How-to: Ollie on a Skateboard

The ollie is one of the more basic and most important skateboarding tricks. It's when you push down on the back end of the board and then, when the front end comes up, you bring the back end off the ground by pushing down on the front.

Even though at first it might seem impossible, with practice--and many failed attempts--it will become much easier. Once you know how to ollie, you will be able to move on to other skateboarding tricks that begin with the ollie.

You can learn to ollie either by standing on the board without rolling or while moving slowly. It may be more difficult to learn if you are moving because it's harder to keep your balance, and if you fall, it could hurt more.

  1. Begin by placing your front foot in the middle of the skateboard, with your back foot on the very back end. (See stances if you don't know which foot to put first.) Stand with your weight on your toes, so you can push down hard on the skateboard.
  2. Push down hard on the back end of the skateboard. As soon as the front end comes up, slide your front foot up towards the top end of the skateboard and then push down on the front end. As you do this, try to crouch your legs so that the board will be free to come up, making your ollie higher. This will bring the back end up off the ground, lifting the board into the air.
  3. Keep your feet resting on the board (back foot near back end of the board and front foot close to the top). Bend your legs as you land to cushion the landing.

After you learn how to ollie while standing still or moving slowly, practice doing ollies while rolling along quickly. Do this exactly the same way but push off first. Be sure to keep going straight so you don't lose your balance.

You can also try to ollie over objects, such as other skateboard decks, pieces of wood, etc. This will force you to ollie at an exact time and high enough to clear the object.

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