Best Longboard For Tricks: 3 Boards You Can’t Go Wrong With

best longboard for tricks

The other day, someone asked me if you can tricks on a longboard. “Tricks” refers to technical maneuvers you perform on a longboard aside from just plain riding on it. Sure enough, there are always tricks that you can perform on any longboard.

But how do you pick the best longboard for doing tricks? The answer depends on the type of tricks you want to do. The following longboards are among the best for these 3 styles of tricks:

  1. The Landyachtz ATV: this Hybrid board series is ideal for hardcore street and skatepark riding and tricks
  2. The Arbor Catalyst: this symmetrical twin-kick drop-through makes this longboard very well-suited for freestyle tricks
  3. The Landyachtz Stratus: one of the best longboards for doing flatland and dancing tricks

Two additional longboards, albeit pricier, are also worth mentionning for freestyle and dancing tricks – keep reading to find out.

In this article, I discuss in turn the three types of tricks and why the above longboards are the best for each type.

1. Best street and skatepark tricks longboard: Landyachtz ATV

Can you do street tricks and ride park on a longboard? Of course you can. Some say you should get a regular skateboard for that, and it does make sense. However, there are some pretty good arguments in favor of choosing a longboard for street and skatepark tricks:

  • Flips, ollies, handrails, and airs on a longboard look and feel awesome, and are somewhat technically different than on a street deck
  • A longboard is more versatile than a street board. If you can only have one board, a longboard will serve for cruising and commuting as well as doing tricks.
  • So-called hybrid longboards are designed to bridge the gap between street decks and longboards!

Why the Landyachtz ATV is the best longboard for street tricks

Landyachtz’s ATV series boards are hybrids between longboard and street skateboard. They look like oversized and reinforced traditional skateboards with their big double (or single depending on version) kicks. However, they come fit with 155mm Bear trucks that are great for carving and pumping, and bigger (60mm) softer longboard wheels.

There are three different shapes for the ATV, the Laguito, Presidente, and Perfecto, varying in size and functional focus, ranging from pure street tricks and park focus to a more cruising and city slashing focus.

Of the three, the Laguito is the most akin to a traditional skateboard, making it one of the best longboards for street and park tricks on the market. The big double kicks, stiff flex, and mild concave let you easily snap ollies and kickflips and slash on verts and transitions at the skatepark.

The ATV hybrid longboards designed for street riding and tricks are affordably priced (Amazon). Check out my full review here for more details.

2. Best freestyle tricks longboard: Arbor Catalyst

The second type of tricks commonly done on a longboard are so-called freestyle tricks. These tricks lie somewhere in between street tricks and dancing tricks, involving ollies and kickflips but also tiger claws (kicking the board and flipping it in the air while you run alongside it), shuvits, pivots, cavemans, and technical slides. See my post on learning freestyle tricks for more.

While freestyle tricks are increasingly mixed in with dancing, dedicated freestyle boards are quite different from true dancer boards. They are typically shorter and lighter with a medium wheelbase (20-28″) and some flex for responsiveness at low speed.

They are generally symmetrical for switch riding, with flared double kicktails for pop. Some have a drop-through truck mount and/or a micro-dropped deck. They’re usually fit with lightweight trucks and (offset) wheels to facilitate kick tricks and wheelies.

Why the Arbor Catalyst is the best longboard for freestyle tricks

The Arbor Catalyst is a great board for technical freestyle longboard tricks, mainly due to its drop-through mount, stiff deck, and substantial kicks.

It’s a fully symmetrical longboard, allowing tricks that involve riding switch. 41″ long by 9.625″ wide, it has enough foot space for moving around and stepping on and off with confidence when performing shuvits and the like.

Due to its drop-through mount style, the Arbor Catalyst rides lower to the ground, giving you the confidence to try bolder freestyle maneuvers. The mellow concave lowers it even more, and is just enough to secure your feet when setting up for tricks, yet not too deep to get in the way. The drop-through construction and the concave also facilitate doing technical slides during freestyle trick sessions.

The deck is very stiff, more than most drop-throughs. This, combined with the ample double kicks, gives the Catalyst nice pop and a very direct response feel when pulling kick and flip tricks. With its 8 plies of Canadian maple, it’s a sturdy yet relatively lightweight board that can be flipped around without effort.

The Paris V2 180mm trucks that come stock with the Catalyst are extremely resistant and can take a lot of abuse when doing tricks. The big soft (69mm 78A) Outlook wheels let you ride comfortably even on rougher terrain, yet their light weight and offset core placement facilitate flip manual tricks. The 44mm contact patch gives you some grip but leaves some room for tech sliding tricks.

At under $200, the Arbor Catalyst is an nice affordable longboard for tricks. Check out the Catalyst Artist Hablak version on Amazon.

NOTE: a premium, pricier alternative to the Catalyst is the Loaded Tan Tien ($300+), often seen as one of the best longboards for freestyle tricks on the market. The Tan Tien is also a drop-through with large kicks for tricks, but contrary to the Catalyst, it has a certain amount of flex, which some freestyle riders like. The Tan Tien has a reputation for being extremely durable, lightweight, and very responsive. It’s a highly versatile board also great for carving, pumping, pushing, and even freeriding. See the Tan Tien’s pricing and reviews on Amazon, or see the Tan Tien page on the Loaded boards website for details.

3. Best dancing tricks longboard: Landyachtz Stratus

The third type of tricks commonly performed on a longboard is “flatland” dancing tricks, which involve old school board walking, cross-stepping, and sophisticated footwork while continuously carving. The most common trick in dancing is cross-stepping and Peter Pan, which involves bringing one foot over the other while moving. Dancing also typically includes freestyle type tricks such as manuals, 180 spins, and shuvits.

Why the Landyachtz Stratus is the best longboard for dancing tricks

The Landyachtz Stratus is a uber-spacious 45″ x 9.25″ topmount dancer longboard designed specifically for dancing and flatland tricks. Its huge effective foot platform and long 27.5″-28.5″ wheelbase makes it a highly comfortable and stable board to move, cross-step, and pirouette on. The Hollowtech version of the Stratus is also the most lightweight and cool-looking dancer on the market.

Like most longboards built for dancing tricks, the Stratus is symmetrical with an ample kick and nose for those pivots, manuals, and kick flips. It has small foot pockets at the base of the kicks for subtle foot lock-in when performing balancing and carving tricks. The deck is grip-free between the trucks to facilitate cross- stepping and spinning tricks on the longboard.

The Bear Grizzly trucks that come with the Stratus are known for their fluid carving ability, making it easy to keep the longboard flowing while doing tricks. The Hawgs wheels are soft and grippy with a wide contact patch, and small enough (63mm) to avoid any wheelbite.

Overall, the Stratus is no doubt among the best longboards for flatland tricks. The bamboo version is quite affordable at under $250, while the Hollowtech version, much lighter and transparent, is significantly pricier at slightly under $350. See my full review of the Stratus here.

NOTE: If you have the budget for the Hollowtech, you may want to check out the Loaded Bhangra, one of the world’s most praised longboards for flatland tricks and dancing – see the Bhangra’s page on the Loaded website, or see its reviews and pricing on Amazon.

SEE ALSO: what are the 5 best dancing longboards?

Final words

You can perform many sorts of tricks on a longboard, from street and transition tricks, to freestyle longboard tricks, to flatland dancing tricks. Although with the right amount of skills and experience, you could do pretty much anything on any board, different type of longboards will typically work best for different kinds of tricks.

Depending on your preferred style, you may choose a smaller, nimble, hybrid-type deck with tons of pop, a midsize symmetrical drop-through with functional kicks and slideable wheels, or a large dancing deck for board walking and cross-stepping while carving.

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Photo credits:
Featured photo by @ChristianRosillo – Rider: Dandoy Tongco – Permission Loaded Boards

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Big Kahuna

Hi I'm Jesse. All my life I've been passionate about the board riding lifestyle. Some years ago I got into longboarding, and in doing so, I discovered a whole new universe and a fantastic community. There's something for everyone in longboarding regardless of age, gender, size, and fitness level. Ride on!

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