Beginner Skateboard Tricks Even YOUR MOM Can Do!
Steps To Make Landing Tricks Easier
Before doing most tricks on your board, you will have to figure out which way you stand while riding. Mess around riding different ways and choose the one that feels the most comfortable. Left foot forward is called regular and right foot forward is called goofy.
To learn to ride, start by putting one foot on the board then step on the board with the other foot. Land it and stand there without falling.
Once you have stepping on your board mastered, try riding:
-Push off of the foot on the ground and step on the board as it’s moving to ride. Do steps 1-4 in the picture and learn to ride.
Having a good trick board is helpful to doing beginner skateboard tricks, but some of these tricks can be done on cruisers and other types of boards.
RELATED ARTICLE: Finding the Best Skateboard for Beginners
What Skateboard Tricks Should I Learn First?
Getting your balance on the board helps with every skateboard trick and helps you not to fall. It’s also easier to do tricks if you already know how to ride. But if you want to start doing tricks immediately, go into the grass and try these tricks:
An acid drop is where you are holding the board and jump onto it. You grab the board until you are in the air, then you let it go and land on it with your feet. Hold the board any way you want, but the easiest way is grabbing the nose or the tail. Acid drop off of drops when you get better, but try it in the grass first.
Jump onto the board and stick the landing!
After landing it in the grass, try it on the concrete where the board will roll. Be careful at first because your board can slip out and you can fall. Make sure to land with your weight centered over the middle of the board.
A boneless is a way better trick than an acid drop. Try this one in the grass before the concrete.
Follow these steps to do a boneless:
- Start with both feet on the board.
- Step your front foot off the board onto the ground so that the board is in front of you.
- Reach down and grab the middle of the board with your back hand.
- Keep your back foot on the board as you pick the board up off the ground with the hand that’s grabbing.
- Jump in the air off of the front foot that stepped off the board onto the ground.
- In the air, get your foot that jumped off the ground back onto the board while letting go of your grab.
- Land on the board with both feet.
*Make sure to keep the back foot on the board the whole time to do a proper boneless.
Boneless is a legit skateboard trick for beginners and pros. Try to do a boneless 180 and land switch after learning regular boneless. Try to do a boneless while rolling. See if you can do a boneless 360 on flat ground in the grass in case you fall. You can work your way up to doing this trick downstairs and even on ramps or at the skate park.
RELATED ARTICLE: All Types of Skateboards for Beginners and Pros
Doing a manual is one of the most important tricks you can learn skateboarding. A manual is when you put pressure on the tail of the board so that the front tricks get off the ground. You will be balancing on the back wheels.
You can learn this trick in the grass standing on the board and see how long you can hold it before touching back down or falling off the board. This trick is easier while rolling, so start learning how to ride and lift up the front of the board. Find your balance. Tightening your stomach helps to keep your balance.
Manual is a great trick to learn because you can build your balance by trying to manual from crack to crack in the sidewalk until you can do it for multiple sidewalk squares.
This trick is also great because it is used to roll off curbs and even sets of stairs eventually. Stay over your board while going off drops and bend your legs to absorb the impact while landing.
An early grab is an air trick where you grab the board while standing on it and jump off the ground.
Bend your legs and jump while you pull the board up. Your legs will not be able to extend all the way because you are halfway bending down to keep grabbing onto the board. You will still be able to get air.
The easiest early grab is an indy grab where your back hand grabs the edge of the board in front between your feet. A cannonball is also a good one to learn where you grab the nose and the tail at the same time while jumping.
Learn to early grab off curbs or off ramps. Just make sure to keep the board level while getting air. You will have to jump so that you don’t smash your hand on the curb or the ramp’s edge. You can slightly manual while you early grab which helps to get more air like an ollie, but this is more advanced.
The ollie is the most important trick to be able to do intermediate and advanced tricks. Learning to ollie takes a lot of time. It can take a couple years before you are able to ollie up curbs and off stairs comfortably. It’s worth it though once you get it.
You can still ride and do other tricks while you are working on getting your ollie down. Keep working on your riding, acid drop, boneless, manual, and early grabs because they will make doing an ollie easier.
Start with your feet in ollie position. Your feet should be facing to the side while your board is riding forward. You front foot should be just behind the front bolts. You back foot should be on the tail. Your toes shouldn’t be hanging off the board at all, but your heels will be if you have big feet.
There is something very important to know about ollie foot positioning that can be holding some riders back:
Think about standing on your toes. The balls of your feet are touching the ground while your heels are off the ground. If you stand on your toes on the board, the balls of your feet should be directly in the center of the board’s concave. This is important for getting the center balance down and learning the pop. You don’t ollie by jumping off of your heel, you ollie by jumping off of your back toe.
Steps To Do An Ollie
- With your feet in ollie position, start your manual, but hit the tail of the board on the ground to get a good pop.
- From the time your manual is too high to balance, your front foot will turn so that the outside of your shoe is touching the grip tape. (The outside of skateboarding shoes are designed to grip the board for ollies. Getting a good pair of closed toed skateboard shoes will make the ollie easier.)
- As your tail hits the ground, jump off the ground with the back foot that’s on the tail. (If you slide your front foot correctly, the back of the board will stick to the back foot as it jumps off the ground.)
- Slide your turned foot forward on the board from just behind the front bolts to the middle of the nose at the most. (The slide is what picks the board up off the ground by grabbing onto the grip tape at the upward angle of the manual.)
- As you and your board jump off the ground, level out your front and back feet. Usually, this is done by bringing the back foot up to match the front foot. (If you did the pop and the slide correctly, the board will stick your feet as you jump.)
- As you start coming back down from your jump, your feet will push down on the board. Make sure that your feet don’t come off the board from side to side while in the air. Also, make sure your back foot moves forward slightly so stay with the board sliding forward.
- Land on the bolts and bend your legs to absorb the impact. If you land it and your back foot stays on the tail instead of moving up slightly to land on the bolts, it is okay. Landing bolts are better though. (Remember that you will land on the balls of your feet in the middle of the concave-not your heels.)
Your ollie is made up of the pop, the jump, the slide, and the land. You can work on each of these parts separately and then put them all together to get the ollie down better. Doing the ollie is all about the timing of the pop, the jump, and the slide.
You can work on the pop by itself by standing next to the board and pushing on just the tail to pop the board up. Just watch out that the board doesn’t come back and hit you. to the side of your board but behind the tail.
You can learn how to pop the board up and catch it in your hand. This is a great way to pick the board up off the ground without having to reach down.
If you don’t pop hard enough, you will just do a manual where your feet jump off the board and the board stays on the ground.
Jumping off the back foot can be tricky because you will have to get the timing down with the rest of the parts of the ollie. Practice the jump by standing on the tail while it is touching the ground. Your front foot will be up in the air on the front of the board.
Grab onto a wall or have someone help you as you go from the riding ollie position to the drop in position. Stand with the tail on the ground while the front of your board is in the air at the upward angle. Both feet will still be in ollie position, but you will be standing still on the tail not riding on the wheels.
Doing a rocket ollie is common when you pop the board up, but don’t have the slide down. This is when the front of the board goes up at an angle, but the back of the board barely gets off the ground.
Work on turning your foot to get a better grab on the board. Stretch and strengthen your ankles to help with the slide. Also, practice an ollie ninja kick while turning your foot to practice lifting your leg upward in the right direction for the slide.
To work on landing the ollie, start in the drop in position and jump to the ollie riding position. You can also practice landing it by practicing your acid drop and boneless.
Dropping in is important to learning how to skate ramps and bowls. Most skaters will learn how to drop in before they learn how to ollie.
Start on a small bank because its easier to drop in on a ramp that’s straight instead of a curved transition ramp.
Start in a drop in the position where you are standing with the tail touching the ground while the front of your board is in the air. Both feet will still be in ollie position, facing away from the direction you are about to drop in.
The board will be locked into the edge of the bank or the coping of the bowl. It is a good idea for beginners to drop into something that has a deck on top so they can balance on the deck before dropping in. The tail of skateboards is flat for a couple inches before curving up to allow skaters to lock into the deck of the ramp and the coping. You can also drop in on banks half way down without locking into anything if that’s all you have.
Steps To Drop In
- Stand with your back foot on the tail and your front foot standing off to the side.
- Lock the board into the corner of the bank or the coping where the wheels are in the ramp and the tail is on the deck.
- Start leaning forward.
- Step the front foot onto the board and put it just behind the front bolts. (You can start with both feet on the board, but it helps the rider not fall backwards if they step on the board as they are leaning forward. If they want to start with both feet on the board, do this: Have them grab the nose so that their weight will be more into the ramp helping to avoid falling backward.)
- Touch the front wheels down onto the ramp.
- Ride down the ramp and move your body accordingly. (You will move your body like you are standing straight up on the surface. If the ramp is going down, you will be standing straight up over your board, but angled down to match the ramp. If your body stays straight up to the sky while the ramp is curving down, you will slip back.)
- Move your body from standing at a downward angle riding down the ramp to standing straight up again as you ride from the ramp to flat ground again. (This is where your balance comes into play, and the riding basics will make it easier to drop in.)
- Ride away.
Dropping in is about timing and having the confidence to do what you know you are going to do. Wear your safety gear and go for it! Consider starting on smaller obstacles like a driveway and move up to bigger banks and ramps.
Beginner skateboard tricks are fun and help the rider build skill on their board. Landing tricks feels great, but don’t get stuck in one place: learn how to ride around on the sidewalks so that your tricks can be done while moving.
Learning beginner skateboard tricks in the grass is a good idea at first. Falling on the grass is a lot nicer than falling on concrete.
Some people like to tighten their wheels all the way so they don’t spin and the rider won’t slip out while landing tricks before they have their balance down. This is a good idea also if you don’t want to get grass stains on your wheels. If you do and they get a little green, it’s not a big deal. Your skateboard is going to get messed up. White wheels naturally turn yellow over time but you can always clean your wheels with soapy water.
Just be careful that the grass isn’t wet. Take care of your board by avoiding waterlogging the wooden deck and bearings. Also, try to keep grip tape clean and free from mud. Staining wheels won’t affect riding, but wetting the parts can mess them up. Getting mud on your grip can affect your ability to slide your foot for ollies.
Keep practicing! Learning how to skate takes time.
If you are interested in skateboard lessons, the Stix Skate Academy is starting up again soon in the greater Los Angeles area.