Skateboarding is uniquely creative and independent because the sport doesn’t have any traditional rules or regulations. However, a certain unwritten etiquette for skateparks does exist. This informal code of conduct helps minimize the risk for injury and ensure that everyone at the park has a good time. So how should you behave at the skatepark? Here are the most important points to consider.
“Snaking” is the single most common cause for both frustration and collisions at every skatepark. It’s when you steal someone else’s turn, dropping in before another person who had been waiting for longer than you. It also sometimes refers to dropping in when someone is still in the middle of their run. Essentially, snaking is the skatepark version of cutting in line. No one likes a snake!
The basic guideline is simple: wait for your turn and let everyone finish their runs. This way everyone gets the chance to try their skills at the park. And if you accidentally snake someone, don’t worry, it happens! Just make sure to get out of their way as soon as possible. And an apology doesn’t hurt.
2. Watch other riders
When you’re waiting for your turn to go, always think about whether or not you’re in someone else’s way. Standing in the middle of the skatepark is typically a big no- no as it tends to be the most heavily trafficked area. You might want to wait for your turn by the edge of the park instead.
3. Know where it’s ok to sit
When you’re not on your board and want to sit down somewhere, make sure that the spot you choose is appropriate. That concrete bench looks perfect, right? Well typically it’s actually not. It’s made for skateboarding, not sitting. You’re best bet is to sit outside of the skatepark all together, but if you really want to stay and follow the action, try taking a look where other skateboarders are sitting to get an idea of a good place.
4. Dropping in
That metal tubing along the upper edges of ramps is called coping, and it allows a rider to grind and stall on the ramp. When you’re waiting for your turn it is important that you don’t hang your board here, as it might be in the way of other riders. Generally, standing a foot or two behind the coping is considered respectful. And it’s also a lot safer.
5. “One upping”
When you see someone trying a trick that you know that you can do,don’t roll up that same moment and do it in front of them. That’s just rude. Why not offer to help the person with the trick instead!
It’s not uncommon for boards to go shooting into one direction or another. If this happens to your board, make sure to yell out “board!” if there are any people in the vicinity. Getting a board in the shin at 20 mph stings, so there’s no point in holding your breath or being shy. Feel free to scream at the top your lungs. It’s appreciated.
7. Be friendly!
No one likes a sourpuss, so say hi! Let others go first. Make friends. Congratulate people on tricks. Basically just treat people the way you would like to be treated. It’s more fun everyone!
Keeping these 7 rules of the skatepark will make the skateboard park a happier place for everyone!
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