SK8R Grrrl (290th new thing).
February 15, 2012 § 2 Comments
My brother is really into longboarding. It’s like skateboarding, but the vehicle is elongated and riding it is more akin to snowboarding. The journey of a longboard is about sailing down winding hills rather than performing fancy tricks or flips (although you can do that as well). Brad had offered to let me test out his hobby several times over the past year, but knowing my tendency to fall, trip, bump, or injure myself, I’ve always declined. Until Day Two Hundred Ninety.
Brad outfitted me with his girlfriend’s borrowed safety equipment and board. Helmet, wrist guards, knee pads, elbow pads. It did make me feel a little safer, but I still worried about falling on my ass. I asked if he had butt pads, but he didn’t think I was funny.
My brother quickly went through the “how to” portion instructing me to begin with my left foot pointed forward at the head of the board and then scraping the ground with my right, keeping my weight on the front leg to propel myself forward. I managed that easily enough, but questioned how I should rotate my left foot a ninety degree angle once I was finished scooting. Your feet are supposed to be parallel, right? I imagined all these pigeon-toed skaters who walk with their feet pointed inward.
After I had mastered the “take off” well enough, Brad told me to pull my right foot on the board, bend my knees, and continue to keep my weight on the front foot. I would steer with my ankles, shifting my body weight to veer left or right. That was the easy part, and quite frankly the most fun. I went up and down the gently sloped road leading to our parents’ house four or five times. I was a speed demon at five miles an hour. Exhilarated, I suggested we try a slightly steeper hill around the corner, but Brad turned me down, not believing I was the brilliant longboarder I knew in my heart I was. See for yourself: