Is Skateboarding A Sport?

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Skateboard history

Skateboarding started sometime in the late 1950s, with surf dudes wanting to practice wave surfing on land. They placed wheels under their surfboards and the first skateboards were born. This was not yet called skateboarding but sidewalk surfing. Of course, it was soon decided who was the fastest, who could best slalom and so on. These were not really competitions yet but were more for the hobby.
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The first skateboard competitions

The surfboards were soon replaced by wooden boards with roller skate trucks and wheels. This made the skateboards a lot more agile. The first competition was organized in 1963 in California, the competition included freestyle, some kind of dancing on wheels and downhill slalom skateboarding.

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Skateboard popularity

Until the mid-1970s, skateboarding was practiced by a limited number of people because you couldn't do much on the skateboards at the time and because it was considered dangerous. In the mid 70's the boards were equipped with polyurethane wheels and the tail was extended to create a "kicktail". This made the skateboards more agile and a lot faster. Skateboarding became more and more popular thanks to skateboard magazines and riders like Stacey Peralta and Tony Alva. In 1976, the first skate park was built in Florida. Soon more and more skate parks appeared in America and the rest of the world. Skateboarders also started to skate in empty pools. The "U" shape of the pools lead to new tricks in skateboard land, halfpipe and vert skateboarding was born and the popularity grew.

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The X Games

With the arrival of the skate parks, competitions were soon organized by local skate shops, skate brands, skateboard magazines, and so on. These were often isolated, local events. In 1995 the first x-games were organized in Newport Rhode Island. The main sponsor of this competition was ESPN, which gave the x games ample attention on television. This resulted in even more popularity for the skateboard sport.

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Skateboarding is a sport

Yes skateboarding is a sport. In addition to the x games, there are now many competitions such as the Dew Tour, Tampa pro, etc. and events such as European skateboarding championship and the World skateboarding championship.

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Skateboarding an Olympic sport

The idea was that skateboarding by 2020 would become an Olympic sport at the summer games in Tokyo. With both street and bowl events for men and women. Unfortunately the games were canceled because the corona virus got in the way of the games.

Skateboarding more than a sport

But skateboarding is more than just a sport. Riding around on a skateboard is not that difficult of course, but as soon as you start learning tricks you will find out that skateboarding is very difficult. After landing a trick you are therefore euphoric. Every skateboarder knows how difficult skateboarding is and this creates a bond. By wearing the same clothes, listening to the same music, etc., the skateboard subculture was born. Skateboarding is addictive and more of a way of living than a sport.


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