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How to Back Roll (Wakeboarding)

How to Back Roll – Trick Tutorial

The Back Roll is the easiest Invert besides the Raley. The Back Roll is a sideflip over your back shoulder.

You need to be able to ride safely already and I would highly recommend that you learn the basic flat tricks first like the Ollie, the 180 and the 180-to-Blind. The starting position is a little bit inside of the running wire if you want to do the Back Roll to the outside and a little bit to the outside if you want to do it to the inside. It’s best to do the trick right after the motor tower. Try to ride a little bow. Imagine that you want to ride this bow, that you turn by 180 degrees and keep riding in the other direction. This works best if you approach for just about 1 to 3 meters. Start cutting gently and then lean in more and more. Also keep the handle close to your hip.

Then, you have to release. This means, just like fort he Raley, you need to set a block. For the Raley you kick down into the water with your front foot. If you can do the Raley already you can do this block here as well, but try to kick a little softer than you would usually. If you can’t do a Raley yet, there is a little bit easier Variant of this block which can be used to stick the first Back Rolls. Like I said already, you need to try to ride a bow and try to ride into the opposite direction. Of course, you won’t be able to do this, but this brings your board in a position, where the block can be made easily. If your board is almost 90 degrees, hold your heel side edge and press down with your back foot into the water while you keep riding the curve.

This way, you will do a small block as well and you also have some swing to the Back Roll. It  doesn’t matter if you do this block or the usual Raley block. You need to try to keep the tension of the cable by not giving in with your upper body, but keeping it behind your board. While blocking you should rotate your front shoulder and your head upwards. Rotate the hip in the same direction such that you initiate the rotation with your whole body. The rotation direction of the Back Roll gets initiated wrong, often. Some riders turn too much to the back by turning their head into their neck. Others turn sideways and this results rather in a 360 than in a Back Roll. So take care, that you really rotate your head and shoulder diagonally upwards.The closer the handle stays at your hip, the higher you will get and the faster you will spin. Tuck your knees in the air to rotate faster as well. Once you are almost done with the rotation, you can let your back hand go to slow down the rotation. 

But don’t let it go too early, because then you will do a Back Roll Revert, so an additional 180. Indeed, the Back Roll Revert is not even harder or easier than the normal Back Roll, so If you would rather land a Back Roll Revert or have the feeling that you can’t stop the rotation. Let go your back hand when you are upside down and you will land a Back Roll Revert.