Difference between Kickflip and Heelflip

Key difference: The kick-flip and a heel-flip are two widely used terms in skating. The difference between these two stunt styles is that a kick-flip rotates on the heel-side of the skateboard, while a heel-flip rotates towards the toe-side on a skateboard. 

Skateboarding is an extremely popular sport amongst kids, teenagers and adult skateboarding enthusiasts. Though, it was widely a hobby, now it’s a legitimate sporting event that is fast gaining global attention. The key to skateboarding is based on the tricks of the sport. The ollie, railstand, manual, the heelflip and the kickflip are some of the most popular stunts in the world of skateboarding.

The kick-flip was invented by Mullen in the year 1982 in his Florida farmhouse. It is one of the most basic tricks that a rider learns in skateboarding. Here, the rider climbs down from the board, flips the board horizontally, takes a complete 360 degree turn, and then catches the board with his/her feet when the board re-lands on its wheels. The trick here is to flick the board by sliding his or her foot off the top of the board.  

The trick can be easily performed by continuous practice. To execute the trick, the rider first ollies into the air, and lifts the back foot from the board while simultaneously sliding the front foot off the skateboard diagonally forward and towards the heel of the foot. This front foot motion flips the board over completely, and the rider stops the spin by returning his feet on the board as it nears its original position.

The heel-flip, on the other hand, is an advanced and harder version of the back-flip. This trick is completely opposite to its older version. It is similar to an ollie, wherein the rider first ollies into the air, and then flicks the skateboard with his heel making it spin in the air along the nose-tail axis of the skateboard. While spinning the heel edge, the skateboard is supposed to come up first and the skateboard is supposed to stay aligned parallel to the ground. It also includes continuous spinning of the board.

The board spins on toe-side i.e. towards the toes. To perform a heel-flip, the skater has to place his front foot on the front bolts and towards the heel-side edge of the board. Then, push the back foot on the tail of the board slightly angled initiating the "pop" and a slight spin. Here, the front foot is slid out diagonally in order to start the board rotating while the shoulders are centered over the board. And, then the feet are lifted for proper spinning of the board. Then, the rider catches the board and rolls away.

In heel-flip and the kick-flip, the former is the natural progression of the latter. Though, it is possible to learn the heelflip before knowing the kickflip in the game. These are the two most basic tricks a rider learns at the beginning of skateboarding. The hardest part of these tricks is to not lean back or push forward.

Further Comparison between Kickflip and Heelflip:





It is a skateboarding trick where the rider ollies and kicks his/her foot out and flips the board 360 degrees along its long axis with his/her toes, and allows the board to spin completely and then catches it on its wheels.

It is an aerial skateboarding trick where the skateboarder kicks out in front of him/her flipping board 360 degrees along the board's long axis.


The trick is to kick one’s foot backward to do a 360 degree flip of the board.

The trick is to kick one’s foot forward to do a 360 degree flip on the board.

It is

It is considered the most basic trick.

It is a little hard as compared to the back-flip.


It is opposite to help-flip.

It is opposite of kick-flip.


It flips in the backward direction.

It flips in the forward direction.


The other types are:

  • Double Flip
  • Backside Flip
  • Kickflip Melon
  • Hardflip
  • Late Backfoot Flip
  • Frontfoot Lateflip etc.

The other types are:

  •  Double Heelflip
  • Triple Heelflip
  • Varial Heelflip
  • Late Heelflip
  • Late Back-foot Heelflip
  • Inward Heelflip

Image Courtesy: flickr.com, blog.hellodesign.com

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IMHO,, the back flip is far harder than the heelflip, thats just me, a professional backflipper

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