What Is Carving On a Longboard? - The Ultimate Guide!
A new starter in longboarding? Don’t know what is carving on board? Then this post will become your helpful assistant!
For every boarding fanatic, carving has been an indispensable part making this street surfing sport become unique and favored all over the world. So what is carving on board, exactly? Let’s find out then!
The Purpose Of Carving
Carving is the most essential technique of boarding. You have to learn how to carve efficiently or else you will lose control of speed which can lead to injuries and demoralize you when trying the sport.
By doing this you can have more sense of controlling your board, you can make it turn or slow it down to prepare for some boarding tricks.
Carving is also the foundation of other more advanced techniques that enable you to create greater momentum and speed.
An example of the effect of carving is that when you try boarding from the top of the hill. The speed going straight from the top will be extremely high and it will be a great struggle for anyone to gain control of the speed.
But, using the carving, you can easily slide down just at 3-4 kph without worrying about any breakages or any harm to your body.
It’s great, right?
What Is Carving On a Longboard - All The Basic Techniques
Ok, now you will start to learn the basic way to make a curve on your board.
Your ultimate goal is to make a clean wavy line into the asphalt.
Basically, the way to carve is just directing the board by shifting your body’s weight to the side of the toe or the heel and making your surfing line S patterns or wavy instead of a normal straight line.
Stay relaxed and let your body move with the line. Your only work is to shift your body so if you are so rigid, inflexible, it will be really hard to make any movements.
Also, don’t start with steep hills as you should get familiar with controlling the speed first. And you should measure your legs’ pressure, you should feel the force on the toes and heels. If you don’t, you should learn more, otherwise, the board won’t turn
Position On The Board
There are different stances depending on how people naturally stand on the board:
To know your natural position, put your feet together, stand normally and ask someone to suddenly push you forward. The foot first stepping forward will determine your stance on the board.
If it’s your left, you belong to the typical group - the Regular riders, whereas if it’s your right, you’re the Goofy.
The Regular will use their toe to turn left and the heel to turn right. The opposite way of turning is true for the Goofy.
Your natural position is very important as it affects the whole learning process and it will come along with you throughout your skating life. The inability to identify your stance can result in many consequences including injuries caused by falling off the board on your weaker side.
Shifting Your Weight While Carving
To form a perfect carve, your whole body has to move as flexibly as possible as carving is continuously shifting your body to the right and left.
It requires the combination of all the body’s parts not only the heel and the toes alone and a smooth change from toe carving to heel carving. In detail, I will inform you on the way to effectively put your pressure on the board.
First, you will want to know exactly what is your stance and the direction you are heading to. This is crucial because it can be very confusing while you’re on the board for real.
Then push off a little bit to get some speed, but remember that excessive speed will be disastrous as you can not react fast enough while with deficient momentum, the board can not run forward.
Head toward the direction, slightly push your front shoulder ahead, preparing your entire body for the turn.
Naturally, your body will turn as your shoulder does so, the motion will come from it down to your hip and create pressure on your toe, the board will turn to the side you want. That is the toe carving.
Now, aim yourself in the opposite direction, the heel side. The motion will be the opposite. Slight fall on your back, your heel will be the foundation to lift all your body and the pressure on it will carve the board.
Also, you have to look behind and open your chest and keep your knee bent as well as slightly open your arm to keep a really stable form throughout the turn
Repeat all the processes and you will be able to shift your body weight easily and effectively.
Advice Needs To Take While Carving
First of all, when toe curving, remember to prevent your heel from coming too far from the board. Conversely, when heel curving, your toe should be kept in touch with the deck.
Following this instruction will help you get more sense of changing direction and feel of your feet and become more attached to the board as well, making every movement smoother and easier.
Also keeping your feet close to the deck will help you avoid any falling-out, keep your body from being black-and-blue
Besides, keep your center low when you turn and stand tall right after that, therefore, you will give more speed and momentum to the board, keeping your board run still to acquire a better practice result.
Longboard Carving Setup
may be you need: longboard for kids - some things to know
Now, you have had a clear picture of how to carve using a longboard. So allow me to guide you through another matter of utter importance: longboard carving setup! You have to know how to assemble a longboard properly to have the safest and most interesting experience, am I right? Well then, without further ado, let’s get started!
What a carving truck looks like
What is a carving longboard without some high-quality carving trucks? If you are planning to show off your skill anytime soon, you must have these handy items by your side. So, it’s time we get to know the making of the perfect carving trucks.
These days, on the market, there are basically just two types of truck widths available that best suit carving. One is 180mm in length while the other is 150mm. Now, the former is most common as it lets you perform a variety of carving tricks. But honestly, you should go with the one matching the size of your board.
Next up comes the baseplate angle. In case you have no idea what it is, the baseplate angle plays the role of a connection, holding the longboard deck and the entire truck set together. It is made of metal and comes in the form of a small rectangular. Though it is quite tiny, it takes on a somewhat major responsibility: deciding how well and how sharp your board can turn.
The carving longboards launched to the market are paired with different baseplate angles, which can be either around 40 degrees or 50 degrees depending on the models. There are not many clear differences between both, but the board with a 40-degree baseplate angle is more newbie-friendly and it will give you a sense of safety while doing some high-speed move. On the other hand, the 50-degree one is pretty much designed for the pros. It lets you do more exciting and bold stuff easily, but it is also less lean and demands you to react fast.
Bushings And Bushing Seats
Bushings are a crucial part of the longboard that helps somewhat control the board as you turn. Besides, bushing seats (the part where the bushings lie) are also items of paramount importance as it decides how your truck will feel. There are tons of bushing seats available on the market, so you must choose those that suit your demands.
People often pay no mind to truck height, but this can be their biggest mistake!
Truck height affects your longboard setup. Most of the time, a longboard with a higher truck can offer more stability when you are riding at full speed, and vice versa. Pushing and foot brake are much more complex with a high truck, too. So, make sure you keep this in mind when purchasing your carving longboard.
If you are in two minds about what carving truck you should invest in, why don’t you try out our favorite product? Introducing BEAR Grizzly Longboard Skateboard Trucks - One of the best trucks we have ever set our eyes on!
Why should you get it? First of all, it is a slant truck, and it is super newbie-friendly in case you are just starting out. Second, it is made of pure aluminum, which ensures that it is going to have a long lifespan. And finally, it comes with a wide range of cool features, such as bushing-base lock-in, the ability to reduce base plate warping, to name but a few!
Carving Wheel And Bearing
Another vital factor that you must take into account when selecting a carving longboard is carving wheel and bearing. Different wheels can bring about different experiences like the small ones can slow your speed when the bigger ones increase it. Just like that, the shapes of the wheels and the cores where the bearings are set on need attention too.
Seemore: best longboard wheels for roughroad
Carving wheel suggestion
Do you want some hints on what type of carving wheels you should get? In this case, I have something that you will probably enjoy. Why don’t you check out this Orangatang Caguama Longboard Wheels?
With exceptional design and shape, it enables you to have the smoothest ride even on the roughest terrains. Not to mention, the product features a large and supportive core that can lessen the amount of weights put onto the wheel while letting you go at high speed. Sounds interesting?
Longboard Deck for carving
Never, ever should you leave out the deck while looking for a carving longboard. It is among the main factors deciding whether you can become adept at performing tricks or not. And here are something that you should have in mind when it comes to longboard decks.
In simple terms, this refers to the way the truck-mounted to the board’s deck. And how does this have anything to do with carving? Well, a lot, actually! If your longboard has its truck under the deck, it can carve faster, but you will have to say goodbye to stability. On the contrary, if your truck goes through the deck, your ride can be safer, but daring moves are definitely out of the question.
Deck length and flex
Most of the time, the length of a carving longboard varies between 35 inches and 40 inches. And they are all going to be paired with some flex, which decides how sharp you can turn. Keep this in mind before making your purchase though: The shorter your board is, the sharper your turn will be. So, yeah, stay away from those small longboards if you are inexperienced!
Deck concave / camber, wheel wells
You do not know what these mean? It’s okay, let me give you a thorough explanation.
Concave is the way your board curves downward. For safety purpose, carving longboards are often paired with decks with really deep concave.
It goes the other way around for the camber. This term refers to the way your board curves upward. When weights are pressed down on the board, the deck will function like a spring, thus fueling your power as you make a turn. That being so, every longboard made for carving comes with a rather impressive camber
Lastly, we have wheel wells. As their name suggests, these resemble the shape of a well, with empty space inside a container, giving more room for the wheels. When you make some sharp turns, this can lower the risk of wheel bite.
Three Types Of Longboard For Carving That Everyone Craves For
First and foremost, we have Atom Drop-Through, a breakthrough in the world of the longboard. Filled to the brim with cool features, such as a deck that can prevent wheel bite, wheels that perform flawlessly even on rough terrains, and high-quality bearings, it can bring you the best carving experience by all means!
Next up we have a product created from high-quality materials with a symmetrical design that can turn quite a few heads. It is shock-resistant, durable, suitable for newbies and pros, and can last just as long as you have use of it. Not to mention, it comes with a pretty good look that will do for those who want to appear stylish while carving on the road.
Sector 9 Tackle Fractal
When it comes to carving, not many longboards can compete against this badass! Made of high-quality material with a special design, this board can help you turn like never before. Besides, it features a rather wide truck, which means that you will not have to be afraid of losing balance and falling while riding atop it. Neat!
The Protective Gears Required
Many skaters skip the use of these tools as they think it’s no need to wear uncomfortable and in some cases useless gears when they go out for training. However, you should cover your vulnerable body parts for your safety.
A helmet is essential in every sport and skating is no exception. Training curving can be very dangerous and a helmet is definitely crucial.
The purpose of wearing knee pads is to protect meniscus and the patella, or kneecap. Knee pads also guard the knee against scrapes and scratches which could happen during the practicing process
Elbow pads are also great for beginners as they are used to protect the elbows from injuries and burns caused by the rubbing against the asphalt.
Gloves are protective equipment that you need to wear. It also protects you from the harm of contacting with the road at high speed and gives you a sense of a professional skater as well
Suitable Places For Practicing
As a beginner, I highly recommend you for a gentle slope for training. A medium height enables the board to run steadily on its own at a very suitable speed so you don’t have to push off without knowing whether it runs fast enough or not.
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Also, practicing on a gentle slope, you will have more control of the board, the thing that you usually don’t have if you are a newbie to the sport. Therefore, when it comes to avoiding injuries, this method, in my opinion, is the best!
When you master carving, a slope will not fully satisfy all your needs, there are more advanced skills which need a more suitable place - with more appropriate height and steepness to practice. For that reason, let’s move to a more challenging one - a hill or similarly high slope.
This is by no means advised for the beginners. Sliding down from the top of the hill will require certain techniques that can be only acquired by a lot of practices.
What immediately stands out is that the height of the surfing line gives more momentum to the board, enabling the skater to run faster and practice the curving skills with greater intensity than a gentle slope.
I’ve just explained to you all the things you need to know about what is carving on board. It’s a quite fascinating technique to get to know about and also fun to practice. I hope you enjoy reading and become a dab hand at curving skateboards!
Further reading: what is helmet?