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Slacklining is more versatile than ever and there are lots of fantastic tricks to try. Beginners are shaky on their feet for the first few sessions and then, as they gain confidence and better balance, there’s more freedom. Children and adults love slacklining because it’s so creative and it’s a lot of fun. You’ll learn fairly quickly how to set-up and use a slackline safely, along with the basics, and can move onto more advanced tricks too. Learning tricks and fancy flips is a lot easier than you think and there are lots of great tips to help you along the way.
So, why not learn these 12 tricks for attractive slacklining?
- Beginners Level 1 Trick – The First Balance Steps
The idea of this challenge is pretty simple; balance on your right foot for ten seconds and then switch to your left foot and balance for another ten seconds. Not too difficult right? This is the perfect trick for most beginners and with practice you may be able to stretch to fifteen seconds and beyond.
- Carefully step onto the slackline. Ideally, you want to go with a basic stance so that you have good balance and are comfortable on the line.
- When you are ready, carefully move your left foot away from the line. You can lift it forward or behind you, depending on how you feel most comfortable. However, you need to keep your weight evenly distributed to keep your balance.
- Do not shift your weight or tilt forward or backward, as this can cause you to lose balance and fall.
- Count from 1-to-10 and ease the leg down. You should try the same steps for your other leg.
- You can try this as a solid stance or a balancing trick as you take a step forward. It can work both ways.
- Don’t rush this. You could fall or miss the line and injure yourself, instead, ease your body into it. If you can’t make ten seconds, opt for a five-second timer instead.
While this is a beginner’s trick, it’s harder than you think especially if your balance is off. Ideally, you want to set the line up very low to the ground so that if you can’t evenly balance and fall, it’s from a small height. For beginners, setting the line up around 30 centimeters to a foot off the ground would be safest. And don’t forget to ensure the line has enough tension; you don’t want to get to the middle of the line and have it snag and touch the ground.
- The Beginners Level Drop Knee Slackline Trick
The Drop Knee trick is deceptively easy. Most beginners – that have mastered their balance – should be able to try this trick. You should warm-up for this static trick because you don’t want to do yourself an injury. This trick needs control and balance so make sure yours are fairly decent. If your balance isn’t there yet, a few more practice rounds may be required.
- Climb onto the slackline and move to the middle of the line so there’s sufficient room to complete the trick.
- Then, drop one leg down onto the line so that your knee is slightly hanging off but your ankle is resting on the slackline.
- In a way, you’re going down on one knee, like a proposal, but the dropped knee is hanging off the line.
- If your balance is good, your knee should ease down under the slackline. To keep your balance, slowly drop the knee by easing back and resting your weight on the ankle.
- Remember, all of your weight is resting on that back ankle, so keep your concentration and focus. Stay in this stance for five seconds then ease your weight to your front foot and stand.
Competent beginners love the Drop Knee trick as it shows how far they’ve progressed and it’s an elegant trick.
- The Beginners Level Line Snap Trick
Line Snap tricks look complicated at first but they’re actually some of the simplest jumps beginners can make. Of course, as you gain more experience, there will be many variations to try. Expert slackers opt for several snaps at one time and some even try their trick one-footed, but for now, let’s stick to the basic Line Snap.
- Step onto the line and test the tension for the bounce. You need some give so that you can make the jump successfully without the line touching the ground.
- As you jump, you want to push or kick your feet in the opposite direction.
- But, bring the legs back together while you’re in the air so that you can land safely.
- Both feet should land together on the line, hence the importance of the above step.
- While you land, keep your hands above your head.
While this trick is fairly easy for some, it isn’t entirely without risk. You could be seriously hurt if the trick goes wrong. You could miss the line and injure yourself. It’s essential to focus at all times and work your way up to the Line Snap.
- The Beginners Level Vertical Jump Trick
Once you’re a competent slackline beginner, the Vertical Jump trick will definitely be one to try. You can opt for a simple straight up and down jump, or, when you reach an advanced level, can jump up and forward. Of course, that’s difficult for most beginners to nail so, let’s just stick with the basic up and down for the moment.
- Test the line for bounce. You want a line with good elasticity so that you can bounce up, but not so that you touch the ground.
- Once you’ve pushed the line down and have some leverage to jump, you can bounce and start your jump.
- Keep your arms in a straight direction at all times.
- Tuck your legs in as you jump.
- When you land, try to keep your hands raised above the head.
If it goes well, it looks very smart but of course, it takes a lot of practice. Even some advanced slackers miss the line from time-to-time so you have to be prepared for that. Anyone trying this trick needs to have full concentration and focus.
- The Intermediate Level Revert 180 Trick
This trick has many variations and can be more complex the greater experience you have. However, the 180 Revert adds half a turn into the Vertical Jump trick and can be very elegant. Of course, even at an intermediate level, your jump height should be limited. This is to prevent serious injury for those trying the jumps out for the first time.
- Push the line down with your feet to get bounce.
- Then, when you feel ready, swivel your body around 180 degrees. Your head and arms can help encourage your body to rotate.
- Again, your hands should be above your head as you land.
- Standard Revert 180 jumps take a lot of practice for intermediate slackers but once the trick is mastered, they can add a second 180 jump in the opposite direction.
- So, once the first rotation is complete, use the bounce for the second 180 rotation in the opposite direction.
Of course, adding a second quick-succession rotation isn’t for everyone and can take a lot of time to master the Revert, never mind incorporating two in the mix. Before attempting two 180 Reverts simultaneously, master the first before moving on.
- The Intermediate Level 360 Turn Trick
Similar to the 180 Revert, the 360 Turn is a Vertical Jump where you spin your body around 360 degrees. It’s a challenging trick for any intermediate slacker and one that requires a lot of skill and practice to get right.
- Like with the 180 Revert, you need to bounce on the line to get leverage to jump high in the air.
- You must spot the line as you’re bouncing so that it’s your focal point during the jump.
- Your head and arms will encourage your body to complete the rotation and are likely to rotate before the lower part of your body.
- Bounce, jump and rotate.
- Make sure your eye goes to the line as you spin around. That will help you to maintain your focus and land on the line.
- As always, keep your hands over the head.
This trick is incredibly smart. If you pull it off, it’ll look fantastic; however, it does require a lot of practice. The 180 Revert is very challenging and until you master that, you shouldn’t be moving onto the 360 because it takes much more skill. Fortunately, if you can nail the 180 and practice hard, the 360 can be a fine trick for your slackline arsenal.
- The Intermediate Level Buddha Sit
You’ve probably seen the traditional Buddha pose before but it’s actually possible to try it on a slackline. Now, this trick isn’t without risks and you need a lot of strength in your muscle legs, as well as a good balance to pull it off. If you want to nail it spot on, you’re going to need a lot of practice. Fortunately, it follows the same practice as the Drop Knee trick and when done right, it’s a smart trick to show-off.
- Position yourself on the slackline.
- Take a few steps and carefully cross your legs as your body turns 90 degrees. You can follow the same premise as the Drop Knee trick to get into the seated position.
- Remember, your ankles will take most of the weight.
- Ease your body onto the line and go into the Buddha position.
- You need to use your legs to push up and stand on the line again while turning the body back 90 degrees.
The Buddha Trick should only be tackled once you’ve practiced hard and have many hours of slacklining under your belt. It’s difficult and can be uncomfortable, not to mention dangerous, if it’s not done right.
- The Advanced Level Butt Bounce Trick
While the Butt Bounce looks like a simple trick, it’s only simple when you are at an advanced slacklining level. It’s an incredibly popular trick and if done well, looks good.
- Step onto the slackline and move along so that you have enough room to bounce without knocking into any obstacle.
- Then when you feel ready, ease yourself onto the line. Essentially, you want your butt to fall onto the line.
- As your butt falls on the line, you should bounce and be able to stand back up on your legs.
- It’s essential to keep your arms out so to help balance you during the fall.
The slackline should be set slightly higher off the ground so that when you fall, only the soles of your feet or heels touch it. Of course, you can set it lower if you feel that’s more suited to your comfort or needs. The Butt Bounce is an advanced trick and it takes a lot of strength to complete it. It’s not one to rush.
- The Advanced Level Chest Bounce Trick
This bounce trick is not easy, in any way shape or form. It takes a lot of hard work, practice, and ultimately skill to successfully complete the trick. The Chest Bounce trick is pretty risky because once you’re into a standing position, you suddenly dive your body on the line. You have to lay your chest on the line, while you grab the line (one-handed). The aim is to bounce your body up off the line to regain your standing position. It’s certainly one that has to be spot on otherwise you could end up face-first on the ground.
- Once you’re in a comfortable standing position, you must lean forward and fall.
- Your chest should hit the line and it’s essential to grab or catch the line as quickly as you can. If you don’t catch the line, you’re likely to fall off.
- You have one hand and foot on the line and as you bounce, push off with your hand to regain your footing.
- You should finish standing upright.
As an advanced trick, it’s a difficult and risky bounce. You’re essentially throwing yourself onto the line and if you miss the line by a fraction, could end up seriously hurt. That’s why you have to ease yourself into this trick and undertake many hours of practice.
- The Advanced Level Back Bounce
If you want to become a serious slackline competitor, you’ll need to master the Back Bounce trick. It’s not as easy as it sounds and can require a lot of upper and lower body strength. You may want to set the line lower so that if there is an accident, you’re not falling from a greater height. Also, to begin with, a soft mat underneath may be necessary, should you fall.
- Once you’re on the line, lean back and let your body fall onto the line.
- Your legs should remain up so that you’re able to regain your footing when you bounce.
- As you bounce, you need to move your body so that they’re higher than your feet. This is to enable your feet to reach the line and push your weight up.
This trick certainly isn’t for the faint-hearted. It’s a lot of work and serious skill is needed to do it safely.
- The Expert Level Hard-Line Spiral
The Hard-Line Spiral trick uses the same idea as the chest bounce. It’s a pretty hard trick to try and requires a lot of strength of skill.
- Follow the same steps as the chest bounce trick except you add a spiral as you bounce.
- Your head and arms can be used to encourage the rotation.
- Your body must be parallel to the slackline at all times and the chest bounce is used as you land.
- The Expert Level Lady Bounce Trick
The Lady Bounce is an expert level trick, even though it’s similar to the butt bounce. This involves keeping one leg straight as the other is bent across the straight leg. It takes serious strength and skill to complete this trick.
- You follow the same premise as the butt bounce.
- As you bounce, you cross one leg over the other and uncross as you bounce up to stand.
- You can try one basic crossover or several at a time. If you can keep the bounce, you can change your leg positions with ease.
It’s not the simplest trick to try but with practice, can look smart and elegant.
Top Tips for Trick Lines
Any decent trick line should offer sufficient bounce. That is what you need if you want to do any trick on the line; however, it also has to be strong, sturdy, and absorb the pressure as you land. If there is no smooth landing, the line isn’t best for tricks. Also, you have a wide variety of slacklines and trick lines to choose from. Some have a pulley or double ratchet system but they can vary considerably. Sometimes, the pulley and double ratchet systems can be better suited for tricks as the right tension can be achieved.
It’s essential to choose slackline webbing suitable for tricks and flips. Bounce is affected by the webbing so it’s essential to get a slackline that offers good bounce and safety features.
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