No one had ever seen anything quite like it before, but no one knew just how transformative that moment would become. It wasn’t just that you could simply pop up into the air, it’s that it gave the rider a whole other set of opportunities to do tricks, and you don’t even have to be dependent on a ramp! As time went by, people began to add other skateboard tricks while they were airborne.
Go for the low truck profile if you want to obtain additional stability when you do flip tricks. It also works well for small wheels. The mid-sized trucks are good for all-around use, especially in streets and parks. You can also choose the high-sized trucks that are good for carving and cruising, which is the reason why they are perfect for huge wheels.
Pop the board in the air – The reason you jump up into the air in the first place is because you’re slamming the back end into the ground (don’t worry, your board is made to take the abuse). It’s the same motion you would do if you were standing near the board and wanted to pop the board up into your hands, except this time, you’re standing on top of it. As soon as you feel the board pop into the ground, kick your front foot up into the air at the same time. The timing on this is important: kick too early and you won’t go anywhere, kick too late and your board will fly out from underneath you.
If you are completely new to skateboarding, consider taking a minute to read through the Skateboard Decks Section in our Buyer’s Guide will be helpful, but a good rule of thumb is: the bigger your feet, the wider your board should be. If you wear a size 9 and up, you can’t go wrong with buying an 8” board. Narrow boards are easier to flip while wider boards are more stable, but there are no hard and fast rules to skateboarding. The only way to really find out what you like is by trying new shapes, sizes, and brands. Brands like Welcome, Baker, Chocolate, Deathwish, and Element all have a wide variety of sizes, shapes, and graphics.
Bolted onto the underside of the tail end of a skateboard, the tail guard (also known as a "skid plate") protected the tail end from skid stops and other maneuvers that would otherwise wear away the wood (commonly known as razor tail) and decrease the longevity of the tail. Typically made of plastic, these were widely popular in the '80s but their usage quickly diminished with the arrival of two-tail board designs, which became increasingly popular in the '90s.
The top part of the truck is screwed to the deck and is called the baseplate, and beneath it is the hanger. The axle runs through the hanger. Between the baseplate and the hanger are bushings, also rubbers or grommets, that provide the cushion mechanism for turning the skateboard. The bushings cushion the truck when it turns. The stiffer the bushings, the more resistant the skateboard is to turning. The softer the bushings, the easier it is to turn. Bushings come in varying shapes and urethane formulas as well as durometers, which may affect turning, rebound and durability. A bolt called a kingpin holds these parts together and fits inside the bushings. Thus by tightening or loosening the kingpin nut, the trucks can be adjusted loosely for better turning and tighter for more stability (useful when landing tricks). Standard kingpin nut size is 3/8" - 24tpi. The position of the hanger respect to the baseplate is also determined by the pivot, a rod that slots into the corresponding seat in the baseplate. The pivot stops the hanger from rotating around the kingpin. The pivot must allow some movement around the bushings and therefore is not a perfect fit. The space between the pivot and its seat in the baseplate is filled by a pivot cup, a plastic part that will take most of the wear and tear of the pivot and assist in centering the hanger needs to be lubricated every so often.
My son seems to have a lot of fun riding this skateboard. He will be out there doing tricks for hours. One evening when he took a break, I decided to see if I could still ride. When I took off down the driveway, I could feel how smoothly the wheels rolled. I used to have to pay extra for wheels like this when I was his age. Lost in thought, I coasted faster, and my neighbour didn't see me when I shot out of the driveway. Even though this thing flew several feet in the air, bounced, and came to rest more than 20 feet away, it had no visible damage! Not so for me. I loved the skateboard, but am now recovering from two broken ribs, torn neck cartilage, and a cracked pelvis. Still, this board rides like a dream!
Now, I might not be able to skate to save my life, but I can do a little physics. So here's a thought - maybe I can use physics to learn how to do an ollie. Here's the plan. I'm going to open up the above video of skateboarder Adam Shomsky doing an ollie, filmed in glorious 1000 frames-per-second slow motion, and analyze it in the open source physics video analysis tool Tracker.
Slide your front foot as soon as you start jumping. Use the same movement you have been practicing to slide your foot towards the top end of the board, just as you jump off it and kick the back down. The front of your board should lift up as you slide your foot along it, with your foot hitting the top of the board at the highest point of your jump.[9]
Level out on the way down – Before you start to head back towards the safety of the earth, level your feet out as the board begins to fall. If you’re trying to jump a gap on your board, this will help you keep going straight and maintain your momentum. Alternatively, you can land on your nose or tail and perform a manual out of the jump, but those are pretty advanced moves. Might want to wait until those little pink training wheels are off your board first.
Grip tape is a sheet of paper or fabric with adhesive on one side and a surface similar to fine sandpaper on the other. Grip tape is applied to the top surface of a board to allow the rider's feet to grip the surface and help the skater stay on the board while doing tricks. Grip tape is usually black, but is also available in many different colors such as pink, red, yellow, checkered, camo, and even clear. Often, they have designs die-cut to show the color of the board, or to display the board's company logo. Grip tape accumulates dirt and other substances that will inhibit grip, so use of a grip eraser or rubber eraser is necessary after riding through mud or with dirty shoes.

The good news is that majority of skate shoes today come with high-quality flat soles that are capable of providing the maximum surface area designed to let you come in contact to the board, thereby promoting better control. Look for a really durable shoe, which you can wear comfortably to guarantee a safe and enjoyable experience when you are skateboarding.
After you’ve properly applied a burst of force to the tail, the top-side of your front foot’s toe should start dragging up your board almost automatically. Eventually, the higher you are able to bring your front foot during lift will determine the apex of your ollie, so work gradually towards lifting your front foot as high as your body allows. Skateboarders who record the highest ollies usually (somehow manage to!) bring their feet higher than their hips!
Choosing a skateboard deck is a great place to start when building a complete skateboard. Unless you have experience riding a shaped board - something a little more retro or unusual, we recommend you start with a popsicle shape. CCS carries over 60 different skateboard deck brands that sell this popular popsicle shape. If you have questions on what size you should ride or have any other questions about building a complete, we recommend you check out our Skateboard Buyer’s Guide. Here, you’ll find helpful how-to’s for choosing a skateboard decks, skateboard trucks, skateboard wheels, skateboard bearings, and skateboard components. This guide explains every part of a skateboard and helps you choose which sizes and styles to best suit your needs.

The problem with wheel bite is that it tends to stop the motion of the wheels. This can result not only in a bad wipeout for the rider but also damage to the wheels. With the help of the riser pads, it is easier for you to preserve the deck of your skateboard since these pads can reduce the tendency of having stress cracks on where the trucks and deck meet.


In 1977, skate parks began cropping up all over the place, including Skateboard USA, where Gelfand began to spend most of his time. His buddy, Scott Goodman, is the one who gave Gelfand the nickname of “Ollie” and dubbed his aerial lipside the “ollie-pop.” Pictures of Gelfand during this time period clearly show him getting airborne and performing the trick associated with his name today.
After you’ve properly applied a burst of force to the tail, the top-side of your front foot’s toe should start dragging up your board almost automatically. Eventually, the higher you are able to bring your front foot during lift will determine the apex of your ollie, so work gradually towards lifting your front foot as high as your body allows. Skateboarders who record the highest ollies usually (somehow manage to!) bring their feet higher than their hips!
Today, many riders use the “ollie-pop” on more than just the flat-level surfaces in between other tricks, it’s used heavily in the half-pipe and bowl ramps to allow the rider to go even higher in the air. Performing the “ollie-pop” while you’re at or near the top of the lip is a great way to get an extra couple feet, which might be all you need to get that extra turn in and nail the 720 (or 900, if you’re Tony Hawk).
Longboard - A longboard is similar to a cruiser in terms of overall use and getting around town. Longboards start at about 42 inches in length and about 9 inches in width. When you buy a longboard, the wheel base of the trucks is usually wider and they have wheels starting at roughly 60mm. This gives you more maneuverability and a very smooth ride.
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