How to Pump on Ramps to Gain Extra Speed on a Skateboard


My name is Justin Lauria, and today I’m going
to show you how to get extra speed on your skateboard without ever having to take your
back foot off to push. The technique is called pumping and you can
use it any time the angle of the ground changes. When you pump correctly, it will increase
the amount of speed you gain from going downhill, and decrease the amount of speed you lose
from going uphill. First, let’s look at pumping down a flat ramp.
Make sure that you’re already comfortable just rolling down the ramp normally, because
this technique is going to give you a boost and you need to be able to handle that extra
speed. Roll up to the top of the ramp with your legs
only slightly bent. You’re going to bend your legs in a second, so don’t crouch down too
much. Once you’re on the ramp going downhill, bend your knees so you do a squat on the ramp.
When you do this, you should feel yourself accelerate a little faster than usual. Once
you hit the bottom of the ramp, you can stand back up into your normal stance, and enjoy
your speed boost. OK, so what’s going on here? Where did this
extra energy come from? When you roll down the ramp without bending your knees, your
center of mass will ultimately fall the height of the ramp. But when you crouch down, you’re
lowering your center of mass down even further, so the total height of your drop will be greater
than the height of the ramp. You’re simply making the most out of your gravitational
potential energy. This energy isn’t free though; Do this move enough over and over and you’ll
start to feel the burn in your legs. You have to admit though, it sure beats the heck out
of the alternative. If you really want to maximize all the speed
you can get from a down-ramp, you can try having your center of mass up even higher
before you start going downhill. Any technique you can use to increase the distance that
your center of mass drops will translate into a bigger boost of speed. Note that you can only pump one time per ramp.
If you stand up again before you hit the bottom, you’ll end up losing your boost. So on longer
ramps, you should try to time your squat so that you’re pumping near the end of the ramp,
otherwise your going to be stuck holding that position until you get all the way to the bottom. Make sure, though, that you get to the bottom
of your squat before you transition out of the ramp, or your efforts will be in vain.
You want to feel your legs pressing the board into the downhill part of the ramp to gain
the extra speed. You can use this technique on any downhill
ramp, regardless of the shape, but just know that it’s easier to keep your board under
control on a flat ramp than it is on a curvy one. Alright, so on to uphill ramps. Going up a
ramp is going to take away some of your speed as you convert your momentum into gravitational
potential energy, but you can reduce the amount you lose if you pump correctly. To pump on an uphill ramp, you’re going to
be using your legs again to “jump” off of the flat ground at the bottom, up to the top
of the ramp, rather than using your sideways momentum to carry you up. Right before your
front wheels get to the bottom of the ramp, crouch down and spring up as if you were jumping
off of your board with both feet. The angle of the ramp will keep the board pressed up
against your feet, so you won’t actually be leaving your board behind, but since you just
launched your body weight upward, that momentum is going to help carry you up to the top of
the ramp, minimally impacting your sideways speed. When you start getting good at this, you might
notice that you’re still going so fast at the top of the ramp, that you fly up over
the transition to flat ground and have a little trouble staying on the board. If this happens
to you, when you get to the top, suck your legs up into your body and let your board
gracefully follow your feet up to the apex of your jump. Then, just make sure to position
your feet over top of each set of wheels and stomp the board down. Pumping is an especially important skill to
have when skating a half-pipe. Every time you roll down one side, make sure to bend
your knees to add that extra momentum to your run. Likewise, always spring up right before
you go up the other side so you can get your body up higher, allowing you drop down even
further once you go down again. Once you start rolling back and forth on a half pipe, you
should never have to take your feet off to push, and you should still be able to get
to the top of both sides, just using pumping. Once you master the technique, you’ll find
that you can use it on almost any obstacle, as long as it has a transition from the high
part to the low part that you can pump on. Stay tuned for more skate tutorials, subscribe
if you haven’t already, and as always, remember, have fun.

87 thoughts on “How to Pump on Ramps to Gain Extra Speed on a Skateboard”

  1. I was trying to explain to my friend who isn't a skater, but is a physicist, how pumping works. This was perfect, thanks!

  2. Another great vid by Justin. I struggle commiting to an Ollie down a bank could you please please do a tutorial on it Justin there isn't a vid on here on how to do it and you explain things so well. job well done 👍

  3. watched this video then after I went out for a skate done everything u said and no word of a lie I bombed it round the bowl 😊 big thankyou to you Justin your videos are amazing pls make more cant wait to see what's next 👍

  4. Okay man firstly this video was super helpful and it's awesome BUT I'm doing it EXACTLY as is in this video on a half pipe (which I can drop in on and kickturn and that) but if I drop in and ride up one side I pump up and it is a bit faster than if I were to do it without pumping and then pump down and it's fast still but then I go up the other side pump the exact same and it still gives me kind of a boost and I keep pumping the exact same really hard but it just slows down and stops after like 2-3 pumps up each side and I wouldn't even be tired it just stops?!? I've been trying it for so long but everytime this happens will it just get better with even MORE practice or have you anymore tips? Thanks in advance man!

  5. Great video ! any chance we can get a "How to Pump around a Bowl!" tutorial ? Just getting into bowl skating now and this was super helpful !

  6. Just getting back into skating did it in 7th grade. But had no motive and didn't know what I was doing lol thanks man.

  7. You can also pump from side to side to accelerate instead of pushing, this is a core skill for surfing. You can do it at a skate park but its easier with any kind of longboard, because of improved horizontal leverage and no wheelbite. This works better the faster you are going, but you can even pump up long gentle hills without pushing. Approach the hill with enough energy, at least 15 or 20 mph, and you can maintain that energy all the way up.

  8. pflugerville! that weird thing in the middle near the big banks will send you almost to the top of the wallride if you hit it right.

  9. Great video, dude! Very I nstructional without being cheesy or creepy, or catering to the 15 and under crowd…(I won't mention the name of the channel with the weird creepy Scientologist.)

  10. hey i m just a beginner & when i push my board it always turn in either left or right direction how to go straight ???

  11. there's this ramp at work like at the skate parks, I usually go down it but ima pump next time I go, thanks for the tip

  12. This video helps me a lot. Big thanks. Could you make a video for more detail about when you carving in the bowl and gain your speed?

  13. You have some of the most comprehensive skate videos I have seen. I just started skating because my son wanted a skate and your videos have been great. I like how you break down the physics of the process as well. Keep it up. ✌️🤘

  14. As a beginner, at first i thought this was some thing gay or something but this video was very helpful now that i watched it! 🙂

  15. Great video. I've been told that on a mini ramp you need to push down as you go down…. you are essentially saying that you just need to get low, but I can see that when you come off the transition you do push down with your legs and your head kinda remains the same height. Can you explain the idea behind your technique here?

  16. Nice video but the extra energy doesn’t come form squatting but you pushing the board down at the end of the ramp think about it it doesn’t make sense what you said there;) but still a good video

  17. Hi thanks for video my village only has a half pipe probably about 6 foot plus it's on a slight downhill angle, I'm finding it hard to get get more than 3 pumps then I stop any tips?

  18. Your tutorial helped me to finally pump all the way up to a high ramp without getting off my board. And what an awesome skatepark that is! Where is it? Thanks.

  19. This looks like Pflugerville, TX – am I correct? If not, it’s almost a replica – I love that park – also, great video!

  20. He makes all these tutorials look so easy but the reality is that I’ll eat shit on the first try doing these I bet😂

  21. I have to question your explanation of how pumping works. If your claim was true, I don’t see why you would need to pump at the bottom, you could just keep your legs bent. Also, if your claim was true, the added potential energy that you’re talking about would turn to kinetic energy at the moment you bend your legs, thus giving you a speed boost. I’m sure we can agree that this isn’t the case.

    I believe pumping works because as you transition from vertical to horizontal, your body is accelerating into the ground and the ground is pushing back.

    This is the same force that you feel when you free fall and land on a flat surface, but there’s a fundamental difference.

    When you land on a flat surface, the ground pushes straight up, so if has no affect on horizontal speed. However, when you are on a transition, the ground pushes back at whatever angle you are at , so it pushes at an angle that has a horizontal component. Thus, you can influence that force via pumping by maximizing the force that the ground receives as you transition.

    Great video and I don’t mean to knit pick, but misguided physics is actually so ridiculously common that it’s become somewhat of a pet peeve of mine. That being said, someone please correct me if my claim is wrong.

  22. As a beginner I really appreciate the detail u put into the video and actually explaining the WHY behind every thing . Gonna try some of this

  23. Hey Justin, your explanation starting at Minute 1:00 is not correct. You don't gain speed by crouching at all. You just need to crouch for being able to stretch your legs – this is how pumping works. Oh, I just read under Zachary's comment that you see it this way now, too. Could you add this to your video, as I would guess hardly anyone reads the comments and gets taught by you the wrong way?
    I am a professional skatetrainer from Hamburg, Germany and discovered too many wrong explanations about how to skateboard. This is my domain: www.skate-school.de – I hope I add videos soon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *