At one point or another, we've all asked ourselves "Can front flips actually be that hard? You just throw your weight forward and tuck like you would on a trampoline right?"
I can assure you they are quite difficult, but the process of learning them can be made a lot easier with the right equipment and tips. A front flip is not a trick you should just throw yourself at or try and learn through a process of elimination. It is important to take the right methodical steps in order to prevent unnecessary learning curves and or injury.Base level necessity:
- For one it's important to have a sizeable jump with a 6ft lip (or more), yes you can frontflip on smaller jumps but the smaller the jump the harder it will be to learn.
- Secondly, it is very important to have an accessible airbag/foam pit because your very first attempts will likely end with you landing flat on your back.
- Thirdly having a back brake is not an absolute necessity but it will surely make your learning experience much easier because it helps initiate the frontward rotation.Let's get started
Firstly we'll watch this video and then I'll break it down into its key steps.Step 1: The Set Up
Just like for any trick, it's important to enter the lip at a medium speed in a neutral and controlled position. Don't overcompensate and go super fast hoping that will make the rotation easier, it's actually the other way around. To a certain point, the slower you go the more you can focus on the technique of your pop rather than just trying to muscle it.Step 2-3: The Pop
These are the hardest steps. In order to begin the frontward rotation there needs to be a popping action. Unlike a backflip where you can just lean and pull backward in a singular smooth motion, for a frontflip you need a precisely timed transfer of weight from backward leaning to full forwards. The best way to explain it is you stand up towards the end of the lip with most of your weight in the back wheel, then just as your front wheel leaves the lip you throw your head forwards into the stem.
It's important to throw your head into your stem and not towards your front wheel, then you pull the rear bike up with your feet and push the front of the bike down with your arms. This is the tucked position you want to remain in until you've completed the rotation.Step 4-5: The Tuck and Open
At this point, you've completed the hardest steps, but there are still a few more things to keep in mind that'll help tremendously.
One thing to consider is that instead of just blindly throwing your weight forward you should throw your head into your bars to one side or the other, this allows you to spot your landing instead of blindly leaning forward.
Lastly, just remember to open up the tuck just before landing to slow/stop the rotation. That's It!
Now you're ready to give it your best go, just remember to always aim for perfection with every attempt and never shortcut any steps to the learning process.