A Piece of Wood with Wheels – Thank You Skateboarding

“On a Mish” #253 Thank You Skateboarding. Te Anau Skatepark, Southland. 9.3.2021. Doing nothing is challenging for me. I always like to be on the move, active, and doing something to keep my mind and body busy. Who would have thought that a piece of wood with wheels attached could play such an important part in my life. At a young age skateboarding found me, and I have spent countless hours rolling around on concrete ever since. At times I have drifted (literally during my car days) away from the sport for a few years, but I have always managed to pick up a board again. Along with participating in the activities that come with the past time, I have followed the lives of some of my favourite pro skaters. Although some of the names have changed I am happy that most of my earliest skating idols have kept at it, and are now doing tricks that boggle the mind in their technicalness…

A long time has passed since the premier of “The Jared & Mark Trying to be Cool Show”, and the boards are a little bit different, but the feeling of flying just above the surface of the earth is still the same exciting rush as before. I do have to say that I think somehow concrete is harder these days, and I don’t get up as quickly after slams as I used to. Also gravel rash (a wound made by falling over at speed) seems to sting and stay around a lot longer than during my youth. Even with that being said, I’ll take gravel rash over sitting around any day of the week! While recovering from my hip injury I went months without stepping on to my board. Eventually I couldn’t stand sitting around anymore, so I prepared myself for some pain, and grabbed my skateboard. Ironically walking on uneven ground is worse for my hip than a shred around a skatepark.

The Perfect Mix of Concrete and Mountains

Like with most physical activities at the time, I could only do so much before needing a break. To start with I could only skate for about 10 minutes or so, then after time I could usually last about an hour before the pain seriously affected the fun. The short blast of activity would be crucial for my mental health, and a must to keep me sane. Nowadays I can last a lot longer on my board, and I’m at the Te Anau Skatepark as often as possible. I have no issue with being the skateparks ‘Old Man’ and I give tips to the younger skaters along with encouraging scooter kids to grow up and give skateboarding ago. I owe a lot to my piece of wood with wheels, it definitely helped me through tough times. Also shout out to ‘The Nine Club’ on YouTube, watching skateboarding’s best watching skateboarding’s best film clips has been the entertainment I needed on days I couldn’t skate (usually because of the weather). My goal is to be still rolling around on my board at 50, a challenge that is approaching a bit quicker than expected!! Thank you skateboarding, you’re AWESOME! Xoxo…

New Zealand. What a place to explore!

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