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How to Turn on a Skateboard — Top Skateboarder Tips!

How to Turn on a Skateboard — Top Skateboarder Tips!

You may have seen skateboarders doing cool tricks on the street. It looks so easy!

But, how do you even get started? Learning to turn can be one of the most intimidating things for a new skateboarder.

If you want to learn about turning, better read this blog and remember the tips on how to practice at home.


How to Turn on a Skateboard

You turn on a skateboard by leaning your feet in the direction you are trying to go and leaning the rest of your body in the opposite direction to counteract the weight. If you feel yourself falling, straighten your feet back up to regain balance or lower your body to lower the center of gravity.


Practice Your Turning at a Standstill

Skateboard Turning at a Standstill

It’s possible to practice your turning skills while you’re just standing still.

All you need is a flat surface where the wheels can’t spin. A yard or carpet will do just fine.

This lets you practice the basics of turning which is leaning your feet from one side of the board to the other.

What happens is the board will end up tilting whichever way your feet lean. As your feet move, the board will actually tilt in the same direction.

This is because there is some give between the skateboard and your trucks, which hold the wheels in place.

Since the entire board moves, it causes your body to need to counteract the change in position and you start to gain better balance.

I’ll talk about the kickturn later but this is also a great method to use for learning that technique.


Practice Turning by Leaning

Skateboard Turning by Leaning

Once you got the skills to balance when the board isn’t moving, you can start trying to turn.

Start by practicing the same thing as before, leaning your feet from one side to another.

The difference is now you’ll be combining it with pushing off with one foot. You’ll need to get some speed in order to turn so start by pushing off and, once you have both feet back on the board, start leaning.

If you find yourself falling off to one side it means that your entire body is leaning with your feet and you have no center of gravity.

You can correct it by either getting lower to the ground when you are turning or by leaning your body even more in the opposite direction when you start to turn.

Some advanced skaters will even hold on to their board while turning to help the center of gravity move where they want.

You’ll see this happen when people are competing in speed skating and some of them are so low they can use the ground to balance.


Practice Turning With the Kickturn

KickTurn on a Skateboard

You’ll notice after a while of practicing a normal turn that you can’t really turn all that fast.

One way you can change directions quickly is by learning the kickturn.

The kickturn is when you move your back foot to the bend in the board and push down slightly so that the front end lifts up.

This allows you to rest on two wheels temporarily while you shift the entire direction of the board left or right.

This allows you to change directions much faster since you aren’t really using the wheels to turn so much as using them to rest on while the entire board pivots.

It will require some practice though, so make sure that when you are learning this turn that it doesn’t take away from your overall balance.

Lifting the board up on two wheels while simultaneously shifting your weight can knock you off the board fairly easily so make sure you’re wearing protective gear when you try this one.


Adjusting Your Trucks

Adjusting Trucks on a Skateboard

You can actually make your turning harder or easier depending on how tight you screw in the trucks.

The tighter you tighten your trucks, the harder it is to turn since there will be less give between your wheels and the hardware.

Your board may also feel more rigid if you tighten up on the trucks too much.

The opposite can happen as well with loose trucks which makes turning really easy but not very stable at high speeds or over rough ground.

If you want to try loosening up your trucks so you can turn easier, start off by slowly loosening them a little at a time.

Take a ride with the new adjustments and then make further changes if you still need them.

You can even purchase different kinds of trucks that allow for more or less turning ability.


Frequently Asked Questions about How to Turn on a Skateboard


How Do You Control a Skateboard?

You control a skateboard with a combination of balance and body movements. You can use your body to turn, perform tricks, stop, and more. Balance is what will keep you on the skateboard while controlling it.


How Do You Powerslide on a Skateboard?

To powerslide, you need to go fast on your board and simultaneously push your back foot forward while leaning your body slightly back towards your front foot. The momentum will cause your board to turn 90 degrees, where you’ll need to push evenly with both feet until the momentum slows. Then, reverse the steps to get out of the position.


Turning on a Skateboard

You can turn on a skateboard fairly easily with more practice. Remember to take it slow by starting on solid ground and eventually graduating to a moving position.

You can even learn some more advanced turning techniques like the kickturn to really get where you want to go.