The Skateboard Moms' Blog

A Blog by Women Skaters, for People Everywhere.

Risking It February 14, 2011

Filed under: extreme sports,injury,moms,mothers,skateboarding,Uncategorized,women — skateboardmoms @ 8:30 pm

by Patti

I knocked myself out the other day.  I was trying to drop in on a 13-foot vert ramp.  I have no memory of what happened, and there’s no video.  There’s only one picture of my unsuccessful drop, taken milliseconds after I put my front foot on the bolts.  It’s clear from the photo that things had already gone terribly wrong. 

Fortunately, it wasn’t serious.  I have a mild concussion and I tore a muscle in my shoulder.  I’m feeling better every day, and I’m already back on my skateboard.   

I’ve been lucky.  I’ve been skateboarding for almost five years now with only minor injuries.   Wearing my helmet and pads helps keep injuries to a minimum.  But injury is an unavoidable part of skateboarding.  Everyone pays the piper sooner or later.

For me, it’s a worthwhile risk because I love to learn.  It’s thrilling when a new skill finally reveals its secrets.  But learning is a trial-and-error process.  Nothing comes to me for free, and I have to experiment a lot.   That means I fall a lot.  It’s the price of understanding.

There are other reasons why I risk it.  Skateboarding forces me to examine my own beliefs about what I’m capable of.  I’m doing things today on a skateboard that I never thought I’d be able to do when I began.  I’ve learned that the limits of my ability are governed chiefly by my own fears.   When I can get past the fear, the possibilities seem endless.

I also enjoy challenging other people’s perceptions of what I’m capable of.  The skater dudes’ faces light up when they see me grind pool coping for the first time.  Their definition of “skater” has just expanded to include old ladies!  I hope the moms and dads watching from the sidelines rethink their own abilities when they see me trying something new.

And there’s this:  Injuries aren’t fun, but the process of coming back from an injury can be very rewarding.  That’s when you find out what you’re really made of.  It takes determination, patience, persistence and focus.  Those traits are useful in all areas of life.

Truth is, I do lots of risky things in a day.  If I wanted to be as cautious as possible, I’d stop driving.  Being in a car is, by all accounts, the most dangerous thing a person can do.  I’d also stop riding my bike, walking in snow and showering too. 

Who am I kidding?  I’d be bored (and smelly).  And I’d be ashamed of letting my fear get the best of me.

Skateboarding makes me happy, and I feel most alive when I’m doing it.  That’s reason enough to risk it.

Skatemom Patti, back on the horse after two weeks of recuperation.

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21 Responses to “Risking It”

  1. Glenda maier Says:

    I love what you wrote because you spoke for me like I haven’t been able to! I would love to be able to post your message on my facebook page because I want others to see why I love skateboarding enough to want to get back on it again (albeit terrified) after breaking my leg in a bad way last year, of all days, on April Fool’s day. I just got on a snowboard this weekend and am ready to try a round on the skateboard. Thanks for giving me a needed kick in the butt.

    Like

  2. Claudia Says:

    Patti, that’s the best blog ever. Ever! Especially the perception challenging part, but the whole thing – you nailed it.

    BTW, once my dad called and told me not to snowboard because he saw a lady that was killed in a bad fall. I told him to stop driving because I have saw a hundred dads being killed in bad accidents.

    Like

  3. Bern Says:

    Great Post! Keep it up.

    Like

  4. Wrex Cook Says:

    Killer blog! Ha!!!!!

    Like

  5. jered Says:

    Nice post. In addition to challenging what you think is possible I think there is a HUGE value in the slams and falls of skateboarding. There is a very tangible risk/reward factor. Nothing comes for free on the skateboard, every actions builds and you land the trick or you fall. I’ve always used this in life to my benefit. Sometimes I slam, other times I land life clean, either way I learn something important!

    Also food for thought is how skateboarding teaches you to be in the moment. If you are too far ahead (what is for dinner, gosh I’m thirsty, what trick am I doing two walls from now, etc) the skateboard will remind you. If you get on the board with a heavy head full of frustrations and concerns the skateboard will tell you. Thinking about the past – the skateboard will tell you. If you’re really on your board you are 100% in the moment and it is always amazing. The cool part is learning to find that spot where you are 100% present on your board and then bringing that to the rest of your life!!

    Enough of the woo woo deep stuff – go skate (once it stops raining).

    Like

  6. belkins10 Says:

    My son is i 2nd grade and wants to go to the skatepark for the first time. I’m kinda nervous. Should I be? I have a video of his skills on YOUTUBE. He’s just getting started. But his tricks look cool in slow mo. LOL, doesn’t EVERYTHING look cool in slowmo? LOL. Check it out >> http://bit.ly/edxQlg

    Like

  7. Such a great post!

    Like

  8. Rob Roberts Says:

    skateboard risks will always be there.

    Like

  9. wbkook Says:

    great blog post. Really like reading most every post you put up….

    Like

  10. that’s so impressive! haha i wish i could get my mom to come to the skate park with me . . .

    Like

  11. Andrea G Says:

    Hey cool moms of the world! Since the discussion of injuries and getting knocked out is a frequent one, I just wanted to mention that I’m trying to spread the word about a web chat going on next Tuesday about “Concussions and Sports Injuries”. Here’s the page for more information and we’d love help promoting it so more people can protect their noggins! Thanks! 🙂 http://www.northshore.org/communityandevents/default.aspx

    Like

  12. Anonymous Says:

    Seriously Patti, that is exactly how it feels! Thank you for writing the words that could have come from my brain, or any of the other skater chicks out there. I can’t do anything but smile. 😀 You rock!!!

    Like

  13. Hi Patti! I had such a huge day last week, I finally learned to pump myself around the bowl and get serious motion! It was great feeling “stuck” to the wall and actually continuing my run… till I slipped and now have a cast on my right foot for 6 weeks. Yeah it sucks. But that day the rewards were so major I can’t wait to get back on my board. I really relate to what you wrote, thank you for sharing. Everybody has been “told you so” in essence. But I’ve had so many bad things happen on accident doing stuff I don’t love half as much -so what’s this got on it? Nothing really.

    Like

  14. Raven Says:

    All pain is taken away when you land a trick.

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  15. In skateboarding risk is always there…. for new skates collection visit roller skate usa

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