What Is The Best Age To Start Skateboarding? – Pocket the Right Answer
When your kids keep pestering you about getting them a skateboard, many questions pop up in your head. If you know a thing or two about this sport, that will ease half of your concerns.
However, if skateboarding is new territory, you might think your kids are too young to safely start this journey themselves. So what is the best age to start skateboarding?
What Is A Good Age To Start Skateboarding
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, kids under 5 years old should not skateboard. Those younger than 10 years old should only ride a skateboard under the close supervision of adults or responsible adolescents.
5-10 Years Old Are The Suitable Age For Skateboarding
Children younger than 5 are at higher risk of injuries due to these developmental reasons:
- Have a high center of gravity
- Find it more difficult to maintain balance
- Their neuromuscular system is not fully developed
- Have slow reaction times
- More often than not, young children overestimate their ability
- Poor judgments of obstacles, ramps, traffic
For all of these reasons, they are more likely to fall and hurt themselves and cannot break their falls. Then, when is the best age to start skateboarding? 5 to 10 years old are generally considered the ideal for learning skateboarding.
However, it is not a hard-and-fast rule as there will be a few exceptions. You might realize your kids’ talents and can’t wait to explore their potential at an early age. The general rule is to wait until they reach the age of 5 to minimize the risk of injuries.
See also: Top 13 Best Skateboard For Kids To Learn On
Some Well-Known Young Skaters
Sky Brown is the youngest professional skateboarder in the world at age 8. She competed for Great Britain at the 2020 Summer Olympics and won bronze in the women’s park skateboarding, making her Great Britain’s youngest-ever medal winner.
This American skateboarder started skating at the age of 4, and set the record for being the youngest X Games competitor until 2019. In 2020, he earned the bronze Olympic medal in the men’s street’s event.
Jagger Eaton at Olympic 2020
Brighton Zeuner became the youngest-ever female athlete to participate in the X Games at the age of 11 and the youngest gold-medalist of all-time in the competition.
Tyshawn Jones was introduced into the skateboarding world at the age of 10 and won the Skater Of The Year Award from Thrasher in 2018.
Alex Midler started skating at a young age and grew into a pro skateboarder at 18 with a long list of big sponsors like Nike or Redbull.
Can You Start Skateboarding In 40s?
It’s never too late to learn skateboarding as long as your physical health permits. The sport is open to people in their 20s, 30s, 40s, or even 50s, although a 40-year-old skater or older might find it hard to learn to balance and pick up tricks.
An old Skateboarder
Some Well-Known Old Skaters
Lance Mountain was one of the outstanding skateboarders in the 1980s, and now when he’s in his 50s, he is still committed to skateboarding.
Neal Unger, the inspirational 60-year-old skateboarder, proves that you’re never too old to skateboard.
Steve Caballero was a member of the Bones Brigade skating team. With his amazing creativity, he invented many tricks that are heavily used nowadays, including the Caballeria. In addition, he is credited with inventing the frontside boardslide.
The “Sisters of Shred”
Founded by shredder Barbara Odanaka, the Sisters of Shred now have 300 hundred members, many of whom began staking in their 40s and 50s.
Types Of Skateboarders For Beginners
If you assemble a skateboard for your kids, there are a few things to keep in mind.
- The truck width should be as close as the deck width. Too-narrow trucks might make your board less stable, whereas too-wide trucks will impair the turning performance.
- Wheels come with different hardness levels. For a kid’s entry-level board, it is advisable to choose softer wheels. They are more forgiving and let you easily ride over pebbles or twigs without worrying about them getting blocked.
- Softer bushings will let your kids maneuver their boards more easily
However, it can be risky to put together a skateboard yourself if you’re new to the skating world. You might end up buying cheap or wrong components and wasting time and money as a result.
Skateboard for kids
Instead, you can purchase pre-assembled skateboards. If you decide to buy a complete board, here are a few pointers to help you steer clear of getting a low-quality board:
- The board is warped in plastic
- The deck is thicker than a regular board
- It is heavier and noisier
- The wheels won’t spin or stop in seconds
Size-wise, there’s no difference between a kid-sized board and an adult board. A 5-year-old kid or older should be fine with a smaller or regular skateboard as long as the deck width falls anywhere between 7.5 to 8 inches.
If you’re an adult skateboarder who is completely new to the sport, your best bet is a cruiser board. As a complete beginner, it would take some time to perform flip tricks or other advanced moves, so there is no need to have a thinner board.
Skateboard for adults
The cruiser board generally has a wide deck to provide you with more stability and room to practice standing and balancing on the board. They also have big, soft wheels designed for a smooth ride.
Safety Tips For New Skateboarders
It is recommended to put on protective gear before heading to the skatepark to keep your kids’ safe while skating:
- Wrist guards to protect the wrist when falling
- Elbow and knee pads
- Skateboard closed-toe shoes with anti-slip soles
- Never let young children skate without any head protection. The helmet should have a strong buckle and a securely fastened strap.
Safety Gear Is Important In Skateboarding
Places For Skateboarding
Choosing where to ride is one of the crucial decisions for beginners to make. It pays to make sure the surface you’re going to skate on is smooth and clear of cracks, sticks, rocks, other debris, etc.
If you’re just getting started, you should never ride on the streets since you have not developed enough skills to handle the board in the face of accidents.
Instead, a skate park, unused parking lot, or a place away from pedestrians and traffic would be ideal environments for learning how to skate. Before entering the skating areas at skate parks, be on the lookout for incoming traffic to avoid collisions.
Kids Should Skate In A Place Free Of Traffic
It’s hazardous to hit a ride from a car or other vehicles. There is a higher chance of injuries to yourself when skating in wet conditions in the same vein. Wearing headphones while riding a skateboard is also a bad idea as you cannot be alerted by the sound of the incoming traffic or passers-by.
Knowing How To Fall Correctly Is A Crucial Skill
Falling is an inevitable part of skateboarding, so learning to fall properly goes a long way to ensuring your safety while skating. Here are a few tips to follow:
- Do some falling rehearsal on a soft surface like grass
- Upon the fall, crouch down to shorten the distance from the upper body to the ground
- Land on the fleshy parts of your body instead of using your arms or hands
- Do not attempt elaborate techniques before you can get the hang of basic tricks
- Relax the body while you’re landing will make the fall less painful
Now you have the answer to the question, what is the best age to start skateboarding? Children from 5 to 10 present a full potential to take up this sport with the quickest result. But don’t let the age put you off, as there are thousands of skateboarders starting their pro careers in their 40s or even older.
Don’t just only purchase a quality skateboard, as a first-time player also needs to wear protective gear to stay safe on their first days in the skate park. You will be happy and have fun with this newfound pastime while being protected by proper equipment.