When’s the last time you landed a new trick? Maybe it was yesterday, or maybe you don’t even remember. How about we make it today? Progression is a big word on my mind right now. It always seems to be. I want to push things in the right direction. Not force them, but throw a little fuel in the fire and feel some forward movement. This is more or less how the trick board came about…

I’ve been talking about this ‘trick board’ to my crew for a while. It used to just be something we just talked about that never actually existed in real life. Some of us had a few tricks we wanted to learn in the back of our heads, but that’s as far as it went. Some days you find yourself stuck, struggling with a stock trick and never getting around to trying new ones. Or you’ve stomped everything you can do and aren’t even sure what to try next. And this is where the trick board comes into play.

Each of us made a wish list of 4-5 tricks we want to learn. The important thing is variety. They can’t all be impossible tricks, you have to be semi-realistic with yourself, don’t go hucking back bigs before you can do backside 180s. Throw in an easy one or two so you don’t get discouraged. It might not be a vflip, but it will still make you a better rider and add to your bag of tricks. Don’t forget about switch tricks either, or different variations or tricks (toeside, inside out, etc).

Warm up with a few of your stock tricks and get your ‘Tony Hawk meter’ up for some freshies. After the first fall or two, move on to some new stuff. Don’t get bent if you are falling on stock tricks, everyone has off days. Instead of wasting time and energy trying to land that inside out shuv you always do, leave it and try something new. If you’re not feeling it move on to another one on your list.

Commit to the trick off the water too. Hop on the trampoline and work on getting the right scoop for that front shuv, or the right flick for that kickflip. Don’t have a trampoline? Put a skate deck or wakeskate on the carpet and spin some shuvs. Do a few on the trampoline right before you go out and work up that muscle memory. Watch wakeskate videos or trick trips and see how other people are doing that trick and where their feet are. Get pumped.

Get your whole crew involved. Push each other. Maybe even go as far as throwing around some paint or markers and making an actual trick board. Come up with some sort of incentives for whoever lands a new trick 3x, or crosses out everything on their list. Maybe it’s a case of a tasty beverage or even a sushi dinner.

This isn’t a race. This about progression, and the trick board is simply a catalyst for your progression. Hold your standards high, don’t cross a 360 off the list when your only going 270 and spinning the rest on the surface. Keep it legit! Good luck, and cheers to whoever wins the tasty beverage. — Jen Gilanfarr

Your author in action. Photo: Bryan Soderlind