not.

3. The Proper Equipment Makes a Difference

Quality over quantity, always. Nothing will frustrate you more than a failing skateboard when you’re trying so hard to make progress. A cheap board is going to prove harder to master than a quality one. Every component of a skateboard is important. If one fails, it affects the general performance.

Apart from losing zeal to learn, riding a cheap skateboard can be dangerous to you. You never know when your wheels will give way and you end up hurting yourself. Try as much as you can not to go below average.

If you have to wait a while to be able to save up to buy a good and quality skateboard, then take that time. Do not allow haste ruin skateboarding for you. Having quality equipment motivates proper learning.

 

4. Skate With Others

There’s a lot you can achieve when you work with other people compared to when you work alone. Granted, you can make progress on your own, but having people coach you will prove more useful. In that, they can teach you to avoid the mistakes they made, the tips that for t m, and even advise you when you have questions. You can learn twice as fast that way.

As long as you’re nice and eager to learn, people will be willing to help you out. Skateboarding in groups is a lot more fun too. And a bit of fun never hurts.

Another benefit of skateboarding in a company is the morale you get from watching others do what you can not do. You would want to try your best, give your all to do what they are doing. But wisdom must be applied here because watching other peoples’ progress might push you to attempt something you are not ready for. You can cause serious damage to your board or severely hurt yourself. So know when to draw the line.

5. Make And Watch Videos

A lot of people are virtual learners. They assimilate faster when they watch videos. It’s advisable(if you can manage) to video yourself practising so you can watch later. That way, you can see firsthand the errors you’ve been making and work towards fixing the problem.

If it’s something you can’t seem to figure out on your own, you can always upload the videos and ask for insight from those more experienced than you. And remember that it doesn’t have to be just videos of yourself. You can get tutorial videos off the internet and it just might help you ride or stunt better. Keep at it until you see the changes you want, remember consistency is key.

7. Ask For Advice on The Web

We live in a world where we can contact millions of people, even those we have never met, in just one click. The internet is your friend, remember that. If you’ve hit a wall, you can always look for forums where skateboarding is discussed and throw your question to the house. There are a lot of people who want to feel useful and who has the knowledge to give you the answers you need. Quora is one of the great places to seek advise on skateboarding.

You also do not have to make written inquiries. You can send in videos of your yourself and ask people to watch and enlighten you on what you’re doing wrong and how you can make the necessary corrections. Make sure your video is of high enough quality and it shows the parts of your body that needs to be viewed and corrected.

Do not hesitate to seek advice from other people who have scaled through the wall you’re trying to pass. You don’t have to figure things out al on your own. Use the web today.

8. Age And Overall Fitness

At the beginning of this post, I made mention of how beneficial it is to start learning skateboarding early enough. The younger you are, the easier it is to learn. I don’t mean young, as in 8 years of age. Nah. While that is fine, anything below 30years is fine.

Being fit enough helps a lot too. You can not compare the progress between a beginner who works out and keeps fit to one who finds it burdensome to pick up a remote control. You don’t have to be the Rock first or John Cena, just don’t be lazy. It doesn’t matter your shape or size you can pull anything off if you set you to do mind to it. And an upside to skateboarding is that it’s a great way to burn calories. It’s a form of exercise so you can have fun and keep fit all at once.

Summary

As with most things, learning how to skateboard requires patience and determination. Just try not to skip steps. Master the basics and progressively move to the more technical stuff. Learn your stance, learn to balance, learn to ride, and then learn to do the gnarly tricks.

Good equipment is proportional to stress-free learning. Try not to economize so much that you buy death on wheels. Invest in your skateboard, why, because quality is paramount.

There is a world is skateboarding. Actively participate in that world and see how much more progress you amass. Be proud of whatever progress you make and don’t go overboard on attempting new tricks.

How Long Does It Take to Learn an Ollie?

How Long Does It Take to Learn an Ollie?

There are a lot of skateboarding tricks and one of the most common is the ollie. So it doesn’t come as a surprise that as a new skateboarder, you are wondering how long it generally takes to learn an ollie. The amount of time it takes to learn how to ollie is different for different people. For some, it takes months, years even and for some others, it takes a couple of days. These set of people are those we call naturals.

Depending on how much time and effort you put into practising, on average, it takes some people about two months to learn an ollie while moving and two weeks to learn it while stationary. A sure way to learn fast is to make sure you know and master the basics first before moving to ollieing.

If you want to be good at performing skateboarding tricks, it is important you know how to do the ollie because a lot of other tricks are based on it. Comprehending how to get ollieing right is a challenge for most beginners but it is very doable and there are ways to speed up your progress too. We’ll discuss that in this article as well as the reason why ollieing might be hard for you and also the difference between popping an ollie stationary and while moving.

 

Ollieing While moving

Ollieing while in motion is a bit than doing so while stationary but it is best for mastering the trick. The reason a lot of people conclude that this method is harder is mostly born from their fear of falling off a moving board.

Doing tricks generally is always comes after you have learned how to ride. Learning how to ride means you have gone over or greatly mastered your fear of falling. If you know how to ride, doing an ollie is not difficult as people will have you believe. This is because falling is inevitable while learning skating skills and the best way to fall is to fall while in motion. That way you can control how you land so you don’t hurt your ankle or anything.

The truth is, learning an ollie while in motion takes more guts, but pulling it off means you’re making progress, not just with landing tricks but with your general riding skills. Just keep practising and watching others pull it off. You’ll get better.

Ollieing Stationary

I wouldn’t advise a beginner to practice doing an ollie stationary. Of course, you will be able to lift your board off the ground, but you won’t have that extra pizzazz you need to make a trick go from basic to awesome.

Like I mentioned previously if you attempt pulling off an ollie while stationary and you fall, you are sure to get badly injured. If you are on the move, the impact of the fall won’t rest on a single part of your body, the weight of the fall will be distributed when you roll or slide on your knee pads.

 

How Often Should You Practice an Ollie?

There’s no limit to how much you can practice. In my opinion, the more the better. The trick is just knowing when to chill and let your muscles relax and adjust to memorize the motions. If you feel the pressure of learning is becoming too much, it’s probably wise to focus on practising something else to allow your . and muscle assimilate the little it has learnt. Just don’t get frustrated enough to quit. It might seem difficult, but just keep practising.

Mastering an ollie

The two most important parts to pulling off an ollie are getting the accurate movements and having total confidence that you can pull it off.

First, you want to perfect your balance. It is important you use your core, legs, feet, shoulders, and arms to balance. Doing an ollie is just about popping your talk and sliding your front foot. Do this while you’re on a soft surface so in case you fall, you won’t hurt as bad as if you fell on concrete.

Before you proceed to kick your tail, first stand on your board and jump up and land on it. That movement will make your body get accustomed to the feeling of jumping and landing on your board. Once you feel comfy with doing that while stationary, you can proceed to do it while on the move. Here is some step by step guide to perfecting your ollie.

Stand On The Board And Bend Your Knees.

Stand on your board with your front foot in the middle and your back foot at the back edge. Slightly bend your knees in preparation to jump while keeping your shoulders level with your feet. Make sure you maintain your balance or else pulling off the trick would be near impossible.

Jump Into The Air Engaging Your Front Foot First.

Once you’re balanced, stay on the balls of your feet and crouch. Once you have crouched down, the next thing is to spring back up to take your weight off the board and allow it to lift off from the ground. When you jump up, try to put more weight on your front foot first and then doing the same to your back foot.

Kick Down On The Rear Of Your Board As You Jump.

As soon as you feel your weight lift off the board, push down on the back of the board with your back foot. Do this so that you only lift the board and not your body.

Slide Your Front Foot As Soon As You Start To Jump.

With the same technique you’ve been using, slide your foot towards the top end of your board, just as you get your board up and kick it back down. As you slide your foot along it, the front of your board should thrust up. At this point, you should be at the highest point of your jump and your foot should be hitting the top of your board.

Yank Your Knees Up Towards Your Chest.

The height your board can reach is directly proportional to the height of your feet, so you’ll need to pull your knees upwards as you jump. Your ollie can only be as high as you can lift your feet.

Levelling Your Board.

After you slide your foot to lift your board the next thing is to level out your board. Once the front of your board reaches its highest point, push your foot forward into your board. This will cause the front of the board to lower down and will raise up the back, elevating the whole board into the air and causing it to straighten up.

Sticking A Proper Landing.

Landing properly is the important finish. Landing wrongly could cause you to get hurt and might also damage your board so you got to get it right. In order to avoid snapping your board in half, you need to maintain balance on your board.

On your descent, extend your feet and start to straighten your legs moving them over the wheels of the board. This will provide you balance and enable you to bend your knees ever so slightly so you can absorb some of the shocks.

 

Is it Hard to Learn An Ollie?

At this point, this question should be personal to you. If you have learnt the basics of skateboarding, then landing the ollie is not really hard. Doing the ollie is not something you could possibly get on your first try so it will take some practice and lots of determination.

Your learning this trick fast depends on how much time and effort you put into practising how to get it right. Your first day trying might be tough, just keep at it.

Conclusion

There is something about general sports and that is every one progresses at their own pace. Do not beat yourself up if there’s some other guy at the skate park who started out the same time as you and is now popping tricks here and there. He just learns faster than you and that is not at all your fault. Especially if you work as hard as him. Just give it your best and soon, you’ll get there.

Don’t practice 1 hour a day and expect to progress as fast as the guy who practices 3 hours every day. It just doesn’t work that way. And if learning the ollie is a battle for you, it might do you good to try out some easier tricks first.

Good luck popping your first ollie!

 

 

 

Is Skateboarding Dangerous?

is skateboarding dangerous

Skateboarding is a lot of fun and a great way to catch some exercise. But how much risk is loaded up in that much fun? Is skateboarding dangerous? If yes, then how dangerous?

I have seen a lot of people who are fascinated by skateboarding but one thing or the other holds them back from wanting to learn. The predominant reason being the fear of endangering themselves. It is quite easy to fall in love with seeing pro skateboarders performing awesome tricks and wishing you could do the same. But you can’t just help imagining a hundred and one ways you could hurt yourself trying to do what they do. That is totally understandable and reasonable, in fact.

The truth is, like every other sport out there, without taking the proper precautions, danger is inevitable when skateboarding. But with the right attitude, equipment, and knowledge of safety, you can lower the risk level of any activity.

But while you consider the dangers involved in skateboarding, it also helps to balance it out by learning what the advantages are so you can weigh both and make an informed decision.

So, let’s get on with learning the risks involved in skateboarding and how you can actively stay safe.

 

Is Skateboarding Dangerous?

Skateboarding like every other sport has its risks. You can sustain minor injuries and well as major and severe ones. Some of them are:

  • Fractures, sprains, and strains to various parts of the body, like the legs, ankles, necks, arms, and trunk
  • Concussion
  • Damages to the face, such as a fractured jaw or a broken nose and other brutal injuries.

 

 

Over the years, statistics have shown that skateboarding injuries like sprains, contusion, and fractures occur 74% of the time and the majority of skateboarding injuries are to the limbs, arms, and legs, while the head gets 20% of the injuries. About 3.1% of the injuries are major head wounds and a few of them result in a concussion. But a lot of these can be avoided if the rider is equipped with the right headgear.

Also, it is majorly advised that beginners always skate while fully equipped with safety gear. This is because those who are inexperienced are prone to sustaining injuries than professionals or average riders. Skateboarders who have some experience in riding are skilled in avoiding dangerous situations and have a better chance of managing themselves if an accident is imminent.

 

Moments When Skateboarding Is Most Risky.

If you know how to play it safe, you can skateboard all you want without sustaining any injuries or reduce the risk of getting injured. But there are situations where skateboarding is most dangerous. These are some of them:

  • Riding without donning protective gears
  • Riding too fast
  • Skateboarding on wet or rough surfaces
  • Skateboarding in traffic or near it
  • Making use of homemade ramps
  • Attempting risky tricks and stunts without proper basic skill set.

 

Skateboarding Safety Tips

Like everything else, skateboarding is in stages. There are basic things you must learn before progressing to the really technical stuff. While it is easy to get carried away in watching professionals do awesome tricks and wanting to try them out yourself, you must first start at the basics. Becoming a pro takes time.

  • Understand that progress comes with consistency and there are you might not be equipped to try. So don’t allow internal or external pressures to make you try stuff you are not ready to try.
  • Do not wear headsets or headphones. You might be getting a warning and will fail to hear it.
  • Keep fit as best as you can. The more you weigh, the harder your fall.
  • If you don’t care so much for yourself, be mindful of other skateboarders. Especially the younger skaters.

 

Prevent Injury By Wearing Protective Gear.

There are a lot of accidents and injuries that can be prevented when a skateboarder uses safety gear and proper equipment. It is on occasions where riders ignore using safety gear that skateboarding is dangerous. Depending on how good you are at skateboarding you can take the necessary precautions by buying and wearing a helmet, elbow and knee pads, and wrist guards.

For kids, protective gear is non-negotiable. Kids are prone to injuries because they often have underdeveloped or less active motor coordination. They are very vulnerable and are not always conscious of their environment or surroundings. Also, make sure you inspect your riding equipment before going out to ride.

  • Examine your board for jagged or sharp edges.
  • Be sure your trucks are in top condition.
  • Your grip should be replaced if it becomes slippery, hence you need to keep it in good condition.
  • Check your bearings to make sure they are not broken.
  • Be sure your wheels are attached to your trucks properly.
  • Make sure to wear approved shoes for skateboarding.

Wearing protective gear is not the most comfortable thing but it is necessary, especially if you’re a beginner or just about to learn some tricky skills. But in due time, you’ll get used to wearing them and they will feel natural. Remember, your safety matters and it is your responsibility to keep yourself safe.

 

Helmet

Head injuries are among the worst you could get whether in skateboarding or any other sport. You could become severely traumatized due to head injuries, hence, a helmet is probably the most important safety gear you could put on.

Get yourself a helmet and take absolute care of it. If it gets broken or cracked, get a new one.

Elbow Pads

Elbow injuries are super painful, trust me. And you don’t have to experience that pain if you could just use an elbow pad. An elbow injury can cause you pain for years and years so it is best to avoid it altogether.

Wrist Guards

There are tips on how to fall down safely while skateboarding. But you might not be able to pull that off all the time. A good way to avoid getting injuries on your wrists is to protect them with wrist guards. Your wrist could get broken, scratched up and seriously bruised if you land a nasty fall. Do yourself a favour, get one for yourself and use it.

Knee Pads

Using knee pads might be uncomfortable especially for a street skater but it is important you use one. Knee scrapes aren’t funny business.

Knee pads are known to reduce or limit movement while skateboarding which is a major reason most skateboarders don’t use them. But instead of discarding them totally, you can choose to get the softer ones you can place inside your pants. No matter how uncomfortable, I say you can always get used to anything if you use them often.

So, learn to take precautions. Keep your discomfort aside and learn to use a knee pad. They are pretty good to use when learning how to fall safely since one of those ways is by sliding on your knees.

Getting skateboarders to utilize safety is a major task. Some wear helmets because they look ‘cool’ wearing one. While that’s not a problem, it is better they know the reason why they must stay safe instead of choosing to wear gears for aesthetic purposes.

Always Wear Proper Clothing

While you can work with any shirt or no shirt at all, please avoid skating with skinny jeans. They are uncomfortable and they restrict movement. Wear pants that let you move easily and will offer some kind of cushion when and if you fall.

Proper Shoes

It is easy to bruise your heel if you wear shoes with thin soles. Shoes with higher and softer soles can easily absorb impact when you land tricks, so they are generally recommended.

Wearing the wrong shoes can limit your sense of control, numb your toes, and cause you some pretty bad heel injuries, which sucks. So before you go shoe shopping, find the ones that can offer you some ankle protection.

Skateboarding Socks.

You can use socks to prevent blisters on your feet. Blisters might not seem like a big deal to you, but trust me, they hurt. Using breathable socks is advised because they cause no inconveniences, unlike cotton socks.

 

Use The Right Skateboard

Getting and using the right skateboard does a lot to keep you safe. Skateboards are not exactly cheap and getting one at the cheapest price you can find might not be a very good idea. Quality matters a lot when it comes to skateboards, and you get exactly what you pay for.

There are skateboards designed specifically for different riding techniques and different skill levels. So figure out what exactly you want to get out of skateboarding and buy the skateboard that best fits it and is of good quality.

 

Weather Conditions

Weather conditions present increased risks when skateboarding. When street skating, there are weathers that are really dangerous to ride in. It is generally advised to avoid skating during Winter and autumn because of the ice, snow, and rain depending on where you stay. So at times like that, it is better to skate in parks.

Skating in the rain makes surfaces very slippery and icy ground is very dangerous too. Fallen leaves and sticks are also another cause of danger for skateboarders because they can induce nasty falls. So, generally speaking, in weather conditions like this, it is better to avoid skating outdoors altogether especially if you are a beginner.

 

Skateboarding Is Not Dangerous.

If we begin with the premise that skateboarding is dangerous, then we can say the same for almost every sport out there. If you follow every safety rule and guideline, skateboarding isn’t dangerous.

If you think about it and if you follow researches, you will find out that people visit the doctors for domestic injuries a lot more than skateboarders do for skating injuries. I’m not saying that injuries don’t occur frequently in skateboarding, they just are not always serious injuries that could send people off to emergency rooms.

Just try as best as you can to use quality equipment and safety gear and also stay in shape. Try also to buy good and quality skateboards commensurate with your skillset. Follow these simple rules and you’ll be fine.

 

22 Easy Beginner Skateboard Tricks Which Look Impressive

22 Easy Beginner Skateboard Tricks Which Look Impressive

If you’re perusing this article right now, I’m only assuming you have learned the basics of skateboarding and you want to progress to the next stage; learning basic skateboarding tricks. There are technical skating tricks which I’ll only advise you try to learn much later and there are the basic ones you can easily get a hang of. And these easy beginner skateboard tricks will serve as a foundation for learning the more technical stuff.

If you want to get more out of your skateboarding in the long run, you have to take your learning step by step. Don’t attempt to cut lines to do too much too soon. Learn your Caveman before trying out the Ollie. 

If your concern is appearing like too much of a learner, then you can learn some basic tricks which aren’t difficult to pull off and are sure as hell to make you look good. Keep reading to check out the list of 22 easy tricks you can master.

 

1. The Hippie Jump

 

If you’re looking for easy beginner skateboard tricks that will turn heads, the hippie jump is one in a long list that you should try out. In a previous post, I mentioned how you should rehearse the hippie jump before you think to learn the ollie. This is a particularly easy trick you can learn to get the feel of what it’s like to make a jump without popping your board deck.

Once you have gotten comfortable with moving on your skateboard, you can perfect this trick quickly. It’s simple. Give your deck a little push, jump up and land on your board. Once you have gotten the hang of that, the next to do is look for anything that will allow your board to pass underneath it while you jump over it.

Keep practicing over higher obstacles until you can not go any higher. If possible, employ the help of a friend or friends to help you out. And make sure to land properly on your board else you might risk the board bouncing and hitting you in an unpleasant place.

So generally, the steps are:

  • Push your board a little
  • Jump up
  • Land on your board

Repeat the process, possibly over an obstacle till you can jump higher.

2. Nosebleed or Nose Stall

 

To execute the nose stall, you lean backwards on your board while applying pressure on it. The nose stall comprises an obstacle like a curb with a shelf or an edge. Basically, you just want to lock the nose of your board on to the obstacle and then get your nose to climb the curb. To do that, you have to apply pressure on your tail to get the nose lift enough to make the climb. Once you have achieved that, you lean on your right foot to maintain that position and then roll-off. As usual, keep trying this with higher obstacles until you get great at it.

  • Roll in the direction of any obstacle with a shelf
  • Lightly apply pressure to your tail
  • Bump your nose on the obstacle
  • Push your weight on your front foot
  • Lean on your tail and then roll back.

3. Caveman

 

This is yet one of the easy beginner skateboard tricks to pull off. This trick involves holding the board in your hand and jumping in the air and landing on your board. It’s important you learn this trick because a lot of other tricks’ execution depends on it.

You want to start by jumping on your board from a little distance with a slight forward movement. What I mean is, running towards your board, not at great speed though, and jumping on your board. Hold the nose of your board with one hand run for a few steps and leap off the ground. While in the air, let go of your board and land on its deck. See, not that hard is it.

  • Hold the nose of your board with your hand
  • And a short distance and jump up with your back foot
  • Let go of your board and execute a perfect landing on it.

4. Nose Pick Up

 

In order o get this skill right, you are required to remove your back foot from the board while popping and rolling your board with your front foot. When you do this, the tail of your board will automatically pop up behind you and when it does, you need to grab your deck.

The easiest way to get the hang of this trick is to practice it while stationary. It’s not a difficult task to try and grab your deck when pulling off this trick because when your skateboard comes up, it’ll be at a vertical position behind your leg. So all you need to do is reach behind you and grab it.

Easy peasy. Here’s a short recap:

  • Get a bit of momentum by pushing forward a little.
  • Press the nose of your board with your front foot.
  • Reach behind you and grab your board.

5. Ollie Pick Up

 

To land this easy skill, there are just little steps to take. The ollie pick up is one of the easy ones. All you need to do is get a little forward movement, pop your tail a little, put your two feet on the ground just after you have popped your board and grab it.

If you’re wary about doing this trick at a go, you can try taking it slow. Try just popping your board and letting it go. When you’ve got that on lockdown, you can try grabbing it. When you pop your board correctly, it should just fly upwards and when it does it, it should be easy to pick up. Once you’ve gotten a hold of the nose, try jumping back on your board. That’s a bomb drop and it’s another great trick you could learn.

  • Ride in a forward direction and gently pop your tail.
  • Put your feet on the ground.
  • Grab your board.

6. Bomb Drop or Acid Drop

 

If you understood the ollie pick up, then this trick is not so different from it and neither should it be difficult for you. And if you are in the market for easy beginner skateboard tricks you can pull off,  try learning the bomb drop. Virtually, you grab the nose of your board with your front hand, give your board a little swing and jump on it with both feet.

While you stick your landing, it is important you land on the bolts of the board. This is because landing in the middle with such force might snap your deck in two. Like I made clear in the previous trick, the bomb drop goes pretty well with the ollie pick up. They’re a pretty cool combo to get you going.

  • Grab the nose of your board and take a few steps.
  • Swing your board a little.
  • Land on your board with both feet.

7. Wall Bounce

 

If you need something that will impress your skateboarding pals, this is a great trick to use. Though it’s a cool trick, it kinda requires confidence to pull it off and while a lot of guts. If you don’t think you can pull it off, you probably won’t so you can just decide to skip this number altogether. But if you feel up to the task, then let’s move along.

To land this trick, you need to pop your tail a bit and make your board leap forward. When you do this, your board will naturally move upward and the wheels should bounce off the wall. If you can just get the timing right, you might just be able to land this trick.

  • Roll(not speed) towards a wall.
  • At the precise time, pop the tail of your board and jump off the board.
  • Wait for the board to bounce back and jump back on it.

8. Firecracker

 

This trick is generally performed on staircases but for the sake of your beginner status, it’ll be best to start off learning on a curb. When you can land the trick on a curb, you can progress to staircases with at least two steps.

The trick is all about adding some pressure on your tail and riding off a staircase. As you approach the stairs, bend your knees a bit and add some pressure on your tail. This trick requires some mental strength so you might want to stop thinking of the stairs as a drop but as just another surface. Maintain your balance always and try not to lean forward. Let the board guide you and you’ll do fine.

9. Tic Tac

 

Just another easy trick for him to learn. All you need to do is push your front wheels from side to side while gaining speed by pushing with your knees. Oh come on, it’s not that terrible.

With this trick, you’ll get a lot more familiar with your board and learning how to move your board with your body’s movement. I think it’s worthy to be called a trick. You could try it.

10. Fakie Kick Turn

 

This trick is so easy, I don’t think it’s even necessary to add a video. But for the sake of visual learners, I decided to add it. All you have to do to land this trick is to ride and make a 180 degrees turn, moving your shoulders and head first and letting the rest of your body join the ride.

  • Get your board rolling backward
  • Turn your shoulders and head and push your tail gently.
  • Turn your body in a 180-degree angle and your board should follow.

11. Kick Turn on a Ramp

 

This is a basic trick that will earn you some street cred at skate parks. This trick goes two ways: backside and frontside. But for the sake of its easiness, you should probably start off with the backside. Once you have gotten a hang of it, you can move on to try the frontside kick turns.

Start by applying a bit of pressure on your tail. This will lift your front wheels up. Then when you start to ride up to the ramp, slowly begin to turn your shoulders and head, your entire body will.

Don’t add so much pressure on your tail or lean too much into the ramp when you make your turn if not, your board might move forward without you.

  • Climb up the ramp.
  • Turn your shoulders and head and press your tail gently.
  • Turn your entire body.

12. Boneless

 

Mastering the ‘boneless’ is a door to mastering a lot more tricks. Don’t fret, it’s an easy one and you can easily pull it off with a little practice. But if you’ve got a bad back, you might wanna skip this one.

This trick requires you to rightly grab the outer side of the board and stepping off with your front foot. Then jumping up and get right back on your board.

13. Rail Stand

The rail stand is one of those tricks that appear scary at first look but in reality, is actually easy to pull off. This trick is a four-step process so you have to pay attention enough to get them.

A rail stand or primo stand is when you stand on the side of your board. To land this trick, place your feet over the bolt of your board. Adjust your front foot so that it kinda hangs off the board and move your back foot so it also hangs off the board a bit. Keep your body balanced and centred and your shoulders parallel to the board.

Then when you have assumed this position, there are two things you need to do simultaneously. Use the toes of your front foot to push down on the heel side of your board while you jump a little in order to lift your back foot up. Then use your back foot to stop the board’s rotation and set your front foot on the rail.

To get out of the rail stand, just do a slight hop, pushing the board in the direction you want it to go and landing on your bolts. That’s it.

14. Biebelheimer

 

15. Manual


This trick is great for combining with other tricks so it is a good one for you to learn. At first try, it’s not as easy as most of the tricks we have talked about here, but with consistent practicing and determination, I’m positive you can be a master at it.

You need to be already good at riding your board before going for this trick. It’s all about balance so you need to be comfortable on your wheels.

Basically, you put your front foot on your front bolts then place your other foot on the tail. Add a bit of pressure on the back tail and ever so slightly, bend your knee. Keep your back knee straight through this and keep moving.

16. Staple Gun

 

Okay. Staple gun. Not for the faint-hearted. It’s one of my personal favourites actually and is pretty cool if you can pull it off. Majorly, this trick is done on a ramp, but you can actually also do it on a curb. Practising on a curb is a lot easier though.

So, you want to roll towards a curb. When you get close, pop an ollie while leaving your back foot on the ground.  Get your board to the top of the curb whilst keeping your front foot close to the bolts, leaving thay foot at an angle of at 45°. This will leave you in a kind of split and when that happens, pull your front leg back and also pull your back foot then place it back on your board.

17. Step off Under Flip

 

This trick is also one of the cool ones. To pin this down, you need to jump off your board, walk a couple of steps then flip your board by placing a foot under the board. You have to be on the move as it is not a stationary trick. Once you have flipped your skateboard over, jump back on it.

18. Mike Vallely Shove It

 

Skateboarding legend Mike Vallely came up with this trick, hence it was named after him. If you have learned how to do the ollie shove it, this is kinda like a spinoff. Don’t fret, this trick isn’t risky as much because your board will be sliding on the ground. So here’s the deal. Slide on your board, jump off of it and jump back on. That’s it.

19. Shove It

 

This here is an honourable mention. It’s a bit more difficult that most tricks we have talked about so far but I felt like mentioning it because it is one of the most sort after tricks for most beginners. And it’s a good way to challenge yourself especially before going on to practice doing the ollie.

20. Strawberry Milkshake

 

This is another one to your archive of mastered tricks. It’s pretty easy and looks really impressive but do not confuse or mistake it for the no comply. The trick involves jumping off your board, scooping it around and jumping back on. At first, you might choose to take it slow. With your front foot, step off your board, pop your tail and then step back on again. Keep doing this at increased speed and voila, you’re a pro.

21. Bean Plant

 

22. No Comply

 

Last on our list of beginner tricks is the no comply. It’s a great trick and I think you should learn it as well. Luckily, it’s one of the easy ones.

  • Twist your shoulders backwards and step your front foot off your board.
  • At a 180 degree, pop your deck using tour back foot.
  • Jump right back on your board.

That’s It!

So there you have it. 22 pretty cool, pretty awesome and easy beginner skateboard tricks you could shine with. I really hope you don’t just read all of this and keep them locked up in your head. I need you to go out there and practice. Fail at them and then practice some more so you can become a guru at them.

There are not impossible tricks to land. I know some are more tasking to learn than some, but what are we without challenges? So give yourself the push you need and get skateboarding.

How To Be A Pro At Skateboarding

How To Be A Pro At Skateboarding

At the beginning of a career, the average human works hard and gives his best to become an expert at what he does. He looks into the future and sees himself at the top. Well, that’s the same for most skateboarders.

In the beginning, most skateboarders are drawn to professionals who know how to work a board. They wonder what it will be like to be able to pull off major tricks and wowing the crowd. They wonder if they can make a living from skateboarding. If you’re in this position and you’re wondering how to be a pro at skateboarding, then you should keep reading.

The first order of business should be to know and understand what it means to be a pro skateboarder and how to be one.

In simple terms, a pro skateboarder is one who makes a living from skateboarding. Now, the truth of the matter is, there are kids who are badass at skateboarding and they do make money off it. But technically, they are not considered pro skateboarders simply because they are still under their parents or guardian. On a basic level, they can be considered pro skateboarders if they can live off it. In other words, it’s all just technicalities.

The term “pro” in skateboarding is the same as in other sports. Pros usually would have sponsors, travel all around the world for series of competitions, and live off the money they get from sponsors and the competitions they participate in.

So, if you understand this, then you realise that to be a pro, you have to be skilled enough at skateboarding to attract sponsors or companies where you can become an ambassador. And if this is your goal, then read through because you’ll come to learn exactly what it takes to become a pro skateboarder.

 

How To Be A Pro At Skateboarding

  • Have A Passion For Skateboarding.

To become a pro at skateboarding there are going to be a lot of sacrifices that you will make. You’re going to give it so much of your time and energy. Some days you’ll wake up early just so you can be the first person at the skate park, and other days, you’ll give in more hours than you planned just so you can master a trick.

If skateboarding is not something you’re passionate about, you will get tired and maybe even frustrated. It will make it extremely difficult to make the sacrifices that are necessary for your success. If skateboarding is just all fun and games for you then maybe you should not bother trying to go further. If it’s not your passion, do not force it. It’ll be better you find something you’re passionate about and try to succeed there.

 

  • Start Young

According to Malcolm Gladwell, it takes 10,000 hours of deliberate practice to become the best in any field. If we go by his principle, that means there is over one year worth of practice to be done. This, of course, will be cut into a few hours a day, so it will work best to start out in your early years.

There are people who started skateboarding as early as two years old. Check out Nyjah Huston who holds a gold medal in the X Games and he did so at age 13 making the youngest to achieve that. Till date, he has only grown his skills and he is known as one of the best skateboarders in the game. There is also Ryan Sheckler who started as early as age 6 and he is also a great skater.

If you’re a parent and your kid has shown signs of loving skateboarding, you should encourage him/her to see it through. Passion is rare these days and if your child has got it for skateboarding, you should nurse it. They might just be the next big thing in the skateboarding world.

 

  • You Are Not Too Old To Go Pro

It is true that there is an added advantage if you start skateboarding at an early age. But it is also true that starting late is not a disability. You can be in your teens, your twenties, or even your thirties and still learn to skateboard. Except you are a naysayer, you can be a pro skateboarder at an older age.

As long as you have a passion for skateboarding, you can give it a go at any time. The stress of adulthood should not make you think it is too late for you. On the contrary, your age might just give you an edge because you can learn at a faster pace.

Don’t look at the number, just ask yourself if you have what it takes. And you just might be the next big thing in skateboarding even in your thirties.

 

  • Always Practice

Like I have mentioned, it has been speculated that it takes 10,000 hours of practice to become the best in your field. And even if that speculation is not accurate, it does not change the fact that to become a pro skateboarder, you must practice. A lot. There is a lot of competition in skateboarding. There are so many people skilled at it and you will not stand out if you don’t put in the work and become the best of the best. There are no two ways about it. To attract sponsors, you must be really good. The time you spend skating, the more you’re comfortable on your board, and the more you can land more tricks.

There are a large number of skateboarders out there and a lot of them are good. What would make you catch the eye of sponsors? Well, to do something the other aren’t doing. And that might be to work harder than them which means more hours practising. You can hit the jackpot at any age, even in your teens. But that will take a whole lot from you. So are you willing to give it your best?

 

  • Get Into Skate Competitions

After putting so much work and time, I would imagine you would have mastered some major tricks. The next thing to do is show them off. You can attract sponsors if they cannot see you and that happens if you put yourself out there. Enter every skateboarding competition you can find. Doing this will help you make friends as determined as you and will also put you in front of Representatives of skateboarding companies.

The more you attend competitions, the more you’re increasing your chances of being a pro skateboarder. And this chances increases, even more, when you win these competitions. Another advantage of participating in competitions is that you’re more exposed and desensitized to the pressures of performing in front of judges.

  • Connect With The Public

One thing I know will put your name out there is getting a street cred. People have got to know how good you are they have to know you’re one of the best. Let it be that when they’re asked who the best is around, your name will be among the top 3. You have to build your reputation as one of the best skateboarders in the area.

Be in good rapport with your local skateboarding community. They will encourage you and spread the news of your success. A good way to find a sponsor is to put together a publicity or sponsorship package. This package will contain information about you as a skateboarder and as a person. An opportunity to show your potential sponsor that you have what it takes to be the best and sponsoring you would be a great business decision.

  • Build A Social Media Following And A Brand

It is a really good idea to get followers or fans. We’re in the social media age and truthfully, you can get recognized by sponsors just from your online presence. When you build a social media following, you’re making yourself a brand. It gives you a strong foundation to fly from.

Even if you get sponsors and you lose them, your fan base will cushion the fall. You will have something to fall back on because you have already built a presence on the internet. People know you not just as a skater but as a person and even if you lose competitions, your fans will always be there to help you bounce back. And if you have some business sense, you can make some money off of it.

 

  • Take Care Of Your Health.

A sure way to end a career, in any sport, is to get some terrible injuries. As a skateboarder, beginner or otherwise, you must learn to protect yourself to avoid injuries that will cause you setbacks. Skateboarding is already risky without trying to add more danger to it. There are some tricks you know you might not skilled enough to pull, the best thing is not to try them. And even if you must, you have to make sure to put on your safety gear.

If your dream is to become a pro skateboarder, you know it can end in a flash if you disregard your health. So do the needful and get a helmet.

 

  • Get Fit

Skateboarding is a physical activity and you’re going to exert yourself a lot. Having a fit body will help you manage a lot of the stress and perform your best.

Getting fit also helps with keeping injuries at Bay. When you’re healthy and strong, you’re less likely to break your bones or sprain your wrists in accidents. It also makes it easier to get back on your feet after an accident.

 

  • Be Consistent

Consistency is one of the keys to success. The practice is great but if you’re not consistent with it, you’re not going to go very far. You can’t practice today and forget to practice tomorrow and the rest of the week. To improve at skateboarding, you have to be consistent in practising. That way, you can keep track of your progress and helps build your confidence very fast.

 

  • Give It Your Best.

To be the best, you have to give your best. You need to understand that you will not become a pro by being stagnant. You have to move forward. You have to try new things. Push yourself to do what you couldn’t do the previous day and push yourself till you can get it.

Always give yourself new goals. Do not revel too long in your small successes. Once you have learnt a trick, move on to the next. As soon as you master 3 stairs, try 4 stairs.

You should not put yourself in danger, though. Know your limit and don’t exceed it. There will be no victory if you knock yourself out of the game by getting injured.

Just put in the effort. To get to where you want to be, you have to put in the time, effort, and make the necessary sacrifices.

 

Conclusion

Becoming a pro skateboarder is not going to be a piece of cake. It’s going to take everything you’ve got; your time, and resources. So you have to be ready to go the whole nine yards.

Sponsored skaters are paid to do photoshoots, compete, and/or participate in publicity activities. They usually travel around the world doing these things so it’s a really great opportunity.

Companies are constantly looking for good skateboarders in the spotlight to help market their products as it is one of the most convincing forms of advertising. Getting signed is a great opportunity and even though you don’t hit the millions right away, with patience you will.

Just be true to yourself and give skateboarding all you have got. It is only a matter of time before you become one of the best in the game.

How To Build A Mini Ramp: 4 Feet High

How To Build A Mini Ramp: 4 Feet High

If you are thinking of how to build a mini ramp, then the tools required will include the following – a hammer, impact drill, an electric jigsaw for cutting transitions. A saw to cut 2x4s because mini ramps are made with a lot of 2x4s, tape rule, a decent assortment of drill bits, level; the ramp has to be on the same level. You will also need a chalk line used to see where you place your 2x4s under the plywood when you have started building, as well as a heavy-duty pencil.

The mini ramp will be in two sections, the 8-feet wide and 4-feet wide section which can then be combined later. You must measure the length of the 2x4s with the transitions.

To get the transitions perfect, you take one of the 2×4 and place it on the plywood. For this ramp, we would make a 7-foot transition. So, put the 2×4 on the plywood and screw it together in the middle of the 2×4 precisely at 7 feet. Then you drill a hole at the other edge of the 2×4 and fit a pencil in it, so it touches the plywood. Then mark out the height of the plywood from the 2×4 lying on it with a pencil.

The 2×4 will pivot at that point. Once it’s done, you drag the 2×4 edge fitted with a pen, so it marks a perfect tranny on the plywood. After this, you saw out the marked part of the plywood to get your transition. Flip the other side of the plywood and place the cut-out transition on the other side. Trace and then use your saw to cut it out to get the second transition.

Marking Out

The next step in building the ramp is marking out a line on the transitions. You mark a line every 8 inches on the transitions where you will insert the 2x4s. Start from the bottom of the transition. Make sure the 2×4 is in a level position with the transitions on all sides.

Screw the 2x4s to the transitions; you would want to use at least three screws on each side. Start with the front and back, so the rest of the 2x4s fit in well. Now, the reason we make marks on the transition is, so we don’t measure each time we want to fix it in a 2×4. The line will guide us on where to set the 2x4s with the transition. I recommend using two 2x4s for each line, so there’s extra support for the ramp.

Since we are building a 12 feet wide ramp, remember I said it would be in two sections, 8 feet wide and 4 feet wide. Together makes it 12 feet. So, two 2x4s on each line would hold it up.

The next part is building the flat bottom. You’ll be using a ratchet, just like the one in the image below, to hold your ramp in place. I found this extra strong ratchet (on Amazon) if you are looking for a ratchet that does what it says on the tin.

You take four 2x4s from a rectangle so that you would have four sides. The flat bottom depends on how you want it. But a lot of flat bottoms give you enough time to set up. Let’s say, for example, you want to make 8 feet flat bottom; you start with the rectangle as earlier stated. The length should be 4 feet wide, while the breadth should 7.75 feet long. On the middle section, the 2x4s will be 45 inches, so they are different sized 2x4s than the outside. Make the inside 2x4s be 8 inches apart.

Coping

The next phase is coping. Coping is the essential part of a mini ramp; Make sure your coping is 2 inches at least in diameter. This reason is that 2 inches is the right size for your trucks to lock into for skateboarding tricks on mini ramps. We are making a 12 feet mini ramp, so the coping should be 12 feet long too. The length of the coping depends on the length of the mini ramp you want to build.

After fixing the coping, the next step is the deck. The deck is something you will stand on. It could be 2 feet or 4 feet depending on the standing space you want in your ramp. It’s smaller than the flat bottom because it has to fit right into the templates. Make it 94.5 inches so it fits between the template and can butt up right against the coping. The deck will be 4 feet away from the coping.

Sheeting

With this, the skeleton is ready for sheeting. At this stage, where you connect the transitions to the flat bottom, it must be all levels. So, you push them all up together, and you screw the part of the transitions that touch the flat bottom together, both sides. Screwing at least four different parts would hold it firm. After joining the transitions with the flat bottom, there would be a line where they joined that is perfect for your plywood to match.

Use 2 inches screws for sheeting, that is when you are covering the skeleton with the plywood. Each sheet should have at least four screws on each rim going across. When you put your transition first layer up to the flat bottom layer, stand on it, walk from the bottom up, so it doesn’t get warped in the middle.

Start screwing from the first 2×4, second, and so on so that it bends with the wood rather than starting on the top and going down. Screw by every foot on the plywood. Then fix the deck to the edge of the transition. Avoid any angle and make sure it’s flush with your transition and screw together. Also, put 2x4s at each corner of the deck and screw, so they support it well. For the coping, make a small hole using a drill and use a screw of 3/8 inches, so the screw head doesn’t go through.

Make eight holes in the coping, drilling every 3 feet. Drill 4 screws to hold the coping to the transitions. The other four holes are countersinks so that the screw heads go through the coping. You should use a ½ inch sheet of plywood for the first and second layers.

Then a Masonite for your third layer if it’s indoors or plywood if it’s outdoors.

It’s good to have three layers, so you don’t break through when skateboarding and hurt yourself. If you follow all the instructions here, you should be able to make yourself a durable good mini ramp.

 

16 Tips to Overcome Fear of Skateboarding

Overcome Fear of Skateboarding

It’s typical for every newbie or novice to chicken-out at their first attempt and skateboarding is no different. Most times, even when we fully kit out with the full protective gear, the fear of the first attempt still lingers. If you have friends to cheer you for every fall, you take that is a plus on your skate ass, but if you don’t or rather prefer to learn the hard way, then this post is for you.

The first step of overcoming your fear of skateboarding is to tell yourself you are willing to learn and you are ready to practice. This you can call level zero; level zero is the attempting and practice phase. This stage, you may start to feel like you “gat it,” but in reality, you ain’t “gat nothin’.”  If you attempt a technical trick or anything beyond your skill and level of practice, you will hurt yourself!

As mentioned earlier, the fear you feel is completely normal, but what is not “normal” is holding onto the fear.

You have to be ready to;

  1. Master basic skateboarding technique
  2. Practice frequently
  3. Learn to ignore or overcome your fear
  4. Accept falling as part of becoming a better skateboarder
  5. Build your confidence but do not become overconfident
  6. Start with simple tricks
  7. Practice, practice, practice…

Fear will limit your ability to become a better skateboarder, so you must commit fully and ask yourself this question – am I ready to overcome my skateboarding fear?

To help you overcome your fear of skateboarding, below is a list of some tried and tested tips that have helped me and many skateboarding friends to become better over the years

 

Skate tip #1 – Master the Basics

Many skateboarders seem to think the startups don’t matter. They begin trying out and practising different tricks like kickflips, ollies, and other technical skateboard moves. This is the major reason why most skateboarders pick and get used to the wrong posture, which becomes a problem in the future as there are not properly acquainted with their boards. By the time they get used to just tricks, they would lack the basic knowledge to fall safely.

 

Skate tip #2 – Start trying out Tricks Slowly

Tricks are complex no matter how easy they look; one wrong move could make everything go sour. Tricks are a mixture of moves, turns all taking place in different phases. Before you go rotating your deck, practice landing on your two feet, and if you find a trick too hard to learn, you do not need to waste time; there are so many tricks to learn and you could come back to it later.

 

16 Tips to Overcome Fear of Skateboarding

 

Sometimes you may need to be a master at trick A and B before you could even attempt trick C and D. The key here is to give your brain some time to process and master each process and then every other thing will fall in place.

 

Skate tip #3 – Get motivation from music

With the help of your favourite music, beating your fear will be a lot easier. Although it can be distracting when you are about to perform a trick, try not to listen to music at high volume if skateboarding in areas where there is vehicular traffic.

Skate Note- depressing music doesn’t help – a bit of upbeat opera just might do the trick though!

 

Skate tip #4 – Have faith in Yourself

Anything humanly achievable is possible, you just need to convince yourself that you can do it. The main thing is to tell yourself, “I am ready, I can do it” (please don’t do this if you haven’t mastered the basics of skateboarding). You need to accept that you may fall on the first try, and with a little more practice, you are bound to do better. There will be times when fear or nervousness become overwhelming, you might have to trust your instinct and just go for it.

This is because you might not actually be ready – some tricks can be really complex- and if you don’t deliver the right phase of each trick properly, it could lead to a bad ending. So take baby steps and do not completely ignore your fear when trying each trick.

One thing you should avoid is peer pressure, while there’s always a chance that your friends will be able to do certain things you can’t do – you will get better with time! If you succeed in using your fear as a tool method, then a little encouragement from friends will not go amiss.

Skate Note- try railing on stairs to dwindle your fear.

 

Skate tip #5 – Start landing on soft ground

Some tricks are better to be practised near or on grassy areas, in case of a fall. It helps you prepare for the impact of falling on concrete or coal tar ground.

 

Skate tip #6 – Fall Properly

Overcoming your fear becomes easier when you learn what makes you fall and how you should land from a fall. Practice your falls on soft ground (grass). Always wear your protective gear and learn how to land with your arms and other ways to fall with minimal injuries.

Weirdly, pain can help you to improve your skateboarding – so unless you seriously hurt yourself, you don’t need to stop when you take a tumble!

Skate Note- if you are not wearing your protective gear, practice how to roll when you fall with your hand in a defence position in front of you.

  • Never fall with your hands behind you.
  • Even after practising how to fall, always wear your protective gear.

 

Skate tip #7 – Land with one foot at a time

Some skateboarders are scared of placing both feet on their deck, if you are in this category, start with one foot.

Land on one foot before landing on the other (land on your front foot, then your rear foot, if this suits you better).

Skate tip #8 – Let your brain process every trick

When skateboarding, skateboarders who perform really well are those who can focus only on the moment. So, as much as possible, you need to concentrate and see every trick in your mind. All your concentration needs to be on your breathing and body posture; relax your muscles, prepare your mind, and go for it.

Skate note – most times it is better to skateboard with relaxed muscles and healthy body. If your muscles are sore, skateboarding could be a dangerous activity.

Skate tip #9 – Don’t Beat Yourself up

Don’t take it to the extreme and beat yourself up mentally, if your fear is holding you back. There is no need to be mad at yourself or use substances to boost your confidence or influence your skateboarding performance.

Allow your frustration to yield motivation. With time you would get to and exceed where you want to be.

 

Skate tip #10 – Don’t skip the protective Gear

Most skateboarders often overlook wearing the correct skateboarding protective gear, especially once past the beginner phase. So many people complain about being uncomfortable when wearing protective gear or some are just lazy to grab their gear before going out.

The point is that protective gear is a necessary evil, like it or not – ensuring kids wear the right skateboard protective gear is extremely important. They help protect you from body contact on a hard surface (it is better to have a 50% impact on concrete than 100%).

Skate Note – Do not take unimaginable risks because you are wearing protective gear, you could still land yourself in an emergency room.

Skate tip #11 – Master one trick at a time

You do not need to hurry when learning to master a skateboarding trick. Practice makes perfect! Be a master at one trick before moving to another; if you fail at a new trick, practice the old one, then go back to the new trick. Aim to become better at it by practising the different phases to avoid building a mental block/fear.

Skate tip #12 – Accept failure

The chances of you nailing a trick at the first attempt are often about 10% mark.  You should look at skating as you view life, you fall ten times, stand up and try again. One trick to improve yourself is to stop overthinking every skateboarding trick. Once you start thinking about falling, you significantly increase the chances of it happening.Learn to skateboard in public

Skate tip #13 – Focus on yourself and not others

Constantly watching others will eventually lead to fear of being overwhelmed. You may have a friend or know someone who is killing every trick and learning at “flash velocity”. It’s fine!

Yes, it should motivate you, but not to the point where you perform tricks you are not ready for – if things go wrong, you might end up making things worse. Learn each move at your own pace, not others; with the right practice, you would become perfect.

 

Skate tip #14 – Learn to skateboard in public

The fear of skateboarding in public is something mainly experienced by beginners. The feeling that everyone can tell you are a newbie.

The thing to remember is that even if they do make fun of you, it will only be for a short while because with enough practice, you’ll also become a master. You can begin practising in less crowded areas until when you are ready to face the public.

 

Skate tip #15 – Practice with a Friend

There are many skateboarders out there who are willing to teach/ help you through the process. Try to join a skateboarding group (these are some in London area) to get tips on tricks.

Joining groups like this will help motivate you and improve your performance. You will meet a lot of people with talent, passion, and zeal. If you don’t like big crowds, then try hooking up with a friend or two that are also into skateboarding. Practising with them will do a lot of good to you, even if you are all newbies – it really doesn’t matter.

 

Skate tip #16 – Videos help

There are so many skateboarding videos online now that the hard part will be separating what works from all the waffle. Watching YouTube videos will help prepare your mind for each phase of the trick you want to deliver.

While videos will not help prepare your muscles, it is an easy way for you to learn stance, feet position, balancing and how to get in the zone.

 

Final Thoughts on How to Overcome Fear of Skateboarding

One of the main things I have tried showing you in this article is that skateboarding welcomes falling and overcoming fear. And for you to succeed, you have to learn to overcome your fear of skateboarding and learn to fall, correctly.

Many people do not skateboard anymore because they tried to do tricks that ended up hurting them, tricks they weren’t ready for. Some skateboarders skipped the basics, while others fail due to being overconfident and do it without protective gear.

The key is learning to trust yourself and practice, practice, practice..

What is a Pro Skateboarder?

What is a Pro Skateboarder?

Asking what is a pro skateboarder is a question that is often asked as there are many skateboarders out there but only a few are actual pro skateboarders. Going pro in skateboarding is a smooth ride to making a living from the sport. To be referred to as a pro skateboarder is not something that comes easily.

Skateboarders usually need to work hard to be promoted to a pro rank.

Let us take a look at what pro means, particularly in skateboarding, who decides who a pro is and how to identify a pro skateboarder.

What is Pro in Skateboarding?

Becoming a pro skateboarder is when you cross the line from skateboarding for fun (an amateur) and to skateboarding for money (a professional). It means being able to earn a living from skateboarding. Pro skateboarders live off of skateboarding.

They travel around for competitions and have sponsors who invest in them and expect a return on investment in them. This way, they get money from competitions and sponsors. Pro skateboarders are paid to skateboard and receive monetary benefits from their sponsors.

A pro skateboarder is one that has made it past it being a hobby. They receive lots of free items like skateboards, shoes, helmet and other accessories from sponsors.

What is a Pro Skateboarder

 

A skateboarder can be very good, join in competitions and still be called an amateur.

The number of years spent practising and visiting skateboard meetups is not also a factor in being recognised as a pro skateboarder. A skateboarder can spend a number of years in a team and still not be confirmed a pro, but a skateboarder on the same team can spend a fewer number of years and become a pro shortly after.

Being recognised as a pro skateboarder is a whole different ball game. It really doesn’t matter if a skateboarder is a member of a popular team, joins a team in competitions, has been in the game for long, skateboards beautifully – he/she may still not break into the rank of pro skaters.

A skateboarder cannot be called a pro in the game simply because people feel he is a good skater. So, how then do skateboarders become pro in skateboarding?

 

How Do You Know A Skateboarder Has Gone Pro?

The skateboard brand company will often decide who is pro or not. A company can decide to make the skateboarder a pro when they decide that the skateboarder is good enough, and his decks will sell. This is confirmed by giving the skateboarder a pro deck.

A pro deck is one that has the name of the skateboarder embedded in it. In other words, when a company sees that a skateboarder is good, they give him a pro deck. When such decks are sold, a certain portion of the money goes to the skateboarder.

How money from such sales is shared between the sponsor and the skateboarder is usually spelt out in the terms of the contract and can easily be measured.

 

 

Such a decision comes when the sponsor values the skateboarder and feels he deserves to be paid more and can generate income for him in return. Therefore, while the pro is making more money by being a pro, his sponsors are also benefiting from him.

It is important to note that pro in skateboarding has gone beyond just having a pro deck. Sponsors from other industries such as clothing, shoe companies and the likes print name of pro skateboarder that they sponsor on their brands.

A pro skateboarder does not have to be restricted to just having the one sponsor. A pro skateboarder can have contracts with different sponsors.

The good thing is you do not need to be on a team to be recognised as a pro skateboarder. Some prefer to skateboard alone while others prefer to be in a group.

Some Reasons Sponsors Make a Skateboarder a Pro

If a skateboarder has been with a company for a long time without being confirmed a pro, another company can offer to promote him to a pro rank as bait to lure him to their company.

Companies that want better skateboarder on their team, use such incentives to win the hearts of their favourite skateboarders.

When companies enter an agreement with a skateboarder, it is often agreed that, if the skateboarder spends a number of years with them, he will be made a pro.

If the company values the skateboarder to pay him more, then the company will make the skater a pro.

When a skateboarder is good with particular tricks in skateboarding and is consistent with making good videos, a sponsor can see the value in promoting the skateboarder to a pro rank.

Sponsors lookout for those that are good at doing great tricks and stand behind them.

A skateboarder’s good relationship with team members and fans can attract sponsors to make him a pro. Sponsors lookout for skateboarders that will promote them anywhere and be good ambassadors of the company.

In recent times, the social media presence a skateboarder has can attract sponsors to him. This shifts from just having a pro deck to other areas. One of the things sponsors look out for in a skateboarder is the fan base and online interaction.

A skateboarder that has successfully attracted millions of fans on social media is a big asset to sponsors. The reason is that social media has become a major hub of building brands. Once a skateboarder has engaged supporters on his social media handles, sponsors begin to scout for him.

Nowadays, a skateboarder does not have to wait for a sponsor to find him. He can write to companies that he wants to be their brand ambassador. If the company is ok with him, then they enter in an agreement and set the ball running.

 

How do Pros In Skateboarding Make Their Money?

The amount of money pro skateboarders earn is not fixed. It often depends on the agreement between the sponsor and the pro skateboarder.

There are various ways pro skateboarders can make money from being skateboarding. It is left to the skateboarder to explore the countless opportunities available. Most of the earnings here are quoted in US dollars as there are more examples to use.

  • Sponsorships: Pro skateboarders can earn a monthly salary. This is called a retainer fee. Companies sponsoring them pay them a monthly allowance. They also give them freebies, sponsor them to competitions, and cover all-expense-paid trips to events.
  • Deck Sponsor: The majority of pro skateboarders have pro decks. Companies pay them a huge ransom for this. Pro skateboarders can earn on average between 1000 – 3000 dollars per month.
  • Wheel Sponsors: These companies pay pro skateboarders about 2000 dollars and above.
  • Trucks: Truck sponsors pay less. Pro skateboarders earn about 250 dollars from these sponsors.
  • Shoe Sponsors: Shoe sponsors pay more as there’s a higher chance of their brands being seen. They pay so much that pro skateboarders can rely on their earnings from a shoe campaign and make a living from it.
  • Royalties: Pro skateboarders receive royalties when items that have their names on them are sold. The amount is based on an agreement between the company and the skateboarders. Some have pro shoes, pro board, pro wheel, etc. Sponsors can then print the name of the skateboarder on a product. When any those products then get sold, the pro skateboarder also gets paid.
  • Photo Incentives: When a pro skateboarder has a photo appears in a magazine and the sponsor’s logo is shown as well, the sponsor will also pay for it.
  • Contests: Pro skateboarders win cash prizes in competitions when they emerge a winner.
  • Ads: Pro skateboarders get paid when they advertise the company’s products and services or wear branded items in ad campaigns.

Evolution of Pro Skating

Pro skateboarding is not what it used to be years ago. Things have changed. The skateboarding evolution can be broken down into different eras.

Different eras witnessed different changes and below are the eras in more detail;

First Era (the 1960s)

This era was not about having a pro deck. Sponsors also made skateboarders go pro by giving them magazine coverage. Pro skateboarders were able to get a better payday check from a magazine publication.

In the 1960s when skating was not very popular, companies inscribed only the names of popular surfers like Duke Kahanamoku on boards. This is because people knew their names very well. The more popular a skateboarder was the more the chance of having his name on a skateboard.

In 1977, skateboard company owners began inscribing their names on their decks.

However, pro skateboarding took another turn with the emergence of skateboard magazines. This kicked off when a magazine photographer took a shot of Tom ‘Wally’ Inouye. It happened that Wally was skating close to where the photographer was shooting someone else for Tom Sims team. Upon noticing Wally while skateboarding, they asked him to put on Sims jersey and took a photo of him on a skateboard.

That photo started the pro journey. From then on, companies will ask skateboarders to put on their products, take pictures and pay them.

Later on, the pros did not stop at being in magazines. They also joined in skateboard production. Pro skateboarders advised producers on how to make good decks. This is because they understood what a good board should feel and look like. They became advisers in the industry.

Pro skateboarders were also requested to scout for young talents for sponsorship.

Second Era (the 1980s)

In this era, skateboarders got pro contracts by winning competitions. Pro skateboarders made their money winning in competitions. Pros that thrived were the ones that took part in competitions. This phase of the job description reinforced magazine coverage. Magazines covered pros that performed new tricks in competitions. Pro skateboarders that did participate in competitions soon lost relevance.

Companies paid skateboarders to win contests. Most skateboarding activities were competitions.

Winning competitions, skateboard sales, and making demos became the major source of income for pros.

Skateboarding was not very popular in this era, and there was not so much money in the industry. Pro skateboarders could not solely rely on deck sponsors. They did lots of demos, and competitions for sponsors to make more money.

The era also gave birth to video making for professional skateboarders.

In 1984, Stacy Peralta made the first skateboard video and the success of his video paved way for other pros to start making their own videos. This is how skateboard videos got popular and video making was added to a pros job description.

Some amateur skateboarders got signed as pros because of their performance in videos. Videos helped bump up the popularity of a skateboarder and increased their board sales.

Pro skills shifted from being a good contest skateboarder or a demo skateboarder to a video skateboarder. Whoever was able to tell a story and made impressive films became more dominant. Those that relied only on pro models found it difficult to survive in this era.

 

Third Era (the 1990s)

In the 1990s skateboarding contests faded out. Shooting unique and extraordinary progressive videos was the order of the day. Magazines stopped photo shooting skateboarders and printed photos from videos instead. Only progressive videos were considered professional skateboarding.

Those that did fantastic moves in live videos or tricks in progressive videos were the popular ones in this era. Some popular pro skateboarders in this era were Ed Templeton and Mike Valley.

Fourth Era (the 2000s)

Pros got sponsorships from brands who just wanted to be associated with the skateboarding lifestyle. Energy drinks, clothing, and other companies came onto the scene.

A pro skateboarder could get money by simply advertising for the brand in any form. Even if it was just showing the public that they consume the item. Some pros didn’t have board sponsors but had sponsors from other industries.

Sponsors then determined what a pro skateboarder could do for them. Some sponsors asked pros to wear their branded shirts, caps or hold up their drinks in public view whether in videos, photos or live events.

Fifth Era (the 2010s till date)

In this era, sponsorship comes from endorsement. Social media also plays a major part too. Pro skateboarders use their social media presence to promote brands. Sponsors look at a skateboarder’s social media presence before making him a pro. They do not look at their skateboarding ability but how strong his social media presence is.

These sponsors come from different industries and judge a skateboarder not by his skating skills, but by how popular the social media presence is.

With all that said, the core role of promoting the game itself is important and this is not something all sponsors understand. After all, it is the ability to skateboard that attracts huge fans on social media and beyond.

 

How Do Skater Trainers Work?

How Do Skater Trainers Work?

In the world of skateboarding, skater trainers are a relatively new trend and lots of beginner skateboarders constantly wonder if they truly work. There are also a lot of questions to be answered, with some people saying they work amazingly well, while others categorically say they don’t work and are just a marketing scheme.

The focal point for a beginner to skateboarding is how to ride without falling off and learning how to do tricks. Are tricks meant to be done when in motion or when stationary?

And whatever the options are chosen, are skater trainers a must-have and how do skater trainers work? The truth is skater trainers do work for beginners who are frightened of falling off a skateboard. Skater trainers will help them feel comfortable and can sometimes eliminate their fear of seeing their boards go off with a mind of their own. Trainers generally do not really help you learn tricks faster, if anything, they kind of slow your progress.

The trick to mastering skateboarding is to have absolute confidence and a desire to understand your skateboard and how you can be in sync with it. Trainers can work for some people and be a total waste of time for others.

 

How Do Skater Trainers Work

The Moving vs Stationary Debate

The real question is not just a case of whether skater trainers work or not and if you should use them, it’s more important to consider whether the tricks you want to learn can be learnt while moving or when stationary. Studying both sides of the arguments closely will help you come to your own conclusions as to why some skaters trainers do work and why some argue that it’s just a money-making strategy.

You see, like every other exciting activity, skateboarding beginners are often too keen to advance too fast. There are processes to everything and step by step guide on how to progress in every sport. Skipping steps will not really benefit you, on the contrary, it will impede your progress in the long run. You must first understand how to be in sync with your skateboard before you can attempt to learn ‘basic‘ tricks.

Pros and Cons

As is with every debate, no sides are actually completely wrong, an idea just works better for certain people more than it works for others. In the same vein, learning tricks while moving on a skateboard works for some people, while learning from a stationary position works for others.

Of course, there is a difference between landing a trick while moving and achieving it while stationary.

Whatever method you choose to use, it will work for you as long as you have pegged down the basics of skateboard riding. When you practice a trick from a stationary position, you have a better feel for the trick and it’ll help your muscles remember how you did it.

A major reason skateboarders go with learning while stationary is that performing a trick while in motion is more difficult and kind of scary. Of course, they cannot be blamed, because lots of tricks are always scary the first time (I still find certain tricks difficult after multiple attempts), but it’s actually not as bad you many would think.

It is actually okay to fall down once in a while.

Also, while we’re here, you should know that falling while doing a trick stationary causes more damage than doing it while moving. You’re more likely to hurt your shoulders and ankle because you are in less control of the situation. The impact is also a bit more on the joints in your body.

If you fall off your skateboard while moving, however, it’s easier to roll when you fall because you have already gained momentum.

 

Reasons to Buy Skater Trainers

The number one reason why people use skater trainers is probably more psychological than physical, in that it helps them feel more confident on a skateboard. Getting on a skateboard for the first time is a bit daunting for most beginners and having skater trainers that remain fixed on the boards will turn the fear down a notch.

Skater trainers are also designed to stop your skateboard from sliding out from underneath you. Once you have them in place, you can work through the motions without being worried about falling and hurting yourself. My advice is if you choose to get a pair of skater trainers, ensure you only use them to get a hang of your board.

Do not use them to learn tricks, that’s not such a good idea.

However, if you truly believe skater trainers will accelerate your learning curve then you should totally go for it. You should know though, that there are cheaper options if your reason for getting trainers is your fear of your board slipping from beneath your feet while practising your balance. You can train on a patch of grass or carpet, something that will cushion your landing if you do fall down.

Reasons to Not Buy Skater Trainers

In my opinion, skater trainers are a waste of money. You can buy yourself a set of Spitfire or Bones wheels for the same amount you would get trainers. They are more fun and the truth is that I think with better wheels, you will progress faster.

If your wanting to get skater trainers is because of your inability to control your wheels, then you could just tighten the nuts on your wheels so they stop spinning. Locking your wheels on a piece of carpet, or rubber mat does the same thing. You can also tape a drying towel and on some socks on your wheels.

Anyhow, the choice is yours to make. If you really want skater trainers, then go get one. Or you could choose to use any one of the other tips I mentioned.

Conclusion

Skater trainers have their perks. While they’re great to some extent, you should never use them to learn tricks. I can suggest that beginners get them but not rely on them. Especially if you are scared of stepping on a skateboard for the first time. They can help you get accustomed to using your board and will stop your board from moving when you don’t expect it to. You can totally use trainers for that.

However, the minute you have gotten comfortable with the board and you have mastered your fears, get rid of the trainers. Skater trainers are okay to use until you get comfortable riding your board. They won’t help you in the long run.

On that note, instead of getting a pair of skater trainers, you can consider buying better skateboard parts that will help you a lot more in the long term. What is more important is that you get as comfortable as possible riding a skateboard. Whatever what you go about doing it, does not matter, what matters is that you are actually doing it.