There were many ups and downs in skateboard history. From sidewalk surfing to the booms of the seventies and the eighties, being banned, to becoming one of the fastest growing sports.
What was it like when I started?
There wasn’t much to go around when I started skateboarding in the early nineties. There were no skateparks, few places to buy skateboards. It was banned in a lot of public and private spaces. Most people thought of skaters as criminals just out to cause problems. This core group of skaters didn’t have much but they were innovators. The tricks became very complex and technical. The equipment got simpler and higher quality.
The innovations that were made in the 90’s brought skateboarding back slowly. It was accessible easy and super cool. It grew steadily into the millennium. Even catching the interest of the Olympic Games.
What it is like to be a skateboarder today?
That is very different to what is happening today. Skateboarding has gone mainstream; from Disney movies, video games and million dollar skateparks. Tony Hawk is a household name.
Skateboarding has made such an impact of the mainstream it has spawn some copies. The culture copy cats like rollerbladers, scooter kids and to a lesser extent bmx.
Skater’s these days can get equipment everywhere. The junk you can buy at the local Wal-Mart, to shops in malls and of course the local core skateshops. Did I mention all the skateparks!
It has become a popular and diverse sport that is here to stay. the yearly Go Skateboarding Day on June 21st adds to skateboarding’s strength. A great format for enjoying this day is a Skateboard Jam competition. These can be held in one location or in many around the city. The skaters can travel and skate together between the different locations. I give a disclaimer on the internet wiki sites that don’t know crap about skateboarding.