I found that my problem was unclear instruction about the timing between jumping and popping. One day when I was watching a slowmo ollie video though, I noticed that the skateboarder already was beginning to jump (at least his body was already going in an upward motion) before snapping the board off the ground. That was a critical change I needed to make in order to get it working. I had been trying to pop the board while all my weight was still pushing down on it (kind of an obvious mistake, but I somehow overlooked this). Hope this helps somebody.
Slide your front foot forward – You remembered to angle your front ankle right? Good, now use that to move your board forward in one big rolling motion, and bring your back leg up into your chest. All of this is done at the same time, but it takes practice to get the timing down. Don’t slide your foot out too early though, or you’ll end up with a pretty weak jump, but also, don’t slide it out too late, or it won’t get leveled and you’ll end up in the pavement. Come to think of it, just do it perfect the first time and everything will be great.
The wheels of your skateboard can greatly affect your ride in numerous ways, such as the speed, your ability to take control of the skateboard’s movements, and what you feel while riding the board. The good news is that they come in various sizes, levels of durability, and colors, allowing you to pick one that suits your skateboard preference and style.
Hey, I’m a girl too and I’ve been skateboarding for nearly ten years now. I’m not a pro or anything, but I used to ride around in the local skatepark that was mainly just a big bowl that was fun to just drop into and cruise around in. I’m only just now learning street tricks. Anyways, I’d go there and the dudes would sometimes tease me, but sometimes they’d tease me about it. The thing you gotta do is not give up. Just ignore them. Dudes are stupid. Practice at home, by yourself, and learn some awesome stuff. So when you get really good, you can go to the park and if they start saying bad stuff, show off. It’ll blow them away. It always made me feel really good to show them that I was better than them right after they teased me for it.
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So with your back foot, you want to kick the tail of your board down and right when it touches the ground you jump in the air off your back foot. This is the ‘pop’. It takes a little bit of getting used to but most beginners don’t really understand that initially, your back foot is doing most of the work. Then bring your knees up to your chest after the jump, the higher up you pull your knees the higher up your skateboard can go!
The type of skating the rider wants to do will inform the board choice, which sometimes involves skating a non-popsicle shaped board. But if you are just starting out, you can simply start with the traditional popsicle shaped deck that you probably recognize. As you skate more and get to know what shapes you like or what kind of skateboarding you enjoy best, your decisions will take into account for company, shape, width, and style of riding. Until then, choosing a board by its graphic is totally acceptable. For an overview on types of skateboard decks and riding styles, check out our Skateboard Decks Section in our Buyer’s Guide. Once you find a deck you like, you can simply select the default wheels, trucks, bearings and grip tape or you have the option to make it a complete.
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.
A skateboard is moved by pushing with one foot while the other remains on the board, or by pumping one's legs in structures such as a bowl or half pipe. A skateboard can also be used by simply standing on the deck while on a downward slope and allowing gravity to propel the board and rider. If the rider's leading foot is their right foot, they are said to ride "goofy;" if the rider's leading foot is their left foot, they are said to ride "regular." If the rider is normally regular but chooses to ride goofy, they are said to be riding in "switch," and vice versa. A skater is typically more comfortable pushing with their back foot; choosing to push with the front foot is commonly referred to as riding "mongo", and has negative connotations of style and effectiveness in the skateboarding community.
Jump – Ah yes, finally, we have reached the move itself. Basically, you have to do about twelve different things all at once to execute a successful ollie-pop: lift your front foot, press down with your back foot, angle your front ankle, and jump. Lift the front foot off the ground first, and then move your back foot. This whole process is easier if you’re actually moving forward – since you don’t have to fight for balance – but it can be done while you’re standing still as well.
In 1978, Alan Gelfand, who was given his nickname "Ollie" by Scott Goodman, learned to perform no-handed aerials in bowls and pools using a gentle raising of the nose and scooping motion to keep the board with the feet. There are numerous references to Alan Gelfand's Ollie with most notably pictures in the 1970s skateboarding magazine "Skateboarder".