Category: School

The Best Video on How to Kickflip EVER


Make Sure Your Front Foot is Placed in Area it Can Flick Well

Your front foot positioning is more important that your back foot positioning, because this is the foot that dictates the kickflip. An angle or position which is off will throw off your flip. You will need to flick the board near an exact point (shown in the video). In order to hit this point, you need to not have your foot too far away from this point. You will also need to make sure that the end of your front foot aligns with this spot. (Watch the video above for more details)

Upper Body Positioning is Absolutely Crucial

In order to avoid what is known as “mobbed kickflips,” you must keep your shoulders and balance level. A “mobbed kickflip” is when the back of your board flips below the front. This is considered a style error. A proper kickflip should level in the air. The front and back should be lifted to the same height.

Keep your shoulders level and weight equally distributed between the front trucks and back trucks. This will ensure your board is less likely to be mobbed.

If You’re not Catching in the Air, You’re Not Doing it Right

Simple truth: You should catch in the air or your dynamics are wrong.
You need to make sure your pressure and flicks are powerful enough to lift the board high enough. Your board should not be rolling above the ground.

Use the Principle of Opposite but Equal Pressure

Don’t put 3 times as much power into your flick as your pop.
Your pop and your flick should have the same power.
You will notice a major difference in your flip tricks when you put this principle into practice.


The Best Video on Kickflips EVER

Rob teaches you how to properly kickflip on a skateboard in a VERY detailed procedure.


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Can You Teach Yourself Skateboarding?

Yes and No

Why Yes

Skateboarding is something that can be learned simply by watching good skaters. Watch them at the parks and on video. Pay close attention to their foot placement. Look at how they have their upper body. How are they popping or scooping?

Many skateboard greats have taught themselves. There was no such thing as skateboarding lessons or Woodward. Skateboarding was about fun and trying to create new things yourself.

Why No

Think of the first time you learned a second language. You heard a word, tried to repeat it, and had someone tell you how you just butchered it! Many times when you think you are copying something but you need to be corrected. Skateboarding is the same way. You need correction.

The other reason to have someone else teach you from the start is so that you don’t pick up bad habits. You don’t want to have improper balance, pop, and scoop.

It’s funny. Many people know they can’t teach themselves snowboarding but think skateboarding is different!
Depositphotos_58126403_mThink about kids that learn how to push mongo from the start. They pick up this horrible habit and can never reverse it because they learned the wrong way!

Do not get confused! There is a difference between knowing how to do a trick and knowing how to explain it. You want someone to help that has experience in teaching it! We have all seen those obscure advice videos on Youtube which show you how to do something, but do not help at all! This is usually because the person does not have experience in teaching it to people!

If you would like to learn with a certified professional, you can learn here at We can help you learn in your driveway or any skatepark. We have over 5,000 professional who can help you.

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Three Principles You Must Know That Apply to Every Skate Trick

Earlier we talked about four scientific aspects of skating are foot placement, pressure, timing, and landing. When learning any new trick, there are a lot of techniques to learn and to practice.  One way we have consistently expedited the trick-learning process is by breaking the process into four parts.  There are four sectors of every trick (the kickflip, Ollie, pop shuvit, even the 900) We call them the Big Three of skate tricks.  In order the Big Three are


Principle #1 – Foot Placement

Foot placement must be right before doing anything else.

Foot placement makes sure that prior to the trick your feet are in the correct spots to add pressure.  The is one complication to foot placement- Grip tape.  Varying brands of griptape and vary levels of stickiness.  If the trick you are doing require sliding your foot, you will need to make the adjustment.  For example with sticky grip, you want to start your foot positioning closer to the pressure point.  With less sticky grip, you want to start further away from the pressure point.


The difference in foot placement is usually little (less than one inch) however if you change grip tapes and don’t make the small adjustment, you will fall more.  When buying new grip, it is best to stick with the same brand of grip tape.  Your feet and mind are already familiar with it.


Principle #2 – Pressure

Proper pressure will determine how high your board will pop.

Pressure refers to how hard you push on the board.  Pressure applies to your front and back feet.   Usually with tricks like the ollie and kickflip, your back foot initiates pressure in the tail of the board.  The “pop” is when the tail of the board hits the ground.


When the pressure point is hit, the most powerful and perfect ollies are executed.

With an ollie and kickflip, the pressure points are both on the nose of the skateboard.  The pressure point for the kickflip, is slightly behind the pressure point for the ollie by 25%.


Here is a diagram to clarify:


We will cover more pressure point later as we go trick by trick.



The second part of pressure is the weight you place into the front foot.  The front foot is more often used to tell the board what to do.  Depending on the pressure point, the front foot can make the board, pop shuvit, kickflip, heelflip, or ollie all while the back foot should remain in the same place.  I will refer to these parts as pressure points.  A pressure point is a target where you want to aim your front foot in order to do a trick.  For example with an ollie, the pressure point is exactly in the center of the nose of the board.



Princple #3 – Timing

Timing controls over-flipping or under-flipping your tricks.
Timing means how quickly between actions your feet move.   Most skate tricks require two actions.  The first action is your back foot and the second action is your front foot.  The timing between these two actions is critical.

Let me give you an example, let’s say I am going to do a kickflip.  My first action is to briskly push into the tail with my back foot.  My second action is a kick of the front foot to the kickflip pressure point.  If I make the kick to the pressure point to quickly after the first action, the board will either not flip all of the way, or not give me enough height or control to land.

If I stretch the timing out too long, the board will end up over flipping and possibly doing a flip and a half or more.  There is a sweet spot for timing in each trick.   The exact timing depends on how hard your pop is.  This is often the hardest thing for beginners to understand.

skater making an olli with his skateboard

Starting out, give the timing some practice.  Try adjusting the timing slower and quicker.  NOTE:  Timing should only be experimented with after foot positioning and pressure points are perfected.


All Big Three are equally important. 
No skater will become great by only know three of the pinnacles.  Foot placement will affect pressure.   Pressure will effect timing, and timing  will affect the landing.  It is a chain of events so you want to make sure you have mastered the first pinnacles before continuing.


The Big Three are so accurate that they work every time.  When a skater has mastered all four, he/she is no longer needs to experiment with anything, but has arrived at a certain technique that works every time.    If you are landing kickflips, three out of every ten tries, you have not mastered the Big Three.   You have only mastered the Big Three when you are executing the trick at least every nine out of ten tries.


In Expert skaters, after years of practice, will get the Big Three in their subconscious;  Thereby, enabling them to do many tricks without looking or without falling.  The further you are able to engrave these four principles on your subconscious, the better of a skater, you will become.




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The Importance of Persistence in Skateboarding


The Persistence of Jim Greco
Jim Greco, a team-rider for Baker skateboards is documented in interviews talking about the number of tries and run-ups he does before landing a trick.   He had video documents with several hard tricks he has attempted to land with at least 130-180 tries prior to landing it.  Greco accounts his persistence to his success but also the vision he holds in his mind of himself landing that trick.

Greco’s Persistence Starts at 00:33

One More Try…
Speaking about persistence, this remind me of a story about a California Gold Miner.  This man  bought a plot of land to mine gold.  After several weeks, he was disappointed by that he was no longer finding gold.    He dug a little further and still found nothing.   He proclaimed to his friends the land was a waste and disappointed by that he was no longer finding gold.    He dug a little further and still found nothing.   He proclaimed to his friends the land was a waste and had no more gold in it.   Eventually, he gave up!  The miner sold his equipment to a junkman  for only $2000 (much less than the actual value).

The junkman had no idea about gold so he hired a specialist to tell him about gold before ditching the equipment.   The specialist told him the gold runs in veins and that the miner poked through a vein.  The specialist explained,  “If you go back and dig three feet from where the miner dug,  you will find gold.”�

Persist and You Will Get it
Sure enough, the junkman found gold, lots of it!  He found millions of dollars of gold and become one of the richest men in California!  The purpose is this story is the importance of not giving up.   Don’t give up on the 129th try.  You may be three feet from gold…  Seek the advice of a professional and strike it rich!

Skateboarding is just like that.

Slams, Falls, Gets Muddy, and then Lands it!

See another great example of not letting fear overcome you. Keep your mind and focus on rolling away. Play out the entire trick in your head first. Envision what you need to in order to land. Keep a clear picture in your mind. Do not get discouraged.

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How I Learned Skateboarding

It was the summer of 1997, I had never been more bruised in my life. The left-overs of my school vacation were scabs on my elbows, bruises on my shins, and tired legs. While other kids were at the beach, building sandcastles and throwing frisbees, I was in my driveway where I was practicing for my dream of learning how to skateboard.

There was one problem. My friends were better at skating than me. I desperately wanted to keep up enough to skate with them. I was so embarrassed I avoided the skate park. I feared getting laughed at. I had a feeling something separated the park skaters from me. I didn’t feel like I could do anything right on the board. I would fall on turns, ollies, and any attempt of going down a ramp.

My dream to skateboard led to endlessly searching the internet for tips. I ended up buying two skateboarding trick tip videos, a local video and a video from Thrasher Magazine. I was so excited to finally get the secrets to skateboarding! I was so motivated that I watched the videos every for over 30 days!
Immediately after watching, I would go outside and practice. I tried everything they said word-for-word. After over a month of trying everyday for hours, I became frustrated with the lack of progress.

On my ollies (a trick you lift all four wheels with), I could hardly lift the back to wheels off the ground. My style was sloppy, and I still wasn’t ready for the park.

Points to Remember

  • Anyone can learn skateboarding.

  • There is no age, weight, or height which is optimal.

  • Falling is a part of everyone’s learning process.

One day in the sixth grade, I saw three kids skateboarding fast, grinding curbs, and doing kickflips (full flip of the board in the air) in front of the school.  They were very good.  I asked my friend Alex, “These kids are amazing!  They are grinding, and get so much air on their ollies.  Who are they?”

“They’re sponsored,”  Alex replied.

“Sponsored?  You mean like paid to skateboard by companies.”

“Yeah, they ride for a local skateboard shop called, Wheels and Waves.   They do competitions and demos all over the state.  They’re good man.”

“Wow.  I’ve got to be good like that someday.” I said.

“You want me to go introduce you?”

I agreed and we walked over.  Next thing I know, I was witnessing, 11 inch high heelflips and fakie kickflips right next to me.   Wow!  Dan, Josh, and Matt were sponsored and told me they skated everyday at the skate park.  (The place I had desperately tried to avoid.)  They invited me to come and see their sponsored demonstration at the park that weekend.   There was going to be free products giveaways, pros, and lots of sponsored skateboarders to watch.

The Guy Who Taught Me Everything

Astonished by their moves, I agreed and went to the demonstration that weekend.  At the demo and over the next couple weeks, Matt and I grew close and he asked me to go skating with him.  I told Matt, “You know I’m not very good.  I skate a lot, but I’ve never actually skated the park.”

“That’s okay. My favorite terrain is flat ground.  I have a flat driveway which is smooth and has a small jump ramp and rail.  My Mom won’t be home and there will be no cars around.  It’s the perfect place to learn!  Do you want to go skate it tomorrow?

Knowing this was at his house, I felt a bit more comfortable.  “Sure!  That would be great!”

The next day after school, we skated over his house.  I got on my board and showed him what I could do.  The first trick up was the ollie.  I bent my knees into my chest, held my arms out and popped an ollie off the tail of the board.

“Nice job, but try lifting your back foot more, sucking it up into your stomach when you jump.  Also, the reason why your ollies are not lifting the back of the board is your shoulders.  What you are doing is dropping your back shoulder.  It’s a very common problem for beginners.  You need to keep you shoulders level from the set-up to the landing,” Advised Matt.

I got back on the board, put my feet into position, bent down, kept my shoulders level and ollied again.  “Wow!” I gasped enthusiastically.  “That was my best ollie ever.  My wheels were level.  Seriously, I have practiced this for hours and I have never done that before!”

“Yup, that’s because you kept your shoulder level.  I’ve actually got another tip for you, because right now you are ollieing about 4 inches high.  If you want to be able to do tricks like the heelflip and the kickflip, you need to get 6-8 inch ollies,” Matt said.  “Try putting more delay between your pop and the slide of the front foot forward.  Right now, you are too quick, and it’s not giving the board enough time to go high.”

Once again, I following Matt’s instructions.  It was very difficult to break through my mold. I tried and tried, but it was difficult due to months of skating incorrectly.   After many tries, I finally did it!  I put in the delay Matt instructed.  “Wow! ” I said.  “I have never improved this much so quickly.  In just one day, you have fixed my shoulder positioning and now have double the size of my ollie.  This is incredible!”

“It’s very simple.  Many people think of skateboarding as luck.  Unfortunately, they think of us as crazy kids who get hurt all of the time.  The truth is,  skateboarding isn’t trial and error.  It’s ,more exact than that. ”

“It’s exact foot placements and stuff?!”  I chuckled.

“Yeah man.  It is about pressure, timing, foot positioning, and landing.   The mastering of all four in combination can help you master any trick.”

Matt continued, ” Every flip of the board is triggered by pressure to an exact point on the board.  Every trick has a precise foot positioning.   Like this…”  He showed the positioning for a kickflip.

“That’s crazy Matt.  How come know one knows this?” I said.

“People do know this, but it’s mostly the pro’s and sponsored skaters.  Some of them don’t want to teach skaters it because it could threaten their career,” Matt explained.

Wow! I thought.  Matt had just completely changed my perspective of skating in one day.  Skateboarding is a science and


Wow! I thought.  Matt had just completely changed my perspective of skating in one day.  Skateboarding is a science and I was determined to now start trying it taking into consideration his four scientific variables. pressure, foot positioning, balance, and weight distribution.

Over the next few months, I began to progress rapidly.  The more I began to skate with Matt, the more I would learn.   I soon picked up pop shuvits, fakie ollies, 180’s, and then eventually kickflips and heelflips.     Matt shared advice on many tricks and coached me through all of the intermediate tricks.

After three months, I finally boosted my confidence enough to enter the skate park!  Gosh, I had no idea how much fun I was missing.

Matt and I grew close, and I began going to all of his competitions.   For a few months, I watched and noted how to put together a winning competition run.  I noticed that the successful skaters were those who use most of the park, and put together a flawless run of the most difficult tricks possible.

My First Sponsor

Towards the end of the season, Matt convinced me to compete in the competition.  I was nervous because I had never been to a skate park only a few months earlier.  I combined my notes about putting together good contest runs and Matt’s tips to get third place in my first competition!  It earned my a spot on the local skate team.   I earned my first sponsorship!

I was really living my dream!  I was in middle school and most people don’t get their dreams until after college.  It was great.  I went home after the contest and told my parent all about my latest accomplishments.  They received it with a little bit of congratulations, but unfortunately, they weren’t nearly as enthusiastic.    “Do you know that very few people actually make a lot of money in skateboarding?”  my Mom said.

The bitter truth is I am no one special.  There are thousands of skaters just like me.  They all start out in the same place.  Falling, pain, and frustration consumes us, but our desire to progress trumps all.

My advice:  Find someone better than you.  Model them.  Do it for skateboarding.  Do it for anything you are passionate about.

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How to 5-0 to Fakie EASILY on a Ramp

Before you learn how to 5-0 to fakie on a ramp you should first feel comfortable with:
-How to axel stall
-How to 5-0

Weight Distribution:
When you come up and do the 5-0 to fakie, your weight will be similar to how it is for a regular 5-0. It will be mostly over the back truck. However, you will not be pushing the board out in front of you. You want control of your skateboard and in order to achieve this, you must keep your board beneath you.

As you are coming out of the 5-0 keep your weight over the wheel which on the inside of the ramp. This is going to help you bring your board back in without getting hung up on the coping.

You want to aim your top truck so that it hits the ramp beneath the coping. Use your weight to re-adjust your board straight as you land to come straight back into the ramp.

The 5-0 to fakie can be a difficult trick to learn so have lots of patience. Try it on a small ramp or bank ramp to start– less than three feet is preferable.

That is how to do a 5-0 to fakie on a skateboard. Now go out and practice yourself. Once you learn this, you can use it in combinations–like kickflip 5-0 to fakie, switch crooked grinds to fakie and a whole lot more. Go out and have lots of fun with it!

How to Ollie Higher on a Skateboard


Okay, I got some questions on my blog about how to ollie higher:

Hey Rob,
I’m having trouble with getting my ollies up. I have follow the two steps you said to do. I am popping the board and I am also sliding the front foot up to the nose with power. Unfortunately, my ollies are only going about 1-2 inches off of the ground each time. I’m still studying your videos, but I wanted ot get the best #1 advice for getting these ollies higher.

Thanks, Carlo.

I Responded:

Hi Carlo,

The biggest factor in higher ollies is the amount of delay you put between your pop and the slide of your front foot forward. The more delay, the higher your ollie will be. The ollie takes a lot of practice. To get comfortable with putting more delay, the best way is going to be practicing everyday. Practice your ollies rolling to get your confidence up higher also.


I also created the video below which goes over the two steps of the ollie: pop and slide. I talk about how and why foot positioning and timing is important.

This video was also featured on the homepage of another well-known skate site. It has no thumbs down so far so I must be doing something right!

Also check out this more basic video:

This video and article was written by Rob Dunfey. Rob has taught over 8,000 people how to skate, has made skate trick tip videos that have been seen nearly 3 million times online, and has built the largest skateboarding school in America, Go Skate.

10500347_912187875464888_5782917500317265722_nRob has been featured on, eHow, The Boston Globe, Yahoo Sports, and Skateboarder Magazine. He has skateboarded for over 14 years, and competed in the BOE National Finals. Rob is an avid street, ramp, and flat ground skater.

–Oh yeah, that’s Rob to the right ollie-ing over 5 skateboards at a skate camp earlier this year!

Make sure you have first seen our page on how to ollie and you watch the videos on that page. Those are more in-depth on the basics of the ollie. This video above is mainly for people looking to learn how to increase the height of their ollie. This page is mainly for those who can already ollie


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How to Ollie (3 Steps) Pictorial & Video

What is the Ollie & Why Should You Learn it?

The ollie was invented in 1977 by a pro skater named, Alan Gelfand. It is essential to learn how to ollie to be able to do almost all over skateboard tricks.

The ollie is the “root” trick for nearly all skate tricks.  It must be mastered prior to learning hundreds of other moves.  The move is essential for transportation, getting up onto curbs, and over obstacles.


Before You Start

Feel comfortable standing on the board.  You should feel already know:
-Basic transportation
-You feel okay in balancing on the board.


Place Your Feet on the Board

Place your back foot on (1).  Your front foot needs to follow the placement of the second sneaker below.  (Not on (2), yet)

Below is the foot placement you want to have when starting out:

The first step of the ollie is to get the proper foot positioning. You should keep your shoulders above your feet and not twist your hips or shoulders. There are two steps to the ollie.

Step 1.  Pop

ollie2The first step is pop. Pop is hitting the tail of the board to the ground until you hear a “pop.” The louder the sound of the pop, the higher the board will go. You back foot should be centered on the tail and your toes should be on the front edge of the skateboard.








Video Lesson on Step 1.


Step 2. Slide

The slide has merely begun here and is in progress. Notice the angle of the foot and the leg. Your sliding foot must angle inward to help lift the skateboard. If your foot is stubborn, flat, non-angled front foot, it will stifle potential ollie height.

The second step is a slide. You will need to slide your front foot forward to the center of the nose pocket of the skateboard. This is the part of the trick which will cause the back to wheels to lift. The stronger the slide, the higher the board will go. Make sure you put power and control into the slide.

At the start of the slide, the bottom knuckle of your pinky toe should align with the center of the nose. You will notice that many skater’s shoes are battered on this spot. The rough slide against the grip tape causes this.

The front foot has slid to the nose in this photo.  This point is where the slide ends.




It is just as important to delay the time it between the pop and the slide of the front foot. The more delay you can put between the steps, the higher the ollie will be.


Step 3. Allow Your Board to Level Out

A leveled-out ollie.




A proper slide will lift the back of the board.  Your back foot will leave the ground and follow your front foot to the crescendo of the ollie.  This is when your board will stop lifting.

Look down.  Aim for the bolts and ride away!

How to Practice these Steps

It is best to start practicing the ollie on flat ground and do not do it while moving. After you get the ollie while still, then you can try it while rolling.

The ollie is the base trick for hundreds of other tricks so you will have many other tricks coming soon. You can then take it to curb, stairs and much more. Try your kickflips and 180 and much more!

What you can do next:
-50/50 grinds
-180’s and 360’s
-Manuals and Nose Manuals
-Tailslides and more

Before you Start: Exercise to Improve Your Ollies

Maybe you landed on this page for a refresher or to become more confident at ollies.  You know the steps, but you can’t merely consistely land the ollie.  This video below is for you to watch:

Find a flat, smooth parking lot which has some parking lines in it. Think of the lines as “deadly lava” which you must avoid. First go over the lines with you feet on the ends, and then try ollieing over each of the lines and this will help your ollies become more consistent.

Last Step: Ollie Higher


Tips to Remember

-A successful ollie is based on 3 things:
1. Power
2. Timing
3. Control

-Make sure you put a lot of power into both your pop and slide. This will dictate how high the board will go.

-Timing.  Be cautious that you allow ample time between the pop and slide so that the board can raise as high as possible in the front.

-Control.  Lastly, have control of your board by using proper foot placement and keeping your center of balance between your legs.

-If you are still having problems, watch the videos on this page, starting at the top.

Still Having Problems? Take a 1-on-1 skateboard lesson here on Mastering the Ollie.

These tips are brought to you by which is one of the largest skateboard schools in the country. You can learn how to ollie in a private skateboard lesson in your driveway with one of our Go Skate Certified Pros. Sign up today for the free course or by clicking the “Contact Us” tab.

This video and article were written by Rob Dunfey. Rob has taught over 8,000 people how to skate, has made skate trick tip videos that have been seen nearly 3 million times online, and has built the largest skateboarding school in America, Go Skate.

Rob has been featured on, eHow, The Boston Globe, Yahoo Sports, and Skateboarder Magazine. He has skateboarded for over 14 years and competed in the BOE National Finals. Rob is an avid street, ramp, and flat ground skater.