Elements are variations in normal track movement that add thrill or excitement to the ride. Some elements, called inversions turn the train upside-down.

Types of elements

Banked turn

A banked turn is a common type of element where the track inclines sideways while turning to reduce lateral g-forces.

Brake run

Main Article - Brakes

A brake run on a roller coaster is any section of track meant to slow or stop a roller coaster train. Brake runs may be located anywhere or hidden along the circuit of a coaster. The vast majority of roller coasters do not have any form of braking on the train itself, but rather forms of braking that exist on track sections. One notable exception is the scenic railway roller coaster, which relies on an operator to manually control the speed of the train.

Most brake runs include drive tires, which move the train after it has come to a stop.


A headchopper is any point on a roller coaster where another part of the ride comes very close to the passengers' heads. All headchoppers are, of course, designed so that even the tallest rider with their hands up would be unable to touch the structure; although if a rider exceeding the maximum height does board the coaster it could be potentially dangerous. Headchoppers are most common on wooden roller coasters, but are also found on many steel roller coasters.

The inverted roller coaster equivalent is a footchopper. Footchoppers are designed such that rider's legs appear to come close to the ride's support structure, water, or other ride surroundings.


See Helix (element).

Launch track

File:Kanonen Launch Track.jpg

A launch track is a segment of straight track on a roller coaster that accelerates the train to its top speed. Most launch tracks launch the train from a stopped position, however, some roller coasters, like Cheetah Hunt launch the train while it is already in motion.

Typically, launch tracks use brakes to slow the train down in case of a rollback.


See Inversions

An inversion refers to any element that causes the riders to go upside-down.



See Station

A station refers to the area where riders get into and out of the cars.

Bunny hills

File:Kiddying coaster bunny hills.jpg Bunny hills are small hills often built to create strong negative g-forces.

See also

Userboxes that relate to inversions

Roller coaster descriptions