A new skateboarder who wants to learn tricks starts with basic moves like the railslide trick. What is a railslide and what makes the railslide one of the most popular skateboarding tricks will be answered in this comprehensive skateboarding trick guide.
What is the Railslide Trick?
The railslide trick is one of the most popular skateboard tricks. Also known as boardslide, it is about sliding along the center of the board with your skateboard trucks facing the front. Old-style skateboards come with very hard plastic rails along the sides right between the skateboard wheels. You must slide on the rails when you perform a railslide.
After learning the railslide, you’ll be able to perform many other sliding and gliding tricks. It’s essential that you perfect this trick to be able to safely land other tricks and stunts.
What do You need to Know About the Railslide Trick?
According to experts, the railslide is the first slide stunt that any skateboarder should learn. The first thing that you must do is to find an excellent spot to learn this trick. A curb around 6 inches or 150 mm from the ground is the best slide. Once you find this out, you can start waxing the area and slide with it.
The railslide trick is about riding on a curb and suddenly turning on the cub with the deck and sliding. This trick is a lot of fun, and for beginners, it is a refreshing trick to learn.
To complete a railslide trick, you will need to ride up a curb at 45 degrees and then turn your board on it. Put your skateboard deck perpendicular at 90 degrees, and then make it a boardslide between your wheels.
Your goal is to slide from off the end of the curb and then land on both wheels. Roll away as if nothing happened. Most skaters prepare the spot where they will perform the railslide by waxing it. Wax will help improve the feel but be careful in putting only a reasonable amount.
The wax must not stick to the skateboard as you move over the curb. The purpose of using wax is to make the area slippery to connect but not too slick that you can’t hold on.
And possibly the essential thing to consider before performing a railslide is you need to be comfortable working an ollie. The ollie is one of the basic skateboarding tricks, so it’s undoubtedly easy to do.
Step by Step Instructions
- Turn to a low curb; no need to ollie first.
We recommended that you learn how to ollie to perform this trick, but this will come later. At the beginning of executing this trick, there’s no need to ollie. Turn to a low curb until you’ve developed a good feel for the trick. Once you’ve perfected this trick, you can move to more complex tricks and a good ollie.
- Face your board away from the curb
Maintain a good starting position. Face away from the curb to prepare yourself to roll over it.
- Move over the curb at 45 degrees.
When you’re in position, roll over the curb at a 45-degree angle. This will give you enough space to prepare for the trick.
- Maintain good footwork
Now, place your back foot along the tail of the skateboard while the front foot is at the front of the hardware near the nose.
- Clear the curb
Let your skateboard wheels move over the curb. Place your front foot down and connect the curb with your deck. Start pulling the wheels back up. Eventually, you will ride faster therefore, you must expect this, especially when you’re using new boards.
- Move the board perpendicular to the curb.
Once you’re able to clear the curb, it’s time to move perpendicular to the curb. Doing these will help you prepare for the next steps.
- Remain in the middle of the concave
Always stay on the middle part of the concave. Avoid too many toes, as doing so will affect your grip. You’ll fall forward, head over your heels which means you’re doing the right thing.
Also, too much pressure on the heels will cause the board to slide out under you. You may even land incorrectly on the grass if you don’t correct proper foot positioning.
Some Tips to Improve Your Railslide
Railslides must be done correctly and effectively to avoid mishaps. Most skateboarders who are able to flawlessly execute this technique but for those who are not too fond of it so you must observe proper wheel maintenance and keep your knees compressed as you land the trick.
Slide the board to the middle of the slide. At this point, remain in this position to efficiently perform the following steps. Move slightly to the right to produce the best results.
The Importance of Practice in Perfecting a Railslide Trick
A slide trick is one of the most popular tricks. Despite being one of the first tricks invented, it is still being enhanced, reinvented, and promoted in various events and competitions.
A railslide may look easy but needs regular practice to perform it well. On the first try, you may fall and hurt yourself, but don’t worry; this is a part of learning new tricks. Remember the following when practicing for a railslide trick and other skateboarding tricks:
- Practice over and over again until you get it correctly.
- You can change the steps or adopt a new strategy to perform the railslide that’s according to your needs.
- Aim to slide faster and longer. Moving more quickly helps you create a more seamless sliding effect.
- Try to perform this trick using different angles of approach. You will eventually find a better, more comfortable way of accomplishing this trick.
- Pop ollies or roll a fakie with this trick.
- Learn how to fall correctly. You can simply get off the board to stop and land safely or wait for the board to slow down before you jump off.
Other Skateboarding Tricks to Master
Learning the railslide opens up your doors to new tricks. Here are some of the most popular slide and glide tricks and stunts beginners will love to know early.
The Barley Grind is a skateboarding trick popularized by Donny Barley in the Toy Machine video called “Welcome to Hell.” This trick is a combination of frontside 180 and Switch Smith Grind.
Barley perfected a Barley Grind on one rail and then switched Barley Grind along with the next one. This is a cool skateboarding trick that’s easy to perform once you master the frontside 180.
In the Bertleman Slide, you have a four-wheel slide where the rider places one of his hands on the ground and then moves his skateboard at 180, causing all the wheels to slide. This trick is done over a ramp or bank. The Bertleman Slide is from a surfer famous in the 1960s who preferred to touch the waves as he surfed.
The bluntslide trick is another very popular trick with the skateboard tail placed along the edge while the truck and wheels at the back are on top of the edges. If you’re gliding over a rail, your wheels will be at the far side of the board. Go up and over a railing to land on the slide.
The backside lipslide is also known as a Disaster. It is a front boardslide as you alley-oop to an edge along the side. This is a moderately complex trick as you need to learn how to ollie, 180 ollies, boardslide, front board, 50-50, and lipslide beforehand. Practice well to complete this trick and avoid issues with your board.
The frontside boardslide is a classic skateboarding trick where you slide on the center of your deck right in the middle of the trucks as you face backward. To perform this complex trick, you must master the ollie, frontside ollie, backside 180 ollie, and the 50-50 grind backside boardslide tricks. Practice well until you can balance really well.
The Casperslide is completed by flipping your skateboard upside down with your back foot on the deck’s graphics side along the tail and your front foot hitting the grip tape side of the deck. This trick must be completed on flat ground or on a ledge. The Casperslide was created by Rodney Mullen, one of the top skaters of all time.
Another grind and slide skateboarding trick is the crail slide. This slide is performed by grabbing the heel side of the skateboard’s nose using your back hand. Practice makes perfect with the crail slide. The more you practice, the more you can perform this with good balance and no hesitation.
The Crooked Grind is also called Pointer Grind, Crooks, and K-Grind, derived from Eric Koston. This is a front truck grind as the nose touch, and the front of the truck is pushed throughout using the weight of the hanger along with the wheel. The name crooked is because the board and the trucks look crooked when posed. You need to master the ollie, 50-50, nollie, nose manual, and the noseslide for this trick.
In the darkslide trick, you will flip to a slide when the board is upside down. You will be sliding on your grip tape. The trick is dark, meaning anything that’s landing with the board in the upside-down position or any trick when the board is upside down.
To make the 50-50 grind, both your trucks must be grinding along the edge of a tail or curb. Half of the grind will be for the front truck, and the other half is for the back, hence the term 50-50. To perform this trick like a pro, you must master the kickturn, 180 ollies, boardslide, and the ollie up a curb.
In the 5-0 grind, you will be performing half of the 50-50 trick. Your back truck will be grinding the edge while the tail will come in contact with the edge. To be good at this trick, you must practice balance and essential tricks like the 50-50 grind, boardslide, manual, and the classic ollie trick.
The feeble grind is about your back truck grinding the edge as the front truck hangs at the top or at the far side of a rail. The feeble grind is a moderately easy skateboard trick that needs mastery of the kickturn, boardslide, ollie, 180 ollie, 50-50 grind, Smith grind, and the 5-0 grind.
The hurricane is a complicated trick where you need to perform a 180 into a feeble grind backward. You need to practice very hard to complete the hurricane as you must ensure balance and the perfect timing to perform this trick. You also need to master the following: kickturn, boardslide, ollie, 180 ollie, 50-50 grind, Smith grind, and the 5-0 grind.
The layback grind is a variation of the 5-0 grind trick performed on transition. The skateboarder lays back and puts his back hand on the ground. This grind should be performed flawlessly using thorough practice and the right timing.
The lipslide is also known as a disaster where a boardslide alley-oop to a ledge from the side. It would be best if you were good at the ollie, 180 ollie, and the boardslide to flawlessly perform a lipslide trick. Try to perform this trick well, as you can break your board if you come back down from the center.
In the losi grind, you will grind the front truck as well as your deck with the back truck riding on the top of the curb or ledge. The losi is almost similar to the feeble grind, but it’s backward. This trick was popularized by Alan Losi as a vertical trick.
In the nail slide trick, your skateboard nose tail slide. Both the skateboard nose and tail are moving down the edge but are spaced apart perfectly for a seamless transition. Again, practice can make this trick look flawless. It would be best if you also perfected other basic slide tricks before you performed the nail slide really nicely.
The noseblunt slide is an alley-oop as the nose is at the side of the edge while the wheels are at the top. Along the rail, your wheels and board will be placed along the far side of the board. Practice well, and you’ll be making noseblunt slides as naturally as you can.
In the nosegrind, you will grind the front truck while the nose may touch, but to be great at this trick, you must use the truck for balance. This trick requires mastery of some of the basic tricks like the ollie, 50-50, 5-0, noseslide, nose manual, and the crooked grind trick.
In the noseslide, you will slide with the nose of the board along the edge. You must learn how to perform the ollie, boardslide, and the 180 ollie first before you can master the noseslide. Practice on a straight surface and not on curbs. This will give you a unique feeling and easy weight transfer.
In the overcook grind, the steps are similar to the crooked grind, but you need to ollie alley-oop to the edge and land with your board, but it needs to be at the opposite side from where you started. Practice the trick many times as this can get very complicated. Always practice good footwork to ensure that you’re landing this trick safely.
The overturn trick is a 5-0 grind popped in a crooked switch grind and vice versa. There are many variations of the overturn, such as the frontside, crooks to 5-0, backside, and many more. The overturn was popularized by Deawon Song, a very talented skateboarder.
The primo grind is about sliding in primo. This is a highly complex skateboarding trick that was created by Rodney Mullen. In fact, Mullen is the only skater who can do this trick as well as other slide tricks because it’s so complicated to perform.
The salad grind is a 5-0 grind with your front truck turning over along the far side of the edges. The name salad grind was derived from the trick’s inventor Eric Dressen which is known as Salad Dressen. This is a very popular yet tricky stunt that you can master only with regular practice.
Another fun yet complicated trick is the slash grind. In this trick, you will grind your back truck along a coping or curb. You will work like you’re slashing the coping with this trick. Careful practice is necessary to ensure you land safe and to protect your truck from the irregular slashing motions.
The Smith Grind is where the back truck grinds over the edge while the front truck is hanging down along the side of the surface or object. It would be best if you mastered the following techniques to be good at the Smith grind: ollie, kickturn, boardslide, 180 ollie, 50-50 grind, and the 5-0 grind tricks.
This trick was created by Aaron Suski, and it’s a combination of 5-0 grinds from the front truck turned off from the ledge. This is more of a crooked grind or an outside-turned salad grind. But nevertheless, you must practice well to ensure good form, great landing, and good transition.
Nothing much is known about the tailblock grind, only that it’s created by a tailslide nose grab. It would be best if you mastered essential tricks like the ollie, tailslide nose grab, etc. As usual, the practice goes a long way as you learn to land safely and prevent issues with your skateboard deck.
In the tailslide trick, you will slide along the side where you made an ollie using the tail. You will land with the tail along the edge of the board. This is a moderately complicated trick that needs the mastery of the following: ollie, lipslide, noseslide, boardslide, and the 180 ollie tricks.
The tailslide is a classic but needs constant practice. It would help if you had the alley-oop action in a lipslide down from the tail to the other. You will use the tail to move up an ollie, and then you must reach a point at the curb and rotate to a tailslide position.
It would help if you tried this trick on a stall, ledge, or curb before riding a rail. This will allow you more time to learn the movements and landing and fall safely too. You can practice on a fence when you’ve achieved board control. Remember to rotate and slide.
The Willy Grind is a tough grind and slide trick where you grind the front part of your truck along the edge using the back truck below the rims. The trick will look similar to a backward smith grind. It is not as popular as it looks messy. You can accidentally make a Willy Grind when you miss your back truck when doing a 50-50 grind.
The railslide is a classic and popular slide and grind skateboarding trick. This is a trick where you slide the underside of your deck along any object such as a handrail, curb, or edge. There are many variations of the railslide. Some are very complicated, combining a slide with flips and ollies, while some are simple to do.
Regardless of the trick, you wish to master, it would help if you constantly practiced getting the best results. Practice will help you land tricks safely, as you will better understand the footwork and landing part of the trick. Also, practice will help keep your skateboard in good shape as the railslide will constantly hit the middle of your deck, which is the most vulnerable part.
Consider practicing and following all the steps to master the railslide and other variations to get the best results. Finally, wear your safety gear, whether you’re practicing and riding on the streets or in the park.