Skateboarding in the Olympicz
Updated: May 4, 2018
Despite getting its start in San Diego in the 1940's, skateboarding has only recently been granted entry to the Olympics as a competitive sport, set to make its debut at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. The reaction to this news in the skateboarding has been split in the skateboarding community - with some saying they fear the sport will lose an aspect of its counter-culture roots as it joins the ranks of gymnastics and ice-skating as competitors try to wow the judges with their routine. Supporters of the addition of skateboarding to the Olympics are hoping it will legitimize the sport and generate an even wider interest among youth around the world.
The USA has gotten a slow start so far with creating its skateboarding team and we are eagerly awaiting the announcement of team members. Australia, on the other hand, has gained a competitive edge already by creating a well-funded Olympic skateboarding program and getting a jump on selecting and training competitors.
The competition will be divided into two categories, street and park, and is going to have about 40 men and 40 women competing for the gold. The street course will be full of stairs, handrails, curbs, benches, walls, and slopes and skaters will be able to choose what tricks to include in their routine. Judges will be looking at the degree of difficulty of the tricks, height, speed, originality, and execution of the moves.
The Park course will be a hollowed-out course featuring a series of complicated curves in surfaces resembling large dishes or dome-shaped bowls. Skaters will try to earn the highest score by performing mid-air tricks and grabbing the deck while being judged on location of the deck-grab and their posture in the air. Skaters may even perform balancing tricks on the lip of the ramp.
Team Wittle may be booking a flight to Tokyo, because the Street & Park courses at the Aomi Urban Sports Venue will even be open to the public before and after the actual competitions, giving skateboarding fans a chance to skate where the pros have and be a part of history. We are definitely looking forward to seeing who will be a part of Team USA. Team Wittle will be supporting them as they represent and show the world why skateboarding is what we live and breathe for!