15 Things That Make You Look Like A Beginner Skater (And How Not To)

15 Things That Make You Look Like A Beginner Skater (And How Not To)


My name is Justin Lauria, and today we’re
going over the top 15 things that only novice skateboarders do, so that you know how to
avoid looking like a beginner when you go to the skatepark. Alright, so I know that one of the biggest
factors that holds people back from learning how to skateboard is that they are actually
just too afraid to go to the skatepark when other people are there because they think they’re going to get made fun of if they look like they’re new to skateboarding. Now, right off the bat, I do want to go ahead
and mention that for the most part, these fears are completely unnecessary, and most
of the higher level skaters that I know will tell you that they don’t really give a second
thought to the other skaters at the park who don’t look like they know what they’re doing,
other than maybe wanting to offer a piece of advice here and there. It’s important to keep in mind that all of
those skaters have been through the exact same process, so they’re not going to judge
you in a negative way for wanting to practice and get better at a sport that they’ve spent
years practicing themselves. However, I know that looking a little awkward
in public is easier said than done, so hopefully knowing a few key things that you can do to
avoid looking like a beginner will give you the confidence boost that you need to finally
make it to the skatepark and stop worrying what other people are thinking about you. OK, so the first thing that people tend to associate with beginner skateboarders, is a way of holding your board called a ‘mall grab.’ Now, a mall grab is when you carry your board
like this, as if the hanger of the truck was a convenient handle added to the skateboard
for the sole purpose of helping you carry it, allegedly the same way that a kid at a mall
would carry his skateboard if he didn’t actually skate, but he just wanted to carry his board
around with him in order to look cool. I personally don’t think there’s really anything
inherently wrong with using your trucks to carry your board like that, but at some point
along the way, such a huge stigma developed around it that I eventually just stopped carrying
it like that altogether so that I didn’t have to listen to the younger kids tell me over
and over that I was carrying my board incorrectly. Alright, so now, the second telltale sign
of a beginner skateboarder is setting the board on the ground with your hands when you
want to start riding it. When you see someone doing this, you can just
tell that they haven’t spent enough time with their skateboard in order to develop a more
casual way of getting their board to the ground. A couple of alternatives that you can use
would be to drop your board under your foot like this, or to get a running start and hop
on as you throw your board down to the ground like this. The third thing that people do that pegs them
as a beginner is to push like one. Most people will push like this when they
first start skateboarding, with their front foot already perpendicular to the board, so
that they don’t have to adjust it once they get up to speed and put their back foot on. However, this does force your body into an
awkward looking position, and you will come off as looking a lot more natural if you,
instead, start with your front foot on the board facing forward, and then rotate it into
position once you’re up to speed. Habit number four is another pushing technique
that is called pushing ‘mongo.’ Pushing mongo means that instead of setting
your front foot on the board over the front wheels and pushing off of the ground with
your back foot, you actually start by setting your back foot on the board and push off of
the ground with the foot that you normally ride with in front. When you push like this, not only are you
making it harder on yourself to get your feet set up on the board properly, but it also
makes it harder to steer, throws you off balance, and makes you come off as an amateur. So if that’s how you usually push, I would
highly recommend that you go ahead and take some time out of your next few skate sessions
and practice pushing with your front foot already on the board and pushing off of the
ground with your back foot. Number five covers what you do when you need
to pick up your board, and if you bend down and pick up your board with your hands, again
you’re going to look like a bit of a beginner. Instead of doing it like that, try to get
a little creative with how you pick your board up. Learning some of these shouldn’t take too
long to figure out, so spend a couple of minutes working on them the next time you’re bored. OK, so let’s move on to habit number six,
which is always skating in the same stance. This one doesn’t stick out quite as much
as some of the others, but the more advanced skaters at the park understand and appreciate
the time and effort it takes to learn tricks in multiple stances. So once you learn how to do a trick in normal
stance, take an extra five minutes or so and try to figure out how to do the trick in fakie
stance, or even better yet, in switch or nollie stance. Now, for number seven we’re looking at how
you ride up and down ramps at the skatepark. The most efficient way to ride over obstacles
at the skatepark is to use a technique called pumping, which allows you to increase the
amount of speed you gain when you go downhill and decrease the amount of speed that you
lose when you go uphill. Beginner skaters who haven’t mastered this
technique yet will go for more of a straight legged approach to rolling down ramps, which
not only means that they’ll have to take their back foot off more in order to push,
but it actually makes it harder to balance and gives you the appearance of being unsteady on your board. Alright, so on to number eight, which is performing
all of your flatground tricks while stationary. When you’re practicing to land your first
ollie or your first kickflip, for example, it can sometimes be a little easier to wrap
your head around the maneuver if you put your back wheels into a crack in the cement and
try to land the trick from there. Once you get the hang of the basic motion
though, you should move on to learning how to do your tricks while rolling. Not only is it more functional and more stylish,
but it’s also easier to land flatground tricks and keep your balance throughout the maneuver
if you’re moving while you do it. It’s very similar to riding a bike. If you’ve ever tried to keep your balance
on a bicycle while you’re not rolling forward, you know how much more difficult it is to
do than while you’re rolling. Now let’s look at number nine, which involves
what is known as tic-tacking which essentially just means that you landed your trick a little
bit off balance and you had to pick up the front of your board in order to align it with
the way that your momentum was going. Now, on this point, I do want to make an important
distinction. I’m not saying that advanced skaters don’t
have this happen to them while they’re working on a trick. It happens to skaters at every level all the
time. The difference, however, between a beginner
skater and an advanced skater is that a beginner skater will consider a trick landed in this
way a make, and an advanced skater will consider it a do-over. If you’re filming the trick and planning on
posting it somewhere online, you will be amazed at how big of a difference these few extra
attempts can make at giving you the appearance of style and control. Alright, so for number ten, I want to talk
about what the bottom of your board looks like. One part of becoming an advanced skateboarder
is practicing tricks from multiple disciplines of skating, and if you’re carrying around
a board that looks like you just walked out of the skate shop all the time, there’s a
good chance that you’re missing out on some of them. One of my favorite ways to give your board
a little character is to do boardslides on ledges and rails. For a tutorial on the easiest version of that
trick, the backside boardslide, you can click the link up here or in the description section
below. Now, let’s take things over to the mini ramp
for a bit and talk about number eleven, which is starting your runs in the mini ramp from
the bottom. When you start learning how to skate a mini
ramp, one of the hardest things to overcome is learning how to drop in for the first time,
but once you do it for the first few times, it’ll start to become completely second nature
to you, and you won’t have to feel afraid of the maneuver any more. So, a good way to help you wrap your head
around what it’s going to feel like to drop in is to ease your way into it by practicing
fakie tail stalls, starting low in the ramp and then working your way to doing them
up on top of the coping. It might not make total sense why this would
be easier at first, but essentially what it boils down to is when you do a fakie tail
stall, you’re doing a reverse drop in followed by a drop in, so you already know what the
reverse of the motion you’re trying to do feels like, and then on top of that, you’re
keeping your body weight on the inside of the ramp so you don’t have to worry about
committing to leaning forward. So that makes it a lot easier to wrap your
head around what it’s going to feel like when you’re coming back in. Number twelve is another mini ramp habit,
and it occurs when you do tricks that are supposed to involve rocking your board over
the coping like this, but by just barely setting your trucks over the edge instead. For tricks like the rock to fakie and the
rock n’ roll, take the time to develop the motion enough to be able to set the middle
part of the board on the coping, and rock your board forward so that your wheels touch
down on the deck. It might be a little harder to do your tricks
this way at first, but the extra style points that you get from it are more than worth the
added effort. Alright, so let’s move on to number thirteen
which involves doing runs in the mini ramp that only consist of the same one or two tricks
over and over again until you’re blue in the face. Now, it’s perfectly OK to do this when you’re
just getting the hang of pumping back and forth on a half pipe, but if you really want
to add some style to your runs, make sure to keep learning new tricks so that you don’t
have to repeat yourself as often. If you’d be interested in a big list of easy
to learn mini ramp tricks, you can check out my video on that topic, which I’ll put a link
to right at the end of this one. Now, let’s talk about number fourteen, which
is not knowing how to fall gracefully. One of the most useful things you’ll learn
as you improve at skateboarding is learning how to fall down without getting hurt. If you’re a beginner, you may want to spend
some time practicing what it feels like to fall from a little bit of a height so that
when it happens during a skate session, which it will, you’ll have already developed the
muscle memory necessary to fall in a way that keeps you from hitting your head or breaking
any bones. Alright, so finally, bad habit number fifteen
is using the terms ‘frontside’ and ‘backside’ incorrectly. Unfortunately for the sport of skateboarding,
the use of these terms has evolved to have so many nuances and exceptions that learning
how to use them correctly in every case becomes fairly difficult to do. If you’re doing a trick that involves approaching
an obstacle where it’s on one particular side of you, you use one definition. But, if you’re approaching the obstacle straight
on or if you’re doing a trick that doesn’t involve an obstacle, you use another definition,
except for in the case when you’re riding in fakie stance, in which case, everything
is completely backwards. So, it does take a few minutes to explain,
but it is information worth knowing, and once again, you can click the link that I’ll put
at the end of the video for the full breakdown. Alright, so after hearing everything on the
list, I’m sure you can probably tell that most of this stuff will just come to you naturally
as long as you’re spending some time skating on a fairly regular basis. So, if nothing else, I hope this video at least
gave you some motivation to go out and do some skating, when you do get new clips, make
sure to tag them on Instagram with the hashtag #nsiskateboarding so I can easily find them
and share them with the rest of the community, and lastly, never stop improving.

100 thoughts on “15 Things That Make You Look Like A Beginner Skater (And How Not To)

  1. I asked my mom if she could drive me to the skate park one day. i'm just hoping that no one else will be there. but im trying to not care about what people think of me.

  2. So are we not gonna talk about the fact that the person teaching you how to not lokke like a beginner is wearing moon boots. (no offense btw)

  3. How things have changed. BITD (mid 80s to early 90s) the mall grab was the ONLY way to carry your board. It showed that you had a real deck and the artwork was beautiful. Guys who carried sideways always had the bottom facing in so you couldn't see that their cheap-ass parents bought them a cheapie board. Also, if someone ran up on you, it was the best way to hold the board to crack them in the head with it. They'd go down and you could make them read these Nikes. We also ran deck rails not only to protect the artwork (are you seriously going to scratch off the hot chick on the Salba Witch Doctor deck?) but to slide better. Wax obstacles? No way, spend your money on better bearings.

  4. Thing about skateboarding is that you can be from any walk of life and the only thing that matters is that you enjoy skateboarding. This is what makes skateboarding so great.

  5. im so close to a ollie on concrete, im improving to get it higher on grass, once i can kickflip, im going to start going to th skatepark

  6. Haha awesome video. I'm trying to learn so I can teach my 6 yr old son. I don't really ever care about looking stupid (see my YouTube videos for proof lol) … BUT my son is easily embarrassed and just wants to hurry and be good. It's nice to see these videos and watch them with him.

  7. my problem is i’m literally terrified to skate alone but i have no one to skate with. i want to improve so bad but i can never get the guts to practice

  8. Everybody’s gotta start somewhere 🤷🏽‍♂️ I’m 21 and I can barely land a kickflip but practice makes perfect

  9. my first (and current board) is from a thrift shop, it looks like I practice a lot even though I just started taking it serious today

  10. Am I the only one that actully prefers the mongo over the regular/goofy way? Or am I just wrong and should do it in the regular/goofy way. Thank in advance

  11. I think with the lingo it can go either way, I was tought goofy footed but I know how to skate pretty well like that, but I could see how it could come off as awkward to some people

  12. Theres absolutely no point knowing this stuff if you suck at skating. You might carry your board like a pro but everyone will know the difference as soon as you get on it.

  13. I’m 16 and i want to learn how to skate but you guys think I’m to old for learning? Like I’m a going to look like an idiot 😂

  14. If you look like your new to skating you will get lots of support from other skaters who cares what people think

  15. i honestly don't care if people think I'm a beginner. Just enjoy yourself and stop caring what people think

  16. Ive been pushing mongo since I started riding back in 1994..Im almost 40 and its never been a problem for me, steering or anything else. Its just always been comfortable to me that way, I think a lot of these stigmas come from todays "Sponsor me" kids. I grew up skating in the skate punk community and no one gave a shit how you looked when you rode. And I still feel that way today. Just have fun and dont care what others think!!

  17. Tip: if you don’t want to break bones or sprain your ankles, GO FAST. Learn all your tricks going fast. This requires you to learn how to fall correctly (rolling back up to being on your feet), but in the long run, your weight won’t be coming straight down but always forward. This means less gravity pulling on your ankles and knees and shins toward the center of the earth and more force pulling you diagonal and therefore into a slide or roll when you fall (fail).
    You will end up with more road rash but that’s better than being out for four months as your muscles waste away in a cast.
    Tip #2: if you do end up in a cast, take a supplement called Glutamine EVERY DAY. It limits muscle wasting (why your arm gets skinny in a cast) and maintains the strength of unused muscles (you’ll keep your muscle memory AND your muscles after your cast is removed!).

    Tip #3: Go fast. Get some good bearings (Bones Swiss are always a favorite staple). Go fast. Shred around and learn how to get the most out of your pushes. Go fast. It’s more fun and you feel all burly with the wind in your face roaring in your ears. Go fast. A skateboard is a toy. Never forget that. It’s meant to be a fun thing to play with. Soooooooooooooooooo
    GO FAST!

  18. I have been skating since I was a teenager and I have always rode "mongo". I am goofy footed but right leg dominate on some things like pushing off. I also throw with my left hand but bat righty in baseball, I'm kinda weird like that.

  19. When i was a kid, back in 90s, if you went to skate park and weren't good other people (who aren't riding the same sport) would give you so much shit. But now I go w my young brother and everyone is so nice and helpful. A bmxer stopped my skateboard the otherday and I was shocked. My days it would've been thrown or maybe even broke.

  20. 6:00 isn't even true. It all depends if your making a video. But if u trying a trick and that happens. Better believe it's counted but doing it twice is more important then realigning the board.

  21. Do u have to be at a skatepark to skate because I’m really awkward and my mom won’t let me go to the skatepark on my own and I’m 13 😫😤 makes me mad. Should I start skating I tried once when I was like 6 but I got a crappy board and I could be better now

  22. I was at a skatepark and this little kid had asked me “did you just start or something” and I’m like “…. I’m not a beginner but I’m getting back into skateboarding” I was so speechless because it was obvious I haven’t skateboarded in 3-4 years :((

  23. I stopped at mall grab. There's seriously stigma with certain ways to carry your board? Is the skate scene really this lame nowadays?

    Here's all the beginner advice you really need:
    1. Progress at your own pace.
    2. It's ok to pad up especially when starting and learning gnarly stuff.
    3. Don't snake.
    4. Have fun.
    5. Ignore losers that tell you how to carry your board.

  24. what a ridiculous video and human for posting it. skateboards are made for fun! do WHATEVER you like with one – that's what keeps us unique and not like sheep. i skate better than this dude, push mongo and carry my board however the hell i like, because i have far more important things to care about. I don't know why Youtube recommended this crap, but while i'm here i'll join the other 1,200+ viewers with a big ol thumbs DOWN.

  25. this is really great for newer skaters, im still pretty bad but all these tips are incredibly accurate to at least get a good starting point. happy skating

  26. If this helped you, like this comment- if this didn’t because you are not a big bigger, like if u thought it helped others, and comment if you want a helpful pro video! Thank you!

  27. tf why would you want to just fit in everywhere? what’s wrong with looking like a beginner when being a beginner? It’s mich more embarrassing to make videos about how to look cooler when carrying a skateboard than just carrying your skateboard at the trucks. Have fun you won’t make a living out of it most probably so enjoy

  28. There nothing wrong with pushing mogo. Being a lefty its the way i learned even tho im able to push eitger way. But when done properly mongo can be just as effective as regular pushing.

  29. Mongo is a way to push, like be goofy or regular.. I don't think is right to correct. The pro surfer Clay Marzo is mongo for example.. There are even some pro skaters that keep mongo.

  30. I've skated mongo since I was 12 or so, the only difference being my dominant foot is in the middle of the deck as I push, then I move it back once I have enough speed. It was just more comfortable to me for some reason.

    Haven't actually skated in a nearly a decade, though. I was more of a technical skater than rails or flip tricks.

  31. Nr1: Who cares how you hold your board, when somebody calls you out, learn how to double treflip over their poser faces.
    Nr3: Pros and long practicing skateboarders start with their front food sideways and don't turn them at all. with enough balance and muscel their is much mor controll that way.
    Nr7: Doesn't matter if you don't need the speed. especially for tech.
    Nr10: Seen skaters who would skate your face off and still don't do a lot of grind tricks (Freestylers for example) so who cares.

  32. Just asking, is "pushing mongo" going to make learning tricks and riding on a skateboard harder, even if you feel comfortable doing it?

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