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How Can I Make My Ollies Higher?


Two boys (10-12) skateboarding on suburban street
Nicki Pardo/The Images Bank/Getty Images
Question: How Can I Make My Ollies Higher?
Low ollies are a problem for most new skaters. Actually, ollies in general are a problem! There is a lot going on with this trick, and it's very hard to understand how to do. Plus, the ollie is one of the first tricks skaters need to learn - so it makes sense that a lot of skateboarders out there get frustrated with it. To learn the basics of the ollie, read "Learn How to Ollie". But for low ollies, read below for help:
Answer: Almost all problems with low ollies come from not picking the feet up high enough. When ollying, you need to have your shoulders centered (not be hunched over super far - pull those shoulders back a little. some hunch is OK, but you need to be relaxed, with your weight centered over the board), and when you snap that back foot, PULL THOSE FEET UP INTO THE AIR! Actually slam your knees into your chest if you can. Practice a lot.

If you are still having problems, here's the next step. Go out and try to ollie, pulling those feet UP, and don't even worry about what your front foot does. You likely know that you should be sliding it up the board, right? Well, for now, just don't think about it. Focus on getting those feet up high, and let the board figure itself out. Try this a few times, and see what happens. Don't read more of this article - go outside, do this a few times, and then come back. You might fall. That's OK.

Some skaters get so focused on sliding that front foot, that they are actually pushing the board down with it. If you found your ollie was higher after that, then you are one of these people. That's OK - now you see what's going on, and you can focus more on letting everything happen with your ollies, instead of forcing it to happen. Go out and practice some more.

You are still going to have to figure out how to slide that front foot, and not doing so can also keep your ollies low. And, without sliding that front foot, you aren't really ollying! Here's the foot sliding section of the How to Ollie instructions, to find out more.

Still having problems? The truth is, ollies are tough to figure out without having someone there watching you, giving you advice. But even then, if the person giving you advice isn't good at explaining things in ways that make sense to you, you might still be frustrated.

Read "How to Ollie" for some detailed explanations, and take a look at the "Troubleshooting" section at the end. Ask someone you know and trust to watch you, and point out what's going on. the person doesn't even have to know how to ollie - have them take a look at the Learn How To Ollie article, and they should have an idea. Or videotape yourself, and watch it. Try different things - move your feet around on the board, try ollying while rolling, or while standing still. If you still have problems, then practice more, and drop by the Skateboarding Forum and ask for more help, or read other skater's stories on how they learned to ollie on the How Did You Learn to Ollie? Readers Respond page!

Related Video
How to Ollie
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