Since I’ve been given the opportunity to write a trick tip for a move invented by a good buddy of mine, I’d first like to give a little history lesson and set the record straight. This trick is not a Michalchuk, or Michalhuck, or whatever. Mike himself has never called it that, and if I remember right, he calls it a backside flip. Last year Mike’s best friend, Ben Wainwright, and I made a valiant effort (after long-baked debates) to get people to call it the heave-ho. Mike didn’t really like that, so he never promoted it. By that time every snowboard clown from here to Wichita was calling it the Michalchuk, and his double back to fakie a double Michalchuk, even though they’re completely different tricks done on different walls.
I was there in the summer of 1997, in the Blackcomb-blowhole quarterpipe, the day Mike perfected the heave-ho. When I saw it, I thought, “No way! That’s against the rules of physics or something.” For almost a full year I watched him do it. Mike claimed it was the easiest trick in the world to do, saying, “It’s just a straight-up backflip. But, you really have to be careful if you don’t commit, because you could snap your neck on the lip,” was his only advice to me. This intimidated me so much that I started hucking the double flip before I would try the backside flip. The following spring I hit puberty, grew some balls, and tried the backside flip-I remember what he told me, and I committed. Somehow, I made it first try. And after learning it I realized that it’s the most fun, easiest, straight-up backflip I’ve ever done. You just have to commit.
Now, don’t think that I’m going to give a one-two-three instructional to my friend’s trick that has brought him international fame and nut-ball status, because I’m not. You just need to find it in yourself and figure it out. Remember, if you want to learn it, it’s all about commitment.