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Progression in Longboarding: The Next Step

Ryan Lee cruiser board downhill freeride how to kicktails long boards Longboard longboard safety gear longboarder longboarders longboarding longboards street slashing

Progression: Things to do.

So, you’ve learned to cruise. You can turn well, you can carve hard and you can outskate that one poser group of pintailers that sits outside your coffee shop mid-week in the summer. You can get out the door, hop on your board and be at your destination quickly and efficiently, and pushing feels as natural as walking or running.

You are also running out of things to do. So what now? Well, at this point in your longboarding career, there are many things you can do. This is when you can start splitting off into the more extreme disciplines of longboarding, and in this article, I will explore those.

  1. Street Slashing

The name is a little bit weird, but street slashing is probably the easiest style of riding to get into that is more advanced than just plain old cruising. Street slashing has a lot to do with small tricks, and incorporating these into a fluid line through downtown. For example; you may get out of work, drop down your longboard, and push hard. With this speed, you drop down from a curb onto the road and do a small 180 slide (where you pivot your board quickly), and then ride up a curb. Then you pull off a grab trick by hopping on your board from the top of some stairs. All in one smooth movement.

Street slashing is great because if you get good enough, you can totally pull off a line just going to work, since it doesn’t particularly need fancy equipment. All you need is practice and some good old patience. Here’s a video.

 

  1. Freeride

Freeride is what you call sliding. Freeride requires a bit of practice and fancy equipment like slide pucks, but with practice, you can build up a quiver of around 3 slides pretty easily. Plus, you can learn how to stop without using your feet! You can slide to a stop. This is probably the first thing that most professional longboarders get into, and it’s extremely flashy and impressive. Once you learn to freeride, you can meld into any longboarding community quite easily, and it is extremely easy to progress once you have one or two basic slides.

Also, freeride-specific skating events are called “slide jams”.

  1. Downhill

Ah, yes. The ultimate form of longboarding that requires freeride skills, slashing skills and just general skating mastery. This is where people reach speeds of 80 km/h, doing long slides and drifts around corners. However, downhill starts off being something that many people fall in love with. In a previous article, I said that I fell in love with longboarding through a shallow downhill run. Many races are shallow downhill runs, and so you don’t need to be extremely fast and fluent in order to enjoy downhill.

Magneto longboards come with grippy, giant wheels with scrubbable urethane, so your complete Magneto longboard is able to perform all three of these styles out of the box.



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  • Ryan L on

    @Tommy Strefford

    For wheels, really if you scrub wheels (Do a first few slides on them), any wheel is good for sliding. However, learning on some low-durometer street-skating wheels will help you get your form. That’s what I did.

    There are some great wheels out there for sliding though depending on where you’re from.

  • Tommy Strefford on

    For an intermediate longboarder, learning to slide, what kind of wheels are needed for a beginner slider? And what size? Is there a difference between expensive slide wheels and cheap slide wheels?


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