Riding a hoverboard is easier than you think. They’re not nearly as challenging to ride as a skateboard, but they don’t have the handlebars to hold onto for that extra balance you’ll need in the beginning, so, for some, learning how to cruise around can be tricky.
If you don’t know what is a hoverboard, they’re basically like a Segway/scooter, but with smaller wheels and without the handlebars. These innovative devices are used mainly for recreational purposes, however, models that offer a longer mileage or impressive run time can also be used for commuting or as a greener mode of transportation.
How to Use A Hoverboard
Before you hop on your new hoverboard, make sure the battery is fully charged. You should never stand on a board when it’s switched off since you’ll most likely fall off right away, so power it on before you set foot on it.
To learn how to balance on your board, use one foot to keep the board level, and in an upright riding position. When the board feels balanced and stable under your feet, lift your other foot off the ground and place it on the board. A wider stance, with the knees bent will make you feel more stable as you ride around, so the feet should be placed as far to each side of the foot pad as possible.
These boards are designed to electronically balance the rider, which means, as you as you step on the board it should feel pretty stable. However, the board will still wobble a bit until you’re able to correctly place your feet and find your center of gravity. If you’re a beginner and unsure of your balance, grab your board and place it near a wall or next to a rail so you have something close by you can grab onto to help you balance.
Mileage and Charge Times
Some boards are fully or partially charged, right out of the box, while others will need to be charged for several hours before you can take your first ride.
Before you take your board out, make sure you learn about the board’s true mileage and what you can expect, based on terrain type. This will give you a clearer idea of how far you can really go on your board, so you don’t end up far from home with a drained battery.
Learning How to Get the Board to Go Forwards and Backwards
Once you’re confident in your ability to stand on the hoverboard without it wobbling, you can now begin practicing going backward and forward. Doing so is pretty easy, but it can take some practice, especially if you’re not used to balancing on one. However, the concept behind the board’s movement is very simple. To move backward you’ll lean back and to move forward you’ll lean forward.
In order to get better control of the speed, make sure you keep your knees bent. Additionally, you should give yourself plenty of time to stop, so go at a slower speed until you get the hang of riding around. Some boards can take longer to deaccelerate than others.
Learning how to turn is very similar to moving backward and forward. It’s basically all about balance and pressure. Each side of the board is independent of the other, to some degree. This will allow the rider to twist each side. In order to make a left turn, the rider will push their right foot forward. To make a right turn, they will push their left foot forward.
We recommend starting off using gentle, slow movements before you move up to tricking or quick spins. You’d be surprised at how easy it can be to totally lose control of the board if you’re not careful.
There’s a method you’ll need to practice that will prevent you from falling off your board once you’re ready to get off it. The key here is to ensure you step off the board backward. If you step off it forwards it will cause you to place pressure on the front of your foot, causing the board to shoot forward.
However, this issue can also happen when you step off the board backward, but it tends to happen more often when stepping off forwards.
With several models of scooters on the market, it can be difficult to find a model that’s deemed beginner-friendly, but they are out there. A beginner-friendly scooter will feature intuitive controls and a streamlined design that makes it easier to balance. Models such as the Razor Hovertrax 2.0 Hoverboard Self-Balancing Smart Scooter features a larger than average platform that also makes it easier to balance and is a better option for riders with larger feet.
To learn more about other leading models of self-balancing scooters, click here to check out our buyer’s guide.
Riding safety is important, especially in the beginning when you’re just getting the hang of your new hoverboard. Before you get started, make sure you have the following safety gear:
- Wrist guards
- Knee pads
- Elbow pads
- Tailbone protector
Protecting yourself by wearing the appropriate safety gear can help you to avoid injury. Just remember, most hoverboards can go six to twelve miles per hour. While this may not seem fast, it can be incredibly dangerous to reach these speeds if you’re not confident in your riding skills. It’s also crucial that you wear safety gear that can help to keep sensitive body parts well protected. Once you’re equipped with all the right gear, then you’re ready to hit the streets and put your new skills to the test.