5 Best Habits for New Skaters: From Your First Flip to Landing Big Tricks

Master skateboarding with these 5 crucial habits! Explore how they boost your style, safety, and overall performance. Make your skateboarding journey epic!

Wondering how to nail the skateboard life as a newbie? Want to learn the best habits for new skaters? Whether you’re a fresh face on the wheel scene or just trying to up your game, you’re in luck. In this guide, you’ll encounter seasoned insights drawn from the trenches of street, park, and vert skateboarding’s challenging journeys and exhilarating thrills. Packed with not just tips but habits to develop as a skateboarder, this piece will help you ace your ride, keep injuries at bay, and take the maximum lifespan of your gear into the stratosphere.

What are the best habits to develop as a newbie skater?

When it comes to mastering the art of street, park, or vert skateboarding, it’s not only about learning the tricks but also developing habits that complement your progress and overall skating experience. Let’s explore five such savvy habits that will set you on the right path to becoming a seasoned skater.

Image of a skaters on a skating ramp. Source: unsplash
Image of a skaters on a skating ramp. Source: unsplash

1. Loosening your trucks gradually

One of the most critical habits any skater, new or seasoned, can develop is gradually loosening their skateboard trucks. Imagine gracefully gliding on your board with style points skyrocketing. Sounds tempting, right? That’s what loosening your truck gets you. But it’s not without its challenges.

Looser trucks mean less stability, and there’s always the risk of wheelbite. The drastic difference between tight and loose trucks could leave most skaters feeling off-balanced. But here’s how to handle it: try loosening your trucks a quarter turn each week until you get the feel of surfing on a skateboard. Before long, you might find your kingpin nut hanging loose, but you’ll have nailed a style-enhancing skill most skaters strive for.

2. Riding in switch

Switch it up with a riding switch—a handy habit that even seasoned skaters will vouch for. The concept is simple: ride with your foot position opposite to your usual stance, practically like reversing your skateboard maneuvers. While it’ll undoubtedly feel like you’re returning to day one, this habit is invaluable. Riding the switch makes you an all-around skater and opens up many trick possibilities.

And it doesn’t hurt that it makes your rides smoother. The earlier you start practicing, the better you’ll become, and the greater your performance versatility. When you step on a skateboard, sprinkle in occasional switch riding. In the long run, you’ll pat yourself on the back for the substantial benefit.

3. Stopping in multiple ways

Skateboards don’t come with brakes, so learning how to slow down and stop becomes vital.

Before attempting to conquer any hill or master any trick, make it a top priority to learn how to stop your skateboard in multiple ways. Skateboards don’t come with brakes, so learning how to slow down and stop becomes vital. After all, you wouldn’t want to zoom helplessly down a steep slope, praying not to end up as a human pancake!

Foot dragging and power sliding are the two most effective ways to slow down quickly on a skateboard. But, while foot-dragging can bring you to a quick stop, it can make your board wobble when you’re at high speed. On the flip side, power sliding requires both expertise and balance. Make it a habit to learn both. This way, you’ll conquer any hill and skate more safely and confidently.

4. Learning tricks while rolling

Yes, you read that right! Roller tricks are the real deal; forget being stationary. It might be quite comfy for a beginner to try out tricks while your skateboard is at a standstill. But let’s face it, that’s not how real skating works!

Image of a skater with safety gear, practicing in a skatepark. Source: unsplash
5 best habits for new skaters: from your first flip to landing big tricks | image of a skater with safety gear practicing in a skatepark unsplash | skateboard salad

Almost every trick in skateboarding is done while moving. Making tricks while rolling a habit will fast-track your progression while giving you the feel of real-time skateboarding. Start slowly and gradually pick up speed as you progress – a safe bet to avoid more injuries while nailing your tricks. Plus, you can weave your tricks seamlessly into your ride. Check out this guide for learning the Benihana trick while rolling.

5. Caring for your skateboard

Last but not least, caring for your skateboard is absolutely vital. As a skater, the last thing you want is a worn-out skateboard right before an exhilarating ride. Make it a habit to regularly check and maintain your skateboard to prolong its lifespan and ensure a smooth and safe ride.

Regular cleanups, replacing worn-out parts, and ensuring your skateboard trucks are neither too tight nor too loose can go a long way. Not only will you save on frequent replacements, but you’ll also enjoy a safe and fantastic ride every time you step on your board. Check out this guide on how to fix one common skateboard problem: delamination.

My favorite complete skateboard (at the moment):

Enjoi Whitey Panda Complete Skateboard

5 best habits for new skaters: from your first flip to landing big tricks | 61vn95mf7ql. Ac sl1184 | skateboard salad
My favorite complete skateboard (at the moment):

Enjoi Whitey Panda Complete Skateboard

I had my board stolen a few years ago and was forced to quickly replace it with a complete. I got one with an Enjoi deck and loved it so much that I still buy the Whitey Panda deck each time I need a new deck. This complete with budget-friendly, beginner-friendly parts, but I still swear by it.

What is the importance of developing good skateboarding habits?

Skateboarding habits aren’t just techniques or activities; they’re consistent behavior patterns that shape your skateboarding journey and overall performance. Whether you’re into the street, park, or vert skating, how well you develop these habits can considerably influence your skateboarding experience. More than routines, they become an integral part of your skateboard life.

Here’s why they matter: They fast-track your learning curve and boost your performance, safety, and enjoyment. Underpinning every smooth ride and successful trick are habits honed over time that turn novices into seasoned skaters.

Dos and don’ts of skateboarding habits

Good habits are the cornerstone of a great skateboarding journey. And as you dive into it, there are some essential dos and don’ts to remember to make the ride smoother, safer, and more enjoyable.

Do gradually loosen your trucksDon’t go from tight to loose trucks abruptly
Do practice riding in switchDon’t limit yourself to one foot position
Do learn to stop using different methodsDon’t rely solely on jumping off the skateboard to stop
Do learn tricks while rollingDon’t limit your tricks learning to stationary practice
Do regularly maintenance your skateboardDon’t ignore wear and tear signs on your skateboard
Breakdown of the dos and don’ts in developing key skateboarding habits

What other habits make a great skater?

While the above habits are helpful, there are some bonus habits to bring to your skateboarding experience. They are insightful and can help you avoid common pitfalls and make your rides a killer experience.

  • Keep exploring. Challenge your skateboarding boundaries regularly.
  • Master one trick before moving on to the next.
  • Watch and learn from seasoned skaters. They’ve trodden the path you’re exploring.
  • Wear skateboarding-appropriate gear for safety.
  • Last but not least, enjoy the ride. Remember, skateboarding is about having fun!

How I developed my skateboarding habits

As an avid skateboarder, I’ve had my fair share of ups and downs in my skateboarding journey. Like most beginners, I initially thought it was about learning tricks and impressing friends. Little did I know that I was barely scratching the surface.

My breaking point came when I tried to master the Benihana too early and spent more time falling off than staying on my board! I soon realized that without the right foundation—developing solid skateboarding habits – I was setting myself up for failure and frustration.

Although I’m still learning, focusing on habits over tricks has made a world of difference. I embarked on this habit-building journey, and it’s been one of my best decisions to date. And now, even as a novice, I see myself on a learning curve that’s as thrilling as it is enriching. Skateboarding, for me, has moved beyond a hobby to a lifestyle activity that I absolutely love.

“Good habits are the cornerstone of a great skateboarding journey.”

For more tips and tricks, check out the video below from YouTube.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

As you embark on your skateboarding journey, it’s natural to have many questions, especially about developing the right skating habits. Here’s what some fellow skaters often wonder about:

What happens if I don’t loosen my trucks gradually?

Rushing into loosening your trucks could leave you feeling off-balance and less stable. Gradually easing into looser trucks lets you handle the shift more smoothly.

How long does it take to get comfortable riding switch?

The timeline varies based on individual learning curves and the amount of practice. However, the earlier you start practicing, the better you’ll become over time. Check out this skateboarding advice I put together to help new skateboarders.

Why should I learn tricks while moving?

Almost every trick in skateboarding is done while in motion. Learning tricks while rolling mimics real-skating conditions and accelerates your progress.

How often should I maintain my skateboard?

Regular maintenance is crucial. Always watch for wear and tear, and carry out necessary checks and maintenance after every few rides.

Is it normal to struggle with developing new skating habits?

Absolutely! Developing new habits, whether in skateboarding or something else, can be challenging. Remember, it’s a slow process that requires patience and consistent practice.

Final thoughts

Adopting the right habits as a skateboarder can be game-changing. It’s not just about finding your balance or landing your first Ollie but about enhancing your overall skating lifestyle and progression with habits that bear long-term benefits. So, start chipping away at these habits from day one and watch as the magic unfolds on your skateboard journey.

And now, over to you. What other habits have you found helpful in your skateboarding journey? And did I cover everything you wanted to know? Let me know in the comments section below. I read and reply to every comment. If you found this article helpful, share it with a friend, and check out my full blog for more tips and tricks on skateboarding habits. Thanks for reading, and keep on shredding!

Key takeaways

This article covered essential skateboarding habits for newbies and their impact on your skateboarding journey. Here are some key takeaways:

  • Gradually loosening your trucks enhances your riding style and balances handling.
  • Riding switch makes you a versatile skater and expands your tricks repertoire.
  • Mastering multiple stopping techniques boosts your safety while riding.
  • Learning tricks while rolling accelerates your progress and simulates real-skate conditions.
  • Regular skateboard maintenance prolongs its lifespan and ensures smoother rides.

Helpful resources

Steven Portrate
Written by Steven Sadder, Staff Writer

Hey! I'm Steven, a lifelong skater, and proud New Yorker. I’ve been skating since I was a teenager. I may be a bit older now, but I'm not slowing down. Follow me for skating tips and latest gear reviews.

Nick eggert.
Edited by Nick Eggert, Staff Editor

Nick is our staff editor and co-founder. He has a passion for writing, editing, and website development. His expertise lies in shaping content with precision and managing digital spaces with a keen eye for detail.

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