How to ride a roller coaster (with pictures)

How to ride a roller coaster (with pictures)
How to ride a roller coaster (with pictures)

Nothing makes your heart beat faster than a roller coaster. If you've never been in it, it can be intimidating to muster up the courage and buckle up, but knowing a little more about the different types of roller coasters and what you can expect from the course can be really hard. the experience much less frightening. It should be fun! If you want to take a roller coaster ride, you can learn how to choose the right ride, stay safe, and have a good time.


Part 1 of 3: Choosing a roller coaster

Ride a Roller Coaster Step 1

Step 1. Explore the different styles of roller coasters

There are loads of roller coasters with different designs, intensities and styles and the first important step is to decide what kind of experience you want to get from a roller coaster ride. Some riders prefer good old wooden roller coasters for a retro feel, while others will prefer the newer, super-fast Colossi that turn your head upside down to test their mettle. The choice is completely up to you, but it is recommended that you have an idea of ​​what to expect from the different types of attractions.

  • Wooden roller coasters are the oldest and most classic types of roller coasters and generally the kind you need to get started on. They work with a traditional chain ascension mechanism, in which the cars are raised to a peak and dropped to allow gravity to drag the cars along the rest of the bends and dips at high speed. These usually won't go upside down. The Texas Giant, the American Eagle at Six Flags America, and the Beast at King's Island are all examples of classic wooden roller coasters.
  • Metal roller coaster are distinguished by complex steel rails, offering a slightly smoother ride and more maneuverability, as well as the possibility of putting users upside down, incorporating loops or loops, corkscrews and all kinds of exciting movements. Most of the more modern roller coasters, including the classic Kingda Ka, the Millennium Force, and the Steel Dragon 2000 are metal roller coasters.
Ride a Roller Coaster Step 2

Step 2. Check out the different types of seats on the rides

Not all roller coasters are designed the same and some are a bit more comfortable than others for a first experience. Having an idea of ​​the different types will help you choose the right one. For a beginner, a traditional roller coaster with a seat in a wagon is usually the best way to get a first experience on this type of ride. They are comfortable, secure and relatively simple.

  • Groundless roller coasters, for example, allow riders' legs to hang freely, simulating an intense free fall experience, while standing roller coasters keep riders in place in an upright position.
  • Wing rider type roller coasters are characterized by two wagons which are placed on either side of the rail, which gives your individual wagon the impression of floating, while for "Hanging" type roller coasters, the cars are able to swing back and forth freely, as the train moves through the bends.
Ride a Roller Coaster Step 3

Step 3. Start with a small roller coaster

If you've never been on a roller coaster before, the best way to adapt is to ride a smaller version of a roller coaster. Most of the parks have different types of roller coasters and they are all fun. Smaller rides will generally have less intense drops, no loops and still give you a good thrill, going at high speeds. Often times, they will also have shorter queues, which will give you less time to worry about while you wait.

As an alternative and depending on your temperament, you can also take the plunge and ride an extreme roller coaster to end it once and for all. This way you will know that you have survived the most intense and you will no longer need to be afraid

Ride a Roller Coaster Step 4

Step 4. Make sure you meet the weight and height requirements

At the start of most roller coasters there should be a measurement area with a minimum height requirement for all passengers. This is not to punish enthusiastic children who want to ride in a big merry-go-round, but to ensure the safety of all users. Safety seats and harnesses should be large enough to fit everyone, therefore children and especially short people run the risk of slipping through the harness.

  • Do not stand in line after avoiding the measurement area. Usually, before you get into a train car, the park staff will measure you with a ruler and kick out anyone who doesn't meet the conditions. It would be a shame to have waited more than two hours just to be kicked out at the last second.
  • Most roller coasters warn that pregnant women, passengers with heart problems, and those with physical problems should not ride on certain roller coasters. Most of these warnings will be displayed at the start of the queue, next to the minimum height required. Do not sign up if you have any doubts about your physical health.
Ride a Roller Coaster Step 5

Step 5. Choose a roller coaster with the correct queue

A great way to choose a roller coaster is to pick one that doesn't have a huge queue. The very popular roller coasters will often have queues that last two to three hours, depending on the course and the park, so it's important to manage your time if you want to try out multiple roller coasters. It might be worth it to wait several hours for a single big ride or you could instead optimize your time with other attractions.

  • Bring something in line to do or some friends to talk to. Waiting that long can be terribly boring, and it might be a lot more fun with a book or with some buddies to entertain you. Be respectful and courteous to everyone who is waiting in line with you.
  • Some theme parks also have Quick Access Passes, which allow you to show up at an attraction at a specified time, skip the line, and get straight on the train. This allows you to use your time in the park more efficiently, although these Passes are more expensive than a regular entry.
Ride a Roller Coaster Step 6

Step 6. Choose your seat

For many attractions, the queue will split up once you get to the end, to be distributed among the different cars along the train. Once in the boarding area, choose the wagon you want to travel in and stand in line. You can choose any wagon, it will be a great choice for your first trip.

  • Some people prefer the front for its view, while others prefer the rear for what's called the “goat effect,” a phenomenon named after the Thunder Mountain roller coaster at Disneyland. Towards the rear of the car, the centrifugal force or “G-Force” exerted on the passengers is stronger, making the experience more intense and compensating for the absence of sight.
  • If you don't really have a opinion or a preference, head to the shorter line to get on the train faster. Less waiting, less anxiety, more fun.

Part 2 of 3: stay calm and safe

Ride a Roller Coaster Step 7

Step 1. Get on the merry-go-round on an empty stomach

It should be common sense, but with the excitement of the park, the costumes, the decorations, the food, it can cause passengers to forget - roller coasters can make some people vomit. The centrifugal forces in some rides are strong, the feeling of weightlessness can cause knots in the stomach and sometimes nausea in some passengers. For most of us, that feeling will fade and ultimately be part of the attraction, but if you've got your stomach full of ice cream, it might end up sprawled out on the wagon behind you. Don't eat right before going on a roller coaster. Treat yourself to something to reward yourself after your journey, to congratulate yourself on your courage.

It's also a good idea to go to the bathroom before you queue. You wouldn't want to wait longer than 2 hours to board the Vortex only to find that you need to go to the bathroom right before getting on the ride and harnessing yourself. It would be a shame

Ride a Roller Coaster Step 8

Step 2. Get on the roller coaster train and sit down

On most roller coasters, a metal harness should be located high above your seat, which you can lower and lock into place. If you can't do it, don't worry too much, as a ride employee will run the train and check each car by shaking your harness before the train starts. Listen carefully to instructions given over the loudspeakers or by employees. There's no way they'll let you go without checking your safety harness, so relax and stay calm.

  • All seats and safety locks are different, so if you have a hard time understanding how yours works, wait for the employee to approach and ask for help. More sophisticated safety harnesses will usually be locked by park employees. If you think there is something wrong with your safety harness, notify a park employee immediately.
  • Make sure you are comfortable. A roller coaster ride is hectic and you'll likely be rocked in your seat, which is part of the fun. If you don't feel comfortable in the seat, however, it can make the bumps quite annoying. The course will be difficult. If a detail of your seat makes it difficult for you to help, notify a park employee or settle back before the harness is locked.
Ride a Roller Coaster Step 9

Step 3. Store any loose accessories

Before the train sets off, it's important to stow away anything you might lose on a high-speed open-air roller coaster. Sandals, hats, glasses, and necklaces in particular are often sacrificed on a roller coaster and it can be very difficult to get these items back if you lose them along the way.

  • Always take off your glasses and keep them in your pocket. It's a good idea to think about this before you get into the seat and about to take off.
  • If you wear a cap, sometimes it is sufficient to turn it back if it is snug, but sometimes it is safer to take it off and keep it, put it in a pocket, or leave it in your hands. someone who stays on the ground.
Ride a Roller Coaster Step 10

Step 4. Relax

As you sit and wait for the ride to start, anxiety will likely start to kick in. If you've never ridden a roller coaster before, it's common to start imagining that something is wrong and become paranoid about all the noises and jolts you hear. Everything you are feeling is completely normal. Do your best to stay calm and enjoy the adrenaline rush. Roller coasters are very safe and reliable structures.

  • Hold on tight and don't let go unless you feel comfortable. Most roller coasters have small handles that can help relieve stress and make you feel like you have more control over the situation. Hang in there and have fun!
  • Do not wiggle or force the harness after the amusement ride has started. In any given year, several people are going to be injured in a roller coaster, it is true. But about 300 million people ride a roller coaster safely each year, without incident. The overwhelming majority of injuries are the result of a passenger making a mistake or breaking the rules, playing with the harness or getting onto the ride despite the rules. If you follow the rules and sit down calmly, you will be fine.

Part 3 of 3: have fun

Ride a Roller Coaster Step 11

Step 1. Always travel with friends

Roller coasters are a great collective experience. Going alone in an empty wagon would be a tasteless journey. One of the funniest things about a roller coaster is listening to everyone laughing, screaming, yelling comments and experiencing the whole ride together. If you're going to have a great day at the park with your best friends, going on a roller coaster ride can be extremely fun.

  • Friends can also help you make the adventure fun and worry-free. If you're too busy having fun with your friends while you stand in line, you won't be spending time worrying about what's to come. Just think about having fun.
  • Don't let pretentious friends trick you into riding a roller coaster you're not ready for. If all your friends want to ride this terrifying seven-loop merry-go-round but you don't feel like it, check out other attractions during this time and join them later.
Ride a Roller Coaster Step 12

Step 2. Go over the first hill

Most roller coasters have one thing in common: a long, slow climb up the first big hill and the first big descent. The classic roller coaster all has the introductory downhill and once you get rid of it the rest of the ride is just fun and speed. If you're feeling nervous, don't think about it anymore and you'll have a great time.

  • The long, slow ascent to the first descent is one of the scariest parts of the trail as there really isn't anything happening and it's terribly slow. Try to take advantage of the excitement that is created during this time. It will all be over soon.
  • Some passengers who are really very scared prefer to close their eyes, but it makes you even sicker if you cannot see what is coming. If you can, try to keep your eyes open to stay alert to what's going on around you. It will be a lot more fun that way.
Ride a Roller Coaster Step 13

Step 3. Scream

When you rock over that first big hill, most people will probably start screaming for joy. Join them! There are very few times in a life when you get the chance to really let go and let out a howl of pure joy, like when you get on a roller coaster. Your adrenaline will be pouring in and it's a good time to let out a primitive scream.

It's also true that howling in a group can trigger the release of oxytocin, a hormone that soothes and calms the body, under certain conditions. This means that yelling can actually help calm you down and produce a feeling of euphoria

Ride a Roller Coaster Step 14

Step 4. Check to see if any trains are going forward and backward

If you survived your first roller coaster, congratulations! Now the real fun begins. More often than you might think, most people who have tasted a roller coaster want to go back immediately. The excitement produced by a good roller coaster is absolutely second to none. And what is best? Ride the same roller coaster you tried, but backwards. If you find one that you really like, you can experience it for the first time all over again, going backwards.

  • Many roller coasters will roll forward for much of the day and roll backward at a certain time. Go to the park near the entrance to the queue to see what the schedule is or look closely at the lane to see if it is running backwards.
  • Some roller coasters will always roll forward and backward, using two lanes that operate simultaneously. The Racer on King's Island is a classic example of a classic roller coaster rolling backwards.
Ride a Roller Coaster Step 15

Step 5. Try a rolling roller coaster

The rolling roller coaster starts at full speed, using hydraulic pressure to immediately launch the wagons from a stationary position to a high speed, sometimes as high as 100 or 130 kilometers per hour, giving you little time to get ready, but it also helps you get it over with quickly. These will often reverse, go corkscrew and have a fun ride with lots of loops and twists. Space Mountain at Disney World is perhaps the best known example of this type of roller coaster.

Ride a Roller Coaster Step 16

Step 6. Try a roller coaster that goes upside down

The next challenge? Do a loop. The first time you go upside down on a roller coaster is an important moment for a lot of people, but it sounds a lot more intimidating than it actually is and twice as much fun. You will be weightless for less than a second and it will be over. Roller coasters that offer a loop are often long and complex or fast and intense, with lots of crazy maneuvers. If you've been brave enough to ride a traditional roller coaster, raise the stakes.

What confuses most people on their initial journey is not actually falling or nausea, but being shaken all over the place. Doing a loop is, most of the time, one of the most comfortable parts of the ride on a roller coaster, so it's not something that should scare you so much that it prevents you from getting on the merry-go-round

Ride a Roller Coaster Step 17

Step 7. Try to ride all the roller coasters in the park

The Olympic Games of the amusement park? Ride each roller coaster in one day. It is possible, if you divide your time efficiently and are willing to wait in long lines. Approaching your mission with the events planned will also help. In the end, you might have become a real roller coaster addict.

To get there, try heading to the larger queues earlier in the day, when they're likely to be shorter, and making sure you have enough time. Then the less popular rides will be available to you in the afternoon

Ride a Roller Coaster Step 18

Step 8. Go see the most intense roller coasters

If you are on your way to becoming a true adrenaline junkie and roller coaster junkie, now is the time to start checking out which are the biggest and most intense roller coasters in the world and go visit them. Some of the most intense, fastest, tallest and longest roller coasters are:

  • Formula Rossa, in Abu Dhabi
  • Takabisha in the Fuji-Q Highland
  • Top Thrill Dragster at Cedar Point
  • El Toro at Six Flags Great Adventure
  • The Colossus at Heide Park


  • Don't eat anything until you know how you're going to react to the roller coaster. Otherwise, you could throw up.
  • On some roller coasters there is a place you can go down if you decide not to go up.
  • Do not close your eyes during the journey if it has a tortuous path. This way you will know where the roller coaster train goes.


  • Don't shoot first-person videos on a roller coaster. It's against the rules of most theme parks and you risk being kicked out of the park or even having your camera confiscated
  • You shouldn't ride a roller coaster if you have certain heart conditions, back and neck problems, or if you're pregnant, for centrifugal force issues.
  • You shouldn't NEVER unfasten your safety harness. He is here for a reason.
  • Do not eat or drink before getting on if you have motion sickness. You're probably going to throw up on yourself.

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