Andy Anderson: the Canadian skateboarder created a special grip tape with visual guidance for foot positioning

Why hasn't anyone thought about this yet?

Andy Anderson's Theory Map is a unique skateboard grip tape that helps skaters enhance their trick execution by providing visual markers for foot placement and board orientation.

The Canadian skateboarder developed an ingenious grip tape design for both beginners and experienced skaters, enabling them to improve their understanding and performance of various tricks.

The Theory Map surface features a directional graphic that indicates the front and back of the board, ensuring skaters maintain proper orientation.

The idea is to be particularly helpful even if skaters set up their trucks differently or ride the board backward.

The design also includes a series of white lines, circles, and other shapes that act as visual cues for foot placement during tricks, corresponding to key areas needed for flicking and popping.

Theory Map: the innovative grip tape concept by Andy Anderson | Illustration Powell Peralta

Improve Control and Balance

Andy Anderson explains that these visual markers help skaters position their feet correctly for different maneuvers, improving balance, control, and consistency.

For example, specific geometric areas are designed to facilitate stable pops for tricks like 360 shove-its, while others are optimized for flicking to ensure the board flips correctly.

One of the most interesting ones is the red magic line, which indicates the optimal area for popping the board to achieve a full flip.

One of the unique aspects of the Theory Map is the "snooze button," a small triangle area where flicking results in a slower flip.

The "snooze button" helps skaters understand the nuances of trick execution.

Additionally, the grip tape includes forward and side-sweeping lines that mark the board's concave, which is crucial for maneuvers involving rotations and flips.

Andy Anderson notes that the inspiration for the Theory Map came from his own experiences and insights into skateboarding.

After experiencing a period of depression after the Olympics, he visualized the flick lines for various tricks and mapped them out on the grip tape.

He stresses that every skateboard already has these invisible lines - the Theory Map merely makes them visible, aiding skaters in visualizing and understanding the mechanics of their tricks.

Just Like Learning Music Theory

Anderson likens this theoretical approach to music theory, where understanding the underlying principles can significantly enhance performance.

The Theory Map doesn't make skateboarding easier but provides a framework to help skaters comprehend what's happening during their rides and tricks.

Therefore, it can be particularly beneficial for those who enjoy a more theoretical approach to learning.

Anderson also encourages skaters to experiment with the lines and markers, discovering their own insights and aha moments.

Skaters can achieve greater precision in their moves, reducing the chances of mistakes and errors and increasing the consistency of successful trick landing.

The 28-year-old believes each skater will learn something new using the Theory Map, which can be tailored to their style and technique.

Words by Luís MP | Founder of

Top Stories

Why hasn't anyone thought about this yet?

Have you ever heard someone yelling, "Do a kickflip!" while passing by a skateboarder on the street? Here's absolutely everything you must know about the popular shout.

If there's one iconic heelflip that changed a skater's life forever, it's Rayssa's. Here's how a young girl's dream became more real than reality itself.

"Back to the Future" is a timeless masterpiece. Interestingly, the franchise features several famous skateboard-related appearances.