Skate or Fly?November 8, 2019
Lately, skateboarding is being seen by many as less of a teen hobby and more of a professional skill, even globally. Although popularized in the US in the 1970s, skateboarding is a skill known by many and not for the faint of heart. With the 2020 Olympics on the horizon, set to include skateboarding as a competition, it’s easy to see why so many people of all ages love it. Whether or not you have personally experienced skating for yourself, it is hard to deny the presence it has in popular culture. If you consider yourself a beginner thinking of getting in on the world of skating, there’s a bit about boards you need to know. From bearings to riser plates, it’s important to do your research to understand how to safely have fun!
Most boards are between 6.5” to 9” in width, with most riders over 13 fitting about a 7.5” board. You also want to be cognizant of what size and durometer wheel you may need, as this varies based on rider preference and what kind of ground material you skate most. Softer (78A to 87A), larger (60mm) wheels are best for longboarding/cruising and less technical or street tricks, as they provide the best grip. You also may want to consider trying other smaller tweaks to your set-up like the height of your trucks or even where you do or don’t position griptape on your board. It’s important in finding the most comfortable fit to ride. It’s also important to remember to replace parts as you feel their performance deteriorating, in order to maintain your own safety as well as the overall function of the board.
The 21st century is home to a lot of new information and ideas, and we are approaching the futuristic hover-board technology fabled in sci-fi. Technically, they don’t fly on their own, but with an electric skateboard, riders are met with the convenience of any battery operated vehicle. The batteries on most boards are manufactured to last 1 to 3 years, depending on brand and wear, so you won’t have to worry about replacing it for a while. Oftentimes, these boards can go upwards of 25 mph, allowing the rider to get from point A to point B in style.
If you aren’t feeling like Marty McFly, your average human-powered board has its advantages as well. Skateboarding is a craft known for encouraging the rider to learn how to fall and get back up again and again, but at the same time, presents less damage than many other thrill-seeker sports and activities. Depending on how you choose to ride, from skating strictly parks to hill-bombing, as long as you gear up properly and ensure you know what you’re doing (i.e Practice!) skating can bring adventure to your life that you may have never expected. Don’t let the fear of falling stress you out too much that you stop yourself from enjoying something that could bring great joy.