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Coined in 1977 by 14-year old skateboarder Alan “Ollie” Gelfand, the ollie is a trick that increases a skater’s airtime, and has become a staple move in the competitive skateboarding world. If you are a new skateboarder looking to take your skateboarding to the next level, the ollie is one of the most important tricks to learn.

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What Is an Ollie?

The ollie is a skateboarding trick that involves snapping the tail of the board off of a surface, bringing your entire board up into the air. The ollie is the foundation to almost every trick on the street, and most tricks on ramps. In street skating, getting that air allows you to jump curbs, to jump over or onto obstacles like rails and benches for grinds, to perform board flips and rotations, to clear stairs on a jump, and more. In vertical skating, the ollie is key to maximizing the air you need to perform complex aerial tricks.

Tony Hawk’s Tips for Landing an Ollie

5 Tips for Landing an Ollie

An ollie is a jumping technique that should be one of the first skateboarding tricks you learn. Many skateboard tricks start with the ollie, which is all about foot placement and timing. To learn how to nail an ollie, check out the steps below:

  1. Position your back foot. First, you’ll need to position your front foot slightly in front of the middle of the board. Place your back foot all the way on the edge of the tail.
  2. Bend your knees. Next, bend your knees so you’re crouched down and ready to explode upward with your board.
  3. Snap down with your back foot. Snap down on your tail hard with your back foot so your board taps the ground and starts to go vertical. After snapping, bend your back leg so your board can rise and your back wheels can leave the ground.
  4. Slide your front foot forward. Slide your front foot forward so it catches the board and levels it out, bringing the tail end up to your back foot.
  5. Straighten your legs. With both legs bent and maintaining friction between your feet and the board, straighten your legs to bring the board back down to the ground and land the ollie.

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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