How To Stop On A Skateboard (Explained)

Learning how to stop on your skateboard is essential for maneuvering your way out of dangerous situations. There are a few different ways that you can stop on your skateboard. 

Everyone that is new to skateboarding should learn how to slow down and stop using each of the methods below before they start learning tricks.

Once you’ve learned and mastered these methods of stopping, you’ll be more than capable of performing advanced stops, and you might be able to pull off some basic tricks.

Brake With Your Foot

So there is one con to braking with your foot that I want to get out of the way immediately – you will wear down your shoes a bit faster. You’re going to lose a bit of the life on your shoes, but this is a super-easy way to stop on a skateboard.

This is most likely going to be the easiest method to brake for beginners.

  1. Point your dominant foot forward (the one that will stay on the skateboard)
  2. Transfer your weight to your front foot and bring your back foot down.
    Pro Tip: Try to touch the ground with your heel first.
  3. Allow your back foot to drag on the ground.

Tail Scraping

Another easy way to stop on your skateboard is to scrape your tail. Apply more weight onto the tail of your board and allow it to scrape the ground, slowing you down until you finally stop.

The one con to stopping by tail scraping is that you can potentially get a razor tail. That’s when the tail gets so chipped and worn down that the wood on the tail becomes almost sharp.

That being said, if you skateboard a lot, you might go through quite a few boards, so it might not be a huge concern.

  1. Move your non-dominant foot onto the tail of the skateboard.
  2. Press on the tail of the skateboard with your back foot.
  3. Remain balanced and keep the nose pointing straight.
    Pro Tip: Do not step off the board until you have come to a complete halt.

Controlled Side Stopping

A controlled side stop is a great way to brake when you’re skateboarding downhill. This is an advanced stop and braking method, so practice this a bunch before trying it on any kind of busy street.

I highly recommend using a helmet, knee pads, elbow pads, and longboard gloves when you attempt controlled side stops. Get yourself some quality protective gear.

  1. Move your front foot forward onto the front bolts.
  2. Pivot your upper body, turning 180 degrees.
    Pro Tip: Shift your body weight to the side to accommodate the quick turn. As you’re that, crouch down to your knees and lean forward to prevent falling on your back.
  3. Use your hands on the road for stability. (Please use longboarding gloves)

Powerslide To A Stop

A powerslide is a really cool skateboarding trick but it’s also the coolest looking way to stop on a board. I’ll be honest, it is difficult but you will look so cool once you’ve mastered it.

By no means should you ever use a powerslide to stop quickly. Try a faster and easier method. That being said, this should be one of your go-to’s when you’re out skateboarding with friends or at the skatepark.

Foot position:
Front foot is close to the front trucks.
Back foot is on the tail.

  1. Shift your body weight to your heels and lean slightly to the front of your skateboard.
  2. Turn your body 90 degrees in the direction that you want to powerslide. Keep a lot of pressure on your heels.
    Pro Tip: Focus on turning your shoulders and your hips.
  3. Kick out with your dominant foot when you’ve completed your slide or came to a stop.

If You Can’t Stop, Bail

Sometimes, the safest way to stop is going to be to jump off your board and bail. You should only ever jump off your board if it’s a case of emergency and you need to use the proper technique.

Try to keep your arms and legs loose to absorb some of the impact and tuck and roll as you hit the ground. If you can, try bailing onto grass.

And as always, don’t be a gnome, protect your dome! 

  • Practice bailing into a roll on a patch of grass to sharpen your technique in case of emergencies.
  • Try to avoid the urge to catch yourself by putting your hands out. This can cause a lot of harm to your wrists.

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