Skateboarding is a lot of fun and it can be a great way to get some exercise and build new skills. However, skateboarding can be difficult to master, and even professionals continue to learn and improve.
Is skateboarding hard? It can be, but it can also be a lot of fun, and it’s always worth trying. To make it easier for you to get started, you’ll find some great tips below that can get you feeling more confident on your board before you know it.
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Start Simply and Slowly
This is one of the areas where so many beginner skateboard enthusiasts have problems. They see their favorite pro skaters and want to emulate them. They see some of their friends performing advanced tricks and want to do the same.
When you are just starting, you need to know how to stand and which stance you prefer. Do you ride natural footed or goofy footed, with your right foot forward? Figure out what feels best for you and then build your skills from there.
It’s important to keep in mind that learning skateboarding is not a sprint—it’s a marathon. You need to start slow and build your skills. Once you learn the basics of how to balance and how to push, you will move on to turning and controlling the board at higher speeds.
Only once you have mastered the basics should you attempt skateboarding tricks. Even then, you should start with the simple ones. Only try new tricks once you have mastered the ones you are currently trying.
The First Thing You Should Do
Begin by putting the board onto grass or carpet so it won’t move. Learn in different directions to see how it responds. Figure out your balance before you head out to the concrete or asphalt.
Learn to Fall
Of course, even when you have practiced your balance in a stationary location, once you get moving, there’s a chance you could fall. Falling is part of the sport. It might be scary at first, but if you learn how to fall, it won’t be too bad.
If you feel that you are starting to lose your balance, you should try to get low, so you don’t have to fall as far. Additionally, if you are going fast, you will want to roll with the fall to help reduce the impact. If you have on protective gear, as you should, you can slide with your knee pads.
Take some time to learn how to fall properly when you are going at slow speeds, and you’ll see that it’s not such a big deal. You’ll be able to use the same techniques when you fall at faster speeds.
Get a Good Skateboard
You don’t want to get a cheap board that isn’t going to hold up and perform correctly. Low-quality boards will be more difficult to ride. The wheels might not roll properly, the trucks could break, and even the bearings or deck might snap.
Instead, you should buy a high-quality board either from a real skate shop or a reputable online seller. Research the board and all of the components to make sure you are buying something high-quality.
Those cheap boards will not help you learn how to skate. They could even be dangerous. Is skateboarding hard? It’s definitely more difficult when you have poor equipment.
Wear Protective Gear and Skate Shoes
Because there is a good chance that you will be taking some tumbles when you are learning skateboarding, it’s important that you keep yourself as safe as possible. Some riders don’t like protective equipment, but it is essential, especially when you are just getting started.
Some of the most important safety gear to have include:
- Wrist guards
- Elbow pads
- Knee pads
Although it might seem excessive, proper equipment will help to keep your skin on elbows and knees where it belongs. It will also prevent head injuries and damage to your wrists if you go down the wrong way.
You might think that since you’re young, you don’t need to have elbow and knee pads. While you might be able to bounce back from an injury now, as you get older, you may start to notice that those injuries from your youth start to plague you. It’s better to just keep safe now.
Skate shoes are important, too. Regular sneakers might not have the grip that you need to have proper control of your board. Make sure that you get a good pair of proper shoes.
Learn with Friends
Learning on your own can be fun, but it’s often better when you have some friends that are learning or who already skate. If they are already riders, they can provide you with some tips on the basics to get you started.
If you are learning together, it’s a fun journey to see which of you masters different skills first. Skating can be a great social activity, and you might even meet some new friends when you head out into town to board.
Skating with others can be motivating, but don’t let it get to your head. Just because you are feeling good about your burgeoning skills doesn’t mean that you are ready for more difficult tricks. You still need to take your time.
Watch Videos and Record Yourself
Those who are learning skateboarding today have a tool that wasn’t readily available when skating first started. Videos, which were first popular in the 80s thanks to VCRs and recorders, are a great way to learn what to do and what not to do.
YouTube is filled with skating videos. You can learn all about the basics, and you can get tips and pointers for difficult skills that you want to master. You could also just sit back and watch some high-quality skating.
In addition to watching videos, you can record yourself. You don’t want to make it onto a YouTube fail compilation, of course, but you do want to learn by watching yourself. When you get an outside view that the video can provide, you can see what you are doing right and wrong.
Video has helped golfers, baseball players, and people in countless other sports. Let video help you improve your skateboarding skills.
Consider Getting Some Lessons
Maybe you feel that you aren’t learning as quickly as you should. If that’s the case, you might want to think about getting some lessons from someone in your area. You can often find people at skate shops or skate parks giving lessons.
Check out their reputation, and if you are still a teen or younger, make sure your parents check them out, as well. Working with a skater that knows what they are doing and knows how to teach can help you improve your skills quickly.
What Else Could You Do?
Skating is a lot more physical than a lot of people realize. It’s not just rolling around on four wheels. It takes balance, strength, and skill. If you aren’t in good shape, you’ll find that skating can be more difficult for you to learn than maybe it should be.
Consider getting into better shape. The skating is exercise, but consider adding some strength exercises, as well. Being stronger makes it easier for you to develop your skills for skating and other sports.
Some things you can’t change, such as your age. If you are over 30, it will be more difficult for you to learn to skate, but it’s not impossible. As long as you remember to go slow and wear protective gear, you can do it.
Find Great Places to Skate
When you are just starting to learn and you want to get comfortable riding, do it close to home. Your driveway, the street in front of your house, etc. can be a good place when you are starting with the basics.
As you start to improve, though, you’ll want to find other places where you can skate. You might want to try out a new skill or you might want to find some new challenges. Depending on where you live, your options will differ for places to skate.
If you are lucky, you might have a local skate park that would work well for your needs. They will often have a range of options for different types of skaters. If you don’t have a skate park, you could always check parking lots near you.
Just keep in mind that not all of these parking lots will be skateboard-friendly, so make sure you check first.
Get Started with Skateboarding
Is skateboarding hard? If you are just starting to learn skateboarding, you aren’t going to be a professional tomorrow. It takes time. You will fall more than a few times, and it might seem like you aren’t making any progress. That’s not true, though.
Each time you get on the board, you are learning and getting better. You are improving your balance, your pushing, and your confidence on the board. Start learning today and you will soon see that it’s not as hard as it might have seemed at first.
Although it might be difficult, it’s well worth persevering. Skateboarding is a hobby that can last for many years and bring you plenty of happiness.