Learn Frontside 180s

The 180 is a stylish trick and a good first spin. You’ll pop and spin ½ a rotation to land switch. Many riders prefer spinning front-side—which, if you’re regular, is counter-clockwise or (the direction you would swing a baseball bat). In this video, we cover the basics of this popular starter spin.

Step 1, Surface Spins: Introduce the180 with w-spins on an intermediate run. From a heel traverse, add pressure to your heels and turn uphill. When you come to a stop, transfer to your toe edge and ride away switch.

Try it again, but this time when you stop, hop and land on your other edge. You want to get the feeling of popping off one edge, landing on your opposite edge and riding away switch.

Step 2, Spin 180s in Your Boots: Take off your snowboard and try spinning in your boots. You need to dig in with your toes or heels to take off. You don’t need to spin that hard to complete the rotation. Just dig in your feet and pop. Unlike bigger spins, you don’t really need to turn your head to complete a 180. For frontside, just keep your head looking downhill and bring your feet around under you.

Step 3, Spin 180s With Your Snowboard: Put your snowboard on a try spinning. Bend your knees to get low, dig your edge in and pop and spin. Keep looking downhill and bring your snowboard around underneath. Generate power for the spin by digging your edge in, popping and turning your lower body. Use your ab muscles to rotate your hips and complete the spin.

Think about shooting a 3-pointer or quickly pivoting. It’s very hard to get power flat-footed. For frontside, you can pop off either your toes or heels—whichever is most comfortable for you.

 

Step 4, Frontside 180s While Snowboarding: Go straight on a beginner run and spin frontside 180s. Get low, pop off your edge and spin. These may be easier while moving since the momentum helps you complete the rotation. Keep your head pointed downhill and swing your snowboard around. You’ll land going switch looking downhill.

Frontside isn’t my preferred spin direction and I have a hard time going regular, but I find they are much easier when I start going switch. If you’re having trouble, the motivation to land regular may help you complete the rotation.

Step 5, Frontside 180s off a Jump: When you’re confident popping 180s on a green run, try it off a jump. Find a jump with a take-off that is 6-18 inches high with little or no gap to the landing. Do some straight airs to get comfortable.

As you go up the take-off, get low and tip on edge. When your front foot reaches the top of the lip, pop, keep looking downhill and bring your board around. For many riders, frontside 180s are easier than backside because you can see where you’re going.

The most common mistake with frontside 180s is not enough commitment. If you don’t fully commit, you’ll do a 90 degree spin and land on your heel edge. A slight pre-wind may help you complete the rotation. Prewinding means you’ll counter-rotate as you approach the jump—like winding yourself up. Slightly turn your hips and shoulders uphill to get momentum for the spin. If you ride with your shoulders facing downhill, you’ll have a harder time with frontside spins…just another reason you should ride with good alignment.

Use front-side 180s all around the hill—off rollers, between turns and eventually work your way up to bigger jumps and bigger spins.

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