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When the Surf is Down, Boarding is Still Up

Basic Skateboard Terms and Tricks



Applies to skateboarding, snowboarding, and surfing. It’s the turns made while gliding over the surface. You can carve a wave, a pool deck or ramp, or a mountain.                                                          


Riding the board backwards. This means that a regular footed (left foot forward) rider is now riding with right foot forward. This is used in snowboarding for fun, to recover, to give dominant leg a rest, and for show.

How to Hardflip  Video


If a regular foot rider rides goofy (right foot forward) it is a switch. In a fakie the back foot usually on the tail will be on the nose. In fakie a rider might start up a hill and lose momentum and wind up going back down with the feet in the same position.


A grab on a skateboard or snowboard where rider reaches down and grabs board in between his feet.


Grinding is the name for sliding along an edge (such as a curb, bench, rail, coping, etc.) using your trucks instead of your wheels or deck. Depending on which trucks are being used (front or back), and what direction you are moving, there are many different types of grinds,

A Manual

A manual is a skateboarding trick where, while rolling, the front wheels of the skateboard are lifted off the ground, but the tail does not touch the ground. Its like a wheely.


Frontside refers to rotations or turns done so that the skateboarder’s front is facing the outside of the turn arc. The name Frontside came originally from surfing, as did a lot of skateboarding’s original language.

Rock n Roll

A Rock and Roll is when a skateboarder rides up a ramp onto the lip, or coping, and then rides away. The front trucks go over the lip, and the bottom of the deck rests on the lip.

Rock n Roll to Fakie

A skater rides up a ramp, Rock and Rolls, and then rides back down fakie (the opposite direction the skater usually rides),


The first and most basic trick boarders learn. It is popping the skateboard into the air by first stomping on the tail. It is used progressively to jump over obstacles or onto props such as curbs.


A nollie differs from an Ollie because the boarder slaps the nose into the ground to pop the board into the air.

Kick flip

A Kickflip is similar to an Ollie, but you flick the board with your foot to make it spin underneath you while in the air. In a clean kickflip, the skater kicks the board with the ball of his or her front foot, the skateboard flips and spins over at least once, and the skateboarder lands on the board comfortably, wheels down, and rides away.

Heel flip

A technical flip trick where the skater ollies and kicks the skateboard to make it flip underneath him or her. To perform the heelflip a skateboarder ollies and slides his or her front foot to the toe side of the board and kicks the board with the skater’s heel. The skateboard flips in the air with the heel side of the skateboard coming up at first. The heel flip is complete when the skateboard flips completely over and back to its original position, and the skateboarder lands on it.

Kick turn

A kickturn is where you balance on your rear wheels, and spin your body around. Kickturns can go either direction (frontside or backside), and be at any degree (90, 180, 360 for a full spin all the way around). The alternative to riding fakie as you get to the top of a ramp.


Rider flips the board 180 degrees while in the air.


Rider flips the board 360 degrees while in the air

Revert or Kick turn

Board is spun 180 or 360 degrees on the ground


If the board turns 180 degrees, but the rider doesn’t


A trick in the air where the rider turns 180 degrees and the board does not

50-50 Grind

A grind where the edge or rail being ground is in the middle of the hangers on the trucks. The name “50-50″ refers to being half on the edge and half off, with both trucks even.


A 5-0 (Five-Oh) is when the skateboarder  grinds with only the back truck. The nose of the skateboard is up in the air a little, making the whole trick look and feel something like a manual.

Courtesy of Steve Cave in guide

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