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What is Skateboarding For You?

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Skateboarding means different things for different people. For some people skateboarding is a recreational pastime, for others it is a way to express themselves and learn more about their abilities, unfortunately there are those who use it to break public peace, rumbling across campuses and shopping malls and endangering people passing by.

Skateboarding is an active sport that requires a person to use a skateboard to perform tricks and stunts. A decade-old report showed there were as many as 18.5 million semi-professional or professional skateboarders in the U.S. only, mostly males under the age of 18. At a rough guess there are currently about 100 million people who practice it around the globe.

Skateboarding is a relatively young sport, which goes back to the late 40-s or early 50-s, when people sought to replicate surfing in a totally different environment. Most of its pioneers were Californian surfers who created their own boards at homes and used sidewalks to practice their incipient skills. Only a decade later skateboarding turned into an epidemic craze, which attracted millions of young people worldwide. However, the interest soon started to fade away, which is partially contributed to the fact that many experts proclaimed it to be a dangerous and disruptive activity, to be fair it is important to say that they had their reasons to do so. The 80-s saw a renewed interest in skateboarding, which by that time had acquired totally new freestyle forms. There was no plain street skateboarding anymore; it was the time of vertical walls skateboarding, which included many truly dangerous tricks in public places. Skateboarding of the 80-s became a challenge to the generally accepted rules and a synonym for anti-social reprovable behavior. An aggressive confrontation between skateboarders and law-enforcement authorities has been going on ever since, although the situation changed a little when such skateboarding heavyweights as Tony Hawks and Rodney Mullen started cooperating with the authorities, trying to make them realize skateboarding was going to be around for a while.

At present skateboarding has become an integral part of an urban lifestyle. Cool skateboarders get wide media attention and are often invited to help companies to promote their services and goods such as clothing, sports equipment and even food. Special indoors and outdoors venues are built in big cities to make skateboarding a more accessible and much safer pastime for teenagers. However, not everyone is so open-minded and there are still cities, which strongly oppose to the creation of specialized skateparks in their area, being anxious that this may result in increased drug abuse and crime.

Skateboarding can be a very positive activity which challenges young people to grow physically, emotionally and mentally as well as develop a number of important skills that might come in use later in life. However, everyone who considers becoming a skateboard rider, must decide for themselves whether or not they are prepared to take the responsibility, which is associated with this sport.


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