Learning how to grind is a major step forward for anyone learning how to skateboard. Not only is it the coolest looking skateboard trick, but it’s also the most enjoyable and fun trick to do, and that’s what it’s all about!
How many times have you seen some grind a rail, bench, edge or curb and thought to yourself, ‘Man, I wish I could do that…’? Well guess what, you can! It DOES take practice, and you’ll need to learn some basics first, but you can learn how to grind if you really put your mind towards it.
A grind is when the trucks of your skateboard slide or grind along a surface without the wheels touching it. The trucks are usually made of metal, and they are the axles that hold the wheels in place.
Originally performed by skaters around the rim of backyard swimming pools, today grinding most commonly grinding takes place on a specially built grind-rail which can be found at any good skate park. Additionally you can do a grind on any object that fits between the wheels of your skateboard. Before attempting to grind though it’s important to learn how to grind properly, in order to reduce the risk of injury and of course ensure you’re giving yourself the best opportunity to learn and progress as quickly as possible.
Although there are many variations on the grind trick, the most basic maneuver worth learning is called the 50-50 grind. This involves approaching almost parallel to the rail at a slight angle and then doing an ollie onto the middle of the rail with both trucks in the centre of the rail. It may sound difficult but with practice and discipline around technique, you can achieve it, and once you do the sky is the limit!
Nowadays there are so many different variations on the original grind trick. Some of the most popular and common ones are;
The 50-50 grind I mentioned can be done either frontside or backside depending on whether you’re facing towards (frontside) or away from (backside) the rail at the time you grind it. The backside 50-50 is slightly more difficult, but really exciting when you nail it for the first time
When in ‘The 50-50 Grind’ position if you lean back and push the rail with your hand to help the grind go for longer, this is called ‘The Layback Grind’. It’s a cool way to enhance the grinding experience once you’re full of confidence and your balance is good.
There are two other common ways to grind, which are called ‘The 5-0 Grind’ and ‘The Nosegrind’. These two variations involve only one set of trucks touching the rail while the other trucks are lifted into a suspended position above the rail. When grinding on just the back trucks with the front ones lifted in the air it is called ‘The 5-0 Grind’.
As its name suggests, when the front trucks are the only grinding point, this is called ‘The Nosegrind’, both of these two grind variations require great balance. You’ll really want to know how to skateboard quite well before attempting either of these to moves!
Grinding is an unreal feeling when you can do it confidently. It opens up a world of opportunities for you to explore and maybe you’ll even be able to invent your own type of the grind trick. Learning how to grind is a huge step forward, and when you have mastered it, you’ll be able to show everyone how to skateboard like a pro!
Josh Cairns is an passionate skateboarding fan, internet marketer and consultant. His passions include spending time with his family and friends and helping people.