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Street skateboarding is a style that makes use of the limitless urban environment. The beauty of street skating is that there are no hours of operation, virtually anywhere can be your skate spot, and the environment and what you choose to do with it are boundless. There are many skateboard tricks that both beginners and advanced skaters use, including a handrail boardslide.

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What Is a Boardslide Skateboarding Trick?

A boardslide is a common skateboard trick where the skater uses the middle of the skateboard to glide along a handrail or another steep rail. Boardsliding is a classic skateboarding trick, and it tends to be among the first rail tricks that novice skateboarders learn.

How to Boardslide a Handrail

A boardslide may seem daunting at first, but this trick is easy to master if you approach it methodically. Below is best practice for attempting a standard frontside boardslide on a handrail.

  1. Approach the handrail at an angle. Instead of straight on, hit the handrail at a slight angle with enough speed so you won’t lose your board and wind up taking a rail to your crotch.
  2. Do an ollie. When you’re near the rail, perform an ollie high enough so your front wheels will clear the top of the rail.
  3. Rotate your body. While in the air, rotate your body frontside so you land the middle of the board (or skateboard deck) on the rail, traveling sideways. Be sure to keep your weight centered over your board so you’re balanced on the rail.
  4. Turn the board back to its original position. When you’re dismounting the rail, simultaneously turn your board and body back to their original position so you can land and ride away straight at the end of the rail.
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4 Tips for Safely Boardsliding a Handrail

There’s risk involved in learning to boardslide a handrail, so take the proper precautions to ensure that you’re being safe.

  1. Wear a helmet and pads. If you're a novice skateboarder, falling or tripping is part of the process. Ensure that you have the right pads to break your fall—specifically knee pads, elbow pads, and a helmet.
  2. Read and follow official rules. Every skate park will have a list of rules to ensure everyone’s safety and enjoyment. Do your part and check them out anytime you skate a new park.
  3. Observe before joining in. To avoid collisions, park skaters take turns skating. This is especially important when a park is busy. Notice when other skaters take their turns so you can understand the order and flow, then claim your spot and take your turn.
  4. Practice on the ground. Before using the handrail, practice on rails that are low to the ground to get your footing. Slowly work your way up to higher rails until you've mastered the technique.

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Want to Learn More About Skateboarding?

Whether you’re just learning how to ollie or ready to tackle a Madonna (the vert trick, not the singer), the MasterClass Annual Membership can help you find confidence on your board with exclusive instructional videos from skateboarding legend Tony Hawk, street skater Riley Hawk, and Olympic hopeful Lizzie Armanto.

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