The sport of skating can offer so many benefits to those who are willing to attempt it. Like many other mostly individual sports (golf, tennis, etc.) it can teach us a myriad of things about life, our community, and ourselves. Today we bring you ten of our favorite life lessons from skating!
1. Taking Risks – When you picture a skater in your mind are they engaging in any of these risky behaviors: skating down enormous flights of stairs, grinding on park benches, perhaps using their younger siblings as jumping obstacles? They probably are! And while that can seem frightening and dangerous, risk-taking is an ART that is necessary for success in our society. You can’t go from having the next big idea to running a Fortune 500 company without learning to take and manage risks. And skaters are learning and perfecting this skill from the moment they begin. Just daring to place both feet on a single rolling piece of wood is a risk for many! From there we learn how to turn, jump, ollie, kickflip and so much more.
2. Safety – Hand in hand with risk-taking comes this necessary life skill. While many of the physical risks of skating can seem huge, it’s easy to mitigate them with gear (helmets, pads, etc.) and proper preparation. While injury can happen, skating is physically one of the safest sports out there! No one is repeatedly hitting you in the head like a football player, and there is no risk of a fastball to the face like in baseball. And while it might be riskier than the chess club, the skater is in control of his or her own risk. The control allows a skater to be as safe as they want to be. To be extra safe while skating at night, we always recommend Board Blazers to help light the way!
3. Exercise – Skating is incredibly physically demanding, while simultaneously being great fun! It’s one of those sports where you can exercise without even realizing what a sweat you’ve built up. The mental and physical benefits of exercise are well proven, and we couldn’t possibly list them all here, but among them are a longer lifespan, lower blood pressure, better mental health and relationships with family and peers. Skating can be just as beneficial as exercise as any other sport!
4. Ingenuity – The world is a skater’s playground. “Could I skate that?” is a familiar refrain for skaters. While other sports often take place on a predetermined court or field, any place can be a new challenge for skaters. It takes creativity and imagination to keep skating exciting and fresh. Did you catch our post about where to skate without a skate park? Read it here!
5. Grit – There are so many names for this: follow through, stick-to-it-iveness, staying the course… Grit is one of the least understood but most valuable traits in our culture, and real skaters have it in spades. All skaters will tell you that “inborn talent” is a total myth. Do you want to be a great skater? Get out and work your butt off. It takes time, after time, after time, after time (etc.) to land and then perfect just ONE skill. Skaters know it’s all about the journey and the effort you give to the sport. Skaters are some of the most dedicated people out there.
6. Respect – While skating culture can get a bad rap for being irreverent, skaters know that respect is an essential part of skating culture. You have to respect the board, respect your self and your limitations, respect other skaters, respect property, and maybe most importantly, respect gravity! While skaters do maintain tons of control in their sport, there are still outside forces for which they have to learn deference.
7. Recovery – Everyone wipes out; it’s part of skating. And while it can be tempting to walk away after repeated failures, skaters know that you’re always just one solid try away from landing that next trick! You’ll never find anyone as committed to perfection as a skater, and that requires getting up off of the ground after you flop for the 10th time. If you fall 10 times, you must get up 11 times.
8. Passion – Skaters develop a love for the board, for how it rides under your feet, for that feeling of hang time, for the rush of finally landing that trick… And developing a genuine love for something outside of yourself sets you up for success in just about every other arena of life. Be it personal relationships, or business skills, your best hope at success is putting your passion behind whatever you do.
9. Lifetime Hobby – When is the best time to start skating? NOW! You can begin to skate at literally almost any age (We can prove it to you here!). Kids can skate as soon as they walk, and Tony Hawk is famously quoted as saying, “I won’t quit skating until I am physically unable.” Think you’re too young or too old to skate? Think again!
10. FUN! – Skaters, OF COURSE, take their sport very seriously. But they have a ton of fun and loads of laughter while they’re at it. Skating is exciting, risky, and challenging, but at the end of the day, it’s a BLAST.
There’s so much to learn from this crazy great sport we love. And while we would never have time to tell all of the great life lessons from skating, we hope we covered a few that you love. Have we missed any? Hit us up on Instagram at @BoardBlazers and let us know!
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