There are some things you have to keep in mind when setting goals though, they have to be:
RealisticWhen I say your goals have to be 'realistic' I'm meaning that they have to be achievable, if you've just started skateboarding and can do a small ollie and maybe the occasional shuvit, then your next goal should not be to 360 flip a 7 stair. I know that's a bit over the top, but it's true - your next goal should be to perfect your shuvits or increase ollie height. Leading on from that, you're allowed to make your goals difficult, it won't be much of a 'goal' if you know you can achieve it with ease, it's important to make your goals challenging but achievable at the same time, keep this in mind.
FunEasily the most important thing to remember. How many of you have set goals and failed to achieve them because you lost interest? I know I certainly have, many times. It's important when setting goals to make them interesting. For example; you want to increase the height of your ollies, so you first build an adjustable obstacle (if building isn't fun for you, find an obstacle). Then you think of a suitable reward to give yourself when you reach a certain height. I did something similar back in the day when I was practicing 360 flips. I'd fill myself a glass of nice cold drink and wouldn't let myself drink it until I landed one. When I landed one I'd have a couple of mouthfuls and then land another one before the next drink, etc. It sounds a little lame, but trust me - it works! You can find many different ways of making your goals fun to achieve.
TimedIf you're looking to improve your skateboarding, you should set a time limit for your goals. This is very important in areas where you want to achieve, because it will help motivate you and push you to achieve. I'll give you another example:
- You want to learn a new trick, so you set yourself a goal to practice it every couple of days until you can land it 3/10 times - you go off and practice for about a week or so until you’ve given up because you got bored.
- You want to learn a new trick, so you set yourself a goal to land it by the time next week comes. So you go off and practice hard until you land it. Sure you may get bored, but it certainly helps with motivation, especially if you have a reward at the end.
LimitedIt's important to keep your goals limited, by that I mean keeping them small and manageable. If your goal is to switch kickflip a 4 stair when you've only just learnt regular kickflips and can't switch ollie well - your next goal would be to learn switch ollies. Sure you can focus on reaching that stage of a switch kickflip down the 4 stair, but you have to work on the foundations first.
That's basically it for setting goals, just remember to make them: Realistic, Fun, Timed and Limited
Sam Matla is the owner of the skateboarding blog, iskatedaily.com.