Snowboarding is an invigorating sport that can provide adrenaline-pumping thrills; which is why so many enjoy it on both a professional and recreational level. There are quite a few snowboarding tricks that can drop the jaws of on-lookers and win you competitions (or gold medals), however, everyone needs to start with the basics.
From ollies and tail presses to 360 flat spins and jumps, here are some of the most basic snowboarding tricks for beginners to learn.
5 Snowboarding Tricks For Beginners
An ollie is a great basic first trick for snowboarders to learn. You use the tail of the board to spring you off the ground and get air. This skill began with skateboarding and allows for you to get air without having to go over a jump. We recommend practicing so that later you can use it as the base for other tricks.
- Flexing your back leg, move the board toward your nose (out in front of you).
- As you pull your front leg up the board will flex and create a â€œpopâ€. This is what lets you spring off your back foot.
- As you get air flex your legs making the board parallel to the ground.
- Use both feet to land together to absorb the landing.Â
2. Tail/Nose Press
Learning how to flex your board in an ollie will help as the basis for other other tricks. Another great trick to try on flat ground is a tail or nose press.Â
You will shift your weight over the back and front of your board. This will help with awareness of your edges but also allows a fun way to â€œplayâ€ with your board. After practicing on flat ground try a tail press while riding downhill. As you get better this is a great trick to try on rails and boxes.
How to Tail Press:
- Flex your back leg, extend your front leg and shift your weight over the tail of the board. Donâ€™t lean back! Instead of moving over the top of the board you can also try scooting it out from underneath you.
- Keeping your center over the tail of your board and back foot you will notice the nose start to lift.
- Start by trying this trick on flat ground and then move to doing it while going down a hill.
- You want to keep your arms and shoulders in line with the board to keep your balance.
How to Nose Press:
- Shift your weight over the nose of the board and flex your front leg.
- This time keep your center over your front and you will feel the tail lift up.
- Similar to a tail press try this on flat ground before moving to mellow terrain.
- Keep working on finding the balance point so you can hold it longer.
- Choose a start and a finish line for your presses. This will give you better control and timing which you can move to a rail or box.Â
3. Flat Spin 360
The flat spin 360 can also be practiced on gentle terrain before moving up. It will also help you get ready for bigger tricks. You will move between your heel and toe edge as you spin in a circle.
If you ride with your left foot in front
- Begin as you leave a toe side turn. Point your nose uphill.
- As you pick up the toes on your back feet, put pressure on your front foot. This will cause the board to start rotating.
- Your nose is still pointed uphill at this point so shift your weight onto the new leading foot (right foot) and your right foot heel edge.
- Spin clockwise as you enter a toeside turn and repeat!
If you ride with your right foot in front
- Begin this trick as you come out of a toeside turn. Keeping your nose pointed up will make you spin counterclockwise.
- Pick up the toes on your back foot while you apply pressure to your front foot. The board will start spinning.
- Turn your head as you spin and keep your eyes up while you spin.
- Repeat as you enter a toeside turn.
These tricks can be done in either direction. Start with what feels easiest and then try it the other way.
A 50-50 trick is pretty straightforward. It involves riding over a box or rail in the direction that it does, nose first. Start by trying this on flat ground, imagining a box or rail. Keep your board flat the whole time, ankles loose, and relax your body.
As you move to the terrain park start small. Choose a box that you can ride onto without having to jump. Choose a wide and short one if possible. As you get the hang of it practice riding on those that are narrower and longer. Once you get really comfortable with a 50-50 you can add in other elements like a press or ollie.
Doing a 50-50 on a Box
- Start by watching how other riders approach the box. This will help you establish a good starting point. You want to have enough speed, not have to brake, and finish your turns at least 10 feet before you get to the box.
- Line up nose first to the box so you are riding straight.
- Keep your board flat the whole time and with bent knees keep your hips and shoulder in line with the board.
- Keep looking ahead at your landing and bring your legs up as you ride off the box.
- When you land, keep your weight even so you land flat. Roll on to your toe edge to gain control and ride it out.
Donâ€™t force yourself if you arenâ€™t lined up straight, just dismount off the side. Many people will try to correct how they are lined up by leaning onto their edge. Avoid this so you donâ€™t slide out. You can also slip and fall if you try to dismount early.
If the box is followed by features you arenâ€™t ready for move to the side and stay out of the way of others.
5. Straight Air Jump
Start small. Watch and learn from others who hit the jump before you. Do a practice run by riding next to it so help figure out your speed.
How to Jump
- Watch other riders and check out their speed. How many speed checks do they do? Adjust as needed so you donâ€™t land too far or too short. As you approach the jump make a few clean turns.
- As you approach the takeoff point keep slight pressure on your toes (not enough to turn) which will help keep you balanced. Keep flat and straight.
- As you hit the air bring your feet up toward your upper body like they are floating.
- Keep your eyes on where you want to land.Â
- When you land your board and body (shoulders and hips) should all be on one plane. Land flat and straight with your weight evenly distributed. Use your toe edge to get grip and control and ride off.