What is Skateboarding?
Skateboarding is a relatively new and exciting form of sport most popular among youth. The skateboard itself is commonly made up of a deck, trucks, and wheels, along with other smaller pieces to hold everything together. Skateboarders are known for the extreme nature of the sport and the unique culture surrounding it. There's a range of different styles and competitions, the most common being street skating and vert skating.
Skateboarding embraces creativity and expressiveness as there are hundreds of tricks and techniques for skaters to make their own. Tricks include different variations of flip, grind, grab, air, ramp, and footplant tricks, along with other non-classified tricks. Skaters commonly create their own tricks and methods that they feel most comfortable with because after all, skateboarding is about inventiveness. Today, skateboarding has transformed from a hobby to a full-fledged professional sport with mainstream media coverage and top athletes being paid millions. Skateboarding at its core, however, remains friendly to amateurs and professionals alike as there are a variety of different levels, tricks, and styles for everyone to try.
Skateboarding first originated in the 1940s in California, USA. It was developed by surfers as an alternative leisure activity when the waves weren't suitable, and would later explode as an entirely new sport industry. Children riding small wooden boards with wheels was also traced back to France in the early 1940s. Skateboarding started out very simple, with events mainly for downhill races due to the limitations of early skateboards. However, once a more flexible, maneuverable board and polyurethane wheels were developed to upgrade skateboards, the sport took off.
Skating urban environments, also known as street skating, became a popular hobby among youth and the culture around skateboarding developed along with it. Skaters embraced an edgy, laidback, and non-mainstream personas to go along with the dangerous nature of the sport. In the 1980s skateboarding advanced to vert skating, in which skaters would use large vertical ramps to enhance their tricks and form a new style. Skaters like Tony Hawk and the formation of popular events such as the XGames helped propel this form of skating to the spotlight. The skateboard itself would continue to grow and develop over the years, with changes to its nose, tail, and grip to eventually become what we see in modern day skateboards.