Learning & skateboarding

I missed skating today, as spent most of this  ‘sunny would have been perfect weather to skate’ Saturday indoors teaching kids Finnish language and culture. Happy now to have a blog – a perfect place to do something skateboard related even couldn’t hop on board today. The theme of the day was educational, so will post a list what is my goal in 2017 to achieve with skateboarding.

First something about what I already can do. I mostly skate in skateparks and have developed an obsession on pool / bowl skating. Actually, I am dreaming to become a female Pedro Barros; or at least it helps me sometimes when skating that I imagine I am Pedro Barros, as cool, fast and fearless. All is allowed in love and skateboarding 🙂 I am pretty good with backside carves (that’s when one rides a ‘corner’ of bowl back facing the wall side), but it depends on the bowl, and the new place is always a struggle. Me saying I am pretty good means I feel good, but it looks slow and not very cool.  I can not drop, so it has to be a pool / bowl where I am able to have a speed some other way. I love backside carving, so mostly I am just repeating doing that. I am in the process of learning the frontside carving – that I call pedro or pedroing (it’s just my habit to give own names to things), and can do it somehow if the bowl is easy.

My tick-tacking is poor, but I manage it somehow. Should practice more.

I am okay with fakie turn (on flat). I am ashamed that after this time I still suck with kick-turns. That is something I am determined to practise now everytime when on wheels. After a long-ish pause, I am doing it on miniramp. Yes on miniramp I can ‘swing’ back and forth, but still afraid going to the highest.

I ride things down and up. Pyramids, banks, pumps – it depends on a day how high or fast. Sometimes I am scared of the smallest ones, sometimes I can go SCARY ones with no problem. I know I can do it, my balance is okay. It is just fear that makes me jump off. Annoying.

Another shame is my pushing, the basic skill I am not that great. Well, I’ve been focusing more on taking speed in the bowl, but now with different wheels pushing, as well pumping speed on corners, will be on my list.

Here’s the list dude and me made after new year’s eve. The pink scribble say what I will try to master by the end of 2017.

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Pink is mine obvs, blue dude’s.

After making this list, I discovered old school 1970’s skateboard surfing tricks, and I am so adding those to this list. Not too techincal, not too high or fast – so it is something I should be able to learn. I am dreaming that one day it will be my skateboard style to show off 🙂 Surely will at least write more about that soon.

Speaking about education and showing off, allow me to share this pic from last summer. My PhD graduation took place in Queen Elizabeth Hall (London) just above the famous Southbank skatepark, and I just couldn’t resist sneaking out and asking some skateboarder to borrow his board and to take this snapshot (thank you so much anonymous London skater).

One day I will add videos here, so you’ll see not only read or see still pics of what’s going on. I just need to learn more about blogging and all settings here. Hmm, seems like learning really is a lifelong process.

Also, if you’ll wish me to explain more what the skateboarding terms means, I am happy to. I promise will use the proper names of them.

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Was wearing high heels on that day, and would have been too bad idea to jump on skateboard with those…

 

Transformation of Chris Cole Zero P2 to be Crazy Skate Lady’s dream drive

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After hard work of removing the old griptape…
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…to make space for this.
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It all started with these trucks…
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…and here I am ready to have a first ride on my ‘over the top cat board’ in Antwerpen Skatepark Park Spoor Noord.

I got my first skateboard when was totally new in skateboarding.  I just walked into to the skateshop in Paris where was staying at the time and explained I would like to buy  a board. My first try of skateboarding took place in Helsinki, Finland (that’s where I come from)  with the board that was nicknamed as a ‘shopping bag’ of the skateboarder who owned it, cause it had soft wide wheels, and was meant more for cruising  (or going to grocery shop) than for doing tricks. As a beginner that felt safer for me than a ‘proper’ skateboard, so in skateshop I explained, I’d like to have a skateboard with cruiser set-up, and that’s what I got. You can see it in my header image – the Girl-board with Skid Row sticker.

Of course I fell love with it, because I fell in love with skateboarding. Soft wheels indeed made me feel safer whilst doing my first skate attempts on my own at a parking lot near of my flat in Brussels (that’s where I moved and at the moment am). The minus side of those wheels is that they don’t encourage me to learn to push or pump speed, as they wheel so easily anyway. I am also convinced I would learn better to do kick-turns and other things with the harder wheels, but I am aware that is just an excuse 🙂

No space for those excuses anymore, as you saw already: I have a lovely unique cat skateboard now. It started when I got kitten trucks (I wanted to have them for long!) as a present. Then the dude, who’s anyway helping me a LOT with skating (heh you didn’t think it was me doing the hard work of getting rid of the old griptape), gave one of his old boards, as well as wheels, to get pimped (as cheaply as possible) to be my new board. The board is (well, was) very masculine Chris Cole Zero P2 board with pic of gun and blood and something stupid – if you’ll ask me. After sandpapering, spraycanning, getting and gluing some stickers & griptape on it, I got the perfect board for me. So terrible it is terrific!

I made a first try with it on the other evening and despite of my fear of ‘it will take ages to learn to skate with different board’, it went well. I do need to adapt to it, as it always is with new things, but I already was more aware of how to use my body – that I need to use it more to get things done. Skateboarding definitely isn’t just wheels taking you somewhere.

And yes skateboarding also is not about the graphics on your board. Still I am sure it psychologically helps to have a board that just generally makes you feel good. It’s good to be silly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hello world of blogging

 

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New skateboard* and time for this crazy cat lady to transform herself into the crazy skate lady, and to move my skate stories from skate parks and streets also into the world of blogging.

I have been skating now bit more than 1,5 years. Starting when 40, being afraid of heights and speed keeps me probably always on a level of a beginner. At least for the outside world (and for me too if I happen to watch a video of my skate sessions!). Still I feel I have learned so much, not only about skating, but also how to face my fears, to be comfortable outside of my usual comfort zone. I have met wonderful new people I would unlikely have never met otherwise (including my boyfriend, who’s known as a dude in my writings). I have visited tons of new places in a search of good skate spot. With skateboarder’s eyes I have seen familiar spaces in a new light.

All those mentioned above will be the content of Crazy Skate Lady blog. Surely I will write about other things too. The style of my writing is very personal, so it is inevitably this blog will gather bits and pieces from other parts of my life as well. Actually I am already looking forward to write about how I think dance, running and skateboarding (all three being my passions) have a lot in common. And if skateboarding is a lifestyle, so can be said about  my job (I am a visual artist). And I lead pretty nomad life carrying a skate along, so…

It comes without saying a woman in her 40’s  on a skateboard is quite rare creature. My point of view for many of my posts will come from that fact. It is not that I necessarily like it to be so, on the contrary: I wish this blog reveals some of the presumptions such as  ‘who can skate’ or  ‘what skateboarding is’ or ‘what is suitable for a grown up (woman) to do’.

I have learned that most of the skateboarders give you respect, if you just keep trying &  doing something you enjoy – no matter of your skills or age. I think that is something to respect of.

* new for me, pimped from dude’s old one, more about that in next post.