Google Web
Skate FAQs: Tutorials - Power Sliding

TUTORIAL #4 v1.00

Power-sliding Tutorial by Scott Weintraub (


In-line skating can be a safe sport, provided that you wear safety-gear and skate within your ability. Neither Scott Weintraub nor the maintainers of this FAQ take any responsibility for any injuries you may incur while attempting any of these moves.

Additionally, these pictures are the property of Scott Weintraub ( Copying them for your own use requires his prior permission.

See all the pics in sequence | See the pics animated (200K)


Power-sliding is an advanced stopping technique. It takes a little practice but when mastered can be done at any speed, bringing you to a hault fairly quickly. It looks pretty nifty, too.

GIF #1: This is a shot of what you will look like when you are power-sliding. I'm not actually moving in this picture. But if I was, I would be travelling in the direction I'm looking in. My right foot is stretched out in front of me, perpendicular to the direction I'm traveling. It's doing the stopping. My left foot is pointed in the direction I am moving in.

It's important that you understand how you will look when you're actually power-sliding. The power-slide can be divided into two parts: the transition from skating into the power-sliding form, and the slide itself.

Before working on your transition, you should become proficient at the power-sliding part. When you first try it, you might have problems sliding on the sidewalk or street. They're a little rough and your wheels will probably just stick to them.

I would recommend trying to find a nice smooth surface. A tennis or basketball court would do nicely. Any indoor surface should probably be smooth enough, too. I must warn you though that your wheels will leave marks on the surface you're sliding on. So, make sure it's okay before you start leaving streaks on some guy's tennis court.

Try skating backwards at a moderate speed. Then pick up the foot you feel most comfortable power-sliding with and place it behind you, perpendicular to your other foot. Get it at a nice low angle with the ground and don't put too much pressure on it or else it will stick instead of sliding. When you're sliding your form should look a lot like mine in GIF #1.

Practice that a number of times and when you feel confident, you're ready to try to make a transition while riding forward into the power-slide.

GIF #2: Here, I'm just skating forward. I'm getting ready to power-slide. My knees are bent.

GIF #3: Here, I begin my transition into a powerslide. This can get complicated because there are four different ways to do this. You will do it the way in which you feel most comfortable.

In short, you are going to want to spin until your power-sliding foot is in front of you. Spinning is done by picking up one of your feet and placing it down, forming an angle of about 120 degrees between your two skates. If you want to spin clockwise, you will place your right foot. If you want to spin counter-clockwise, you will be placing your left foot. You should spin in whichever direction feels best for you. In my case, I am more comfortable spinning in a counter-clockwise direction.

In addition to which direction you are spinning in, there's also the matter of which foot you feel most comfortable power-sliding with. I slide with my right foot outstretched.

This leaves four different ways to make a transition into a power-slide: spinning clockwise and sliding with your left foot, spinning clockwise and sliding with your right foot, spinning counter-clockwise and sliding with your left foot, and spinning counter-clockwise and sliding with your right foot.

When you determine which direction you will be spinning in and which foot you will be power-sliding with, try to picture what the entire sequence will look like. Picture yourself spinning until your power-sliding foot is in front of you. If you feel best turning clockwise and sliding with your right foot, you will turn about 270 degrees before you are in full power-sliding form. But in my case where I turn counter-clockwise and slide with my right foot, I will only have to spin about 90 degrees.

You will begin the slide before you are fully done spinning. The moment you are in your full power-slide form is also the moment when you stop spinning.

GIF #4: In this picture, I'm still spinning. My right foot is starting to come out. My knees are bent more in this GIF than the previous one.

GIF #5: I'm just about done spinning. My knees are bent even more. I'm lower to the ground. My right skate is cutting into the ground and at this point I'm actually slowing down and power-sliding. I'm just not in a full power-slide.

GIF #6: At this point I'm in a full power-slide. My back foot is perpendicular to my front one. I'm at a nice angle with the ground. You don't want to get too low or you'll start sliding on your boot instead of your wheels.

GIF #7: This is just a little further along in the power-slide.

As I said before, you might have problems, at first, with power-sliding on rougher surfaces like a sidewalk or street. You may have to practice a lot on something smooth before you're able to move up to rougher terrain. When you're just starting out, you will probably put too much weight on your sliding foot which will make power-sliding impossible to execute on rough surfaces but as you become better, you will be able to keep most of your weight on your back foot.

Harder wheels will slide longer than softer wheels. Harder wheels will also last a hell of a lot longer than softer wheels. Power-sliding can really be a killer on the wheels on your sliding foot. When you rotate, make sure to flip them back and forth between skates so every wheel gets a chance to be a power-sliding wheel. This way, you will even out the wear.

Be careful when power-sliding at high speeds. If you don't have a lot of control, the transition may prove difficult. You may find yourself tumbling on the ground. It may take some practice before you're executing power-slides at fast speeds.

Have a ball. Always wear protection.

_Questions, comments, etc, can all be addressed to me, Scott Weintraub, at

Camerawork by Jody Lupo.

[ HOME ]
Help support Skate FAQs!
General Info Techniques Marketplace Where to Skate Tutorials
Ask Tony
Quotable Posts
Skating Backwards
Skating Downhill
Figure Skating
Buying Guide
Essential Gear
Used Skates Guide
Kids Skates Guide
Buying Women's Skates
Where to Buy
Skate Reviews
Other Reviews
Search Western
Backwards stair-riding
Power slide

Copyright © 1996-2009 Anthony D. Chen,

Serving the inline skating community since 1991

Online Privacy Policy