Tricks on (or above) the coping of a ramp, be it concrete bowl or wooden mini ramp or naturally occurring street quarterpipe, are their own genre or skateboarding. A lot of skaters specialize in either bowl skating or street skating, but then a lot of skaters do both. The good news is that you can do whatever you want. It’s all skateboarding.
DROPPING IN: Nearly anybody can drop into a ramp on a skateboard. If you can roll and do kickturns on a ramp, you can drop in. The challenge (and it can be a huge challenge) is to overcome the fear of dropping in. It is just not something your brain will want your body to do. When a human stands at the edge of a precipice, the brain does not want you to go over the edge. The trick is to build confidence. You can begin by pushing and pumping the transition starting from the flat bottom. Or, if different sized bowls are available, start small and work up. The trick to a drop in is to commit. Lean all the way forward and stay on your board. Almost all drop ins that don’t work involve a skater stepping off their board or not leaning forward. You won’t fall forward. Now, it is easy to tell your mind this, but much harder to get your body to understand it. Especially on ramps that go vertical.
STALLS and LIP TRICKS: The good news is that while there is a big difference between how you execute a ledge trick on street and how you would on a ramp, at least the more or less have the same names. You normally won’t be ollieing into your lip tricks on a ramp, but more just transferring your weight from the side wall onto the top of the coping. Unlike street skating, with transition you already have upward momentum toward the lip. You just need to harness that momentum. Once again, practice and more practice. Also, wear knee pads, as you can knee slide out of most bailed bowl tricks.
AIRS and GRABS: The explanations and names of the different types of airs and grabs in vertical and bowl skateboarding (and there a lot of random ridiculous names happening here) is another list entirely. And we’re not even going to acknowledge freestyle here. The key to every skateboarding trick, be it flatground, handrail, ledge, or bowl, is practice and repetition. Some involve more confidence and guts, while others involve muscle memory and balance. You aren’t only learning skate tricks, you’re also learning perseverance, overcoming adversity, accepting temporary defeat, and even the deep meditation and flow of focusing intently on movement. There may be some frustrations and setbacks, but we promise that if you stick with it and have a good attitude, you will have a good time nearly all the time on your skateboard. Skate safe out there and make sure to tag CCS in any clips of your tricks on social media.