This is one of many moves that bridge the gap between footwork and shuvits. Personally, I think this works best to punctuate a footwork line, rather than as a stand-alone trick – and when you get it right, there’s a really pleasing shift in momentum through the move that gets quite addictive.
Quite often, I’ve had MCs erroneously call this a “spacewalk 360 shuvit”, which it very much is not. The twist into this should have more force than a spacewalk, resulting in almost sliding through a two-wheeled powerslide; you should be on the very edge of losing grip. If you try to just tweak a little spacewalk, you won’t get the same sling out the back of the trick which earned this move its name. Do a full 180 turn and lots of force, or don’t even bother trying.
Your starting position needs to be relatively “open”, with the front foot at a loose 45º angle over the front truck. The back foot should be nestled behind the truck, not on the very tip of the tail – we don’t want to pop the tail here!
As I roll into the trick, I’m already looking over my front shoulder at where I want to be turning. This should be a dynamic, full-body movement, and your head (and shoulders) will lead the way.
To start the turn, I not only bring my front shoulder back, but I actually lean pretty heavily into the rotation. I never realised this until now – this is what helps me push through the frontside 180 and keep the momentum going.
I’ve lifted the front wheels and settled my weight into my heels as the board starts the turn, but notice my chest is already twisted through nearly a full 180º from my starting point. That’s the goal here: you want that full twist with no hesitation.
This is probably the key frame in the whole move. In isolation, this looks like I’m doing a two-wheel powerslide – my weight is past the heelside edge of the deck, and my heel is pushing the back wheels forwards as I finish the 180.
Having got the board through that frontside turn, I’m now at the point that makes people think this is a spacewalk: not only is my front shoulder coming back, but momentum has pushed my body weight back over the board to a more central position.
This is the most addictive part of the trick. Thanks to that little slide, the board has stopped moving forwards – but I haven’t. To deal with this shift in momentum, I’m bringing the nose back round before the board throws me off…
…and while the momentum has noticeably caused my body to continue in the original direction of travel, bringing my front foot round is letting me bring the board with me as I jump, throwing the board into a 360 shuvit in the process.
I’m swapping to a different angle here to highlight something important: as I jump into the 360 shuvit, notice that I’m leaning forwards very slightly, keeping my weight over the board. If you’re still leaning back from the frontside turn, you’ll throw the board away from you.
At this point, there’s almost nothing to do but hover over the board, waiting for it to come around. I say almost nothing to do because I need to keep my front foot close enough to the grip keep the board under control…
…and to eventually get the catch. Because of how twisted up you get, it’s far easier to let the front foot catch this one as the back foot is likely to still be getting into position as the board finishes the spin.
I can’t stress this enough with this one: FORM MATTERS. This should be a flowy, smooth movement, with a full 180 turn, a clean 360 shuvit and a solid landing that still has rolling momentum. Simply putting your feet back on the griptape misses the point of this one: it’s not purely an exercise in board manipulation, it’s more of a case study in momentum and flow.
As such, don’t let your tail drag on the ground as you do the first half of the trick: not only is that going to destroy your skid plates, it’s going to look ugly and kill all the momentum. The occasional accidental tap is fine – dragging your tail around like a caveman’s club is not.
Similarly, if you don’t force through that 180, shunting your bodyweight in the direction of travel in the process, you’re not going to get the sling out of it to keep your momentum going. A little 45º or 90º wiggle isn’t going to cut the mustard here. Try to make a point of totally twisting your torso through 180º – if you couldn’t roll away if you replaced the 180 with a frontside ollie, you definitely won’t roll away from the slingblade properly, either.
Now, I appreciate the fact that this may sound overly harsh, but with footwork, flow is everything. If all you want is a quick endorphin hit and a lazy win, stick to the railflips – but perfecting footwork like this will definitely make you a better, more fluid skater overall. It’s worth persisting with.
If you’re struggling with these, consider swapping to something shorter and with mellower kicktails. The steep kicktails on something like a street deck might help you get ollies further off the ground, but they mean you need to be a lot heavier-footed on footwork tricks, and that makes it much harder to flow smoothly. The same is true with longer boards – they have a lot more rotational inertia, meaning the shuvit will move slower and be more difficult to throw.
Finally, due to the strong push into the turn, you’re definitely going to want some relatively grippy wheels to do this one. Personally, I won’t go any harder than 97a to do a slingblade – and even that might be too hard on some surfaces!