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I'm sure that this write-up can be and has been generalized to just about anything. Yet, so many people who skateboard sit at home and wonder why they don't learn the tricks they try. So, instead of just repeating the "Try to do it. Repeat." theory that most people follow, here's a general procedure that can be used in learning skateboarding tricks.

  1. Decide what trick you want to learn.
  2. No kidding. You need to decide which trick you want to learn. But more than that, you need to tell yourself, "I want to learn this trick." This keeps you from being distracted by other tricks and will help you stay focused.

  3. Research the trick.
  4. This step needs to be emphasized more and more. You need to know the physics of a trick in order to do it. Watch people do it, either on videos or in real life. Watch them a lot. Look at what they do. How are their feet positioned? Which way do they throw their weight? I've seen way too many kids trying to learn to ollie who just jump and wonder why the deck didn't come up with them.

  5. Make sure you aren't skipping grades.

    Pretty simple, don't try to heelflip if you can't ollie. And don't try a crooked grind to heelflip if you can't heelflip. You've got to have the basics down before you can do a trick that is based on it. If it's a combo trick, make sure you can to the elements separately first. If you can't, break it up into parts, and go to step 1.

  6. Try it.

    Self explanatory. Get on your board and give it a go.

  7. Get up, and evaluate.

    Of course you didn't land it. If you did, you suck and I hate you*. But if you're like the other 99.9% of us, you either bit it or bailed. Look at what you did. Remember when you watched the trick being done, over and over? What was the difference between what they did and what you did? Pick out one mistake in technique that you made, and think about what you can do next time to correct it.

  8. Got to step 4 until you get it.

    'Nuff said.

I've used this sequence to learn a number of tricks, and I can honestly say that you can learn anything this way. It might take a few years, but you will learn it. Generalize the whole thing, and you can pretty much learn anything, skateboarding related or not.

* I don't actually hate you, but am just jealous and upset that I can't learn things as well. Just don't skate around me, or I may be very angry.

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