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Gliding is the act of taking flight with an Air Ride Machine in Kirby Air Ride. Gliding can be initiated by riding the machine off a cliff, or going off a ramp. While in the air, the control stick is used to steer. Tilting up on the stick causes Kirby to nosedive, and tilting down causes him to pull up. If Kirby's machine is angled well upon landing, Kirby will gain a small boost in speed. Each machine has different gliding capabilities, though not all machines are capable of gliding - specifically those with wheels.

In City Trial, the Glide Patch can be obtained to improve a machine's gliding capabilities. In practice, this means that the machine will be able to fly higher and for longer durations before having to come down. Wheeled machines can benefit from the patch as well, gaining a higher jump when it goes off a ramp.

Gliding cannot be performed in Top Ride.