The Skateboard Moms' Blog

A Blog by Women Skaters, for People Everywhere.

Going to the Skatepark Alone for the First Time Can Be Scary September 1, 2013

Filed under: extreme sports,moms,mothers,skateboarding,women — skateboardmoms @ 1:06 am
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I’m skating tomorrow, and I’ve told friends where I’ll be. I hope some of them will show up and skate with me, but no one has said they’ll be there for sure.

That doesn’t concern me now, but I can remember a time when the thought of showing up at a park on my own terrified me. On my first trip to a skatepark, I watched through the fence. I was simply too afraid to go in. My heart was racing. The park looked challenging, but the thing that really freaked me out was the hoards of teen-aged skateboarders that ruled the park. The skaters looked really aggressive to me, as a beginner. They skated fast and furious, they took hard slams, and their boards sometimes flew out of control. Some were smoking, they were sweaty and dirty, and some swore and threw their boards as they missed a trick for the hundredth time. They seemed utterly fierce from my vantage point outside the fence. I imagined it was possible that some wouldn’t appreciate the fact that I was there to skate, and might even try to “teach me a lesson.”

To ease my nerves, I hired a 16-year-old neighbor to give me a lesson at the park. None of my fears turned out to be true. The other skaters either ignored me during my lesson, or complimented me as I rolled up and down banks for the first time.

Since that time, I’ve skated at hundreds of parks across the nation, and I’ve never felt unwelcome. Most people I meet are very friendly, and stoked to see another skater at the park. They tap their boards on coping as a sign of respect when I make my trick, as I do for them. If you ask, they are usually happy to show you a line, or to offer a trick tip. The kids follow me around and tell me they wish their moms would skate!

So, I won’t be upset if I see only strangers when I show up at the park tomorrow. I’ll session the bowl and, before you know it, I’ll have made a couple more friends.

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Patti skating the park in Heber City, Utah

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27 Responses to “Going to the Skatepark Alone for the First Time Can Be Scary”

  1. Kate Andrews Says:

    I think you’re the first skateboarding mom iive seen!

    Like

  2. Jennifer Says:

    Wait! Are you from Utah? I’m a skateboarding mom and I live in Utah! I would love to know of more moms from utah that skate!!!! email me! This article rang true for me. That was me 7 months ago. Word for word. Including the terrified feeling and everything. Thanks for this article!!

    Like

  3. Anonymous Says:

    Your story is truly inspiring to me. I myself am a mom. I have three kids and I’m 35 yrs. old. My son just turned 11yrs. about three weeks ago and he got his first skateboard. Growing up I always hung with the boys, skateboarding was my love. After seeing my son skate at the skatepark, here in Virginia Beach, I started missing it. I started riding my sons board home from the bus stop and after a few times, was hooked. Now my sons friends think I’m the cool mom, who wants to skateboard. I, since then have bought my own board and have been to the skate park twice. Made it down a small ramp a couple times successfully, but others have successfully fallen on my backside, thinking I’m too old for this. Any tips on balance going down ramps and being the only mom at the skatepark?

    Like

    • Tina Says:

      I just turned 35 and started skateboarding with my 2 boys about a month and a half ago. Another skateboarding mom gave me the courage to do something I’ve always wanted to do. This website played a huge roll in giving me courage as well. Most of the time, I’m the only skate mom at the park too. And every time I have to find the courage to get on my board. But once I’m up, I’m having a blast and not caring anymore.

      Here’s a tip for ramps …
      Lean forward. You’ll feel like you want to go backwards, but stay leaning forward. It might help to lean your front shoulder down and bend your knees. If you ever feel wobbly, bend your knees to get your balance back. Hope this helps. Have fun skating.

      Like

  4. I agree very cool never knew there were moms who skate !!

    Like

  5. Another skateboarding woman (who happens to be a mom) Says:

    I’ve been skateboarding since as long as I can remember. Being a kid in southern California in the 1970s everybody (boys and girls of all ages) spent their time after school finding the steepest hill we could. I went to the library on my skateboard, I got to class in college on my skateboard at UC Santa Cruz, and when I got married I got some time to myself skateboarding the neighborhood. It’s the most peaceful feeling. When my kids were babies they rode with me (both of us seated on the board) from before they were 1 year old. By age 4 they had their own and we all went out together. No skateparks – just finding a quiet culdesac or school parking lot on the weekends and staying out there for hours. I have a longboard now too, but my favorite is still my little 1970s style hotdog boards so I can turn quickly – no tricks, just speed and getting some breeze in my hair. My son is now in college and I went out into the parking lot the other day and just rode by myself like I used to as a kid. I know I probably look strange to the neighbors, especially now that I live in the South, but the nicest part of being in my 40s is I really don’t care what people think anymore.

    Like

  6. Cheers, Nice to see a Mum Skateboarding, be proud of yourself.

    Like

  7. Super Mum, Im proud of you.

    Like

  8. Cecilia Says:

    Oh what a feeling to read you text! Tears and warmth in the recognition. I started a year ago, on the other side of the earth and the experience is so aline. However it took me six months to be accepted at the park. Both young and old men were really shy. I was the only woman, not only the only OLD woman. Are you stll blogging? It would mean a lot to me to be i. Contact with you! Please visit my new blog. Actually a very similar theme as yours 🙂
    http://mutterskate.tumblr.com

    Like

  9. skatejapan Says:

    Skateboarding Moms! Love seeing your posts! If you get a chance, check out our blog from skateboarding Japan:
    https://skateboardingjapan.wordpress.com/2014/05/31/j-grant-brittain-skateboarding-photographer/

    Like

  10. rebeca Says:

    You’re an inspiration. I’m 23 years old, look about 20, and was hesitant about starting skating out of embarassment. Fuck people. Roller derby is socially acceptable for girls my age and is just as risky and nobody gives a fuck. Im gonna be called ridicule but whatever..u only live once!

    Like

  11. Levy Says:

    Wow! You’re one of the coolest skaters I’ve seen! I’m amazed by your courage and motivation to skate even though you’re already a mom. I salute you and I really wished I had also a mom like you 🙂

    Like

  12. I have never ever heard about this and as a fellow skater I tap my board to you.

    Remembering the first time going to a skatepark was almost the same experience for me. I went with a couple of friends luckily and was able to learn a thing or two; I wanted to go all the time after that but my friends didn’t want to. I learned that skaters will let you skate if you hold your ground. If it’s your turn to go and you back out then it will be harder than ever to get another go at it. Once you take that first run and try something new or land a couple of tricks that you know, the skaters either recognize you as a one of them or simply just don’t notice you (which is easier when you’re first beginning).

    I made a lot of friends through skateboarding and continue to do so today. It’s really given me a great perspective on life and to always give people a chance and be friendly. Really glad to see a mom who isn’t against skaters and rather encourages others to change their perspective on skaters.

    Like

  13. raykorupt Says:

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    Like

  14. jaimme Says:

    Contemplating getting back on my board, 18 years and three babies later. At 38, going to a skatepark alone is scarier than giving a speech in front of hundreds of people! I would love to connect with other skating moms here in ME…but will brave this first time on my own thanks to your support! Hope to see some new posts soon!

    Like

  15. just keep trying. its all for the fun

    Like

  16. El Hefe Says:

    Is there an equivalent somewhere for dads? Love that blog! Keep up the good work!

    Like

    • Cyndi Says:

      The dad groups are more common than the moms. Go to the skate parks early when the parents take their kids. Like 6-630 am. That’s when I meet lots of dads with their kids.

      Like

  17. Cyndi Says:

    Hi Patti, this was a very inspiring blog. Im mid 40’s and I take my son to the skate park “ALL” the time. I love watching but in my heart I can feel the serenity of riding those bowls. I feel like inside me I would be good. I am a cruiser skater but I sure would like to ride those concrete bowls and not feel stupid out there. I would love to have a few skater moms in my area to gather with. I don’t know anyone who would though. I know a lot of dads that go and hang with their kids and I just sit there watching or taking pictures. So far every time I’ve gotten to the skate park early (I’m talking like 5:45am) someone beats us there. One time a few teenagers were sleeping in the bowls. Gee talk about die hard skaters. I’m learning moves from my 11 year old in my garage but I really want to get out there. I wish I could just push pass the embarrassing feeling and just bite the bullet and do it. Why are we so fearful of what others think as humans. This is lame! I should really be thankful for my son who is not embarrassed to hang out with me He’s the sweetest!! I am on the verge of taking a few skating lessons and making that call but I would still have to be seen in public at the skate park. I would love to meet some moms in my area who skate. Any Oceanside, California moms out there??

    Like

    • Cyndi Says:

      Woops, here’s my updated email.
      I’m traveling through Utah in the next few weeks and hitting some skate parks along the way to Colorado. Would be kind of cool to meet you if it’s on my way. Anyways, thank you for the inspiration!!

      Like

  18. Cyndi Says:

    Ok today was the day. After weeks and months of my skateboard gear in the car as I take my boy and his buddies to the skate park. Mine finally got out today. Got here early at 6:45. Only one kid here but this kid is always here. I decided after reading this post yesterday that I just had to get over this first time and then day one would be over. I’m so happy you have no idea how this has helped me!! I really was worried about norhing. As the morning went on more skaters arrived and they just ignored me. It was great. Not in a rude way but like acceptable. One guy asked to borrow my board and he rode it for a while. He said it was a sweet ride that had a lot of pop to it. This skatepark I’m at is called Alex Skatepark in Oceanside (“Prince”) and it’s a pretty good park. It has a long run and lots of separate bowls and hind boxes. One of the skater dads I know happen to show up today too and he encouraged me! He was high surprised by his expression to see me actually skating today. It’s been a long time waiting for me to get this courage. My smile today will last all day!! I love this freedom feeling!!

    Like

    • Cyndi Says:

      Woops I have lots of typing errors but I’m still here at the park and excited!! Maybe one day soon I can concour those grind boxes and the bowls. One step at a time.😏

      Like

    • skateboardmoms Says:

      Congrats on taking that huge first step Cindi! Hope to see you out at the park someday.

      Patti

      Like

  19. Cyndi Says:

    Ok, here I am again. I skated for like almost a week straight and my legs are feeling the burn big time! I’ve lost some weight from this intense workout and I feel great! I’ve conquered trying the bowls and am working hard at getting better and faster! Working on my fakies and pumping. I m feeling pretty comfortable now and want to try dropping in soon. I’ve recruited another mom girlfriend and she’s hooked too? What an amazing feeling of freedom I have! It’s crazy how fast I’m learning when I get some clear instruction from people. It’s the little tips that make “all” the difference. I’m so excited that I wake up every morning wanting to go but have realized it’s so important to prioritize my week and remind myself I’m not a kid in summer time. I’m a working mom with responsibility. Lol… Trying to stay better focused on work and so I can reward myself with skate time when appropriate. Hasn’t been easy, I bust out of my work bubble a lot! Oh well, you only live once… Enjoy it! Thx ladies for all your inspiration!

    Like


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