How to do these best skimboarding tricks yourself!

by Joost Nusselder | Last Updated:  12.03.2022
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Skimboarding is a fun summer activity, but it can be hard to learn the best tricks.

It’s also an awesome way to learn new tricks! Whether you’re just getting started or are looking for something new to try out, these skimboarding tricks will help you take your skills to the next level.

It’s not easy to find skimboard tutorials online that are clear and concise. Most of them are either too long or don’t offer enough instruction for beginners.

We’ve put together this list to give you an idea of what tricks there are so you can add them to your learning wish list!

MAn performing a beginner skimboard trick

Alfabetical list of skimboard trick names

Let’s look at all of the tricks, you can find out how to do them later in this guide:

Skimboard trickExplanation
180 ollieJump up for an ollie while simultaneously turning 180 degrees
360 shove itDo a full rotation shove it of 360 degrees moving your back foot behind your body before landing back on it
540 Shove itDo a rotation and a half of 540 degrees shove it moving your back foot behind your body
Acid dropPop your board up and catch it. Now hold it up high in front of your body before putting it underneath your feet just before you hit the water
Back oneOllie with a backside 180
Backside 180Jump up for an ollie while simultaneously turning 180 degrees backside
Back three360 backside ollie
BigspinThree shove your board while you perform a 180 body varial yourself
Body VarialJump in the air while rotating your body to turn around and land on your board
BuddhaSit down on your board with crossed legs
CoffinLay down flat on your board with your arms crossed over your chest
Fast plantCatch the board while you pop it up to place it back underneath you and land
Fire HydrantLook like a peeing dog by using your front hand on the front of the board to lift up your front leg sideways
Flat SpinSpin your board around with you on it
Front oneOllie with a frontside 180
Frontside 180Jump up for an ollie while simultaneously turning 180 degrees frontside
Frontside 360 Shove itDo a full rotation shove it of 360 degrees moving your back foot forward before landing back on it
Frontside ShoveSpin your board underneath you 180 degrees by pushing your back leg forward
Hippy JumpJump over an object while your board sinks in the water
KickflipGet your board in the air with an ollie, then kick it to flip it over
Kick OutKick your board when it loses speed so you can get back on
Kneel DownKneel down with the knee of your back leg onto the board looking to the front of the board
OllieJump up with your board by pushing down with your back leg
Ollie NorthOllie with your front foot completely off the board
One FooterBalance on one leg
Pop Shove itPop the board up to jump while turning it sideways at the same time for an atrial shove it
RevertA revert is doing a spinning trick, like a shove it, and then revert back to the original direction
Sex ChangeDo a body varial and shove it at the same time to turn around both yourself and the board
ShiftyBack one but you start spinning the board in mid-air
Shoot the Duck (L-ride)Form an L on the board by using your back hand on the board and moving your back foot to the front
Shove IndyPop shove and catch the board to hold it for an indy
Shove itSpin your board underneath you 180 degrees by pushing your back leg back behind your body
Sit DownSit down with both legs to the front
Varial FlipDo an ollie to get in the air and then a shove it when in mid-air
WrapRun out into the ocean, jump on the board and when you hit a wave turn around and ride the wave back to shore

Best skimboard for tricks

There are two boards I really like for performing tricks, and that’s because DB has two main types that are very suitable for flatland skimming, the Proto and Streamline:

Best overall skimboard for tricks: DB Skimboards Streamline


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Because of the symmetrical rounded nose with tail you can perform ollies, 180, and other tricks perfectly and always keep going.

Using a more narrow waist than most boards, you are much more agile for quicker turns and easier holding of your board mid-air for those awesome tricks.

Check the latest prices here

Best beginner skimboard for tricks: DB Skimboards Proto


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This board has a rocker in all directions so it stays afloat more easily when riding those shallow waters. The 3d rocker also allows you to get the board up in the air more easily for cool pops and mid-air shoves.

It has a wider body for more stability, so this one is best for beginners trying to get into tricks on the waters.

Check prices and availability here

DB Skimboards Proto vs Streamline

The proto has a much wider middle than the streamline, giving it more stability, but at the cost of control and maneuverability. The Streamline is a little grippier on top and has a little stiffer flex, which makes it great for tricks and grinding on things like rails.

Now that we’ve got the bases covered, let’s get into how to perform all of these into a few categories, so you can start doing these with some sand skimming or anywhere where you can do some inland skimming.

Easy skimboarding tricks for beginners

These skimboard tricks are good to perform at medium speed, although the faster you go the easier they get.

Flat Spin

This is one of the easiest tricks to do and is a great way to start out. To do a flat spin, jump on your board while running fast. To do this simple spin, put your backhand down in the water and you will start to spin just from the resistance.

As you get more and more skills, you can even try to do a flat spin without putting your hand down into the water.

Kick Out

If you just want to keep on going and keep that momentum, the kick out is perfect.

You’re skimming along and slowing down, but just before you lose all of that speed, you can get your board going again by taking your back foot off the board and kicking the board forward with your front foot.

If you have some speed left you are automatically running when doing this so go after your board and jump on it again to do it over and over to infinity!

One Footer

This trick is suitable for your front OR back foot so you should try them both and start balancing on just one leg.

It’s great for building up balance and getting comfortable with your board.

Shoot the Duck (L-ride)

Build up some speed and once you have your balance, put your backhand on the board behind you and lift up your back leg. You can do an L shape with this one if you straighten your leg towards your front leg.

You’re essentially balancing on both your front foot and your backhand.

Combine these with a flat spin and you’re really getting things going.

Fire Hydrant

Again, get up some speed and this time, put your front hand on your skimboard right at the tip of the board. This frees up your front leg so you can take it off the board and move it to the side so you’re just like a dog that’s peeing on a fire hydrant.

Sit Down

Nothing like a little relaxation after a long day of skimboarding, but this one isn’t quite as easy as you think.

Use your backhand for stability while you put your back leg out next to your front leg and you can basically sit down.


A variant of the sit down where you cross your legs while sitting down and skimming on the water for a zen-like state.


Another variant of the sit down, but this is more of a lying down though. Here you lay down with your back on the board and feet in front.

Bonus if you cross your arms together over your chest like you’re actually in a coffin.

Kneel Down

It sounds easier than it is, but remember that you’re skimboarding sideways, so in order for you to be able to kneel down, you first have to slightly rotate your body without losing balance.

When facing forward you can start lowering the knee of your back leg to kneel down facing forward.

Shove it

The shove it is a trick you’ll see a lot of riders do because it seems so easy, but you have to time it right.

Here, you want to “shove” your board underneath you so the back of the board is now facing front so it skims the opposite way (that’s why you want a symmetrical twin tip flatland skimboard for performing tricks).

To do this, you put some pressure on the back leg and move your foot sideways behind your back while flicking the board to make it spin around.

Use your front foot for a little flick sideways at the same time. You need to crouch down as you do this, almost as you’re about to jump (you get a little off of the board) but more of a sideways movement from your feet to make the board spin and then land your feet on the board again.

Frontside Shove

Do a shove it, but this time, instead of moving your leg behind your back to make the board spin, move your foot forward to make it spin the other way.

Best skimboard jumps

Hippy Jump

You can jump over objects with your skimboard, but the easiest jump by far is the hippy jump. You don’t even have to get the board in the air!

You just jump over an object when you approach it and let your board go underwater.

Body Varial

With a body varial, you jump up in the air and rotate your body at the same time. You can combine this with other tricks but you can just do our body and have the board remain steady underneath you.

Bend both your legs slightly and rotate a bit, moving your arms around your body like a clock, then jump and rotate, ideally landing on your board with knees bent when you’re looking to the front again.

Pop Shove it

Let’s do a shove it, but with some air. Put a little more pressure on your back leg slightly lifting your front leg and press your back foot down to do a pop with a sideways movement to make the board spin around like with a shove. Don’t forget to jump yourself.

Now catch the board underneath you to level it under you, place it under your feet as you land the trick and keep going on the water.

Pro skimboarding tricks tip: Get up enough speed so it’s easier to get your board to pop up for these kinds of tricks.

Sex Change

This is a combination of a shove it and a body varial, it’s called sex change because you change the direction your board is going AND the way you’re facing.

Jump, turn and land it with your board’s tail going in front and your back foot pointing forward now.

Fast plant

Here you catch the board while you pop it into your hands, then drop it down on the water again and ride on.

You have to do it quick to be able to continue skimming, that’s why it’s called a fast plant.

Acid drop

Pop your board up and catch it with your hands, just like with the fast plant. Now, the acid drop is where you hold the board with on hand up to your chest and drop it underneath you JUST before you land on the water.


You’re going to jump together with your board on this one so get up some speed, bend down low so all the pressure of your body is on your back leg and push down while simultaneously jumping up yourself.

Your board will come up high out of the water and you yourself are jumping along with it. To land it, bend your knees even higher to your body and stabilize yourself once you get down with your board again.

The hardest thing is getting your upward velocity the same as your board, you should have the same speed as your board already because you were riding on it.

Ollie North

Here you do the ollie but with your front foot completely lifted off of the board.

This is a little basic version of the Ollie North, not getting much air:

180 ollie

Jump with the ollie in mind but also do a 180 spin as you go up in the air.

(Backside) Frontside Bigspin

This is a combination of a three shove and a 180 body varial (backside).

When you have a bit of speed, flick your board for a three shove and jump to do a big spin of a 180 body varial (backside).

You can do a three shove or a pop three shove for this one, and adding the body varial probably makes the three shove easier to do because of the added force you’ll have for your jump. It feels more natural for most skimmers.

Backside 180

Once you’ve mastered the ollie, you can do the backside 180.

It’s jumping up but turning your body just before you jump when your put the pressure, so you and your board are turning simultaneously mid-air.

It looks amazing, and it’s not even that much harder than the ollie itself.

Frontside 180

Insted of turning your body backwards like with a backside 180, now turn your shoulders forward to go the other way, push down on the board with your back leg turn 180 degrees in the air (both you AND your board) and land the trick going with tail side forward.

Shove Indy

This one also involves spinning the board 180 degrees, but instead of just shoving it, you do a pop shove. With the indy, you catch your board and do an indy grab before putting it back underneath you to land your trick.

Advanced skimboarding tricks

Let’s look at some of the more advanced tricks you can start to learn once you’ve covered the different tricks for beginners.

Frontside 360 Shove it

Instead of doing a 180 frontside shove it, you want your board to do a full rotation of 360 degrees before landing back on it, so it still moves in the same direction as before the shove.

You need quite a bit of force to pull on the sideways motion this off so it takes a lot of practice getting it just right.

360 Shove it

Here you’re going for 360 degrees as well, but you move your foot backwards like with the regular shove it.

To get as much force as possible, use your back foot to kick backwards and your front foot to give it an extra shove forwards.

540 Shove it

Place your feet farther apart and exercise even more force to get a full 540 degree turn (effectively moving in the opposite direction again after you land it, just like with the 180).

Not only do you need to apply a lot of sideways force, you also have to jump quite a bit higher to allow your board to go 540 degrees around.

Varial Flip

With the varial flip, you first do an ollie to get your board up in the air, then flicking the board around with your front leg while in mid-air. It’s like a shove it while in the air.

You can choose to go for a varial flip 180 or even a 360.


The kickflip is essentially the same as with skateboarding. You get your board in the air with an ollie, then above it while in the air, you use the outer sole of your leading leg to kick the board so it flips around underneath you.

Not spinning mind you, but flipping over backside up and then upside up again so you can stomp your feet onto the deck and land the trick.

Very hard to do on a skimboard, and it doesn’t even look as impressive as some of the other tricks, but the insiders will know :)

Front one

Do an ollie but with a frontside 180 so you immediately turn as well. This can make it hard to pop the board out of the water though.

Back one

An ollie with a backside 180 turn so you land the ollie in the opposite direction as where you came from.

Back three

This is a 360 backside ollie, you do a Back one but with a little more push to land it when your board completes a 360 degrees back in the direction you were going in.


The shifty is like a back one or front one (you can do either direction) but you start spinning the board in mid-air.


A revert is doing a spinning trick, like a shove it, and then revert back to the original direction.

So before landing the trick, push your board back in the direction it came from (you can have it spin around as far as you like or dare before reverting it).


What is a wrap in skimboarding?

A wrap is wrapping a wave, so run out into the ocean, jump on the board and when you hit a wave turn around (wrapping) and ride the wave back to shore.

So this is not really a “trick” per say, but more basic skimboarding techniques for wave skimming.

Skimboarding rail tricks

If you like a good rail trick, then this section is for you:


Boardslide over a rail in the water, then swivel across the rail to spin around and land in the water with your tail to the front.


Boardslide over a rail with this one, but mid-slide slide all the way up with your nose to do a fakie, and then balance back again for a regular board slide before landing back on the water.


This is more when something goes wrong when rail sliding. Either a clean slide all the way across the rail or when you land the trick incorrectly and you make the most of it to recover your balance.

How to master performing tricks on your skimboard

The first thing you need to do is get a feel for your board. Start by riding it without doing any tricks, just getting a feel for the movement and speed.

Then start practicing the easier tricks until you get them down. Only then move on to the more difficult ones.

And finally, keep practicing! The more you practice, the better you’ll get. So don’t be discouraged if you don’t land a trick on your first try. Just keep trying!

Here are some basic skimboarding tricks tips:

How do you jump on a skimboard?

The best way to jump on a skimboard is by dropping it into the water in front of you while running, take one step towards it and put your back foot on, then push off with your front foot for extra speed before placing that one on as well.

How do you pump a skimboard?

Pumping is when you ride your board on the wave, using only the momentum of the waves to keep going.

You pump a skimboard by rocking your board back and forth to maintain distance, but it’s not really like pumping a skateboard so you go faster. It’s more trading in speed for buoyancy so you can keep your board from sinking and hopefully reach a far out wave that can give you back some of the lost speed.

How to get air on a skimboard?

The best way to get air on a skimboard is by doing an ollie. But an ollie is not the same as jumping on a skateboard.

To do an ollie on a skimboard, you need to have some speed and then crouch down low before popping up and pushing off with your foot.

How to do a railslide on a skimboard?

A railslide is when you slide your board across a rail in the water. The best way to do this is by doing an ollie to get your board in the air and land your feet on the board once it’s close to the rail. From there it’s all about balance and performing other tricks.

Can you Ollie on a skimboard?

Yes! Ollies are actually one of the easier tricks to do on a skimboard, although they might take you a while to perfect. But they’re not quite the same as skateboarding ollies.

How do you do a 180 on a skimboard?

To do a 180 on a skimboard, you first need to know how to do a spin. So start by doing a shove it and then spin around, you can do this while in the air or have the board 180 underneath you. Once you’re comfortable with spinning, try doing a 180 body varial.

>write a blogpost conclusion about the above

Skimboarding is a fun water sport that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. If you’re just starting out, it’s important to learn the basics before moving on to more difficult tricks.

In this article, we’ve provided a basic overview of skimboarding and some tips for how to get started.

So what are you waiting for? Grab a board and head to the nearest beach!

Also read: is skimboarding like skateboarding? These tricks say it is!

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Kauai Surf Report is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new sports with everything surfing at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2019 to help loyal readers with surfing and water sporting tips.