1. Adjust Your Bushings
Get the proper bushing setup for your riding style and speed. Softer bushings often provide more rebound which can further encourage speed wobbles, but stiff bushings are not the answer to fixing wobbles.
You can help battle speed wobbles with a harder bushing setup but be warned: if your bushings are too stiff it can be more difficult to keep under your feet during awkward moments. During quick turns, this can result in the rider attempting to turn in one direction and the board not being able turn quick enough to stay underneath the rider.
Bushings are something that need to be experimented with to find out exactly what works for you and your riding style.
2. Shift Your Weight Forward
There is a reason most vehicles don’t steer from the rear, it just doesn’t work, especially at higher speeds. Leaning back will cause you to lose control over your board and oversteer during turns. It’s natural to want to lean back, but don’t!
3. Move Carefully & Confidently
Sudden movements make speed wobbles worse, so when you shift your weight, do so with caution and confidence. Be prepared for your board to turn a little when you shift your weight and be sure to go with the turn when it happens.
4. Tighten Your Back Truck
Similar to having more weight over your front foot, having your rear truck tighter than the front will give you more control and stability by forcing your board to turn more from its front wheels.
5. Use Wedging & Lower Angle Trucks
Wedging and truck angles are the answer to physically changing how far your trucks will turn.
Lower angles will cause the truck to turn even less which will make for a more stable ride. Many downhill longboarders will ride with a low angle truck in back to ensure that the board will turn from the front and while remaining stable in the back. A lot of us here at Motion Boardshop ride with 184mm Caliber Trucks with 44 degree baseplates (in picture on left) or 180mm Randal Trucks with 42 degree baseplates (right).
6. Relax & Get Low
It’s easier said than done when you’re bombing a hill and start to wobble, but relaxing your body will go a long way.
Bending your knees will lower your center of gravity and give you much more stability, but it won’t always get rid of speed wobbles. The importance of relaxing and going with the flow can’t be overlooked. Get low, relax your legs and focus on keeping your upper body over your board and positioned slightly forward. Attack the hill and if your board starts to wobble, stay relaxed and confident.
7. Practice Slowing Down & Stopping
It’s much easier to feel relaxed while bombing a hill if you know you could throw a speed check or slide to a stop at any time. Learning various stopping techniques and being comfortable doing them is one of the most important skills any longboarder can have. We highly recommend learning how to stop and practicing it often. Call us for any time for recommendations on learning to stop.