The complete list of wave and flatland skimboarding tricks

Skimboarding: wave and flatland skimboarding tricks were inspired in surfing and skateboarding maneuvers | Photo: Shutterstock

The list of skimboarding tricks is quite long and rich. Explore the sport's fundamental maneuvers.

Skimboarding is an exciting sport that can be practiced in the waves and on a flat surface with a thin layer of water.

Throughout its evolution, skimming took inspiration from surfing and skateboarding to adopt and create its collection of tricks and maneuvers.

Whether a rider is sliding across wet sand toward an incoming wave or gliding across an inland skimboarding pool toward a ramp, rail or box, there are always more or less complex tricks involved.

Discover the most popular beginner, intermediate and advanced skimboarding tricks.


The 360 is a full rotation performed while sliding across the water or wet sand or surface.

The rider jumps on the skimboard, bends over, and then puts the back hand in the water or beach, creating drag.

The board will start to spin. An experienced skimboard can initiate the rotation using not the hand but the body's momentum to spin 360 degrees.


The aerial is a maneuver where the rider gains speed and then launches off the top of a wave into the air while keeping the board under the feet before landing it on the wave or the whitewater.

Depending on the body position in relation to the wave, the skimboarder could be pulling off a frontside or backside air.

Backside Big Spin

The backside big spin combines a 360 shove-it with a backside 180 body varial.

The rider may drag the back hand in the water to start turning before doing the shove-it. In the end, the skimmer's back foot will be moving forward in a fakie stance.

Body Varial

The body varial isn't exactly a spin because the board isn't spinning, but it does involve rotating the rider's body.

It is performed while riding at medium speed and when the skimboarder feels comfortable switching stance.

The rider jumps in the air and spins the body, so he or she is facing the other way. The board remains in the same position.


The butter is a clean swivel performed over an entire rail.

Fire Hydrant

The fire hydrant is an exotic trick in which the skimboard slides fast across the wet sand, puts the hand on the nose of the board, and then lifts the front leg up.

In the end, the skimboarder will be traveling supported by the front hand and the back foot, kicking the front leg out behind him.

The trick resembles a dog peeing.


The floater is one of the several surfing tricks that were ported to skimboarding.

The skimboarder rides toward the top, breaking part of the wave, and then jumps down toward the flats or whitewater.

Frontside Big Spin

The frontside big spin combines a frontside 360 shove-it and a frontside body varial 180.

It basically gets the skimboard spinning 360 degrees while the rider's body switches stance.

The grab: a wave skimboarding technique | Photo: Shutterstock


The grab is when the skimmer grabs the board with one hand while in the air.

There are many grab variations of varying difficulty.

The kick-out or flyaway: a flashy exit strategy for wave skimboarders | Photo: Shutterstock


The kick-out/flyaway is an exit strategy that consists of launching yourself straight off the top of a wave at full speed while simultaneously flicking the board forward with the front foot.

The skimboard will shoot up into the air, and the rider will fall on the back of the wave.


The kickflip is a skateboarding trick where the board turns 360 degrees in a sideways motion and not in a horizontal spin.

In other words, the skimboard will actually flip around, rotating along the rail's edge.


A liner, also known as a down-the-line, sees the skimboarder riding a wave parallel to the beach.

In a backside liner, the rider goes along the wave with his back to the wave and the chest facing the beach.

In a frontside liner, the skimmer is going along, facing the wave with the back to the beach.

No Comply

The no comply is a trick where the rider gets sliding across wet sand and then steps off with the front foot and onto the ground as if he's getting off the board.

As he steps off, he uses his front foot to spin the board around, either 180 or 360 degrees.

The skimboard will spin under the back foot, which just hovers over it while it spins and the front foot is on the ground.

As the board swings back into position, the ride will land first with the back foot and then brings the front one back onto the board - and off he goes.


The ollie is a skateboarding maneuver where the rider pops the board's tail with the back foot to get it into the air.

In skimboarding, the technique is similar. The skimboarder pushes down with his back foot to lift up the board.

At the same time, the rider should jump and stay clear of the board.

Pop Shove-It

The pop shove-it is a skateboarding trick that can also be performed on a skimboard.

To do it, the rider runs, throws the board, jumps on it, and then pops it like in a normal ollie. As the skimboard gets to the air, the skimmer flicks it backward with the back foot and jumps.

As the board completes the rotation, the rider traps it in the air and lands it.


The pretzel is a rail trick where the rider winds the torso in the opposite direction of the traveling board.

The goal is to bring the tail around sideways as if performing a boardslide. As the board swings to the side, the skimboarder starts winding the torso back in the other direction.

This will start a rotation to bring the skimboard back around, but this time, the rider will come all the way around.

When the skimmer rides out, he should be facing the opposite way that he started.

Sex Change

The sex change combines the shove-it and the body varial. The rider jumps and flicks the board to spin it underneath him.

Once in the air, the skimmer flips the body around, so he is facing the other direction. When about to land, the skimboarder should be riding switch.


The shifty is a tweaked ollie where the skimmer uses the hips to swing the board around to the other side as far as possible and then brings it back, facing the right way again.

The rider keeps the rest of the body facing the direction he's skimming.

Shoot the Duck

The shoot the duck is a fun trick where the rider gets a good speed going, squats down, and puts the back hand down on the board.

Then, the skimmer sticks his leg out as straight and far as he can and grabs it like he's grabbing a gun and he's about to duck.

Superman or Double Grab

The superman or double grab is when the skimboarder launches himself high in the air and then bends and grabs the board with both hands, swings it out from under him, brings it back under both feet, lands back on the wave, and rides it out.

Widdly/Westy Loop

The widdly, also known as the westy loop, is a combination of a flip, an aerial, and a grab.

The skimboarder hits the lip of a wave, launches off, flips the body upside down while holding the board under both feet, and lands it.


The wrap: a fundamental wave skimboarding trick | Photo: Shutterstock

The wrap is one of the most important tricks in wave skimboarding.

The maneuver allows the rider to skim toward the ocean and then turn off the wave and come back toward the point where he started his run.

Depending on the original position in relation to the wave, the skimboarder can perform frontside or backside wraps.

Have we missed a skimboarding trick? Send us an email.