Common Beginner Skateboarding Mistakes
This month I’m going to talk about mistakes most people inadvertently make when learning to skate, I’ve been teaching skateboarding for around a decade now, so I’ve seen all the really common mistakes and some really unusual ones as well, but I’m only going to concentrate on the common ones, hopefully, if you’re doing any of these this will help you progress, improve, stay safer and most importantly have more fun
I’ll try to put these in a rough order of when you might encounter them, but a couple of them might come back later on when you’re trying to learn a new trick, so even if you have 20 years of skating behind you, you can still mess up basic things.
so here it goes;
Not Being Centred
Not in the meditative sense of the word but the more literal meaning of get your weight centred, don’t start wiggling you’re his to try get moving, as that’s going to put your weight too far forward then too far back, leading to the inevitable point where you will get you moving but not forwards, instead they’ll get you going straight to the floor, instead what you want to do is have your feet about shoulder width apart; I find younger kids struggle with this concept so I tell them to make sure their bum is in-between their feet so if they fart, they won’t get smelly feet, the advantage of this is it works if they lean too far the wrong way as well as if they have their feet to close together.
Not Bending Your Knees
As well as having your weight centred you need to get them knees bent, it really helps keep you balanced on your board and the more you bend your knees the closer to the floor you are so the less scary a fall is going to be; try it out pick a clear space somewhere stand with your knees straight and fall over face first, doesn’t sound a great idea does it, now bend your knees so you’re in a squat and fall over, easy right, as your right next to the floor and you can drop to your hands and knees safely. So whenever you’re going to fast up or down a ramp squat down low it might not look graceful but it’s a new trick for you so don’t worry about how it looks for now, just have fun with it.
Being Scared of Falling
This is something that holds a load of people back, but it needn’t my best advice is pad up and learn to fall, it might sound weird saying learn to fall but its easy to do, the more you progress the more natural it will come to avoid hurting yourself, but to start with just make sure your pads are what takes the impact (don’t try land on your head even if you’re wearing a helmet) the easiest and best place to land is on your knee pads and just slide on your knees like a kid a school disco.
Having the Wrong Stance
There are two ways to stand on a board, goofy which is with your right foot at the front and regular which is with your left foot at the front. Unfortunately you don’t get to choose which stance you are but don’t worry nobody cares what stance you are if you’re unsure which stance you are its easy to figure out just stand on your board facing a wall, a fence or anything you can use to push yourself along, then push yourself along both directions and see which one feels easier and whichever is easier will be your stance. once you know which foot to put where then when you start learning to push, push with your back foot please, it might feel weird at first but you will get used to it and it will help you later on.
As simple as it sounds, just relax, if you try skate all tensed up you’re going to struggle and it’s going to be more likely that you fall off, so bend them knees relax them shoulders and just go with the flow.
Using the Wrong Equipment
I’ve mentioned this in a previous blog post on beginner skate questions here: https://blog.urbansurfer.co.uk/2018/uncategorized/common-beginner-skate-questions/
so to save me typing it all again, have a click on the link.
Not Having Fun
Having fun is what skating is all about, so don’t let it get you stressed or annoyed if your spending too long on a trick and not getting anywhere, don’t worry about it, just go try another trick if that doesn’t work, just call it a day and give your body and mind a rest then hit it again when you’ve had time to chill out, don’t unnecessarily add negativity into your skating, keep it positive and fun. Don’t let one bad day affect your other days on the board.
Not Believing in Yourself
This one’s quite similar to the one above, don’t doubt yourself, it might look like an impossible task, but just break it down it to tiny manageable sections anything you manage to do even if only slightly better than yesterday is a win, so don’t look to far into the future, while it is good to have an end goal, it’s not worth stressing over it, after all its just riding on a plank of wood hardly the tight of thing worth getting annoyed at, so have fun with it and enjoy the journey, it doesn’t matter how well you ride, it’s all about how much fun your having, you can go ride the worst skatepark in the world, but still have a great session with your friends.
Now get out and go skate, have fun and enjoy life.