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.
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!!!”