Ever wondered when skateboards started being used? Where the concept of skateboards and skateboarding was developed? Who invented the first skateboard? Well if you are having these kinds of questions, read through the article and be informed.
Skateboarding has a deeper meaning than just cruising around. It represents a lifestyle, it signifies love. Skateboarding has gone through some kind of evolution.
When did skateboards start being used?
During the 50s, surfing was a popular sport, and it is referred to as the origin of skateboarding. A couple of surfers thought of the idea of transferring the skills and flawlessness of surfing on water waves onto the streets. Those who implemented this idea back then were referred to as the “asphalt suffers”. At two spots in the world, something that looked like a skateboard was developed for the first time in the early 1950s.
The two spots were Hawaii and California. Back then, they used surfboards that were a little bit shorter and the wheels were metallic but did not have any bearings. In the late 1950s, skateboarding reached its first peak. This was during the post-war period when the economy of the United States rose significantly and the toy industry hugely contributed to that. AT that time, the toy industry had already realized a board that had wheels.
What was the first real Skateboard?
In the year 1959, Roller Derby designed and released the first official skateboard which came with some new technical developments. These developments ensured that the skateboarders were able to develop new tricks and maneuvers. Between the years 1959 up to 1965, skateboarding became increasingly popular in the United States.
The states that were highly influenced were the east and west coasts. As industrial development continued progressing, the skateboard status quickly changed from a toy and started being referred to as sports equipment. In the year 1962, one shop by the name surf shop or Val-Surf in Hollywood succeeded in selling the first self-produced skateboards. These boards looked like a surfboard from the shape to the roller skate trucks. It was sold as a complete board.
During that year, another company known as Peterson Forbes was able to develop a complete board that was industrially made that had more advanced trucks. It was not until the year 1963 when a publisher in the “surf guide magazine” who was known as Larry Stevenson released the first advert for skateboards in his magazine. By this time, the clothing industry started associating with this sport. There is one very famous skateboarding shoe brand by the name Vans which supported skateboarders globally.
The other famous landmark event happened in the year 1963. This was the first skate contest and was held at Hermosa Beach, California. By this time, skateboarding was more than just cruising. Skateboarders were able to showcase their skills in different disciplines like freestyle or slalom. This resulted in coming together of companies that we’re able to assemble a team and also sponsor the riders. Skateboarding continued to be popular and expanded significantly. In the year 1964, the first skateboarding magazine was published.
The Kickboard comes along
The next major development on skateboards was the designing of a better shape. Larry Stevenson was responsible for inventing the Kicktail and this was a great improvement as riders were able to be at ease while skateboarding.
In the year 1972, frank Nasworthy invented the urethane wheels. He started the Cadillac Wheels which were made from a different material that made riding smoother, comfortable and faster. This led to a real high point in disciplines such as slalom, freestyle, and downhill.
In the year 1976, the first artificially designed skate park was launched and it led to the emergence of new elements such as kickers and the vertical ramps. In the year 1970, skateboarding arrived in Germany. American soldiers came with this trend and by the year 1976, Munich transformed and became the first German skateboard center.
In the 1970’s Skateboarding becomes popular.
Now that there were many riders in this sport, they were able to enhance new tricks and this resulted to further development of the skateboarding hardware. The shapes began changing, the boards were made wider, there were those with more concave and they have parts like nose and tail.
In the year 1978, an inventor by the name Alan Gelfand designed a maneuver that was able to give skateboarding another huge change and advancement. There is the “Ollie” which is believed to be one of the greatest ever trick to be invented. It was able to completely revolutionize skateboarding. It bore the flawless street skateboarding.
Rodney Mullen Pioneers the “Ollie”
There was one rider worth mentioning and hid name was Rodney Mullen. He was actually the pioneer rider who was able to transfer the Ollie style into different tricks and this spread the new tricks and styles of skateboarding. This made street skateboarding very popular.
There was one man who was very influential in the development of skateboarding in Germany. His name was Titus Dittmann. He was able to import products that were skate-related directly from the United States. This led to the organization of various events. One particular event was Monster Mastership. This event turned out to be the biggest international skateboarding event in the 1980s. This led to the increased popularity of this sport as it became more and more popular in Germany.
What proceeded in the mid-1980s is that this sport became well known and it became a possibility that one can earn some money as a professional skateboarder. This led to a boom in the skateboarding industry especially in the United States of America. More and more skateboarders aspired to become professionals and this translated to the emergence of other sublime skills.
In the early 1990s, skateboarding underwent a depth phase due to the increased popularity of other sports. However, digitization helped keep a skateboarding presence in the general public. From the mid-1990s, modern skateboarding underwent a high phase and this continues till today. Huge promotions and mega-events such as the “C-Games” became launched and televised all through. The internet came in handy and ensured skateboarding known worldwide where it became common.