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How To

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Here are some tips to try.


1. Carving - While you won't usually carve to a complete stop, carving is one of the best ways to control your speed. Carving is basically making wide turns from one side of the street to the other. The sharper and wider the carves, the more they slow you down. It's usually the first thing you learn how to do longboarding.

2. Sliding - Sliding, while the hardest method to learn, is generally thought of as the most effective and safest way to stop. The most common type of slide is called the Coleman or Bert Slide. There will be an entire article dedicated to sliding very soon. In the meantime, watch some sliding videos by Shnitzsels here or here. They are huge downloads (22mb) but worth it.

3. Speedbraking - Once you are going fast enough-25mph plus, standing up straight with your arms out offers enough wind resistance to keep you from speeding up any more, and will actually slow you down some.

4. Footbraking -This is probably the easiest and most commonly used method of stopping. The advantages to this method are that it is easy to learn-you simply take your back foot off, place it lightly (at first) on the ground parallel to the board and slide either the entire shoe starting with the front half of your foot (from the ball of your foot your toes.) then lowering your heel to the ground. Some longboarders crouch down and hold the front or sides of the board for added stability. The downside it that you'll trash your shoes pretty quickly dragging them along the pavement at 20mph.

5. Rolling into the grass -This method falls under the less recommended methods for stopping. While rolling off into the grass is better than running it off, it is still risky. There is still a good chance that your board will get caught on something in the grass and come to a quick stop, in which case you could quickly find yourself digging for earthworms with your nose.

6. Running it off - Jumping off the board and running seems to be the first reaction of a new longboarder who finds himself or herself in a situation where they are going faster than they feel comfortable. The major problem with running off a board is that it is very easy to under-estimate how fast you are going and over-estimate how fast you can run. This is a a quick way to find yourself falling forward and sliding on the concrete. Do not attempt to jump off and run unless it is absolutely your last option (and it rarely will be).

7. Skidding - On a board with a kicktail, sometimes it is possible to push the back end of the board to the ground (raising the front wheels) and use the friction between the board and the road to stop. Many riders feel uncomfortable lifting the front wheels off the ground at high speeds and unless you have a tailguard, the pavement will quickly chew away the end of your board. This is a less-common stopping method on a longboard.

8. Riding it out - Unless you have a good reason to stop very quickly, this is often the best way to handle speed. Often when people end up falling off their board it isn't necessarily because there is an obstacle or because they are wobbling badly (or if they are wobbling it's because they've tensed up), it's simply because they are nervous going as fast as they are. Hopefully before you attempt any hill, you have already scoped it out and made sure you know where the run ends. Usually, you'll be able to stay on your board until the road flattens out some and you can put your foot down to stop or just roll to a stop. Downhill skateboarding is largely a mental exercise-if you don't let fear get the best of you, chances are you won't fall.

9. Brakes - There are a few companies who now make skateboard trucks with brakes. Silverfish Longboarding is in the process of obtaining a some of these for testing, but in the meantime, we refer you to this review of the brakeboard trucks and these websites. - hand activated disc brakes for skateboards. - foot activated brakes for skateboards.

A note about safety gear. Before you get going fast enough to need to worry about stopping-put on a helmet (at the bare minimum).

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