How to slow down and stop on a skateboard

July 22, 2020 | Skateboarding
Skateboarding: beginner skater must know how to slow down and stop on a skateboard before everything else | Photo: Shutterstock

A skateboard can reach high speeds. Therefore, it's essential to know how to slow it down or even stop it before a disaster occurs.

One of the first things beginner skaters learn when riding a skateboard for the first time is to find their balance on the deck and push off to gain speed.

When they finally get it, they tend to gain extra confidence and somehow lose the ability to deal with unexpected and potentially tragic situations.

A longboard skateboard is able to reach 90 miles per hour (145 kilometers per hour) on a steep mountain road.

As a result, it could be a deadly weapon in the hands of someone who simply doesn't know how to stop it before it's too late.

Learning to put the brakes skateboard is paramount and should always be a top priority when getting into the sport.

There are many techniques to slow down and stop a skateboard.

Remember that high speeds can be reached on flat grounds and windy days, so you don't necessarily need a steep hillside or street to go too fast and get hurt.

Longboard skateboards: riders often combine put their front hand down on the ground and perform powerslides to reduce speed | Photo: Shutterstock

The Most Popular Braking Technique

The first skateboard braking technique you need to master is the back-foot deceleration technique. Here's how to perform it:

1. Find a medium to large-sized hill;

2. Start going down the road or street;

3. Slightly lower your riding stance;

4. Take your back foot off your board and skid it alongside the ground, leaving your lead foot on the front;

5. Add extra pressure to your back-foot for quicker stops;

Remember to use your front foot to help balance and guide where the board is going.

Skateboarding's fundamental stopping technique takes practice, and you're advised to wear a helmet while training it.

The good news is that once you get it done, it's relatively easy to take your foot off and drag it wherever you go once.

Once you get comfortable with riding down hills and knowing how to slow your board down, you can proceed to power slides.

One of the problems with this braking technique is that you'll ruin the sole of your shoes really fast.

Whenever you feel unsafe, jump off the skateboard before reaching uncontrollable speeds.

The Frontside Powerslide

As you get more acquainted with skating, you definitely need to learn the frontside powerslide.

Not only is it a cool trick, but it won't ruin your shoes or deck either.

Yes, your wheels will gradually get smaller, but it's one of the best ways of stopping a high-speed skateboard.

The trick is to turn the board from a vertical to a horizontal position and then slide your wheels across the ground.

Here's how to do the frontside powerslide:

1. Gain speed;

2. Bend your knees and get ready to slide;

3. With your back foot on the board's tail, apply pressure to your toes;

4. Keep your front foot near the nose of the board, on the opposite side of the truck, and put weight onto the whole sole;

5. Maintain your body on the center of the skateboard;

6. Apply pressure on the front foot and use it as a turning axis;

7. Push the tail of the board forward with your back foot's toe;

8. To avoiding losing balance, keep your head above the board;

Remember that if your weight goes forward too much, the skateboard may stack on the ground, causing it to stop suddenly.

Never try the frontside powerslide for the first time on a downhill. Practice it on smooth, flat grounds.

Frontside powerslide: one of the most common ways of stopping on skateboard | Photo: Red Bull

The Scraping Techniques

There several scraping techniques that will also help you slow down and eventually stop a skateboard.

You can use the tail of the board, your back foot's heel, or a mix of both to increase friction and drag and reduce speed.

The bluntslide is also an advanced combination between a power slide and a tail scrape but will require you to learn each maneuver individually before trying it for the first time.

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