Learning how to do a kickflip is a solid trick to keep in your back pocket. The foundation of the kickflip lies in a trick called the ollie, so it may be helpful to review and practice how to ollie.
If you are concerned about this situation and require a suitable solution, do the following:
- Learn the Basics:
- Flip the board
- Nail the landing
- Improve your Technique
- Learn the Basics:
- Start by placing your finger on the board in the starting position. Many tricks start with placing your index finger just behind the front wheels and your middle finger slightly behind the back wheels. Get used to your fingers in this position as this will be the standard finger position for most tricks such as spins, heelflips, and impossible.
- Start by turning the board to the left. This is the direction you will go to do a kickflip. Spin the board back and forth at different speeds. Go slowly at first so you can get used to the board’s movement. Ideally, you need speed to lift the board, but first, you need to be able to control the board with your fingers as it moves.
- Pop the back end of the board down onto the table. As you turn the board, press down on the back end with your middle finger and tap it against the table. This lifts the nose of the board into the air. Continue swinging the board back and forth, but now practice adding pops, continuing these initial movements at a low speed and gradually increasing the speed. These first steps should be smooth so you can focus on turning the board next.
2. Flip the board:
- Roll the board to the left and lower the nose to lift the board into the air. The board should be a few inches from the table to allow room for the board to rotate. Those few inches of air give you time and space to perfect your flips. For each exercise, raise your hands a little higher and pull the board into the air.
- While the board is in the air, slide your index finger towards the nose of the board. As the board moves to the left in the air, so does the index finger to the left. A hard flip can cause you to lose control of the board, so your index finger should make a smooth transition. Also, put your finger inside your nose pocket. The “pockets” in the nose and tail are the indentations where the board starts to curve upwards.
- As you slide the board toward your nose, apply pressure to the slide closest to the board. By slightly pushing the edge of the board with your index finger, you spin the board forward in the air. This is an important step in completing the kickflip. A slight pressure of your index finger controls the rotation of the board. If you flip too hard the board spins out of control, and if you touch too light the board won’t spin at all.
3. Nail the landing:
- After completing the flip, catch the board in the air. After the board spins, put both your fingers on the board to prevent it from spinning in mid-air. Focus on the board itself so you can place your fingers on top of the deck. You can spin the board once and then grab it, or you can spin the board multiple times during a flip to master more impressive tricks.
- Move the board back onto the table with your fingers. No need to let gravity push the board back onto the table. In fact, instead of dropping the board, you use your fingers to point the board down. It takes more practice, but it keeps you in control of the board from start to end.
- After landing, keep the board forward until the landing is complete. Instead of stopping immediately after a trick, if you want to get used to doing tricks then keep the board moving afterward. This allows you to link tricks to tricks for an impressive array of fingerboard moves.
4. Improve your Technique:
- Start slowly. If you try to blow the stages first, you may lose control of the board. Take a step with yourself and take your time. Going slow at first will help you develop good technique on your board.
- Reiterate every step several times before moving on to the next step. The best way to get good at something is to build muscle memory, which forces you to spend time doing the same thing over and over again. But repeated practice makes an athlete, and a seasoned musician can turn pro, and you can apply this technique to your fingerboard skills.
- Add speed. Now that you can move slowly and comfortably, you can gradually move faster with the kickflip. Instead of running faster, it’s a good idea to go a little faster each time you try a trick. In this way, your fingers will get used to the speed, and you will be able to kickflip more accurately at any speed.
Kickflip is much easier if you already know how to play the deck. Also, after learning this well, you can use your thumb instead of your middle finger to start controlling and moving better. Kickflips take time to master, so be patient while you’re still learning how to kickflip.
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