How to: Flatspin 360

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So you’ve blown your student loan on that session of summer camp and those brand-new rockered pow skis. Time to take what you’ve learned in the park and bring it to the big mountain arena. Silver Star prodigy and Whistler, B.C., local Riley Leboe takes us into the backcountry and shows us the Flatspin 360.

Flatspin 360

Dan Carr Photography

This is one of my favourite tricks to do because it’s super slow spinning. You get to see your landing nice and early, so usually it’s an easy trick to stomp. Essentially it’s a Backflip, but your feet don’t go straight over your head, they rotate off-axis to give this trick that “flat” look.

Before taking this trick to the backcountry, you must have it on lock in the park. Feeling if you’re spinning too fast or too slow and being able to adjust is crucial because backcountry jumps and cliffs will always be different and in-run speeds are always changing.

Find a safe zone. If you can’t find something similar to what you’ve been hitting in the park, look for a hip or small step-over. Hips are nice for Flatspins because you can get the spin flatter and overrotate slightly without incident.

Be calm and focused during the in-run. Get a feel for the speed so you can judge how hard to pop and how hard to set your flip.

Set the trick as you would in the park, only a bit slower. Often you’ll end up with more drop time than anticipated, and it’s easier to speed this trick up than slow it down.

Coming through the jump transition, be strong through your legs and core. As you make the lip, extend for a strong takeoff, drop your shoulders back and to the left, opening up your chest to the sky at a slight angle.

Enjoy the ride for a moment. Take a look around, then spot your landing as you pull through the flip. Keep your core tight to bring your spin around, then look for the landing.

I like to grab Japan with my Flatspins. As you set the trick and drop your shoulders back, reach your trailing arm down—your ski will be right there. This also helps flatten the rotation while keeping you straight enough to land forward. For grabs in front of your bindings, wait a little longer so you don’t block your rotation.

Landing in the backcountry is difficult. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t stomp your first attempt. Once you’ve spotted that landing, start thinking about whether you’re under-rotating or overrotating and adjust. Bring your arms out in front of your body and square your heels. You don’t want to land backseat, but rather on your heels. This way your feet will sink in, but your tips will stay up.

Ride out, backcountry bangin’. High-five your buddies and do it all over again.

Riley Leboe rides for Armada, Rockstar, Voleurz, Adidas Eyewear, and Tyrolia.



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