Skateboarding Tricktionary – P

Palm Flip

An ollie followed by a nosegrab in such a way that the board can then be flipped with the palm of the hand whilst in the air.

Phillips 66

A reverse elguerial, meaning this is another fakie 360° invert. The difference (and the reason I said reverse) is that on an elguerial, your body is facing the coping as you start the trick. On a Phillips 66, you’re coming at the coping backside, meaning it’s completely blind. As such, it’s a bloody hard trick, and, to my knowledge, very few people can do it.

Phobia Flip

The easier (though still not easy) version of an inward heelflip, where the skateboard does half a backflip and half a heelflip between the riders legs. To achieve this, the skateboarder starts to pop a varial heelflip with the varial done backside, but turns 90° backside himself as he does the heelflip. Because the heel flicks off the leading edge of the skateboard as it turns, it interrupts the lateral motion of the varial, causing the board to flip vertically between the riders parted legs. The rider turns frontside again to catch the skateboard and ride away.

Basically the opposite of an illusion flip.


Turning on the back or front skateboard wheels. Can be done 180°, 360° or any other increment of 180°. A common use is to pivot mid way through a manual into a nosemanual, or vise versa.


Bouncing up and down as if the board were a pogo stick whilst in a 50-50 truckstand position (standing on the truck with the board vertically balanced on the tip of a kicktail). Can be done with one or two hands holding the nose of the skateboard, or no handed (from a regular truckstand or “no handed” 50-50 position). Can also be done with one, or two feet on the truck and in a crossfooted position.

Pool Skating

The art of skating empty swimming pools that have transitioned (curved) sides. Was the forerunner of modern day vert skating, and enjoying a bit of a resurgence of late, although often in specially made pools found in skateparks instead of illegally draining backyard pools as was done originally.


An often used term in skateboarding, most often when describing how to do tricks, for example an ollie, as in “jumping off the back foot causes the board to pop”. Most modern tricks require you to pop the board, basically referring to ‘bouncing’ the board off the ground by jumping off either the nose or tail in order to gain air. It’s the pop that makes the characteristic sound of a skateboarding session, though I wouldn’t exactly call it a pop myself (more of a loud distorted click, when done cleanly on a decent skateboard).

Pop is also used to describe the properties of a skateboard as in “my new board has way more pop than the last one”, or to describe a trick – “did you see how much pop I got then?”. Pop may finally be used as a verb, as in “I popped an ollie over that trash can the other day”.

Pop Shuvit

A shuvit that is performed much higher than normal, by virtue of the fact that the board is popped as the skater does the shuvit. See this article on shuvits for more information on shuvit variants.

Power Slide

A 90° slide on flat ground usually done frontside in order to slow down. When perfected, power slides are the most effective form of braking a skateboarder has. The board is pivoted 90° on its front wheels as the rider pushes the back wheels into the ground. As the skateboard is now perpendicular to the direction of travel, the friction of the wheels with the ground quickly slows the skateboard to a screeching halt. Warning – excessive power sliding will destroy wheels very quickly!

Pressure Flip

Any flip trick where the board is flipped solely as a result of the pop – unlike in a conventional flip trick such as a heelflip the foot that doesn’t pop (your front foot unless in nollie or fakie) doesn’t do anything except get out of the way. The skateboarder jumps very powerfully off of his popping foot and changes the location and direction of the pop in order to manipulate the resulting pressure flip. By doing this a range of pressure flips are possible including flips in either direction and varial flips.

Pretzel Flip

A kickflip where the skateboarder lands with his legs crossed, in x-foot. The front foot lands where the back foot normally would and vice versa. Pretzels of course have an X in the middle so that’s where this trick got it’s name from, since the skaters legs make an X.

Any trick can be landed cross footed, however ‘pretzel flip’ has come to mean specifically a kickflip to x-foot.

Pretzel Plant

Another name for a calf wrap, often used when it’s done as a lip trick on ramps.


A rail slide, named after Primo Desiderio.


Pumping is a technique used to gain speed on transitions (the curved part of ramps), most often in a half pipe in order to get more air out of the top of the half pipe. Pumping uses the principals of centripetal force to gain speed and therefore height despite gravity.

It’s a simple case of compressing the knees while on the transition and uncompressing them when you hit the flat bottom of the halfpipe – the key is to get your timing right.

Push Off

The act of pushing the ground with one foot while the other guides the board. Used to accelerate on a skateboard. See skateboarding for beginners, part 1 for more information on pushing off and the basics of riding a skateboard.