Is longboarding hard? You’ll be surprised
Is longboarding hard? If you have a bad teacher or the wrong information, you might never be comfortable on board.
But today you’re lucky…
Today I’ll be talking about whether longboarding is difficult or not, and what can make it easier to learn. Check it out below.
Is longboarding actually hard?
Like I said above, with the wrong information or teacher, skating can seem impossible for you. If you’re not being guided right, you will end up doing the wrong things. When you ride, you will feel unstable, you won’t feel in control of the board and you won’t enjoy the experience at all. So as much as skating does look simple, it is worth looking up information so that you end up doing the right things.
Finally, you need to make sure you have the right gear. Not all skateboards and longboards are built the same. Those that have cheap components will feel terrible to skate. They won’t roll or turn at all, giving you a poor learning experience. Getting something decent will help with the experience.
How much time does it take to learn to longboard?
Learning to cruise can take anything from a day to a week depending on your skill and how physically adept you are.
Learning other things like foot braking can take anywhere from a couple of days to a few weeks. It all depends on how consistent you are with practice.
How to get good at skating quickly?
Get the right type of board
As I said earlier, cheap components can make learning to skate and skating itself quite hard. If you have plastic wheels and plastic trucks, your board likely won’t roll or turn much. Pushing will feel very difficult and if you do manage to get moving you won’t feel stable. In short, you need to get a decent, or high-quality longboard.
Finally, it’s good to make a distinction between skateboards and longboards. Skateboards are generally harder to ride especially outside of a skatepark. On average, longboards are better built of riding on asphalt and sidewalks. Longboards are bigger, have taller, softer wheels, and have wider trucks. This allows them to provide a smoother, more forgiving ride. It also allows them to be easier to push and balance on. The bigger wheels also roll over pebbles, cracks, and road imperfections with ease.
Get a good teacher
Skateboarding looks fairly easy. It’s just standing on a board and rolling right? Well yes, but it is more complicated than that. You have to balance right or the board will slip out from under you. You also have to get the right foot positioning so that you can control the board properly.
If possible, get an experienced skater to walk you through the basics. If an experienced skater is not available, the next best thing can be a video guide or an article like this one to help you.
Below, I’ve put some basics to help make learning to skate easier for you.
Ge the basics right
To get started skating, there are two key things you need to keep in check:
- Where you place your weight
- Your balance
You also want to look at where you stand on board. You typically want to stand as close to the front truck as possible. And for foot position, you want your feet to be at a 45* angle with the deck. Ideally, with your toe touching one side of the deck and your heel the other. This gives you the best control for turning left and right.
For your weight placement, you always want to focus most of it on your front foot. This will give you the best stability when leaning and turning.
If your foot position follows what I’ve suggested above, your balance should be an issue. But as a reference point, focus it on the center of your front foot.
Get protective gear
If you can afford it, some protective gear will help you gain some confidence. You won’t be worried about falling over and you can focus entirely on skateboarding.
I would recommend picking up some elbow and knee pads. A helmet would be a good addition too.
Check out the OutdoorMaster helmet here on Amazon.com. It’s an affordably priced helmet that has both the CPSC and ASTM certifications. It’s a great option for any beginner who wants a functional helmet that doesn’t cost too much.
Longboarding can be hard …
Whilst cruising is straightforward and easy, other types of longboarding can be quite difficult. For example, learning to slide or go down a hill isn’t very easy. The same can be said for freestyle and dance.
Learning to slide takes a lot of trial and error. You need to be in tune with your board and learn how to make your wheels brake traction. That said, it does come easier to some riders.
Learning to do cross-steps and various flip tricks will also take some time. Such things don’t come naturally and you’ll need a lot of muscle memory to help you adjust.
What is the easiest board to learn on?
When looking at longboards, you’ll come across all sorts. You’ll have some that have a pintail shape, a brick shape, etc. Admittedly, the shape doesn’t matter as much. What matters is how close to the ground the longboard will be. When a longboard is close to the ground, it is easier to push, foot brake with, and balance on. They are also more stable.
With that in mind, I’ve selected a few decent quality longboards that are low to the ground and that will be easy to learn. Check them out below.
Magneto Bamboo Longboard
The Magneto bamboo board comes in at 42inches in length with a width of 9inches. It’s made from bamboo and fiberglass, this combination makes it lightweight and flexible. It also comes with knock-off Paris trucks and 70mm tall wheels.
The special thing about this board is that it is drop-mounted. The trucks sit on top of the mounting holes and are connected to the hangers through a hole. This drop-mounting brings the board closer to the ground. This will make it easier to push, foot brake, and skate on this board. It is a great choice for a beginner skater. Find out more about it here on Amazon.com.
Sola bamboo board
This board has a dropdown. Instead of the trucks being mounted differently, they are mounted normally. What happens, is that the standing platform of the deck is instead lowered down. So there is a “drop” after where the trucks are mounted.
Similar to the Magneto, this gives you improved stability, easier pushing, and better foot breaking. However, it does allow the board to turn a bit better and gives you more control over the trucks. It’s one of the best beginner boards out there. Check it out here on Amazon.com.
Minority downhill board
Finally, we have the Minority downhill board. It’s similarly built and priced to the Sola above. It comes with a drop-mount too. However, it is a bit wider and longer. It comes in at 40inches in length and 10inches in width.
This is good if you want a really big board to learn with. It will be a bit slower to turn and easier to balance on.
I recommend it for bigger heavier riders, or if you have big feet. Check it out here on Amazon.com.
Your turn? Do you still think skating is hard?
Like with everything else, skateboarding is only as hard as you make it. If you have the proper tools, equipment, and guides, it becomes very easy.
If you aren’t set on a board you want to learn with, I highly recommend you pick up the Sola board above. It is both affordable and looks good. It also will be easy to learn on.