Was COVID-19 Good for Skateboarding? The Unexpected Surge of Skateboarding During the Pandemic

Explore skateboarding's silver linings in the Covid era. Resourceful skaters found perks amidst the pandemic!

Was COVID-19 good for skateboarding? It seems like an absurd question at first glance, yet before you knock me off my wheels, hear me out. The COVID-19 pandemic gripped the globe in lockdown, with skate shops closing down and even the beloved skate parks being off-limits. So, was there any silver lining to this for the skating fraternity? Surprisingly yes! As we thread through, you’ll come to understand how the pandemic molded the skate world in unforeseen ways. Are you ready to power slide into a world where obstacles are just another trick ready to be nailed? Let’s roll!

How did the pandemic boost skateboarding’s popularity?

The pandemic has had a profound impact on mental health, with lockdowns and social distancing measures leading to feelings of isolation, which in turn has escalated rates of depression and anxiety. In the midst of this, skateboarding has witnessed an unexpected rise. This surge in skateboarding is an unforeseen result of the COVID restrictions.

Image of skaters at the skatepark during the covid-19 pandemic. Source: pexels
Image of skaters at the skatepark during the covid-19 pandemic. Source: pexels

Its compatibility with the lockdown rules, needing only a skateboard and flat surface, allows it to be practiced almost anywhere. Contrary to the traditional young male skater stereotype, the rise has been driven by women entering the sport, couples looking for shared activities, and older individuals reconnecting with their skateboarding past, sometimes alongside their kids.

“Similar to the rise in cycling’s popularity, skateboarding gear, especially complete boards, has been selling out nationwide.”

Similar to the rise in cycling’s popularity, skateboarding gear, especially complete boards, has been selling out nationwide. Paul Haynes from Rollersnakes Skateboard Shop in Derby mentioned that they were astounded by the number of online orders for new skateboards, leading to shortages by the start of summer. Tom Brown of Leeds’ Welcome Skate Shop noted the visible growth in skateboarding, emphasizing its broad appeal that transcends age or gender boundaries.

My favorite complete skateboard (at the moment):

Enjoi Whitey Panda Complete Skateboard

Was covid-19 good for skateboarding? The unexpected surge of skateboarding during the pandemic | 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.

More space for skaters?

What if I told you fewer people out and about was actually a boon, not a bane for us skateboarders? Remember those scooter kids zipping around at the park, clashing wheels with your board, interrupting a perfectly good sesh? With lockdowns in place, those days are on pause. As sad as it sounds, the panic around the ‘beer virus’ has made parks a haven for skaters, devoid of minivans filled with scooter-wielding youngsters. Skateparks have become deserted treasures, more skate than you can roll into.

New street spots uncovered?

You’d think lockdowns might’ve killed the thrill of street skating. Think again. You know that staircase in front of the library you’ve been itching to grind on? Or is that sick rail at your local bar usually off-limits? They’re up for grabs now, folks. With less traffic and reduced need for elaborate security, skate spots are bursting at the seams.

“Here’s the golden rule: steer clear of hospitals and grocery stores, and you get access to a world of new skate spots waiting to be conquered.”

Heck, even police stations would be less bothered about you tearing up their steps, provided you’re not coughing up a storm, of course! Here’s the golden rule: steer clear of hospitals and grocery stores, and you get access to a world of new skate spots waiting to be conquered. Check out some inspiring spots at types of skate spots.

Indoor skateboarding—a thing?

On the flip side, not all of us are lucky enough to shred the streets. What about those stuck indoors with parents playing security guard? Don’t fear, fellow skaters; there are options aplenty. For starters, your usually mundane garage could turn into a skate paradise. Ever thought about that?

Remember, we hold a board, not a magic wand. Like a kid locked in a room with a booby prize, we too can get innovative. Tip? Turn your board into a balance board. It’s challenging yet fun and a great way to hone your street skills while stuck indoors.

Low risk of catching the virus?

Another advantage, you ask? Skating is a non-contact sport, resulting in a lower likelihood of catching the virus. Street legends aren’t exactly hand-holding mates when they’re pulling insane stunts, right? Contrary to popular belief, the odds of getting infected while skateboarding aren’t high. Remember, though, that if you’re under quarantine, adhere to the regulations. We’re shredders, not rule-breakers.

Image of a skater holding a skateboard with a facemask on. Source: pexels
Was covid-19 good for skateboarding? The unexpected surge of skateboarding during the pandemic | image of a skater holding a skateboard with a facemask on pexels | skateboard salad

While I may not be an expert, with my experience and countless hours spent perfecting my maneuvers, I’d say the pandemic has created some unique opportunities for skateboarders. It’s pushed us to explore uncharted territories, street spots, or garages.

Though not the most ideal situation, skateboarding during COVID-19 hasn’t been all that terrible. In fact, it’s offered some killer advantages. For more skateboarding tips and culture, you’d definitely not want to miss these skaters you’ll meet on your journey.

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

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Fielding your curiosity like a gnarly grind, here’s something different: a rapid-fire session touching base with your most pressing queries. Ready to ollie over to the FAQ rink?

Can I skate during a lockdown due to COVID-19?

Yes and no. This is dependent on the intensity of the restrictions in your area. If your city allows outdoor exercises while maintaining distance, then sure, put on your gear and shred. However, skating in the face of strict lockdown policies is a no-go. Yet, even nestled at home, you could catch up on some indoor skateboarding. For more details, pop over to Skateboard Maintenance and Quick Tricks.

Which are some sick skate spots deserted due to COVID-19?

Thanks to lesser crowds and unruffled security, numerous street spots are popping up on the skate radar. Think library staircases, roads, railings outside local bars, and even—wait for it—police stations. The possibilities are endless as long as you steer clear of grocery stores and hospitals. For more interesting locations, check out types of skate spots.

How can I sanitize my skateboard?

Sanitizing skateboard gear, particularly in a pandemic, is just as crucial as nailing a trick. An effective way involves using disinfecting wipes or a clean cloth soaked in a mix of water and mild detergent to give the board, wheels, and trucks a good rub. Rinse with a damp cloth, and voila, you have a virus-free set of wheels. Don’t forget the helmet and knee pads; safety comes first, after all. For a more detailed guide, click your way over to Skateboard Maintenance.

Final thoughts

While COVID-19 has undeniably thrown in some sketchy obstacles, skaters worldwide have taken the shred to adapt to this transformation. Remember, every swipe of your wheels on fresh concrete is an opportunity to learn, explore, and modify. Whether you’re mastering new tricks in your garage or discovering obscure street spots, skateboarding in the pandemic sure has its silver linings. And if you’re up for more insightful digging, my greatest skateboarding moments is a must-read.

So, are you stoked to grind the skate life, COVID or not? 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 skateboarding. Thanks for rolling with me. Keep shredding the gnar!

Key takeaways

This article breezed through an unexplored aspect: the impact of COVID-19 on skateboarding. Here are some key takeaways:

  • The pandemic led to fewer crowds, freeing up more space for skaters
  • The closure of popular spots led to the discovery of new street skate spots
  • Indoor and driveway skating emerged as viable options
  • Skateboarding possesses a low risk of virus contraction due to its non-contact nature
  • The necessity to stay creative during lockdowns became a reality for skaters
  • Social distancing norms opened up skate parks for serious skaters.

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

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