Snowboarding Half Pipe Tricks and Tips

Here, on the snowboard half pipe tricks page, find descriptions and how-to's on the basic line and pumping skills required to rip the halfpipe.
Then, go on and get busy learning how to do halfpipe tricks.

I have always loved the tricks. Seeing them, knowing the names of the variety of maneuvers and of coarse, doing them. I have always been a flipper and a spinner. On the hill, on the tramp, off the diving board, cliff jumping on snow or water, any place is grand. I will find a way to do tricks. It just so happens that out of all of those, I personally like Snowboard Halfpipe Tricks the most. The is so much motion. The transitions and shape of a halfpipe provide an incredible facility for creative expression through skills and movement.

[Effective Line][Pumping][Landings][Straight Airs][Spins/Flips]
[Reverse Momentum Tricks][Hand Plants and Lip Tricks]

540s 720s 900s 1080s

Double Flips and Double Corks

Check out this Helmet Camera Video of Riding The Halfpipe. Try and get a sense of the speed and the motion. The swinging on a swing set feel of it.

Working with the Effective Line

---------------Bottom of Halfpipe-----------------

Common Less Effective Line------Top of Pipe---------Good More Effective Line

Common Bad Line - 

 Note Double Turn --Landing hard on downhill edge, followed by an edge change and a second carve to get line going across flat-bottom Lower than expected speed results in hook into the wall trying to get amplitude. Though it usually is not successful. Short travel downhill in air, landing drops straight into pipe. This line has little to no pump, works against flow and results in small amplitude!! Plus, it is not as fun as a good line.

Good Line = Good Flow -

Pumping - Speed is Natural - Amplitude Grows

Note downhill angle at landing mark, followed by a single powerful carve and pump to generate speed through transition (Pump by pushing or extending with entire body through lower half of landing transition), entering flat bottom hold straight, clean, light on the edge traverse to take off. Reset into low ready position in the middle of flat-bottom. 2/3 of weight on trailing foot, pushing board into and up the transition (Up Pump). Shift weight towards front foot at the moment of release from wall. Do some super neato trick, drift, float, smile, and style it out. Look down at your landing and put you feet down Touch down with that same downhill angle to pump through this landing and keep it going.

The Trick to Pumping a Halfpipe
Speed is everything in halfpipe riding. The way to maximize speed its through fearless use of line and pumping. Pumping has a couple of tricks that can make all the difference. For the most pump out of any transition the rider must land in a crouch at the top of the landing, so that they can use the whole transition to smoothly extend and push off of it with their entire body. In order to land in a crouch the rider will adjust the pop at takeoff to let their momentum and body mass float slightly towards the deck of the pipe so they can land in a crouch up high in the transition. If the rider pops or pushes to hard at the takeoff they will drop in to the transtition and land flat, which kills the pump potential.

Using the suggestions for pipe lines and working on popping just enough to land in a crouch up high on the wall and rotate just the right amount to land with that down hill angle noted above, on the uphill edge or in a position to get on it right away, the rider will start to feel the pump and the rhythm of the halfpipe. That is where the real fun begins.

Keys to Halfpipe

Landings -

Landing airs and tricks in the halfpipe can be quite different than the landing found else where on the hill. The most important key to landing successfully is confidence. Being aggressive enough to land with body weight on the front foot and get that board back on the transition to ride back down the wall. When riding correctly in a good halfpipe, the rider is basically just riding up the wall into the air then back down the wall into the halfpipe. With no significant jump movement or landing impact at re-entry, the rider just rides the smooth arcing transitions and lets them do the work.

Beyond that, the rider is trying to maintain a "good line", light uphill edge pressure, and to carry as much speed as possible from wall to wall.

Straight Airs

Frontside Air – A frontside air is performed off of the toe edge wall, which is the left wall for goofy footers, or the right wall for regular footers. While airborne, the frontside of the riders’ body is facing out of the halfpipe.
Backside Air – A backside air is performed off of the heel edge wall, which is the right wall for goofy footers, or the left wall for regular footers. While airborne, the backside of the riders’ body is facing out of the halfpipe.
-In the halfpipe a straight air actually includes a small rotation of around 90-110 degrees. This is due to the fact that in relation to a line perpendicular to the fall-line (straight across the halfpipe), the rider takes a line that is between 20-40 degrees across the hill and up the wall, while airborne the rider rotates 90-110 degrees, or enough to land at an angle of around 45 degrees back the other way followed by a turn through the landing to pump for the next hit and set up the line for the next wall.

-This effect also applies to Quarterpipe straights airs, only on a Quarterpipe the straight air is closer to 180 degrees, like it would be in a vertical skateboard ramp or halfpipe.