Here's Why Pushing Your Skateboard Mongo Style Is Bad (2023)

I learned skateboarding at a very young age and never considered my stance. I just assumed the way my feet were positioned was the correct way to push a skateboard. The first time I heard someone mention pushing mongo was a long time ago, I had no idea what it even was, to be honest. I found out later I was doing it wrong.

Why is pushing your skateboard mongo bad? It’s not just about style there’s more to it than looking bad. Pushing mongo takes you longer to position yourself properly. You adjust your foot position more compared to a proper stance. Second, you have less balancebecause your weight is on the rear of your skateboard. This means it’s a bit riskier than a regular stance, less stabilitymeans a higher risk of falling.

It’s not hard to learn to push in a normal stance but it requires some patience. You don’t have to, it’s up to you but there are a couple of advantages pushing in a normal stance. Also, it isn’t all that bad, there are even some benefits to mongo stance so let’s see what the pros and cons are.


  • 1 What Is Pushing Mongo
  • 2 The Advantage of Pushing Mongo
  • 3 The Cons
  • 4 Skateboard Stance
  • 5 Even Some of the Best Pushed Mongo
    • 5.1 Bill Danforth
    • 5.2 Randy Colvin
    • 5.3 Tom Penny
    • 5.4 Chris Cole
  • 6 Ignore the Hecklers
  • 7 How to Stop Pushing Mongo
  • 8 Conclusion

What Is Pushing Mongo

Here's Why Pushing Your Skateboard Mongo Style Is Bad (1)

Mongo pushing means pushing your skateboard using your front foot. It takes more time to get into a proper position and you’ll have less balance because the rear of your skateboard deck provides less stability. For goofy skaters, pushing mongo means using the right foot to push, regular skaters would push with their left foot.

Proper pushing means you put your front foot near the front of your trucks (near the bolts). Then you use your back foot (and leg) to push yourself forward. Now for mongo, it’s a different story. It’s unclear where the phrase came from but you don’t have to have a wild imagination to know what it means.

When you push mongo on a skateboard you place your back foot near the center of your board (image 1) and use your front foot to push. In order to get back into position, you need to place your front foot on your board (image 2) while sort of simultaneously moving your back foot to your tail (images 3 and 4).

You can see why this can cause problems with stability and reaction time. It takes a lot longer than getting into a normal stance. It’s not all bad, you can unlearn and there are a few advantages if you started out pushing your skateboard this way. It’s not only about the time it takes to get on your board, so let’s take a closer look.

(Video) What's Wrong with Pushing Mongo?

The Advantage of Pushing Mongo

Let’s start with the advantages because even though pushing mongo is frowned upon, you’ll have a much easier time learning to ride fakie! You push mongo and then when you have enough speed you only have to place your front foot near the truck bolts and back foot on your tail. So now you’re riding fake like it’s second nature.

Riding switch will also be a bit less awkward in the beginning. You already push with your from foot so you only have to place your back foot a little more to the front of your board. Then you only have to put your front foot on your tail. Steering will still feel a bit odd but practice makes perfect.

To be fair, the benefits don’t outweigh the cons.

The Cons

Pushing mongo isn’t very efficient there are a couple of disadvantages that aren’t always too obvious. You need quick access to your tail constantly when you push around. You need it to ollie, kickturn, hop cracks, avoid small rocks ,etc.

If you push regular this will be much easier because it just takes less time to get in the right position. You only have to have to take your back foot off and on your tail.

Mongo pushing requires a few extra steps and some can even be a bit risky. If it takes longer to get into a proper and stable position, you can’t deal far as fast with unexpected events. You have less time to react and you probably experienced this yourself already.

Also, weight distribution and center of gravity come into play. Your stationary back foot is between the middle of your board and tail. It makes the ride unstable and becomes more apparent at greater speeds.

It’s also way harder to make corrections when something or someone is in your path. you don’t have these issues when you push normal. Your front foot is placed near the bolts of the front trucks which give you much more stability.

  • It takes more time, you’re stance will impact the time it takes to perform a trick.
  • Less stability, because your foot is in the middle of your skateboard.
  • It look a bit weird.
  • Steering is more difficult, adjusting your direction is harder because of imbalance.

Skateboard Stance

Most skateboarders ride regular or goofy. Goofy means your right foot in front and regular means you push your skateboard with your left foot in front. Mongo pushers can be both regular and goofy skaters but just never learned how to push a board properly.

(Video) Why Skaters HATE Mongo Pushing!

It’s just what you preferred when you first started skateboarding, maybe it was easier or felt more stable, in the long run, it’s going to catch up.

Even Some of the Best Pushed Mongo

Some of the most stylish and talented skaters started off pushing mongo. But while they started out as mongo pushers, they corrected their pushing problem. As a pro, you really can’t get away with pushing with your front foot and can make or break your career. Style is important and mongo looks weird.

Bill Danforth

Bill Danforth is probably the most infamous mongo pusher and was also notorious for his pumping style. He was also called ‘the Nomad’ and older skaters sometimes still refer to his style and call mongo pushing ‘pushing Dan’.

Randy Colvin

Randy Colvin’s part in Two World Industries Men (1990) clearly shows his mongo pushing style. Even though he showed some gnarly skating, it’s just strange to see a skater at that level push with his front foot.

Fakie nose grinds of rails, wallride to nollie are things you don’t expect from a mongo pusher. I don’t think you can get away with it this day, but the stuff he showed in the early 90’s was impressive.

Tom Penny

Probably one of the most surprising names on this list is Tom Penny. Tom was a mongo pusher when he started out. There is supposed to be a video somewhere which shows him pushing with his front foot, can’t find it, unfortunately. Tom is a legend and soon corrected his stance.

Chris Cole

Chris Cole? For real? Yeah, even Chris Cole started out pushing using his front foot. Chris is one of my favorite skateboarders, not just because of his mad skills but he’s just a great guy. In the documentary Motivation 2,Jamie Thomas noted that he once told Chris to start pushing like a regular (or goofy) skateboarder if he wants to advance his career.

Ignore the Hecklers

If you don’t feel like learning to push in a normal way, that’s fine! I get that sometimes you can feel pressured by your peers and people heckling you for riding mongo. I pushed this way for years and nobody cared at all, at least where I’m from. Nobody thought there was anything wrong with it, just a bit different.

I decided to do something about it because I just wanted to ride more efficiently and noticed I had trouble keeping my balance in confined spaces. I’m glad I did though! Also, even some are pros switch between mongo style and normal.

(Video) Why Skaters DON’T Push Mongo

If people give you crap about your pushing style it’s probably best to ignore them, you do you! It’s just like that mall grab thing, nobody cares except for posers. Seriously, why do people care? As far as I’m concerned you go ride the streets in your Trasher shirt, pushing mongo and when you’re done grab your trucks to carry your board around. Don’t change your style just to fit in.

How to Stop Pushing Mongo

I used to push mongo because it was just the way I learned to skate as a kid. It never occurred to me that it’s a terribly inefficient way to push a skateboard. I forced myself not to push mongo, constantly repeating that to myself when I did it again. It’s not easy to get rid of something that’s so deeply wired into your brain. So how do you stop pushing mongo?

I started by just cruising a smooth street or pavement, this way it made it a bit easier to focus. It was hard at first because it just felt unnatural and it was very awkward. I felt I looked like a beginner and was a bit embarrassed to be honest. It didn’t take very long before it got better.

One thing that helped was to lean on my knee with my hand, somehow it made me feel more comfortable. In short, here’s what to do when you want to stop pushing mongo:

  • Find a smooth road/pavement/sidewalk and start pushing normal
  • Use your hand (left or right, depends on your stance) and lean on your knee once you feel a bit more comfortable.
  • Take it slow, your balance might be a bit off.
  • Force yourself every time to push normal when you push mongo. Get off the board and get in the proper position.

You’ll soon reap the benefits when you visit your local skatepark. After a while, you don’t want to go back.


Pushing mongo has a lot of disadvantages but you shouldn’t change your style because people don’t like how it looks. Do it for the right reasons and start practicing. You’ll be pushing ‘normal’ in no time depending on how long you’ve been doing it.

Now if you want to become a pro, you really should stop pushing with your front foot. Some got away with it in the early 90s, but those days are long gone. Skateboarding has come a long way since then and the rise of Instagram and Youtube demand that you skate with style or you can forget about a following.

As for me. I can still ride faster when I push mongo and it probably is because I did it for a very long time. I don’t regret relearning how to push but it was a bit embarrassing sometimes. Nowadays I ride fakie like a boss, so there’s that!


(Video) How to STOP Pushing Mongo! (Fast and Easy)

Here's Why Pushing Your Skateboard Mongo Style Is Bad (2)

Ruben Vee

I’m an aged skateboarder and I still shred responsibly. I started skateboarding 25 years ago but also love surfing, snowboarding, or anything that involves a board.


Is it bad to push mongo on a skateboard? ›

Pushing mongo also makes it harder to control the board due to the temporary weight distribution imbalance, and the skater will struggle to get as much speed and stability. Turning the board while pushing regular makes things easier, too, because of where your weight is centered on the board.

Do any pro skaters push mongo? ›

Legends like Eric Koston and Gino Ianucci are perfect examples of skaters who push mongo when skating switch, and it has become an integral part of their super steezy skate style. - If you're already guilty of pushing mongo, no worries, some of your favorite pro skaters began skating that way!

Why is it called pushing Mongo? ›

It is likely this term started as an insult toward those riders. It could also have its origins in Mongol, because the quick successive pushes often associated with mongo pushing makes you look like a Mongolian riding a horse.

Is Mongo pushing better? ›

Pushing mongo takes you longer to position yourself properly. You adjust your foot position more compared to a proper stance. Second, you have less balance because your weight is on the rear of your skateboard. This means it's a bit riskier than a regular stance, less stability means a higher risk of falling.

Are most skaters goofy? ›

Does being right-handed or left-handed determine your skate stance? No. Of the 4,000 skaters in the Skatepark of Tampa Database, about half are goofy (44%) and half are regular (56%).

Is it OK to ride a skateboard goofy? ›

Just like in snowboarding, surfing, and other board sports, skateboarders can choose to ride with a regular stance or a goofy stance. Skateboarders should choose a stance that makes them feel the most comfortable while skateboarding.

What are the 4 skateboard stances? ›

So, what are the four skateboard stances? You can adopt four different types of foot placement when riding a skateboard: natural, nollie, switch, and fakie stance.

What is mall grabbing a skateboard? ›

Your fingers slip over the truck's hanger and split down the middle as they glide around the kingpin and come to rest in a nearly-closed fist above the base. Your skateboard is now effectively locked into position as your third leg and you've just committed one of skateboarding's cardinal sins: the “mall grab.”

What is better goofy or regular skateboard? ›

There is really no way to tell which stance is better for you. Some skaters will just automatically go into a goofy stance, while some will prefer regular.

What stance is goofy? ›

There are two types of stance: regular and goofy. Regular footed means your left foot is in front and your right foot is in back; goofy footed means that your right foot is in front and your left foot is in back.

How do I keep my skateboard straight when pushing? ›

Pushing skateboard – pushing action

Make sure to extend your left leg completely while pushing skateboard and flex it again as you close your left foot towards the position of your right foot. Try to keep your body as straight as possible, remember, do not bend your spine, push off your knee.

Is a skateboard push or pull? ›

In skateboarding, an action occurs when the skater pushes against the ground with their foot. The ground pushes back against the skater's foot, which is the equal and opposite reaction. This force starts the skateboard moving forward. An object reacts to force with an equal and opposite reaction.

Is skating a push or pull? ›

To start riding a skateboard and build up speed, the rider pushes off the ground with one foot. To change direction or turn a corner, the rider applies a force by pushing down more on one side of the board. To start riding a skateboard and build up speed, the rider pushes off the ground with one foot.

What is goofy pushing? ›

If you're left footed that goes on the floor, and your right foot goes on the skateboard, again covering the bolts. This is called goofy stance. So it's your strongest foot that does the pushing. Why the strongest foot you ask?

How long does it take to get good at pushing a skateboard? ›

Typically it takes at least 12 months to 3 years to become good at skateboarding. In 12 months you'll be able to learn a few basic tricks. Between 1 and 3 years you can learn advanced tricks. The progression timeline varies from person to person.

How fast can you push a skateboard? ›

The average speed of a skateboard can range from 5-12 mph. This figure includes all kinds of terrain, skills, and setups. An experienced skateboarder can regularly hit speeds of 8 mph and over. Longboards are even faster than skateboards, with an average 8-10 mph speed when pushing on flat ground.

What is the coolest skate trick? ›

Best Skateboarding Tricks
  1. 1 Darkslide. One of the coolest street tricks. ...
  2. 2 Impossible. It is a grate flip.
  3. 3 Kickflip Backside Tailslide. This is honestly the best and most cool looking trick in skateboarding history. ...
  4. 4 Wallride. ...
  5. 5 Rocket Air. ...
  6. 6 Hippy Jump. ...
  7. 7 Tre Flip aka 360 flip. ...
  8. 8 Nose slide.

Is skateboard harder than bike? ›

Difficulty: bike wins – easier to ride than a skateboard. Fun factor: skateboard wins – surfing the streets is awesome. Terrain: bike wins – better for rough terrain, uphill, steep downhill. Exercise: skateboard wins – more energy required for commuting.

Which skateboard is easiest? ›

Longboards are a popular choice for beginners because they are the easiest to ride from day one. Drop through boards are even more friendly to beginners because they lower the ride height for extra stability and easier pushing. When choosing longboard size, it is important to keep your own size in mind.

Do lefties ride goofy? ›

This is why most right-handed people have a regular surfing stance and most left-handed people have a goofy surfing stance. However, this isn't always the case. Some right-handed people prefer surfing goofy while some left-handed people prefer surfing regular.

Do skaters get hurt a lot? ›

Although it is a fun and exciting activity, skateboarding carries with it a serious risk for injury. Approximately 70,000 injuries requiring a visit to the emergency department occur every year.

What's a personality for a skater? ›

A few that come to mind are: excellent time management, always on time, hard worker, doesn't stop to talk at the boards, works on their programs, is polite, doesn't quit, competitive, driven, listens to coach, eats good food, falls and gets back up, loves the sport, enthusiastic, powerful.

What is the most common skateboard injury? ›

The most common injuries in skateboarding are fractures and traumatic brain injuries. The most common fractures reported are to the forearm, ankle, elbow, wrist, and head and skull.

Is skateboarding safer than football? ›

THE MYTH, DEBUNKED. According to Stanford Children's Health youth participants in mainstream sports like football and basketball experience a higher rate of serious injury than those who take up skateboarding.

Does it hurt to fall off a skateboard? ›

It'll hurt a little, but not that bad. Keep your limbs loose to absorb the fall; stiffening up increasing the risk of breaking bones.

Can I skateboard without getting hurt? ›

Wear Proper Protective Gear

A properly fitting helmet. Wrist guards help support the wrist and reduce the chances of breaking a bone if you fall. Knee and elbow pads reduce the severity of cuts and scrapes, and prevent gravel burns. Closed-toe shoes that have slip-resistant soles, rather than sandals.

Can you hurt someone with a skateboard? ›

So ultimately, yes, you can use a skateboard to cause significant bodily injury. But caveat emptor (buyer beware), it's better to stay away from crazy people who care about turf or who like to burn and riot while skateboarding.

What are the 2 ways to push on a skateboard? ›

There are two stances, or ways you stand and push on your board. These are regular and goofy. Neither stance will make you a “better” skater. It's simply what's more comfortable to you.

Is it rude to skateboard at night? ›

Skateboarding at night can be a very pleasant experience, allowing you to enjoy the city at night with no traffic or noise, practicing in parking lots or garages or traveling peacefully on sidewalks. Be sure to equip yourself with comfortable wheels and effective lighting for safe riding in the dark.

What is my dominant foot? ›

Ask someone you trust to do this exercise with you. Close your eyes and stand with your feet together. Your partner will gently push you forward. The foot you step out with first to catch yourself from falling is typically your dominant foot, meaning it should be the foot you would put in the rear of your wakeboard.


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