Frontflip looks like a very hard trick to many people, but believe it, it's not! If you are comfortable with the basics, and can do nice 360 ̵...
Frontflip looks like a very hard trick to many people, but believe it, it's not! If you are comfortable with the basics, and can do nice 360 – and if you can do small airs, flips are no problem for you!
Start visualize yourself doing the trick. Going up backwards – and then doing a flip. If you got the idea of how you should turn, then gor for it! Doing a frontflip is only about 4 things – your position in the ramp, the speed at which you turn, letting go, and landing. Got it? Ok, I will try to explain the four things.
First off, you have to have a decent bit of height to land a flip. If your ramp has a couple of feet of vert, you will want to be at around the height of the coping before you try it. If you are any lower you will have to push out as well as turn, and that will only lead to problems as your speed varies. (Ie- you have to push out hard if you are trying one low, as opposed to pushing out none if you are high. The mechanics are much easier if you are higher because you only have to worry about rotation.) My best advice is to go back and forth a few times to get the blood flowing, and do a frontside stall on the coping. Drop back in backwards, making sure to pump hard on the way down, and prepare to flip.
Now you are going up the ramp backwards, facing forwards, and saying your favorite prayer very fast. Dont worry.. You can do this! Hopefully your stance was firm enough going up backwards that you don't drift in the direction of the coping—You'll may land flat against the ramp when you are done, or worse hit your head at the bottom of the rotation. Just remember to go up like a normal fakie air and you will be fine. So as you feel your speed staring to taper off, (about a foot or so away from your max height) throw your arms and cheast forwards until they hit your legs. Grab tight and spin hard and fast.
Your body will naturally know when to unravel from the spin, so trust your gut instinct when it tells you I've spun enough. It may take you a fall or two to get the feel of the timing involved with it, but then again how many times did you fall when learning 360's?! Its an easy trick, but not that easy! To unravel, just let go and push your body apart as hard as you threw it into a ball. The idea behind this is to stop your rotation when you have completed a flip, and have your body in position to drop back in the ramp again. Again, its tricky, but you have to trust your instincts.
Finally, you have to land this trick. Since you have stalled out at the top after doing your flip and are starting to go face first downward, you need to react quickly to try and pull this out. The first thing you need to do is establish contact with the ramp. If you haven't done so yet, push your legs back until they hit the ramp. Hopefully they do touch the ramp, but if they don't, pull them back in because you are going to fall! Seriously, as long as your feet are touching the ramp, you should be able to pull out a landing.
Still can't make the flip, this tips might help you: The first few times you try a flip, you are going to be disoriented. After all, your body is spinning on an axis it isn't used to! Having a friend handy to trouble-shoot is key to solving any problems that you have learning. There are only a few problems to watch out for.
Make sure you are spinning forwards, and not turning along any other axis. If you are, you will land sideways and slide out of it. To remedy this problem, concentrate on sticking your head between your legs when you spin. Another main problem is allowing yourself to drift towards the coping when you spin. When this happens mildly, you will end up landing on your heels and your back may be pressed against the vertical section of the ramp. When this happens majorly, you will hit your head on the bottom section of the spin and maybe even again when your body slams against the vert section. To solve this problem, make sure you have enough height to do this trick, and also that you are keeping your stance firm enough so that if you just went up fakie and came back in forwards you would have no problem. The final major problem would be if you are pushing out of the ramp. The symptoms of this are easy—You keep spinning and land away from the transition hard on your face. (Ive had the displeasure of this experience once) If you do it, you know it—And remember not to push off with your toes when you flip again!
Written by Anders Toxboe on August 4, 2003