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A school project for beginner longboarders.

Oliver C.

on 9 January 2015

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Transcript of Longboarding

How to start...
To begin, you first need to find the right board for you.
Longboards come in all shapes, sizes, weights and flexiblenesses.
Some people like more flexible boards, and others like stiffer boards.
Stiffer boards are recommended for beginners because they are easier to control.
There are also different styles of boards that may be most suited to beginners.
Top mounted decks are usually wide all down the deck, which makes it easier to balance.
Lowered decks are lower to the ground in the middle, so carving and turning is easier on them.
After you find the right board for you, then its time to find the right parts.
(Can't drive a car without wheels!)
Let's start with the wheels.
Some wheels are harder than others. They are measured on the durometer scale. It ranges anywhere from 15-100, depending on what material is used. Typically though, longboard wheels are between 78A and 86A, and they are usually made from polyurethane.
Next is the bushings. The bushings are the cushions in the trucks that allow the board to turn. Everyone has different tastes of course, but I would recommend medium bushings for beginners. Really soft bushings would not be practical for beginners, because the lack of restraint could cause "speed-wobble". On the other hand, really hard bushings would not be a good choice, because turning and carving would be very difficult.
Trucks are also important in longboarding. some people would go on and on and argue over which truck is the best. I think that all longboard trucks are pretty much the same, and it's really the bushings that make the difference. I would just recommend buying the widest trucks possible. (For example, some Paris 180mm trucks.)
bad speed wobble
The last part of a longboard (and quite possibly the most important) are the bearings. All bearings are pretty much the same. The most popular kind of bearings are the "Swiss" bearings from Bones Bearing Company. There is also a scale used for bearings, which is called the ABEC scale. It goes from 1 to 9 on odd numbers (1, 3, 5, etc.) The higher the number the better. Lubricating the bearings every once in a while is also helpful.
Bones "Speed Cream" Lubricant
When you have your board all ready to go , then it's time to learn how to ride. The first thing is your stance. You need to figure out how you'll stand on the board.
There are two stances; regular and goofy. Regular is with your left foot forward, and goofy is with your right foot forward.
After you figure out how you'll stand, then it's time to move on to getting speed, balancing, turning/carving, and most importantly, stopping. I'll let Ella explain it.
After learning how to successful ride your board, why not start doing some tricks? Believe it or not a lot of tricks are simple, and with practice, they become as easy as riding. Some different tricks would be slides, flips, finger flips, foot plants, grabing tricks, and "dancing".
Here's video of me doing the "cross-step".
Why are tricks useful?
Besides just for show, tricks can also help you with everyday riding. Slides, for example, can help you slow down faster, as opposed to footbraking. Early grabs can help you get over obstacles like sidewalk cracks, as opposed to "ollying" the board (jumping it), which is way harder. Plus you look cooler to everyone that is watching.
So get a board, get out there, and most importantly, HAVE FUN! Don't worry too much about finessing your tricks. Getting out there just for a ride and the fresh air is worth it.
Hard wheels are better for sliding, or for cruising down smooth roads. Rougher roads however make for a less enjoyable ride, because there is no shock absorption, and it is very bumpy.
Softer wheels are better for gripping the road. They also help absorb some shock from rough roads. Carving is also easier, because there are less bumps on the ride. However, there is more drag with softer wheels, and they don't keep speed as well as hard wheels.
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