Connecting to a Society Using 4 Wheels
Jack Brewin, 20, said, “There’s no limit to what you can do with a chunk of wood on 4 wheels”, once you lose the fear of falling it becomes a craving addiction. “When I finally pull off a trick, there’s literally no other feeling.”
Brewin, who is a student studying Music Production at Leeds College of Music, has been skating since the age of 14 – and quickly fell in love with the moorish sport after purchasing Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland on Playstation2. Performing elaborate tricks on a video game only made the temptation of buying a skateboard greater – though in reality, mastering them takes the discipline to get back on the board after falling.
Simple Self Expression
“I can’t really tell you why its such a craze at the moment, what I will say is – lads will be lads – if we someone puling off a sick trick, we’ll wanna try harder. It’s male genetics.”
Skateboarding has been a street sport for decades, with an appeal that reaches out to many demographics. It’s clear to see why skateboarding has become so popular over the coming years; the basic anatomy of a skateboard speaks for itself. All you really need is yourself and a board. There are no rules or regulations, and technically anyone can get out there and get on one. “It’s all about self expression” said Brewin as he prepares to enter a half pipe. “As weird as it sounds, you can just tell what sort of person you are through your skating – if you’re chilled and slow, it will show in your style. If you’re quick paced and fast, you’ll see it.” Skateboarding is considered an art form by certain standards, especially by Photographer Glen E. Friedman. If you’re comical, daring, or a perfectionist – it will come out in your skating, much like Music or Art will do.
Once a Skater, Always a Skater
On an average weekday, hundreds of students turned up to a sunny-side-up Hyde Park. The place was buzzing, from all ages and sizes, hipsters to jocks to moshers to geeks – “that’s the beauty of skating, it brings anyone together and no one gives a shit, can you say that about music?” said by Tim Clay, another avid skater who attends Leeds Met Uni. It raises a good question, why can people from all backgrounds find a common interest in skating yet music lovers still hold grudges over people who dislike their taste in music. It seems the skating population have it spot on. The positive vibe surrounding the park is warm and friendly, why wouldn’t anyone want to try this skateboarding business?
Although skating seems like all fun and games, if you’re willing to try you have to be fully aware that you’re going to get hurt, fact. It comes with the package. But what would skating be without the adrenaline aches? “Feeling the danger is part of the rush” Jack says whilst merely brushing off his bruises and scratches, “This is why skaters are respected so much, the danger involved with professional skating is intense – there’s no safety nets, no insurance – you’re just out there on your own, and that takes balls.”
Boys and Their Toys
Having a boyfriend who’s heavily in to skating means only one thing; if they own a games console, they’ll own a skating game. Since being at university, I’ve gained a big male friendship group. Therefore I’ve had to come to terms with the fact I’ll be watching a lot of Call of Duty and Fifa. When a friend brought round to the flat Skate 3, I leaped at the opportunity of playing on it. Anything but watching 3D men playing football and gunning Americans over headsets. I’d had enough; it was my time to try it out! After witnessing the moves of dozens of teenagers and students on Hyde Park, I fancied myself having a pop. After all, “anyone can try it”. So I did, and I loved it. Ollies, Nollies, Kickflips, Pop Shuvits, Forward Flips, Coffins, Backward Flips, 360s. The list is endless. It’s actually a lot of fun once you get the hang of it. I got the urge of wanting to perfect a trick over and over again, much like how the boys on the skate park described real skating. Obviously I can’t compare a game to the real deal, but it’s opened up that little window of opportunity of maybe some day wanting to get on a real skateboard. Though, my boyfriend will probably dump me from embarrassment.
Who knows, maybe we’ll all be riding hovering boards in 20 years.