The no handed 50-50 – sometimes called a truckstand by young ‘uns due to the fact Neversoft called them that in the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater games – is an iconic freestyle move. They look near-impossible at first, but once you’ve figured out how to control them, they become a staple of most freestylers’ repertoires. You can flip into them, roll into them, start combos with them… there are so many options, and they all start here.
Generally speaking, you’ll want to do these the same way you do casper tricks, so if you find caspers easier standing on your front foot, you’ll want to do no handed 50-50s the same way.
We start the no handed 50-50 in much the same way we started the regular 50-50 – front foot on one end of the board, back foot positioned closely to the truck. The obvious difference is we’re not grabbing the other end of the board with our hand!
When you look at it from the side, you can see my back foot is hovering in the air, ready to land on the truck. Don’t get into the habit of leaving it on the floor – you want to minimise the amount of movement you have to make.
The trick begins by lifting the board up with the back foot from the underside. It’s important that I do this very close to the truck so that I can land straight on the truck when the board gets vertical enough.
My front foot remains on the tail of the board for a second while I continue to pull the board up with my back foot. This stops the board sliding away from me as it rolls onto the tip of the tail.
As the board reaches the vertical point, I can start a small hop, lifting my front foot straight upwards and putting my back foot on the truck. I don’t want my weight on it yet, though – the board needs to get just past vertical before I can put any weight on the truck, or it’ll snap back the way it came.
Once your weight hits the truck, the nose of the board will want to slam towards the floor. We stop this by keeping our front foot in contact with the griptape as we lift it up. You should be able to slide your front foot along the grip towards the nose if you’ve got your weight distribution right.
I’m still sliding the front foot towards the nose at the point, but I’ve basically gone as far as I need to. If you have a kicknose, the upturn will help stop the foot going too far, which helps. Now I just need to settle into the balance position.
This frame and the previous look very similar, but the nose has dropped slightly here. I’ve now locked my legs at the knees, and my skeletal structure will hold the board in this position.
From a wider angle, you can see how the balance works. My back leg is straight, but my hips are slightly moved backwards to counter-balance the weight of the nose. I don’t want to actively lean back too far with my torso, but I will stick my arms out like a tightrope walker’s pole.
Now all I have to do is get out. The goal here is to roll the board around the end of the tail to make it do half a flip, and I do that by pushing on the graphic side of the board with the toes of my back foot. You can see this motion starting here.
Look at the ankle of my back foot – I’m pushing my heel outwards, towards the tail, as I push my toes into the deck, causing the board to roll off my front foot. Sometimes I’ll also pull my front foot backwards slightly to get it out of the way.
As the board rolls over, I need to hop very slightly off that back leg. Don’t jump too high, and don’t make the mistake of lifting your front foot up – it barely moves. The worst thing you can do is try to lift it up when all your weight is still on the board!
Compare this frame with the last few frames. My front foot really hasn’t moved upwards at all. All I’ve done is spun it out from under the board, pointing my toes away from the back foot so the board can move past it.
Like most casper tricks, your back foot is probably going to come down first on this one. Thankfully, because of the nature of the trick, it should land right above the back truck, so as long as you weren’t leaning back in the no handed 50-50, you shouldn’t slide out and fall over.
The front foot follows the back one and, if you’ve not moved it miles away from the board, should naturally connect with the griptape around the front truck. This is a good sign, as it makes going from no handed 50-50 to rail very easy later on.
In theory, you can do 50-50s on basically any board, but they become significantly easier on a squarer tail, as it’ll help stabilise you when you’re standing on the truck. If you’re using a popsicle-shaped street board, consider flattening off the end of the curve; I used to use an orbital sander when I was 14 or 15 years old, but I’m sure you can find something better than that.
If you’re using a single kick, you might want to start off on the flat nose, and land on the front truck; that way the kicktail will stop your front foot sliding out from under the board. This is especially important on early 80s style designs like Mullen’s Chessboard, where the nose is so short that it’s very easy to slide off the end and drop the trick.
As mentioned in the video and in the recommendations at the top of the page, steep concave and this trick don’t mix, especially if you like thinner shoes. Swap to a flatter board or pad the top of your foot with something in your shoe if you’re going to be trying these for an hour or so.
It’s also worth picking up some skidplates before you start working on these. Razortail and truck tricks don’t mix; standing on the end of a razortailed deck is an easy way to totally ruin your board.
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