By Andres Pachon
A. Pachon, a journalist and skateboard addict, is a full-time writer for SHIT® Magazine.
The Prophecy has been fulfilled. No, no that one "Skateboarders Against Humanity", yet. You are no longer the apprentice; you have made yourself through all the hard work and have withstand all the trails until now. You’re the man and your own master. You’re the skateboard. So, what else is there? You can’t defeat primordial forces like gravity, you’re earthbound just like any other mortal. Wrong! Even without wings, jetpacks, helixes or airplanes, skateboarders were designed to fly; it is their destiny. They’re are the synthesis between men and birds, and so not even the boundaries of the sky can stop them. Are you ready for engaging the vert and flying high? Then get a grip and prepare yourself for your first 180 aerial. Well then… draw!
Ramp, Half Pipe and Speed
Maybe it’s not the first time you face the ramp of a half pipe. Perhaps you are familiar with ramps and bowls, but for now the half pipe has been avoiding you. When you stare down the ramp vertigo might attack you, but once you try it and get the knack it will become an ever-recurring habit to slide down and bomb dropping every half pipe you see. In order to achieve a 180 aerial, you need speed and concentration. Just those two things, but they demand an immense training.
The idea is simple for starters. You slide down the first part of the ramp, taking for yourself the push that gravity gives you while going down and then you ascend as quick as possible conserving all the momentum gained from the ‘fall’. When you reach the top of the second half of the pipe you’ll be technically launched into air before gravity starts pulling down to Earth once again. If you want to do a 180 correctly, you should work on your airs "How to air" and landing "How to fall with style".
Stance, Back and Front
First choose your stance. 180s can be different in four ways depending on your stance and the direction of the trick. So, if you have a regular stand (your feet pointing the right) you would like to do a 180 to the left: many pro skaters suggest that doing it backside its easier and makes you speed up. If you have a goofy stance (your feet pointing the left), then you should do it to the right. Doing it frontside however is the real challenge, depending on how you manage your stance and your speed in order to properly place you body and deck in the air before falling and dropping down the ramp.
While you’re taking air make sure you bend your knees as much you can and grab the nose of your deck to keep it close and attached beneath your feet. You turn you core where you want the direct the drop. The 180 aerial can only be achieved if you ascend and descend in the same stance. If you practice it and persist, you will never stop trying once you get it. Many vert masters were once like you, and if they did it and surpass it, why stops you from doing it? It the park soon and start you 180s and next time we can meet in a much higher plane.
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