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Getting Started in Skateboarding

Keith Baldassare, 15, wants to make you a better skateboarder. And he has the skills to do it. In September 2008, Keith broke the Guiness World Record of 46 consecutive skateboard frontside ollies on a half-pipe. Keith’s amazing final tally: 348 ollies.

With a few ramps in his backyard, he has a great spot to practice right at home, which he does almost every day. Except that Keith doesn’t call it practicing.

“It’s just having a good time with my friends, being creative, doing whatever we want skating.”

Here are some skateboarding tips from Keith:

TIP 1: LEARN HOW TO FALL

It’s a fact, Keith says. “Be prepared for falls when you’re starting.” That’s why it’s important to learn the right way to take a tumble.

If the fall is too big for you to just land on your feet: Use your feet for a second as a stepping point. Tuck up into a ball (something like a skier’s tuck position), and then tumble and roll onto your shoulder.

And, Keith adds, always wear safety gear!


TIP 2: LEARN HOW TO DROP IN ON A RAMP

Start with the tail of your board on the edge of a ramp. Next, push down with the front foot and stay centered over the skateboard.


TIP 3: LEARN HOW TO OLLIE

You’ll be airborne for this trick, which can be done on either a flat surface or on a ramp.

Kick down on the tail of the skateboard and then level out the board by sliding your front foot forward. Think of it as sort of a jumping motion with the board “glued” to your feet.

This will take lots of practice. But once you master the ollie, you’ll have the foundation for many other tricks.

Find out more about skateboarding basics in the February 2011 issue of Boys’ Life magazine.

155 Comments on Getting Started in Skateboarding

  1. skateboarder // March 28, 2011 at 1:55 pm // Reply

    if you do an ollie cant you do any trick?

  2. Awesome!!!

  3. i havn’t done any tricks yet but i’m not bad. And unlike the video i have no pads.mayby i’ll get some for my birthday!

  4. skatedaddy // March 4, 2011 at 8:22 am // Reply

    iam advaced i do nollies kick flips and even a frontside noseblint revert

  5. FIRST I’M DOING OLLIE!!!

  6. Awesome once I get my mom to give me a skate bord I will be soo ready

  7. i love the video but i still need help with the ollie

  8. this is good advice thanks

  9. It took me like 20 times to do an ollie.But i kept trying and i finally did it.remeber,hard work always pays off

  10. I HAVEN’T DID ANY TRICKS ON MY SKATEBOARD YET!.

  11. I KNOW HOW TO SKATE BUT THAT WAS COOL!

  12. you bet he is

  13. skate master28 // February 7, 2011 at 9:38 pm // Reply

    skateboarding is one of the best sports in the world love it!!!i learned the ollie

  14. Guys, you may not acomplish your goals fast, but you will get it soon, because I could’nt get to 360 flip for a while, but I did not give up.-DONT GIVE UP!

  15. I love skating and this is so cool. but I can’t do an olly yet.
    I have lots of skating friends.

  16. i have landed the ollie and also the kick flip at 10

    • i learned how to ollie,360 kickflip,and360 grind so kool thanks keith

      • Skateordie // April 6, 2011 at 4:21 pm //

        I ride a birdhouse and 2 world indistries. I can do an ollie,nollie,kickflip,heelflip,shovit,360shovit,180,and frontside 180 shovit,tell me sum tips to go pro please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  17. i have a birdhouse sb. its built for speed, not tricks

  18. sk8in freako // February 1, 2011 at 4:44 pm // Reply

    buy your protective gear

  19. i learnded how to do that when i was 7 i am serious

    • carzy skater // February 16, 2011 at 1:09 pm // Reply

      nice i starded skating last year and can do an olli and no how to do a kickflip but cant stick the landing and i also no how to drop in

  20. I have been skating for a while and I can now Ollie, 50-50, and Ollie off a curb. If u need a deck, just ask around for a local skate shop. Once you get there, find a board u like. BUT I warn u- decks are NOT going to cost you at least under a hundred dollars. If you have a board from Target that was $30, u aren’t skating.

  21. Sk8ting is God’s way of saying “I love humans.”

  22. easy

  23. dont count on doing it that fast, it takes a while.

  24. GOD BLESS SKATEBOARDING!!!

  25. paintball boy 75 // January 29, 2011 at 1:17 pm // Reply

    I JUST LEARND HOW TO DO AN ollie!!!!!

  26. ollie master // January 29, 2011 at 9:36 am // Reply

    its not as simple as u think kids

  27. Skateboarding is the best sport in the universe!!!!!!

  28. thats cool yeah can you give me some tips to get a board in houston

  29. Newbe skater // January 26, 2011 at 8:01 pm // Reply

    Could ya give me some tips on where to get a board

  30. Newbe skater // January 26, 2011 at 7:56 pm // Reply

    Love it!!! Could you do a video on a cupl of others?

  31. cool

  32. i still cant do it /:

  33. wow he can do the loop! thats awesome!!!

  34. wow i have been trying to ollie thnx

  35. that is boring

  36. nice to read

  37. guys, when u start dont count on doing an ollie that high because you wont be able to do that for a long while

  38. just got back from a 2 and a half hour sk8 session! wiped out! i love skateboarding, have won 1st place in comps at my skatepark, and i am 10 going up against adults and awesome teens! anyways, everyone keep skating and be consistant to make your way up to the big leagues. :)

  39. that was asome

  40. hu dose u sponser

  41. cool make some more

  42. these are not real tips i can do all these things and its not as simple as they made it sound

  43. This really helps right i mean im still doing it really helps

  44. Keith is a great kid – we have known him for years and he has always been one of those kids you just have to stop and watch – congrats Keith

  45. wow i love skateboarding but i was missing the basic foundation. i leaned alot thnx

  46. cool i have been trying to do an ollie for a long time this should help

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