What Does Bump Mean in Skateboarding: Unraveling an Epic Move

Explore what bump means in skateboarding, learn the dynamics behind a high ollie, and tips on mastering this exciting trick.

Ever wonder what the bump means in skateboarding? Here’s what a bump is and how you can best utilize it:

So, what does bump mean in the skate world? In street skating slang, a bump is any spot that emulates a kicker ramp or provides a slight angle for skaters to launch off of.

What is a bump?

A bump refers to any street spot with an incline, resembling a tiny ramp or kicker. You roll off that modest kick in the road, soaring like a hawk on wheels. A bump doesn’t just add height to your ollie; it puts adrenaline in your veins. Bumps are perfect for honing your street skateboarding skills; they’re a solid choice for improving your game.

Image of a skateboarder skateboarding in a wide skate park with some skate bumps.
Image of a skateboarder skateboarding in a wide skate park with some skate bumps.
My favorite complete skateboard (at the moment):

Enjoi Whitey Panda Complete Skateboard

What does bump mean in skateboarding: unraveling an epic move | 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 are bump-to-bump and bump-to-the-bar?

Think of a bump in front of another, and you get the image of a bump with another one right in front of it. Kick off from one, sail through the air, and land on the other—a sequence of thrills and skill. Come to think of it, though, it’s wild how challenging yet fun this can get! Bump-to-bump setups allow for increased air time and thus create new opportunities for gnarly mid-air stunts.

Bump to the bar is another setup; this time, it’s a ramp staring at a rail. Popularly known as the “Handicap Rail,” the skater is challenged to pop over the rail from the bump.

The science behind the leap

Many young skaters are often baffled at how seasoned skaters manage to ollie much higher off a ramp than on flat ground. The secret sauce? When you’re hitting a bump with speed and pop an ollie, the force plus momentum causes the bump to launch you vertically, defying gravity for that split second. Your leap’s height and velocity depend on the bump’s angle and speed.

There’s sheer joy in pulling a clean ollie off a bump or smoothly clearing a bar after a ramp launch, and it’s worth the sweaty hours spent practicing.

As an enthusiastic, albeit amateur skater, I believe the art of mastering bumps can add a massive boost to your stunt repertoire. It’s a challenge, sure, but isn’t that why we embrace skateboarding? There’s sheer joy in pulling a clean ollie off a bump or smoothly clearing a bar after a ramp launch, and it’s worth the sweaty hours spent practicing.

Dos and don’ts of skating bumps

Like every crazy-fun sport, skateboarding also has some thumb rules to ensure a cool, safe, and killer run. So, before you roll off those wheels on bumps, let’s familiarize you with what you should do and what you must skip:

Practice basic tricks on flat ground before moving to bumps.Never approach a bump at a slow speed. Speed is your mojo here!
Pop or Ollie at the peak of the bump for a higher jump.Don’ts
Practice basic tricks on flat ground before moving to bumps.Avoid trying advanced stunts without nailing the basics.
The essential dos and don’ts of skateboarding on bumps

For novice L-skaters, it’s intriguing to see how the same sport can have varied expression styles and, hence, altered pros and cons for different elements. Check out this comparison between Penny boards and skateboards to illustrate my point. But let’s jump back on track.

Image of a young male skateboarder skating in a park.
Image of a young male skateboarder skating in a park.

Advantages and disadvantages of skating bumps

Ready to give bumps a shot? It’s a pretty solid choice, let me tell you. But it’s important to highlight the ups and downs of getting your ollie game on with bumps.


  • A well-executed move on a bump adds a spectacular touch to your overall skateboarding skills. This can be extremely gratifying and boost your confidence.
  • The additional airtime that bumps provide allows for more complex trick executions.
  • It enhances your control and balance since you’re dealing with an inclined, dynamic surface.


  • Bumps can be challenging for beginners or those uncomfortable with high jumps.
  • The risk of injuries increases due to greater airtime and height.
  • It requires more physical exertion and can be exhausting, especially initially or without proper training.
  • A lack of suitable bump spots can restrict practice and progress.

Remember, the thrill of skateboarding lies in pushing your boundaries while staying safe. So, get out there and shred some concrete. And if you fancy a bit more reading, here’s a piece about choosing your skateboard size!

If you are more of a visual learner, check out the video below from YouTube.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

There are countless ways to shred a bump, but some intriguing queries always catch the drift. Let’s take a deep dive into some of these burning questions!

Why is speed crucial for bump skating?

Here’s some friendly advice: Speed is the heart and soul of successful bump skating. Approaching a bump at low speed might not get you the desired height or trajectory for your stunt. Remember, the right blend of speed, angle, and force on the board can make your bump escapade a dream ride. Are you curious why the right board matters for smooth sailing? Get the scoop on how skateboards are made.

What protective gear should I use while learning to skate bumps?

When it comes to protective gear, do not skimp! Helmets are a must to shield your precious mind palace. Likewise, knee and elbow pads can be life- (or bone-) savers during those unexpected slams. Wrist guards can also cushion your falls. So yeah, gear up before you shred bumps. Check out the essential skateboarding bag items for more insight.

How does knowing tricks like the anchor grind help bump skating?

While the primary trick is an ollie or a pop while skating a bump, knowing other tricks like the anchor grind can improve your game. Anchor grinds can help improve balance and control, which are crucial in conquering the art of bump skating. Here’s a detailed piece on how to do an anchor grind.

Are ramps and bumps the same in terms of street skating?

Not quite. While ramps and bumps serve a similar purpose of giving the skater a boost, they can vary in shape, size, and the kind of tricks you can pull off on them. Bumps often refer to natural or street-built structures with a slight concave, while ramps are generally artificial and can greatly vary in style and height.

Final thoughts

Skateboarding isn’t just a sport; it’s a creative dance that intertwines agility, balance, and physics. Mastering the art of bump skating has its thrills and spills, but the rush and joy it brings are unmatched! Whether popping an olly over a bar post-ramp or cruising through a double bump run, each moment is a performance that tests your skills.

Let me know your questions 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 this gnarly art form. Thanks for reading, and keep shredding!

Key takeaways

This article unravels the exciting world of bump skating in street skateboarding. Here are some key takeaways:

  • A bump is any skateboard-friendly spot resembling a kicker ramp, providing ample skating angle.
  • Bump-to-bump and bump-to-bar are more advanced setups, further escalating the fun.
  • Speed, a well-timed ollie or pop, and the angle of the bump play pivotal roles in mastering bump skateboarding.
  • Practicing on bumps enhances control balance and opens the door to more complex mid-air trick execution.
  • Always gear up appropriately when skateboarding, especially early in your learning curve.
  • Knowing additional tricks like the anchor grind can further level up your bump skating game.
  • In skateboarding, embracing challenges while ensuring safety is a golden rule.

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.

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