The ollie is one of the most basic and the most essential tricks that you can learn as a first-time skater. Nail this, and it will serve as the foundation for everything to come.
If you’re struggling to perform a proper ollie, you are probably making one of the most common mistakes discussed in this article. These mistakes are easy to make, and they could be preventing you from properly landing this basic trick.
Fear of Injury
The fear of getting injured prevents many skateboarders from fully committing to the trick. It’s natural to be cautious, but you need to throw some caution to the wind.
The biggest issue is that they don’t raise their knees. They commit to the first part of the trick, pop the board, and then everything goes wrong because they keep their feet too close to the floor.
Not Popping Properly
Popping the board is one of the biggest challenges for a new skater, but it’s something that gets very easy once you know how.
You pop the skateboard by crouching, jumping, and pushing down with your back foot while your front foot goes toward the nose. The board is then leveled out.
All of this occurs in a swift movement and becomes instinctive. It will feel awkward and even impossible to begin with, but if you persist, you will get there eventually.
Incorrect Foot Placement
Your feet need to be glued to the skateboard for the ollie to work. Not literally, of course, but that’s how it should feel and look.
Place your back foot in the middle of the tail while moving your front foot toward the nose.
Shifting occurs when you land at an angle, and it’s usually caused by incorrect foot placement.
It’s important to keep your shoulders in line with your board and to look over your lead shoulder because as soon as that alignment is thrown off, your foot placement will follow.
Foot placement in general is one of the most common mistakes when performing ollies, so just make sure they are in the right positions and remain there throughout.
Summary: Most Common Ollie Mistakes
If you’re making any of the common mistakes above, then simply adjust, and try again.
Focus on your foot placement, don’t be overly cautious, and keep practicing. It’s not something that you will nail on the first try and it may take you many failures before you land your first ollie.
Practice makes perfect, as the saying goes. It may also help if you ask a friend to watch you (providing they know what they are doing) or if you film yourself and study the recording. Oftentimes, it can feel like you’re doing everything right, but when you watch the footage, you realize that you’re making a big mistake.