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How to Ride a Penny Board [Complete 2021 Guide] With Photos

While Penny boards are some of the most accessible and affordable skateboards on the market, depending on how you intend to use your new skateboard, you might find yourself perfectly satisfied or particularly frustrated by a Penny board.

The Penny board is an alluring spectacle. The half skateboard, half longboard are some of the most interesting and misunderstood choices for skaters.

That’s exactly why GoSkate wrote this article–we’ll tell you exactly what a Penny board is, some of their pros and cons, and when and when not to add one to your arsenal.

As always, we invite anyone interested to learn more about skateboarding to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for the latest news and trick tips. Now, let’s GoSkate!

What is a Penny Board? And How Did it Get it’s Name?

If you’re reading this article, you probably have a general idea of what a Penny board is but we’re going to break it down for you like never before.

First and foremost, the name Penny board is an eclipse of the actual product. Like Kleenex, Rollerblades, Walkman, these products were actually brands that eclipsed the notoriety of the product.

The official 2010 Penny board was a brand named after the owner’s sister.

An Australian Company invented the Penny Board

The Set Up

What makes these boards inherently unique is the streamline approach to the design.

The deck of a Penny board is probably what you’ll notice first. Made from plastic, the top of the boards have a waffle top texture, designed for a non-slip surface and flexible ride.

The wheels of the Penny board are an impressively large 59 to 69 mm set. On a hardness scale known as the ‘durometer’ rating, from 65A–100A, Penny board wheels are a solid 85A; making them capable of skating over some of the gnarliest terrain.

Board: Waffle grip, plastic, 22-27 inches

Wheels: 59-69 mm Wheels, 85A hardness

When to Ride a Penny Board 

These petite cruisers are more akin to some of skateboarding’s earliest conceptions but with an entirely different purpose.

While both it’s DogTown predecessors and today’s contemporary popsicle-shaped skateboards are meant for maneuvering tricks, Penny boards are made entirely for transportation.

Penny boards are made entirely for transportation. “

The younger generation – a group that has widely adopted the penny board as a method of transportation,

Who Uses Them: A United States census found that the average person for non-motorized transportation was from the ages of 14-24 or essentially high school and college students. Students from these ages choose a wide array of transportation but many choose a Penny board for its size and cost.

Why Use Them: Any time you’re looking to have the speed and mobility of a longboard but with optimal accessibility and maneuverability–you’ll be happy with a Penny.

That is if you can reconcile with some of the Penny board cons or reasons why and where Not to ride a Penny board.

When Not to Ride a Penny Board

Penny boards are a lot of fun and this is reason enough alone to always ride a Penny board.

That being said, there are some instances when riding a Penny board is not ideal or even dangerous.

For starters, a Penny board is not for doing tricks. So if you’re looking to hit the skatepark or fly off a jump ramp in your local parking lot, these boards are not built for that type of skating.

The boards do not allow for you to produce an ollie, nor does the plastic deck prove to be viable against impact. Moreover, while a Penny board is built for transportation, it is not necessarily the best option for cruising–like you would on a longboard. The reason being a Penny board requires you to place your feet together a lot closer than on a longboard or other skateboards. In doing this, you do not have the maximum stance to lift your nose to maneuver your board (think sidewalk surfing).

Beginner skaters will find it hard to maintain a core balance, and many new skaters will buy a Penny board and later realize they are too dangerous to maneuver through crowded areas. Your first board should probably not be a Penny board unless you intend to learn how to ride it in an empty parking lot or driveway.

What is the Difference Between a Penny Board and a Regular Skateboard?

You might be thinking: four wheels, two trucks and a deck–that’s a skateboard, right?

Technically, you would be correct but as we see from this article and our catalog of insider skateboarder knowledge, not all skateboards are created equal.

For instance, a Penny board and a regular skateboard provide completely different experiences. A regular skateboard is constructed to handle the high-performance demands and trick maneuverability of contemporary skateboarding, whereas a Penny board is for transportation with an emphasis on speed, convenience and accessibility.

Skateboard types.

A Penny board is a homogeneous plastic deck, whereas a regular skateboard deck is 7 plies of maple wood pressed together with concave curvature.

As we outlined earlier in this article, the wheels of a Penny board are much larger and harder than a regular skateboard’s wheels.

The trucks are also smaller, all of which contributes to a more aerodynamic board for higher speeds.

These differences are precisely why this article was written, but bravo to you for doing the proper research for maximum safety and fun.

How to Ride a Penny Board 

Okay, down to the nitty-gritty. Here are some proven tips and techniques to riding a Penny board.

Pushing off with the back foot on a penny board.

Push off with your back foot: Pushing with your back foot might seem obvious but many beginner skaters will actually feel more comfortable with taking off their front. However, this causes your shoulders and your hips to misalign and forces you to make excess movements that can cause you to slip or lose balance. You’ll need to get in the habit of pushing off your back foot, even if it might feel impossible at first. It will ensure you produce the maximum result with the least effort, and you’ll look much cooler than the ‘mongo’ style associated with posers.

A common mistake – putting a foot too close to an edge. Uncentered placement causes balance issues.

Feet on the bolts: At first, a lot of skaters will have to put their feet wherever they feel the most balanced but for those of us who still find it difficult, a good rule of thumb is to start with the bolts. Bolts? The top of the screws that go in above the trucks. Just like any type of sport or activity, if your legs are farther apart, you’ll gain more balance and stability. With a small nose, be mindful of putting your foot too high. Feel for the tail below the bolts, eventually, you’ll want to manipulate that pocket for turning.

Low Center of Gravity: You know those classic images of DogTown skaters riding tiny boards and ripping downhill or zooming around cones? What do all those photos have in common? Whether it’s Jay Adams or Tony Alva, the skaters are all crouched down low in perfect sidewalk surfing fashion. When you stand straight on a Penny, you’re disconnecting your center of gravity between your toes and the top of your head. Bringing these points of gravity all down to your core in a crouch ensures you’re able to deal with any potential hazards of maneuvers on the fly. Feeling speed wobbles or approaching a crack-ridden part of the sidewalk? Crouch!

Look at common mistake of kids. The feet are not centered Her balance is not low and near the board.Photo Mother holding hands with happy daughter riding penny board created by AntonLozovoyVideo

Know the Speed Limit: What makes Penny boards particularly fun is also what makes them particularly dangerous. These little boards are like lightning bolts, as their large wheels and aerodynamic shape sends you flying down the street. For the experienced skater, this makes them the perfect cruiser for afternoon hill bombs or sunset downhill sessions. However, for the beginner who might not understand the 0-60 nature of these boards–you can find yourself with a scraped knee and a sore hip pretty-fast (no pun intended). But if you take into consideration the tips above and our final tip for How to Ride a Penny board, you’ll be more than fine.

Stop and Pass Go: I can’t tell you the amount of times someone has fallen on a Penny board from failing to stop correctly. The problem is, most people are not used to being on a skateboard, so when they find themselves 4-6 inches above the ground, they put their foot down only an inch or so below, start leaning back (which spells disaster if you’re wearing a backpack) and instead of planting their whole foot on the ground, they maybe get just a toe and boom, the party’s over. You must learn to stop well on a Penny board and quickly, as you’ll generally be zipping through crowded areas or schools. A good rule of thumb when it comes to What is a Penny board and How to Ride One: stopping is more important than going.

Tips for Parents

Now that you know exactly what a Penny board is and How to Ride One, we encourage you to call up a few friends and hit the neighborhood.

Truthfully, from a lifelong skateboarder, a Penny board does not belong in the skatepark.

Although many parents will feel like a Penny board is a good first option for their younger kids, in reality, they are better options.

Truthfully, from a lifelong skateboarder, a Penny board does not belong in the skatepark.”

These boards like we said earlier, lack the nose and tail and true maneuverability of actual skateboards. So when you bring your kids to the skatepark with a Penny board and your kid attempts to turn and the board shoots out, it sends a b-line into the park.

This is not only extremely dangerous for the other skaters there but your kids will most likely spend a lot of time chasing after them into harm’s way.

The Penny board is an alluring spectacle. The half skateboard, half longboard is both boards and yet neither all at once, making these skateboards some of the most interesting and misunderstood choices for skaters.

While Penny boards are some of the most accessible and affordable skateboards on the market, they can also be pretty dangerous.

In other words, depending on how you intend to use a Penny board, you might find yourself perfectly satisfied or particularly frustrated by a Penny board.

Sign Up Your Child for Our GoSkate Lessons!

Penny board or not – Are you interested in more tips for getting your child into skateboarding?

Here is an article on “Tips for Parents at the Skatepark” and some articles on “Introducing Your Child to Skateboarding?”

As always, if you sign up for our skate lessons, our instructors will be there with open arms to catch your kids if they fall. Learning to skate with others expedites the process and adds more fun.

Find out today how you can help gain self-confidence and maintain an active healthy lifestyle by contacting GoSkate.

Now that you’ve been given some proven tips on Learning How To Skateboard as an Adult, you’re well on your way to accomplishing your skateboard dreams.

Remember, skateboarding is best with friends and we’ve even included some ways you can help meet other beginner skaters in your area.

Either way, have fun and GoSkate!

Should I let My Daughter Skateboard?

First and foremost, women and young girls are absolutely some of the most enduring humans on the planet, so of course, they are tough enough to handle the sport of skateboarding.

Still, for a parent or guardian the question of Should I let My Daughter Skateboard? is an important one.

We’re going to lay out all the dynamics present in skateboarding to reinforce your decision.

At GoSkate, some of our best students are young girls who have gone on to accomplish great feats on their board.

More importantly, young girl skaters have gone on to inspire other young girls to do the same. All of which helps change the sport for a more inclusive and representative experience.

Should I let My Daughter Skateboard?

We’re going to outline all your concerns and compare them to the benefits for any questions you might have.

We’ll not only answer those questions but we’re going to explain the reasons why you should let your daughter skateboard.

A little girl wearing a helmet learning to skateboard in a park. Skateboarding is a great summer activity for daughters.

She Was a Skater Girl

Women have been in skateboarding since the beginning. Patti McGee, the first female professional skateboarder landed the cover of Life magazine in May of 1965.

Patti set the world record for fastest female on a skateboard. Not only was she fast, she beat males.

Fast forward to 2021, pioneers like Elissa Steamer, Jamie Reyes, Maria Del Santos, and Vannessa Torres have stood on the shoulders of Patti.

A female force has always been powerfully present in skateboarding.

Great Girl Skateboarders to Follow

Elissa SteamerJamie ReyesMaria Del SantosVannessa TorresLeticia BufoniLizzie ArmantoRayssa Leal

Today, there’s a booming women’s population in street and park contest skating–including such names as Leticia Bufoni, Lizzie Armanto, and the Brazilian phenom Rayssa Leal. You might remember her from her viral video of her heel flipping a stair set in a tutu and fairy costume. Now she’s signed by Nike Sb and competing in contests around the world. Amazing!

Skateboarding is a Girl’s Sport

How about the fastest-growing demographic in skateboarding? – Female.

Did you know skateboarding is the largest female sport in Afghanistan?

Afghanistan, quite frankly, had no idea what skateboarding was or that it was ‘supposed’ to be ‘for boys’.

Now scores and scores of young girls are gaining a new type of confidence and self-expression thanks to organizations like Skatistan.

If it has this type of impact in a country like Afghanistan, we can imagine what impact it is already having in the US and other western countries.

Be a Member of the Movement

Row of smiling girls sitting on a bench with skateboards

There has always been a feminist element to women in skating and as we saw in the past two years, women led marches, hosted skate classes, and made spaces for underrepresented communities.

Throughout the US and around the world, women are banning together on their skateboards to make skateboarding a more inclusive, representative and equal sport.

Just as recently as X-Games 2005, the Women’s Skate Alliance was founded by Mimi Knoop, forming a boycott of the X-Games which saw a meager price pot of $2,000 when compared to the men’s final of $50,000.

As we all know, equal pay for women is a subject that goes far beyond skating, but skateboarding is a great auxiliary to bring this issue to the light and into a sport that claims to be progressive and accepting.

Addressing Your Concerns

“Skateparks are Not Safe”

When you drive by the skate park you’re quick to see the people sitting down with a beer in hand but what you might not see at first glance is the countless people who are there fostering a true love and passion for skateboarding.

Skate parks are often put out of view by city planners or in rougher parts of town where they are less resisted by the neighboring people. That being said, skateboarders view a skate park like a second home.

There’s a natural police force present at every one with coaches, mentors, and a really a local family type atmosphere.

Your daughter, after a few sessions at the skatepark, will gain big brothers and sisters who will look after her. At that point, the skate park is one of the safest and most protected places she could be.

“Skateboarding is Too Dangerous for Girls”

Skateboarding is dangerous but it’s already been scientifically proven that women have a higher pain tolerance than men.

Women are the toughest beings on this planet when you really think about it. There’s no one more equipped for the physical demands and ballet like maneuvers of skateboarding.

Wanna see for yourself?

Just tune into any girls skate contest and you’ll be blown away at the strength and toughness present.

“There’s no Other Girls Who Skate”

This is simply just not the case in 2021 and often, you can find another girl who skates right in your neighborhood.

Go for a family walk, hit the local park or empty church parking lot, you’ll surely see a bunch of young girls riding bikes, scooters and skateboards.

Exchange a few numbers, plan an early morning at the skatepark and get a group together and go skate. You’ll find the bonds skaters create with one another are some of the most special and supportive in the world.

“Skateboarding is a Boys Sport”

While the majority of skateboarders might still be boys, there has been a resurgence of women in skateboarding in the last 5-10 years.

Now, every single skatepark has women present and since it’s been a bonding of locals almost a decade in the making, this means it’s no longer a strange scene when a group of girls comes into the park. More importantly, a skate teams are no longer complete without female representation, including in contests, videos, magazines, and all traditional skate media.

The industry is changing as well, something skateboarding is being heralded for it’s dismantling of its own stigmas.

“Skateboarding will Expose my Daughter to Bad Things”

Skateboarding will expose her to far more positives than negatives and it will give her a passion to pursue above all other things detrimental to her health.

There are a lot of positive voices in skateboarding that promote higher education, mental health awareness, and addiciction and suicide prevention.  At the end of the day, skateboarders love skateboarding more than anything else and won’t pursue things that keep them off their board.

Tips for Introducing Your Daughter to Skateboarding

Here are some proven tips on how to introduce your daughter to skateboarding, including her first trip to the skatepark and her first time rolling on a board. Be excited because this is where the magic happens!

Little girl learning to skateboard with her safety gear.

Proper Safety Equipment: Just like anything with risk, proper preparation prevents poor performance. Remember, skateboarding is one of the healthiest and encouraging activities on the planet but it still requires beginners of all ages to wear the proper safety equipment. If you’re a minor, consult with your parent or guardian before stepping on a skateboard and always make sure you’re wearing the proper attire. Leave the flip-flops at home, pick up your helmet and enjoy the ride.

It starts in your driveway: One of the most important factors in learning how to skateboard for anyone is knowing where to start. If you were to take your daughter to a skatepark before she learns the basics, she will be intimidated to a point of no return. A great place to begin is in your driveway or local empty parking lot. Anywhere with smooth ground and a low traffic of cars and pedestrians. Really a sidewalk next to a grassy knoll is a great place to learn to roll in case she tips over and needs a soft landing.

Picking Out the Right Skateboard: At GoSkate, we cannot stress enough how important it is to pick the right skateboard for your child. There’s a plethora out on the market and many times you’ll think you’re doing your child a favor by buying a smaller board when in reality you are not. The Penny Board is a great example of this, it’s smaller and almost appears child-like but it’s actually best suited for experienced skaters. Rule of thumb, go to your local skate shop. They’ll tell you everything your daughter will need and have a better array of pink wheels, sporty grip and customizable options you just can’t find online.

A girl learning skateboarding with her mother. Mother holding hands with happy daughter riding penny board created by AntonLozovoyVideo

Enroll in our GoSkate Classes: It might seem like a shameless plug but in reality, skate classes are a great way to introduce your daughter to the art and sport of skating by a passionate and dedicated instructor. This article is really the tip of the iceberg in the knowledge that an experienced skater can share with your daughter–not to mention the sure amount of stoke and encouragement.

Have more questions or want to enroll in our skate classes?

We invite you to contact us to take your child’s skating to the next level.  If you sign up for our skate lessons, our instructors will be there with open arms to catch them if they fall.

Learning to skate with others expedites the process and adds more fun. Find out today how you can help you or your child gain self confidence and maintain an active healthy lifestyle by contacting GoSkate.

As always, stay connected with GoSkate by following us on Facebook and Instagram for the latest skateboard news and trick tips.

Either way, have fun and GoSkate!

Learning How to Skateboard as an Adult

One of the largest misconceptions about skateboarding both non-skaters and media portrait is that skateboarding is a sport or activity reserved for kids or adolescents. This cannot be farther from the truth.

Tony Hawk is still ripping half pipes and skating well into his 50s. Every skatepark from Los Angeles to Barcelona sports a healthy skate scene made of skaters of all ages. 

Whether you’re looking to add an extra healthy activity to your exercise repertoire or you’re having regrets for not sticking to your favorite pastime, now is the perfect time to begin your journey for Learning How to Skateboard as an Adult.

Luckily for you, GoSkate is here to get you rolling with proven tips and insightful rules of thumb to help foster your skills and love for skateboarding. 

Once you’ve read these proven tips on learning how to skateboard as an adult, feel free to contact us about how you can take your skating to the next level via our skate classes.

As always, we invite you to stay connected with GoSkate by following us on Facebook and Instagram for the latest skateboard news and tricktips. Now, let’s GoSkate! 

What Not To Do

Sometimes the best way to get started with something new is by having a general understanding of what not to do. Here are a handful of useful maxims to keep in mind when learning how to skateboard as an adult. 

Avoid Pushing Mongo: What the heck is mongo? Mongo is when you pedal with your front foot instead of your back foot.

The awkward motion of taking your front foot off and turning your body is a defining characteristic of beginner skaters and it is deemed ‘ugly’ and unbefitting to the artististic nature of skating. It will also make it harder to perform certain tricks in the future by elongating the pedal process.

Don’t develop bad habits!

Longboard is the Wrong Board: At first glance, a longboard and a skateboard are the same thing, but in reality, they are more unalike than alike. Since you cannot perform tricks on a longboard, including the most fundamental trick in skateboarding–the ollie–moreover, the enlarged, extra grippy wheels tailored for speed are very dangerous to skate around at a skatepark as it limits your mobility.

Sorry if you already purchased your board but this also means no penny or nickel boards. See our first tip to know which skateboard is the ‘right’ board.

An adult skateboarding on a longboard. This is typically a mistake. Regular skateboards should be purchased in most cases.

Respect the Risk: Skateboarders are naturally confident people but that doesn’t mean we don’t respect the risk. Skateboarding is highly dangerous at all levels, it’s part of what makes it so rewarding. Even so, you can’t just hop on a board and start cruising downhill without knowing what you’re doing.

Wear a helmet and pads if you need to, especially as an adult and always approach a new obstacle with caution. Respect the risk and the risk will respect you. 

Comparing Yourself to Others: Comparing yourself to others is a sure way of feeling insecure and intimidated at a skatepark. It’s important to always remember skateboarding is about how much fun you’re having, not about how good you are.

Look for inspiration not comparison and you’ll see skaters generally don’t discriminate against others based on skill level. Because remember, it’s all about having fun! 

Learning How to Skateboard as an Adult

Buy A ‘Real’ Skateboard

One of the biggest mistakes we see with adults who have an initial interest in skating but fail to foster the skills necessary to learn how to skateboard, is buying the wrong type of skateboard.

What exactly do we mean by this?

You might be thinking anything with a board and four wheels is a skateboard but just like most products, not all skateboards are created equal.

One of the most common and largest mistakes is people go into a Big 5 or a Walmart and buy a pre-packaged board off the shelf.

These Walmart boards are made of the lowest quality goods and are seldom produced by real skateboard manufacturers. This not only takes your support out of the real skateboard economy but leaves you with a product that won’t sustain the demands of skating or even get you rolling in the right direction. 

Skateboard types.

Buy your board at a local skateshop, not online. It’s not only a great way to support your local skate scene but also, nurturing a relationship with your skateshop will help you gain more understanding about skateboarding in general. Everything from the skateboard economy, industry, to what it means to be a skateboarder is on full display at your local skate shop.

It’s okay if you don’t know what to buy, ask the worker behind the counter for a beginner-friendly board. Some shops will even have pre-assembled boards specifically for beginners that usually come with a discount and free stickers. A good rule of thumb is to buy what ‘stands out’ to you because whatever gets you excited to skate is really what’s best.

It Starts in Your Driveway

Remember when your Dad took you to an empty parking lot the first time you sat behind the wheel? Stepping on a skateboard for the first time is exactly the same. You wouldn’t let a new driver get behind the wheel on the freeway right? It’s the same with a skatepark.

With the high levels of traffic and foreign obstacles, you would stand a better chance on the freeway than a skatepark full of veteran rippers. In all seriousness, the driveway or an empty parking lot is the perfect place to hone your center of balance and other basic moves. These initial moves lay the foundation which will allow you to learn tricks and seamlessly become a part of a skateparks ecosystem. It is also where you will foster your personal relationship with your skateboard.

Finding your center of balance is key to learning how to skateboard as an adult. This means being comfortable with crouching down (think of a surfer on a wave) and knowing when your feet and head are too disconnected. If you feel like you’re wobbling or losing your balance, crouch down. It’s better to fall from a few inches off the ground than a few feet. 

Learning how to stop is arguably more important than learning how to go. Gaining speed is one thing but you’ll need to learn how to drag your foot and hop off your board in case of oncoming collisions. Doing so in your driveway or into the grass is a great way to learn how to stop.

Learning your stance is one of the defining characteristics of who you are as a skater. Have a friend or family member line up behind you while you stand at attention. Have them gently nudge you from behind so you have to take a step to maintain your balance. Whatever foot steps out is your front foot, and thus, your stance. Cool, right?

Have a Skate Buddy

Just like most activities, having a friend to do it with makes it easier and safer. Additionally, skateboarders are some of the most inviting and inclusive people on the planet.

While, you’ll want to have a certain level of skill before you are ready to become a local of your skate scene, there are skaters out there (like ourselves) who want to help you succeed.

Having a skate buddy will help motivate you and learn new tricks of the trade. While you’ll help push one another, you will also be there to promote safety and keep the good times going.

Here are some tips to making a skate buddy in no time. 

The morning session at a skatepark is a great way to meet other adult skateboarders who might be getting a session in before work or are hoping to beat the afternoon rush. Don’t be afraid to compliment someone’s griptape art or recently landed maneuver and you’ll be exchanging phone numbers in no time. Taking a group skate lesson is a great way to meet other beginner adults skateboarding in their 40’s and 50’s. This is a great way to learn tools for progressing your skating you just can’t get from an article. Skateboarding has many focal points but none of them are arguably as important as community. Get out and meet people and don’t be afraid to be a student. Better yet, you might just teach someone else a thing or two.

Examples of Famous Old Skateboarders

Neal Unger of Anaheim, California, 63 years old. Instagram: @neal_a_unger Lloyd Kahn of Bolinas, California, 81 years old. Instagram @Lloyd.KahnRonnie Creager of Orange, California, 48 years old. Instagram: @ronniecreagerLance Mountain of Pasadena, California, 56 years old. Instagram: @lancemountainTony Hawk of Carlsbad, California, 53 years old. Instagram: @tonyhawk

There are many well-known skaters in their 40’s, 50’s and 60’s. Follow the above riders to gain inspiration on your journey.

Learn to ‘Love’ Falling

Every skateboarder has spent innumerable amounts of time falling off their skateboard and they see your falling as a sign of progression not regression.”

This might sound counterintuitive to the new adult skateboarder because shouldn’t you want to avoid falling?

Bones should always be protected, especially at older ages. Learning how to fall is a must for older skateboarders

Wouldn’t falling be a sign I am not very skilled or even worse, won’t people think I am a poser if I fall?

None of these questions could be farther from the essence of skating.

Skateboarding teaches us to laugh in the face of our failure and in doing so helps us get up every time we fall.

If you’re even remotely attracted to skateboarding, you’ve undoubtedly noticed how we seem like some of the happiest people on the planet.

Well, in skateboarding, you fall more than you land, so if you learn to love the falling, you’ll ensure you’re always having a good time.

Trust us when we say, every skateboarder has spent innumerable amounts of time falling off their skateboard and they see your falling as a sign of progression not regression.

Respect from the locals will come not from sitting in the corner of the skatepark but from trying your best even if that means taking a few slams.

You don’t ever have to give up–when it’s all about having fun. Remembering this simple yet profound truth will help you remember each time you fall; why you got into skateboarding in the first place. Even when learning how to skateboard as an adult might seem like the hardest thing in the world, remember you’re your own rule maker and breaker. There are no rules besides one, have fun. 

How Older Skateboarders Learn

If you sign up for our skate lessons, our instructors will be there with open arms to catch you if you fall.

Learning to skate with others expedites the process and adds more fun. Find out today how you can help gain self confidence and maintain an active healthy lifestyle by contacting GoSkate

Now that you’ve been given some proven tips on Learning How To Skateboard as an Adult, you’re well on your way to accomplishing your skateboard dreams.

Remember, skateboarding is best with friends and we’ve even included some ways you can help meet other beginner skaters in your area.

Either way, have fun and GoSkate! 

Is Camp Woodward Worth The Cost?

If you’re lucky enough to have a child who skateboards, you’ve probably heard: “Mom, Dad, can I please, please, please go to Camp Woodward?”

Even if your child isn’t training for The Skateboarding Olympics, Camp Woodward has always been an alluring experience for every young skateboarder. But what most parents don’t know is that each Woodward skate camp, depending on your area, has its own set of pros and cons that go beyond the question of cost or how much will my child actually be skating.

As your number one trusted source for everything skateboarding, GOSKATE has you covered!

In this article you’ll be learning everything there is to know about Camp Woodward, including but not limited to:

Death of Skate? – The Declining Popularity of Skateboarding

by Susan Mann

It’s a sad reality to confront.  There are signs the popularity of skateboarding is declining:

RIP Skateboarder Magazine

  • Fewer people are looking for skateboards and skate parks online than ever before, as shown by the fact that skateboarding searches on Google are decreasing.
  • Industry studies show skateboarding involvement is down for nearly every age group, including the youth.
  • Participation in skateboarding has declined.  In the past ten years, parks are less crowded than they have ever been.
  • Skateboarding companies are closing.

Skateboarding is definitely in a slump.  Although the following data is depressing, and we are greatly concerned about skateboarding, this is not the first time skateboarding has been hit with a decline.  Skateboarding faced a crash in popularity in the 1970s, when skate park construction halted and parks closed.  Rising insurance costs and declining attendance were blamed for causing the ”˜70’s crash.  Similarly, the Great Recession of 2008 unquestionably hit the industry hard.

Is skateboarding dying?  To get a clear picture of how grim the current stats are, let’s look at the data from Google.

The following graphs show the total number of searches:

Google Searches for “Skateboards” have Fallen Steadily.

Source: Google Trends 2017.

The number of searches for “skateboards” online has dropped at a relatively slower rate.  This slower rate of decline may be due to the rise of skateboard e-commerce.

Google Searches for “Skateboard Parks” are Dying.

(Google searches for “skateboard parks” from 2004-2017.)

Google searches for “skate parks” from 2004-2017 dropped over 85% and might indicate fewer people are skateboarding.  The Skate Park of Tampa saw a 38% decrease in skate sessions between 2004 and 2012.

Fewer people are going to skateboard park site directories.  Skatepark.com and SkateboardPark.com have seen declining traffic since 2013 according to Compete.com.

Google Searches for “Skateboarding” Dropped 90%.

(Google searches for “skate parks” from June 2004 -2017.  The precipitous drop ended and stabilized in 2013. )

Skateboarding searches fell 90% based on information from Google.




Participation in Skateboarding Has Declined Also

Participation numbers are suffering.  Fewer skaters are going to the skatepark than in recent times.  In the seven years between 2006 and 2014, the number of skateboarding participants aged between six and 17 years decreased from 8.75 million to less than four million. Youth participation dropped 50% in the last seven years.

Surveys, conducted by the skateboard and action sports market in the past few years, show a similar narrative.  The number of youth participants in the United States decreased by almost 6 million participants between 2006 and 2014.

Industry Surveys Show Youth Participation has Dropped by Almost 6 Million.
Year Participants (in millions) Annual Percentage Drop
2006 8.75
2007 5.78 -44%
2008 5.47 5.40%
2009 4.97 -9.20%
2010 4.38 -12.12%
2011 3.74 -15.62%
2012 3.8 1.60%
2013 3.48 -9.43%
2014 3.29 -5.46%
2015 3.08 -6.49%
Total Drop (2006-2015)
-64.80%

(Source: Statista.com, 2017)

In the seven years between 2006 and 2014, the number of skateboarding participants aged between six and 17 years decreased from 8.75 million to less than four million.

A similar trend is happening with snowboarding, skateboarding’s step-child; Google searches have dropped 90%.  Burton, a developer of snowboarding products, is struggling to break out of just appealing to snowboarders and become a popular lifestyle brand.

Contest participation levels have also dropped. On the other hand, scooter use is rising.

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Scooters are taking over the skate parks.

Some refute all evidence of the decline in skateboarding, although most agree on one thing — the increasing visibility of scooters at skate parks.  Many skaters are taking out their frustrations on scooters in websites like Skateboard-City.com and SkatersCafe.com, where most complain about getting snaked by scooters or increasing crowds.  Skaters, of the late 1990’s saw the death of rollerblading, and many thought the same demise would return to scootering.  It has not yet happened.

Scooters are swarming local skate parks – more than ever before.  The youth play on scooters while millennials and generation x’ers have stuck with skateboarding.  It also seems fewer people are starting skateboarding than ever before.

Scooter use is hurting the skateboard industry.  The youth are choosing scooters over skating.
Interestingly enough, scooters are more popular in Europe than America.  Spain, Switzerland, and France are experiencing a larger scooter boom.  The interest, measured by search frequency, shows Western Europeans search for “freestyle scooters” at nearly ten times the rate as Americans.

Scoot Fest is dubbed as one of the largest, annual scooter events and takes place yearly in United Kingdom.  It lasts two days and draws visitors and sponsors from around the world.  A media company, Scoot Mag, is one of the leading scooter publications online and in the newsstand and is headquartered in UK.  Despite this, the X-Games woefully partnered with Razor Scooters in 2012 and introduced “freestyle scootering” into X-Games events.

Skateboarding’s Trouble on Wall Street

Sadly, the drop in interest in skateboarding has had a ripple effect on the skate industry.

If any company could by in financial trouble, the last corporation to come to mind, might be DC Shoes.  DC, purchased by Quicksilver, has taken a tumultuous turn–Quicksilver ousted CEO, Andy Mooney, and declared chapter 11 bankruptcy.  Since then, Quicksilver (ZQK), hasn’t maintained enough value to remain on the New York Stock Exchange, and it was delisted at the end of 2015.

Quicksilver isn’t alone. PACSUN (PSUN), known for its iconic skate and surf apparel, filed bankruptcy, and was delisted from NASDAQ in 2016. Zumiez (ZUMZ) finished 2016 with profits which fell 50% from the prior year.  Skate and snowboard apparel companies are now looking overseas for growth.

Converse, Nike, and Adidas now entered the skateboard market, yet for most industry players, they wouldn’t necessarily call Converse an action sports brand.  Same goes for Nike which continues to move into action sports with skateboarding (and owning Converse), and surfing (and owning Hurley).  Nike abandoned snowboarding and skiing in 2014 due to declining sales.  Nike’s skateboarding team retains big names, Eric Koston and Paul Rodriguez, so it is unlikely we will see Nike SB’s demise soon.

Private indoor skate parks have seen many casualties.  Vans Skate Parks had closed locations in Ontario CA, Morristown NJ, Denver CO, Milpitas CA, Potomac VA, Houston TX, Novi MI, and Orlando FL.  Vans had a claim to the largest indoor parks in the country. Skaters drove hours to skate the awe-inspiring terrain.  Public skate park construction simultaneously boomed and likely hurt Van’s admissions.

Chris Overholser, a Vans spokesperson said, “If kids have a choice of skating in a free municipal park or paying $7 or so a session to skate in ours, they’re going to go to the free park,”



Skateboarding Companies Are Closing

CCS, Zumiez, and local skate shops may have been impacted by the downturn.

The list of casualties is long: CCS, 411VM, Digital, Fuel TV, Aesthetics, City Skateboards, Skateboarder Magazine, Arcade, and Vehicle Skateboards are all gone.  Hundreds of local skate shops have closed their doors. ZERO and Fallen are suffering from the downturn, and Dwindle recently swooped in to save them. Jamie Thomas said about the skateboard depression, “Skateboard sales have been sucking this year.”

Chris Nieratko, owner of NJ Skateshop, remarked about the industry on ESPN, “I own three NJ Skateshop stores in New Jersey and this past Holiday season was our worst in seven years.  I have friends across the country that have owned skate shops three times as long and they’re saying the same thing.”

Pro Skateboarders like Tony Hawk, Greg Lutzka, and Dan Murphy, have recently seen sponsors either reduce their salaries or say their farewell due to the bad economy

At the beginning of the decade of 2000, skateboarding was extremely popular.  In fact, were more Americans skateboarding in 2000 than playing baseball.  In 2001, teenagers were watching more action sports than college football and basketball.

This led to the creation of a promising skate, surf, and snow channel, Fuel TV, that helped people stay connected to action sports, including skateboarding, nearly 24/7 on their cable box.  Its birth by FOX in 2003 was unprecedented exposure for skateboarding, although it lasted less than ten years before capitulating to the ever-growing interest in UFC fighting.  Fuel canceled all skate shows to make room for more UFC shows.

Action sports are now becoming less valued by teenagers.

Volcom, skate, swimwear, snowboarding outfitter, who bills itself as “a creative modern lifestyle brand” and Quicksilver have fallen dramatically as a “most preferred” brand among 13-25-year-olds as indicated by the North American Youth Culture Studies for both Spring and Fall.

What are the Ramifications?

Let’s be clear; this is not easy news to swallow.  We are not here to dig the grave for skateboarding, but to shed light on its status in order to turn it around.

Limited to America, the downward trend happening for almost a decade now is not present in parts of Europe, Japan, and China.  Asia remains a flourishing market.  The world’s largest skate park opened in China and skate shops are quickly multiplying.

However, in the U.S., a lack of popularity means fewer dollars in skateboarding, lower salaries for pros, and hurting skate shops.  A reduction in demand will likely have a domino effect on much of the action sports industry.

The silver-lining is not everyone is suffering.

Vans hit a record-breaking milestone, $2 billion in revenue in 2015, which is a huge leap from the $320 million it grossed 10 years ago. Vans has been diversifying their portfolio, expanding globally, and penetrating the surf market.

Street League Skateboarding continues to grow as it expands internationally through a partnership with FOX Sports 1.  The league is the first time skateboarding has had year-round contest exposure on television.  Street League has added a women’s league to appeal to a larger market.

So long as skateboarding remains viable as an industry within the United States, it will remain viable as an industry in other countries as well.  The United States is not just the birthplace of skateboarding; it is also its driving force in the world.  The American skateboarding industry is built on genuine interest and, while this might have declined, it remains significant.




Positive Trends in Skateboarding in the Last Twenty Years

Any discussion of the future of skateboarding, should begin with a look of the positive trends of the past.  In the last twenty years, we have seen skateboarding:

  • The rise of decent skate parks
  • Creation of clothes, shoes, and accessories specifically for skaters
  • Skateboarding moving everywhere, not just California, but all over the U.S. and in Europe
  • The presence of skate videos readily available on the Internet
  • Skating became cool to the public
  • Skateboarding has become more positive and democratic, and kinder – the environment

Coming back soon?

The Resiliency of Skateboarding

Skateboarding bounced back from a dive in the late 1980’s, so it’s resiliency proves it can thrive again.  There are significant signs that skateboarding will not only survive, but increase in popularity.

Emerging markets in Asia, Africa, and South America are likely to prove fertile grounds for future skate booms.  In major nations, such as Russia, India and Brazil, interest in skateboarding is far more stable and not yet showing signs of meaningful decline.

Additionally, there are ways to that those who love skateboarding can encourage and improve interest in the sport.

Show the benefits of skateboarding, among them:

  • Skateboarding provides participants with fun, adventure, and confidence.
  • Skateboarding rules are minimal and, thus, skateboarding allows self-expression.
  • Skateboarding builds individual self-confidence.

Interest in skateboarding can bounce back by encouraging young women to participate in the sport, offering more classes at skateboard parks, and continuing to increase the appeal of skateboarding clothing and accessories to those who are not participants in the sport.

There is a culture associated with skateboarding, one that has not always had a positive image.  It is important that going forward, all of us involved with the skateboarding industry create a universally positive image of the sport.

In August of 2016, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) voted unanimously to include skateboarding in the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo.  The emerging ”˜90s punk scene and the 1995 X-Games saved skateboarding in the ”˜90s – Will the Olympics be skateboarding’s “saving grace?”




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