Big 180’s

Tom Kirkman introduces hints on getting your regular + switch 180’s nailed…

180’s are pretty much a basic staple of mountainboarding and something you need to nail before progressing to bigger rotations. You’ll need to master riding switch before doing them so you can take off or land happily with your board facing what may at first seem like the wrong way or against your ‘natural’ stance.

Practise your 180’s on small jumps and you’ll then be able to do them naturally, without a kicker, popping as you ride and generally just jibbing about.

Then you can take them onto bigger kickers and ramps…

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Regular

1. The run in

Roll in straight at a comfortable speed, pre-wind your arms a small bit, bend your knees a bit as you reach the kicker, unwind your arms and pop up as you leave the lip.

2. In the air

Using your boogie sticks and momentum, rotate your board until it faces straight down the slope again. Keep your head facing forward and spot your landing.

3. Landing

Bend your knees and be prepared for the wobble of landing switch, maintaining your balance as you make all four wheels hit the ground at the same time. Compress and ride away switch.

 

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Switch

1. The run in

Possibly the hardest part of the trick as you’ll be hitting the kicker in switch. Run in the same way, trying to keep as straight & balanced as poss. Pre-wind your arms a little and unwind as you pop up and leave the lip.

2. In the air

Be careful as it’s easy to over-rotate; you may want to get a grab in as this will actually slow you down. Reverting to your natural riding stance for the landing should be pretty easy.

3. Landing

Angle your board into the landing and ride away as easily as if you had just done a straight air!

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As I said, throwing in a grab may actually help the trick become easier if you’re doing it big as it will help control your rotation.
Practise loads and soon you’ll be confident busting 180’s all over the place- off drops and rails, while freeriding, and more. Next you’ll be itching to do full 360’s!

photos by Paul Crilley & Dirt Monkeys, Illustration by Decreate