OK now we are going to learn how to fall, and in the process, how we can learn from falling.
When we lose our balance we instinctively try and jump off the skateboard. Don’t do this. If we can counter this instinct we can learn much faster. We learn by failing, failing and correcting, but if we jump off our board, we can’t learn anything from that experience.
The other reason for not jumping off our board is because of accidents. 99 times out of 100 everything is fine, but sometimes that treacherous plank of wood somehow ends up under our feet again and the board zooms off and we have a nasty fall. How can we counter that?
Well, the alternative is to go to ground, in a controlled fall. If there’s one way to prevent falling over, it’s be near or on the ground already.
How close you are to the ground should be decided by how comfortable you feel at any one time. If you are happily riding along, you should have your knees bent, in your riding stance.. If you are trying something new, you should be dropped down much closer to the ground. If you are in an extremely dangerous situation you should be down, almost sitting on your board, your hands should be on the ground, stabilising yourself. Your hands should be the first contact with the ground. Get yourself a good set of wrist guards to protect your hands.
So the good thing about this technique is that when you’ve regained your balance you can stand back up again – you’ve corrected yourself, you’ve learnt how to do something so that the next time, you can execute it better, cleaner, so you don’t have to put your hands down.
This isn’t just for beginners. You can also see the pro’s using this technique. Look at Jaws conquering the Lyon 25 stairset. Look at Tony Hawk making a 900 aged 48. Their hands hits the floor, balance is regained, and they roll away, trick made.
The main takeaway from this lesson is ‘Keep your friends close. Keep your enemies (i.e. the ground) closer..
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