If you wish to learn longboarding, you first need to know the proper stance. The stance is the way how you position your feet on your longboard and your whole body as a whole when you start to ride. The posture that you do on your board is what you call a stance. Your stances will depend on some factors. The stances you’ll make will be different from time to time depends on what you do, for example, if you are turning or carving, if you are foot braking or pushing, or even if you speeding downhill, performing tasks, or sliding.
Your stance can also be determined with the direction of your hips and shoulders, on how you lean your torso and even with the amount for bending of your knees. Just like riders, if you are able to know your right posture, you will also achieve your desired riding styles and techniques.
First on the list is the footedness and longboard stance. This stance is about the way of position where your body is perpendicular to the direction of your longboard’s movement that one of your foot leads the other when you are riding. Footedness refers to the natural dominance of your right or left foot, meaning it is equivalent to you being left-handed or right-handed. With this, you will use your dominant foot in the back where it does most of the steering. The pivot foot is always the one that gives the control and precision onto your longboard.
Your back foot will dominate the other, which is why you will be using your other foot to provide balance and direction to your front foot. The regular stance is the very first stance you are about to learn where you stand in the longboard with left foot forward in the direction you will be going. The goofy stance is the next one. You must learn where you will be standing on your board using your right foot forward.
In order to know your stance, there are actually 2 methods you can try. You can try moving or even kicking something using your foot. With that, the foot you will place on the back of your longboard will be the one you have used. You can try both the regular stance and the goofy stance so you could see or feel what stance is right for you. The stance for you will depend on your internal balance and also the power of your right leg versus your left leg.
Another stance you can learn is the cruising longboard stance. Before trying this, make sure you already know if you are a regular rider or a goofy rider. When you wanted to ride around in a very relaxing way at a slow to moderate speed, then you might as well learn this stance. In terms of foot placement, you must position your feet a bit wider than your shoulders width, with an equal distance from the back trucks and the front. About the knees, if you’re cruising around, you just only need to bend a little for you to control your balance. Regarding your body, you can just slightly rotate them facing forward. Your torso should not lean backward or forward with this stance. In short, it should usually be neutral. But you can do the leaning forward and bending the knees when if you will go over a crack or bump so your balance will be secured.
Next, the stance of pushing the board. With this stance, you will be using your dominant foot to push while the front foot is doing the balancing and the steering. Some riders do the reverse type, where the foot in front will be the one pushing. You can try both but it is better to do which is more comfortable for you.
Focusing on the back foot to push, you will then be squatting down on your front leg. This requires you to bend your front knee so you could get your back-foot back which is basically hanging off of your board. The knee you use for pushing is also a bit bent for more control and power. Since both your feet are parallel to the deck, your hips and shoulders should always be positioned facing straight forward to the direction of your longboard’s movement. With this stance, you will have to lean your torso on a forward direction of motion.
Another stance is the foot breaking stance. The stance is similar to the pushing stance. You would have to balance by using your front leg, where that leg should be pointing towards your board’s nose. Of course, your body should be facing forward fully. The thing you should do is to squat down a bit so you could be able to put the back foot lower to the ground to be parallel to your standing foot. But with this stance, you will brush your foot against the ground instead of pushing it using your middle foot and back heel. Afterward, you must be lifting your toes up a bit for you to avoid any crack.
The next one is the carving longboard stance. This is a stance that is all about revolving around while snaking turns whether you shed speed or to even gaining speed. This is considered as a technical riding style which hugely dependent on finding your right stance. With this stance, you will probably do a constant shift of your weight between your heels and your toes since this stance is all about making continuous turns. In a Carving stance your back and front foot are both required to be placed in a position where it is perpendicular across your board. The knees will be alternatingly flexing and straightening before and after one carve or turn.
The goal will be to lower the center of gravity and compress it into the carve and after pop it up and then decompress on the exit, where the maximum energy is being transferred into your longboard. The rotating you made with your head, shoulders, hips, and ankles initiates each carves. The upper body should continuously rotate into the direction of every consecutive turn you are targeting. These successive turns will require you to generally lean forward to secure your balance all throughout.
The next one is speed stance can also be called a tuck. This stance is a special one. It is for speed riding. Tucking is about how you position your body, which helps in minimizing the resistance of the wind and maximizing the stability of your speed. In this stance, your front foot should be placed in a slight angle with the deck, and your back foot is in parallel with the front, with a foot’s length distance behind the front. For easy frontide turning, you should make sure that your toes sit close to the board’s edge.
With most of your weight being onto your front leg, you should bend your knee in about 90. Turn on a forward position fully towards the nose of your board, face your hips always forward, which you stretch your front hip in order to allow your back knee to be tucked under the front knee. Position your torso in a forward direction which is almost faced horizontal, with your chest leaning contrary to your front thigh for the least wind surface. Be sure to tuck your arms behind your back.
Again, another stance is what we call the freestyle longboard stance. This kind of stance have very diverse tricks, so this one involves a wide variety of stances. You can do every stance you know when you know the basic positions on other stances. You only need to familiarize those different stances and use them to make your own style stances. Just be sure to learn it and practice it before you do the actual riding of longboards.
If you couldn’t learn these stances with yourself, remember that you can get extra support. This means you can have your friend help you to start out. It is much better to have someone observe if you are doing the right position or posture on riding the longboard. By this, you will probably determine your strengths and improve your balance much easier. The risk of injuries will reduce. If you are able to learn longboarding, and you know all the techniques and tricks with it, you can surely handle and learn other sports that will require your maximum level of body control and balancing skills. But be always reminded of the precautionary measures of this sport to avoid accidents, and so you could master it well and easy. Longboarding requires practice for you to master it, but this sport is indeed enjoyable.
Beginners should always follow some tips on how to ride your longboard. Number one, practice your balancing skills and stability. These two are the very first ones you should master when you plan to start riding a longboard. Number two, identify the stance for yourself, be familiar to the stance where you are comfortable so you could easily do the tricks you’d like to try. The third one, you can call your friend for help, that friend can give you a little support by slowly pushing you while you are focusing on your balance. Fourth, start on a flat surface. Of course, if you are a beginner, it is a must for you to start practicing on flat terrain. Fifth, you can practice doing turns, well you cannot just do a straight-line longboard riding, it will surely be boring. Sixth, learn to stop your longboard, have control over your board unless you want to be injured. And last, don’t be a bummer, do the tricks without harming yourself and others.
Enjoy your longboarding experience with the above-mentioned tips.