Halfpipe is the U-shaped bowl-like structure which has long been associated with skateboards. And for good reason, because the Halfpipe has remained the classic space where skateboarders can come together and perform various tricks.
Luckily for the snowboarders, the Halfpipe is an equally great place to practice various tricks. Since a snowboard offers the same kind of glide and movement as a skateboard, it is incredibly easy to perform various tricks and maneuvers on a Halfpipe using a snowboard.
However, this does not mean that you should try your hands on the Halfpipe as a beginner. Halfpipe does require a certain degree of skill, expertise, confidence on the board and smooth pace. These things usually come to a snowboarder after a considerable time and practice.
So before you head down to the Halfpipe, it is highly advisable that you master all the beginner moves and basics. These will help you not only on the Halfpipe but other snowboarding spaces as well.
Once you have mastered all the beginner basics, it is time to try your hands at the Halfpipe. Halfpipe is great fun for an intermediate rider because there are virtually endless techniques and tricks you can perform here. From easy tricks to advanced ones, you can try your hands at any moves that you dig.
Here is a diverse list of some exciting and awesome Halfpipe techniques and moves. You will need some time and patience to master them but once you have got the hang of them, you are sure to enjoy them immensely.
A slide turn is one of the simplest Halfpipe moves. You simply descend down one wall of the Halfpipe and ascend the other wall. The trick here is to keep track of your orientation. Imagine your right foot is the front foot as you come down one Halfpipe wall and ascend the other.
Now as you reach the edge and complete a complete U-shaped movement, you are ready to go down the wall. This time, your left foot would be the front foot. Understanding this in advance and being ready to shift your balance as required will help you do the slide turn perfectly.
This is another basic Halfpipe trick. Once you can smoothly glide on a Halfpipe from edge to edge, it is time to take things a step farther. Gain some speed and try to take off from one of the edges to do a little jump. As you get some airtime during the jump, turn the board around. This will enable you to be in the same direction as your original position, that is, after the jump, the same foot will be your front foot as the time you entered the pipe.
It is worth noting here that the advanced snowboard moves require a lot more practice and skill. They are risky but if you have diligently practiced the basic moves and done your homework, you should be fine. These moves are not recommended for beginners who should first master the basic moves before moving on to these moves.
Nearly all advanced Halfpipe snowboard moves are about the maneuvers you do mid-air during a jump. This means you must first be able to make sizable jump and be able to achieve good airtime before you begin with these moves.
180 Degree Alley Oop
The 180 degree Alley Oop move is one of the first advanced Halfpipe moves you should try your hands on. This is because it builds on the basic moves and if you have already mastered the basic moves, the 180 Degree Alley Oop shouldn’t be too much of a problem.
To perform this trick, you will need a considerable speed and airtime. So make sure you are paced well when performing this move. As you ride up the ascending side of the Halfpipe at a goodly speed, keep your board as flat as possible as you go into the jump. During the airtime, turn your board 180 degrees. A great way to accomplish this in the start is by grabbing the board and adding the turning momentum to it.
Once you have completely turned the board 180 degrees and turned your body with it, bring the board back on the Halfpipe wall as flat as possible. Congratulations, this completes the Alley Oop maneuver.
Air to Fakie
An air to fakie snowboard move on a Halfpipe usually involves doing a spinning movement during the jump. There are many different variants of the air to fakie move but if you are trying your hands on it for the first time, go with the 360 degrees air to fakie.
To perform this move, gain a good speed on the pipe. As you approach the lip at a goodly pace, slowly shift your weight back just as you leave the edge. This will make your balance shift so that your snowboard will rise up, almost putting you in the upside down position. Go with the momentum and complete the whole upside down maneuver and then back again in the upright position. This will complete the 360-degrees spin.
Once the spin is complete, realign the board to the wall and land back on the pipe with a flat board. When you land, your direction will be the same and will not change as it does in the Alley Oop move above.
The frontside 720 is a fairly difficult move in the list of advanced Halfpipe moves. So you shouldn’t try your hands on it unless you are already very good at the basic and preliminary advanced moves such as the 360 degree spins.
To perform the frontside 720, you require a considerable speed and airtime. So pace up your snowboard as you approach the lip to perform this move. Recall the 180-degree rotation move mentioned above. This is simply 4 times that rotation.
In the 180-degree rotation, you take half a turn and land back with your direction reversed. Now, if you completed a fully 360 degree rotation (not spinning, as in the air to fakie move), you land back on the pipe without your directly changed. Similarly, the Frontside 720 involves two 360-degree rotations done in quick succession. It sounds simply enough but takes some time to master. So try your hands at the 180-degree, 360-degree and 540-degree rotations before you try the Frontside 720 on the Halfpipe.
Ryan grew up with snow, so he has an endless passion for skiing and snowboarding and everything around these.