How to fully commit when doing skateboard tricks
Commitment. This is one of the most vital parts of learning to do any skateboard trick.
It wasn't long ago that I climbed back onto a skateboard with the intent to progress. Once I did, I quickly noticed how the sport had once again evolved.
As I have written before, skateboarding is largely about pushing one's limits and progress. When you have thousands of people pushing the limits, naturally the entire sport is affected. What once seemed impossible, is now the norm. (yet still celebrated and applauded, because it's incredibly difficult).
None of this would be possible without personal commitment. You don't roll away without it.
One of the most common questions I hear from someone asking for help with a trick is..
How do i land on the skateboard with both feet?
How do I stop landing on the skateboard with only one foot?
This is very tricky to answer, because if I hope to help them solve this problem I have to dig deeper than just responding with "You just need to commit". When actually this is the answer.
The problem with saying this to a new skateboarder trying to land a kickflip for example, is that this person thinks they have committed. They ollie up and kick their foot forward and off the inside convex of the nose on the skateboard. They watch the flip but it's not quite directly underneath them. It's quickly moving out of the skateboarders center of action. Finally the flip is over and the skateboarder has slightly turned his or her body as if they had planned to walk away instead of roll.
I remember doing this for about a day or so when I first started learning flip tricks. Then something snapped in my head. I was getting so sick of not landing it. I felt like I had put so much time into the trick. I deserve to land it.
I could ollie high enough, and I could make the board flip over, I thought I had everything I needed to be able to kickflip.
But I was missing a very critical piece of the puzzle. Commitment.
I think this is the most common reason why some people don't learn new tricks faster. Perhaps this has even caused some to quit skateboarding, thinking they just can't do it.
Imagine two doors in front of you. If you take the door on the right you will simply walk through unscathed and it's certain. If you take the door on the left, you might fall or get hurt in someway. You are a smart person, so why not just choose the obviously safe path. As a matter of fact, your brain is so smart that even if you choose the door of potential pain, right before you open the door, your brain will convince almost even force you to choose the safe path.
Your commitment can turtle shell at the speed of light. That means that even if you leave the ground believing that you are going to land on the board no matter what, in the blink of an eye you brain has decided to withdraw all of your courage and put the fear of the heavens in you.
You might be saying, Mikey, what the crap are you talking about?
Im talking about the option to be safe. Ie..landing with one foot on the ground, kicking the board away in mid air.
As a new skateboarder you will choose the safe option every time! You have to convince yourself you want to land the trick. You also have to accept the potential pain you might feel from falling or failing. In all honesty, hesitation and lack of commitment are the most dangerous variables in skateboarding. You need to commit!
How can I commit to a skateboarding trick?
You can convince yourself to just land on the board. This is the quickest most effective route. If you can't seem to do that, it will take you longer, but don't worry because you can still get there. The other way to get over the fear of landing on the skateboard is the least popular way, is simply spending time getting more comfortable on a skateboard.
If you don't want to spend a month getting comfortable on a skateboard before you get to start learning tricks, but you can't seem to convince yourself to land on the skateboard. This is how you can learn to commit to a skateboarding trick.
- Jump from the ground onto the skateboard.
- While riding a skateboard, jump in the air leaving the board on the ground. Land back on the board.
- Push the board causing it to roll, then run and jump on it. (this is really fun because you get to go fast.)
These three things can help you get used to landing on the skateboard after being arial. That should prepare you enough to get the full commitment from you. Each one of them is still something do regularly. I don't do it for practice. It has just become something I do. For example when I miss a trick and my board rolls away from me, I'll run and hop on it.