The frontside ollie on transition is a versatile trick that every miniramp skater should be able to do. When the frontside ollie is done skillfully, it’s an impressive trick on its own. The frontside ollie also leads to other cool tricks such as the disaster, lipslides, and even some cool tricks imported from the flat such as bigspins and tre flips on transition. You can’t do any of these on the miniramp or bowl without a decent frontside ollie.
As they say about chess, the frontside ollie is easy to learn and difficult to master. In the beginning these will feel uncoordinated, but eventually they will start to smooth out. One important thing to understand while you visualize doing this trick is that you are not doing a frontside 180 ollie. Instead, you will be rolling up the transition at a frontside angle, popping your ollie with only a little frontside rotation, and then landing on the transition at a downward diagonal. After your landing, you can steer the board through the rest of the descent and prepare for the next wall.
1. Pump up some speed by doing a series of frontside kickturns. Keep the board comfortably below the coping for now. Keep your line in a large looping pattern rather than going straight up and straight back down. The larger your turns across the transition the better.
2. When you are ready, move your lead foot over or slightly behind the front bolts. You want to be in a wide ollie stance. Since most of the ollie height will come from the curving transition, a large lead-foot scoop across your board won’t be necessary. The curvature of the ramp will be doing a lot of the work for you.
3. Roll up the transition at about a 45-degree angle, with your toes pointed toward the coping. Keep your weight lower on the transition so the board is riding a little higher than you.
4. While you are still moving forward at a reasonable speed, pop your ollie with a very small frontside rotation. You may not need any conscious effort to bring the board around frontside; you may do it naturally.
5. Land diagonally on the transition or as much pointing straight down the transition as you can.
When you are starting to learn frontside ollies on transition, don’t worry about getting big air. Focus on popping your tail with a lot of snap and bringing the board around so it lands squarely under you. (Remember, on transition having the board “under” you doesn’t necessarily mean the board is “below” you.)
If the board’s nose doesn’t rotate in a frontside direction, use your shoulders a bit more to lead it around. Start with a bit of a pretwisted posture as you begin going up the transition and rotate your lead shoulder to your left (regular) or right (goofy) as you ollie.
If the board just doesn’t seem to want to get off the ground even though you are doing everything correctly, find a flat-bank and try a frontside ollie there. If you can ollie on a bank, there should be little challenge doing it on a small transition.