15 Jun HOW COVID-19 INSPIRED A GENERATION OF NEW SKATEBOARDERS
For skating culture, the Covid-19 pandemic has seen a massive rise in people taking up a board and learning the craft.
Here, Onda Skate discusses how the pandemic has inspired a whole new generation of new skateboarders:
The skateboarding industry was worth $1.9 Billion in 2018 and it is now experiencing its biggest boom since the early 2000s. As a result of the Covid lockdowns, kids emptied the shelves of every local skate shop and ex-skaters reached under their beds for their dusty old skateboard.
The boom came with skateboarding providing one of the safest past times in an environment that’s usually so open during a time in which people were staying at home. A free, outdoor activity suddenly became the go-to for people looking to keep their bodies and minds occupied during the lockdown/social-distancing periods.
If you visit any skatepark today, you’ll hear the same story from most of the skaters. “I started during lockdown”. And these skaters are not quitting either. Skateboarding has a very steep learning curve, so it takes a lot of dedicated practice to learn even the most basic tricks. With that said there is a wealth of knowledge on the internet now that previous generations were not afforded. If you want to see a step-by-step tutorial on how to ollie, or even see Tony Hawk himself teach you how to kickflip then you need look no further than on YouTube.
You might be wondering isn’t skateboarding synonymous with drug use and bad behaviour. In truth, skateboarding does have its routes as a counter-culture sport, and it took many years for people to even recognise it as a sport. Today that is not so. Skateboarding was scheduled to feature in the Tokyo Olympic games for the very first time, with the hope that we will get to see the top skaters of the world compete this year. The Olympics are for athletes and skateboarding takes real athleticism.
If you speak to any skate shop, skateboard distributor or brand you will learn fast how hard it is to get stock right now. Ports are still clogged up from the PPE gold rush at the beginning of the pandemic and production problems have meant that certain brands and decks are getting harder to get hold of.
With this growth in skateboarding, we’re seeing several brands starting out. One of these brands is Onda Skateboards who have taken a slightly cheeky and novel approach to their graphics by featuring a skull wearing a facemask. Perhaps a sign of the times or just a way to stay current and stand out. One thing remains certain, skateboarding is back, and it’s definitely a good thing.