Is Skateboarding a Waste of Time? The True Value of Skateboarding

Skateboarding: A waste of time, or a life-long adventure? We're debunking myths, exploring benefits, all while shredding misconceptions.

Skateboarding, often seen as a rebellious pastime, is much more than just tricks and boards. For many, it’s a way of life, a form of expression, and a tool for building resilience and discipline. But is skateboarding truly a waste of time, or is it a misunderstood art and sport? Join me as we explore everything from the paths carved by professional skaters to those who find pure joy in the shred.

Why is skateboarding often misunderstood?

Nearly everyone, from your concerned folks to that random, disgruntled passerby, attempts to belittle your passion for boarding. I’ve had countless dialogues highlighting how the chances of turning pro in this game are minuscule.

Image of a skater riding a skateboard on a ramp. Source: pexels
Image of a skater riding a skateboard on a ramp. Source: pexels

Sure, the field may seem selective, given only a handful of the truly dedicated ones reach the peak (we’re talking a literal few). But that isn’t the full narrative. This notion based on pure statistics omits the gravity-defying leaps in personal growth, resilience, and the sense of brotherhood that this street art cultivates.

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My favorite complete skateboard (at the moment):

Enjoi Whitey Panda Complete Skateboard

Is skateboarding a waste of time? The true value of skateboarding | 61vn95mf7ql. Ac sl1184 | skateboard salad
My favorite complete skateboard (at the moment):

Enjoi Whitey Panda Complete Skateboard

I had my board stolen a few years ago and was forced to quickly replace it with a complete. I got one with an Enjoi deck and loved it so much that I still buy the Whitey Panda deck each time I need a new deck. This complete with budget-friendly, beginner-friendly parts, but I still swear by it.

How profitable is the skateboarding industry?

Time to pop an ollie over to the drier side of things ‒ the numbers. Though the odds of one making millions from skateboarding are arguably slim, they aren’t nonexistent. According to some reports, there are likely more than a hundred skaters out there with a net worth crossing the $1 million milestone.

And that estimate brushes over certain ‘fade’ skaters like Stevie Williams and Jamie Foy, indicating that the tally could be substantially higher. Each shredding their way to a hefty net worth through the industry, which itself stands tall at a staggering worth of nearly $6.5 billion. Talk about making cash while having a blast – solid choice, right?

Can skateboarding take you down dark alleys?

Life as we know it always runs on a two-way street. And sometimes, in the skateboarding sphere, the challenging lane reeks of underlying issues you’d prefer ducking. Case in point ‒ Antwuan Dixon’s gripping struggle with substance abuse. While many may blame skateboarding for attracting a ‘bad crowd,’ the reality is quite the opposite.

“Thanks to skateboarding, he found an outlet for his emotions and, more importantly, a community that gave him a reel of second chances.”

To a large extent, Dixon’s struggle was fueled not by boarding but by personal tribulations outside of the skate parks. Thanks to skateboarding, he found an outlet for his emotions and, more importantly, a community that gave him a reel of second chances. His journey can be an enlightening peek into the flip side of skateboarding, as captured by Vice.

Does skateboarding merely serve as a hobby?

It does! Much like the lows it can hit, skateboarding also operates in balanced moderation. So while some may soar to professional stardom and others might spiral, the majority finds their footing in the ‘chill-zone.’ We’re talking those shredders who love the ride, but without the ambition of turning pro.

And that’s no sad story ‒ pretty much a life spent balancing work and play, a juggle many yearn to perfect. Be it breaking a sweat after work or connecting with other amateurs over the thrill of landing a sick trick, skateboarding pays them back with a sense of satisfaction unmatched.

What unconventional paths can skateboarding lead to?

Take my sweat and wheel grit-encrusted word for it. Skateboarding can lead you down less traversed paths too. Sure, it’s no longer the early days where exclusive filming was a rare treasure, but in the skateboarding galaxy, quality skating filmers still hold their space.

Image of a skater doing a skateboard grind trick in a skatepark. Source: pexels
Image of a skater doing a skateboard grind trick in a skatepark. Source: pexels

Proving that skateboarding isn’t simply about riding a board, it can be your VIP pass into other creative fields, often intertwined with the sport. This turns the ‘waste-of-time’ argument on its head, as skating evolves into a medium for honing diversified skills.

My perspective

From my relatively fresh vantage point, it seems a lack of understanding gives birth to most of the skewed opinion about skateboarding. Most see it as a high-risk, low-reward hobby that’s unlikely to put you at a fancy desk job or help you climb the corporate ladder. But, look closer and you’ll likely see a different picture.

“Skateboarding is misconstrued as a time-suck but trust me, from helping you draw your very own success story, across the spectrum from a hobby to a career, to plugging you into a community that’s got your back — it gives you tenfold the time you invest in it.”

Drawing from personal experience and the stories of others, it’s clear to me that skateboarding, while it may appear unconventional, provides numerous benefits, including discipline, resilience, and camaraderie. And hey, who said success only wears the face of corp jobs and big bucks? More on my skateboarding explorations here.

If you are a visual learner, check out the video below from YouTube.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Here you’ll find answers to some common skateboarding queries regularly tossed my way. This section is sculpted to address those intriguing questions that keep popping up in your head, help solve dilemmas, and further encourage the skateboarding enthusiasts in you.

Can I get rich from skateboarding?

While some professional skateboarders have knocked out impressive statures, making millions, these represent a small fraction in the grand scheme. However, even if you don’t get astronomically rich, there’s still potential to earn a decent living in the booming $6.5 billion industry, especially if you explore diversified creations intertwining with it. For a grip onto the financials, check out our dig into the subject here.

How can skateboarding help me in life?

Skateboarding carries a slew of benefits beyond flipping tricks. It sharpens your physical agility and body coordination and can ’become a great outlet for creativity and self-expression. And on top of the adrenaline rush, there’s the community aspect where you build friendships, share a common passion, and maybe even find mentors.

Will I get injured often if I choose to skateboard professionally?

The road to professional skateboarding can be fraught with occasional harm – scrapes, sprains, the occasional broken bone, and potential future joint pains. However, this isn’t always a given. Proper training, practice, and above all, investing in appropriate safety gear can significantly lower the risk of injuries.

Can skateboarding lead to drug abuse?

While there have been instances where skaters have struggled with substance abuse, attributing the issue to skateboarding would be a misstep. As seen in numerous cases like Antoine Dixon’s story, these issues often stem from troubles beyond the skate terrain rather than the sport itself. Skateboarding, when embraced healthily, can instead serve as a life-saving medium during challenging times.

Final thoughts

From beginner’s enthusiasm to the passionate grit of professional skaters, skateboarding engages us in a rush like no other. It takes us on a lifelong quest, from simple joy rides to potentially lucrative careers, shaping us into better versions of ourselves. It’s worth every drop of sweat, every scrape, every leap of faith. As you navigate the highs and lows of the asphalt waves, just remember, skateboarding isn’t a grind; it’s a dance – one that the skateboarding community cherishes.

What’s your stand on the debate ‒ is the skate journey worth the time commitment? And did I cover everything you wanted to know? Let me know in the comments section below. I read and reply to every comment. If you found this article helpful, share it with a friend and check out my full blog for more tips and tricks on this thrilling ride. Thanks for reading and shred on!

Key takeaways

This article covered the often misunderstood journey of skateboarding. Here are some key takeaways:

  • Misconceptions often paint skating as a waste of time, but deeper insight reveals numerous lifelong benefits.
  • The industry has handfuls of million-dollar professionals, with potential to make a decent living.
  • Roller coaster journeys like Antoine Dixon’s are examples where skateboarding provides second chances.
  • Majority of skaters enjoy the ride without the goal of turning pro.

Helpful resources

Steven Portrate
Written by Steven Sadder, Staff Writer

Hey! I'm Steven, a lifelong skater, and proud New Yorker. I’ve been skating since I was a teenager. I may be a bit older now, but I'm not slowing down. Follow me for skating tips and latest gear reviews.

Nick eggert.
Edited by Nick Eggert, Staff Editor

Nick is our staff editor and co-founder. He has a passion for writing, editing, and website development. His expertise lies in shaping content with precision and managing digital spaces with a keen eye for detail.

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