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Sports & Gaming

How to Do a Kickflip: 4 Step Kickflip Tutorial

Written by MasterClass

Last updated: Nov 8, 2020 • 1 min read

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Tony Hawk Teaches Skateboarding

The kickflip, invented by Curt Lindgren in the 1970s, was one of skateboarding’s first aerial tricks. Skateboarder Rodney Mullen would go on to refine this maneuver in the early 1980s (originally calling it the “magic flip”), bringing the move into the mainstream, and skyrocketing its popularity—along with the age of flip tricks.



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What Is a Kickflip?

A kickflip is a common skateboard trick that pops the skater up into the air, using their feet to flip the board a full rotation—360 degrees. With a kickflip, the board spins mid-air toward the skater. This skateboarding trick is performed on flat ground as well as on obstacles, like over steps or off-ramps.

How to Perform a Kickflip

To perform a kickflip, you must first know how to ollie—a foundational trick that involves snapping the tail of the board off of a surface, bringing your entire board up into the air. Learning to kickflip can open up your trick repertoire, parlaying the move into more complicated tricks, and stepping up your skateboarding game.

  1. Mind your foot placement. Position your front foot just behind the nose of your board and about halfway off the board. Place your back foot in the middle of the tail.
  2. Kick your front foot. When you snap up as you would when performing a basic ollie, kick your front foot out diagonally toward your heel side. It should catch the board and send it flipping beneath you.
  3. Balance your weight. As you and your board travel, be sure to keep your weight over the board.
  4. Catch the board. As your board flips, catch it first with your back foot, then your front foot, then extend your legs to land the kickflip.
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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.