Recently, someone asked me if you can do
But how do you pick the best longboard specifically for 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:
- The Landyachtz ATV: this Hybrid board series is ideal for hardcore street and skatepark riding and tricks
- The Arbor Catalyst: this symmetrical twin-kick drop-through makes this longboard very well-suited for freestyle tricks
- The Landyachtz Stratus: one of the best longboards for doing flatland and dancing tricks
In addition to the above, two additional longboards, even though pricier, need to be mentioned for freestyle and dancing tricks: the Loaded Tan Tien and the Loaded Bhangra (keep reading for more).
In this article, I discuss in turn the three types of tricks and why the above longboards are the best for each type.
Note: if you’re interested in other riding styles, check out How to Choose the Right Longboard for Me for an overview of what to look for in a longboard based on the type of riding.
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.
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,
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
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 page on the Loaded boards website for specs and pricing.
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″
Like most longboards built for dancing tricks, the Stratus is symmetrical with an ample kick and nose for those pivots, manuals, and
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?
You can perform many sorts of tricks on a longboard, from street and transition
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.
Featured photo by @ChristianRosillo – Rider: Dandoy Tongco – Permission Loaded Boards