FIRST THINGS FIRST
Before you move on to learning tricks, you need to work out some skateboard basics – find your natural stance and work on learning to push properly. If you rush at this stage it will slow your learning curve down, so spend some time learning these things before moving onwards.
From Sidewalk Basics – Autumn 2013
There are two stances in skateboarding: goofy and regular.
Goofy footed stance means that you stand on your board with your right foot leading. Regular stance skaters stand with their left foot leading. Each person has a natural stance that will feel the most comfortable to them, the best way to discover what stance you are is to push around slowly when you get your first set up, whichever stance feels the most natural is the one you should opt for. It’s like being right or left-handed, you’ll know which is the right one for you instinctively. Neither stance is better or worse than the other so don’t worry.
This is the most fundamental skill as far as skateboarding is concerned. Before you even begin to think about learning tricks you need to learn how to push competently and at speed. The basics are pretty obvious but you need to practice this part of skateboarding in just the same way as you would with specific tricks. Make sure you push with your back foot – avoid pushing ‘mongo’ (i.e. pushing with your front foot) as it makes everything else harder later on.
Have your front foot angled around your front truck bolts, push with your toes and as you start to gain speed, put your back foot back onto the tail and turn your stance so that your feet are parallel. It’s a very simple movement but it will form the backbone of everything else you will ever do on your skateboard.
A good tip is to go to an empty piece of flat ground and practice pushing: push as fast as you can until it feels natural and controlled.
Again, this is a fundamental skill that you must learn before attempting to learn any of the tricks featured later in this guide.
Turning on a skateboard is really easy as all you need to do is lean and transfer your weight either onto your toe-side or heel-side edge and your trucks will follow the direction of your lean. Tighter trucks take more pressure to turn than looser ones so experiment with what feels most natural to you.
This is a pretty important obviously and can be done in various different ways.
The easiest and most basic technique is to use your back foot as a brake to slow you to a stop.
Alternatively you can press your tail down and use the friction to slow you down or, once you’ve developed enough board control, bring yourself to a stop by powersliding (i.e. sliding horizontally on your wheels).
This is the most basic turning technique on a skateboard usually performed on a bank or transition.
Basically you turn by lifting your front wheels up and pivoting on your back wheels in either a frontside or backside direction. Your shoulders will lead the movement so let them turn with you. Remember to put your front wheels back down as soon as you’ve completed your kickturn and to keep your weight central.