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Skateboarding => Skate Questions => Topic started by: emchen on March 30, 2018, 09:47:37 AM

Title: when did you start getting good?
Post by: emchen on March 30, 2018, 09:47:37 AM
I'm assuming that 99% of you are far better skateboarders than I'll ever be, so here goes:

1. Was your progression a slow, tedious climb or did your abilities shoot up at some point?

2. Has anyone sucked for a really long time only to "figure it out" years later?

I've been skating 6 years (started at 18) and the only thing I can be certain about is that I was NOT meant to skate (not gonna stop tho, I'm a lifer). I learn at a glacial pace and it's a struggle to maintain what little progress I do make even though I skate as often as my legs allow. Learning instruments/art has always been much faster but I'd say those come more natural for me.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: botefdunn on March 30, 2018, 10:48:09 AM
progress in art/music isn't so different, you probably do those things alone and relaxed, in a concentrated way. Most of our time skating tends to happen in more or less social environments, with a lot of distractions (friends, weather, etc.). If you skate by yourself regularly in an environment without distractions, you'll get better at it. Just don't turn into that dude with the headphones at the skatepark, training for what? enjoy the practice and the people, i think both are important
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: givecigstosurfgroms on March 31, 2018, 09:13:00 AM
  Right away. First week I was having as much fun as I do now.  Kid you not.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: Willie on April 01, 2018, 07:51:17 AM
Started when 10, missed a few years in mid teens where I probably could have gotten a lot better, probably reached peak street ability at 20, peak transition at 30. All downhill since but for maybe a few tricks I can do better now.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: Michnich191 on April 01, 2018, 02:36:18 PM
progress in art/music isn't so different, you probably do those things alone and relaxed, in a concentrated way. Most of our time skating tends to happen in more or less social environments, with a lot of distractions (friends, weather, etc.). If you skate by yourself regularly in an environment without distractions, you'll get better at it. Just don't turn into that dude with the headphones at the skatepark, training for what? enjoy the practice and the people, i think both are important

I agree. Im not the best by any means, but i felt like i got good around 18-19 (started at 13 or 14). For me its super important to be able to enjoy skating with your buds, and just as much alone. I typically am more productive in terms of learning tricks alone, but I can skate longer and generally have more fun with my friends. Now Im 27 and I feel like im 47
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: somethingmustbreaknow on April 01, 2018, 05:25:24 PM
started at 10 or something, now i am
28, and i still keep learning new stuff
and getting more comfortable so that
is the definition of "progressing", thus
i am sticking with it. having fun trying
new stuff, fall, or succeed. that is the
whole  point of it. even  if i would not
progress at any sight i would have to
keep on doing it. There is NO retreat.
a tragic.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: MOE SYZLAK on April 01, 2018, 07:50:45 PM
Started when I was 10, just me and my neighbor skating every day in the driveway. (We didnít get a park till almost 4 years later). All of my friends thought I was the best out of them all but I was watching videos and skating with people they hadnít seen who were really good ( since I was a few years older and could drive to the park) I moved to Nashville in 2004 and skated a concrete park by myself often. I learned a shit ton of flip tricks that year and skated with people who were WAY better than I was. It really pushed me to learn more and actually try
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: givecigstosurfgroms on April 01, 2018, 11:36:07 PM
I'm assuming that 99% of you are far better skateboarders than I'll ever be, so here goes:

1. Was your progression a slow, tedious climb or did your abilities shoot up at some point?

2. Has anyone sucked for a really long time only to "figure it out" years later?

I've been skating 6 years (started at 18) and the only thing I can be certain about is that I was NOT meant to skate (not gonna stop tho, I'm a lifer). I learn at a glacial pace and it's a struggle to maintain what little progress I do make even though I skate as often as my legs allow. Learning instruments/art has always been much faster but I'd say those come more natural for me.
  I don't tic tac now. But I can't imagine that not being the biggest thing you do for like 2 years straight!  Thats what skating was like in the 80s.  Get a super wide board and smoke some weed and just do you're own thing for a while and forget about tricks maybe.   Learn tic tacking, 4 wheel slides and some stationary curb dancing (maybe you can do that shit and I'm being asupmptuous.)  (edit, "shoot up at some point" -ha)
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: CrappyChan on April 02, 2018, 07:57:22 AM
I started skating super young and was the best in my small rural Florida town. I never really saw other skaters and there was no park or YouTube to learn tricks. I got lucky if some older burn out who used to skate would give me a couple tips. I learned everything in shitty parking lots on unwaxed parking blocks for the most part. Then I moved to a big city at 12 and got vibed out because I sucked. Kinda fell off but then came back swinging at 15. Never got great but definitely have been at it so long that it doesn't really matter. What kills me is when I learn a trick that I was scared of as a kid and realizing it feels totally natural. I could've gotten peak performance if I wasn't such a poosy back in the day. But everyone was into stairs and shit when I was younger which I was not down for so that may have had something to do with me not progressing. I moved to the bay area when I was 17 and that really upped my skating alot, I feel like I came back with a whole new style and set of skills. I also realized that sometimes you gotta try shit to realize if you can do it or not. Don't be afraid to try to skate an obstacle you're not fully comfortable on or to approach things with new lines. Keep practicing, watch lots of videos, you will be doing what you want soon enough
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: planman on April 02, 2018, 08:16:03 AM
Started actually skating when I was 11. I'm 19 now and after years of putting in hard work and legitimately trying to get better, I still suck.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: emchen on April 04, 2018, 06:47:09 AM
I started skating super young and was the best in my small rural Florida town. I never really saw other skaters and there was no park or YouTube to learn tricks. I got lucky if some older burn out who used to skate would give me a couple tips. I learned everything in shitty parking lots on unwaxed parking blocks for the most part. Then I moved to a big city at 12 and got vibed out because I sucked. Kinda fell off but then came back swinging at 15. Never got great but definitely have been at it so long that it doesn't really matter. What kills me is when I learn a trick that I was scared of as a kid and realizing it feels totally natural. I could've gotten peak performance if I wasn't such a poosy back in the day. But everyone was into stairs and shit when I was younger which I was not down for so that may have had something to do with me not progressing. I moved to the bay area when I was 17 and that really upped my skating alot, I feel like I came back with a whole new style and set of skills. I also realized that sometimes you gotta try shit to realize if you can do it or not. Don't be afraid to try to skate an obstacle you're not fully comfortable on or to approach things with new lines. Keep practicing, watch lots of videos, you will be doing what you want soon enough

I'm so bad at trying stuff that feels like it's not gonna happen that day, but pushing myself to do that has probably been the most effective strategy.

Thanks for sharing your stories, everyone! I'm in my annual "where did my pop go?" slump, so it's shuvit + no-comply time.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: Chavo on April 05, 2018, 09:02:41 PM
During my peak years, I would wake up early (out the door before 8 am) and skate for a few hours before my friends woke up. We'd skate all day, and after they went home, then I'd skate by myself until after midnight.

It's also good to jump in on a session with people who are better than you. It will push you to get better (likewise, being around skaters with good style will unconsciously lead you to tighten up your tricks).
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: AitchBeeGayBuh on April 05, 2018, 09:41:34 PM
After I got laid off from my job...

...and before I had a kid.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: JB on April 06, 2018, 08:42:22 AM
I totally disagree with the idea that skating alone is a better way to progress. I've always found that having other people to skate with, whether they're my friends or just random people are a park or spot, makes for a better session for me. Seeing other people land their tricks motivates me to land my own. Even now when I typically always skate alone, I'll land tricks I haven't landed in years if one of my friends comes out with me because I'm hyped to have someone else there.

I've never been good, but I was at my best when I was in my early 20's. No real responsibilities, no relationships, tons of free time. I started when I was 12, so it took a good 10 years to get that very limited bag of tricks and that amount of comfort on the board, but it was a steady progression up to that point. I'm 30 now and have all the stereotypical adult responsibilities (job/wife/kid/house) and making time for skating is harder, but it's still just as fun. One of the best things in life that I've learned is that you don't have to be good at something to enjoy doing it. Probably doesn't apply to all things, I wouldn't say go practice surgery if you didn't get into med school, but not being a great skater shouldn't discourage you from having a good time on your board.

My advice for progressing is to skate with people who are better than you and try to skate what they skate if it's within your reach and skate different things. You might surprise yourself with how well you skate tranny if you've never tried, or rails, or gaps or whatever. And just skate often. The things that are hard now will become easy the more you do them.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: ChuckRamone on April 06, 2018, 06:13:58 PM
I never started getting good, so Iíll never have to stop being good. Itís like how in some ways Iím glad I wasnít attractive as a young person Ďcause at least I wonít have to deal with losing my looks. Imagine how much that would suck.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: Grind King Rims on April 07, 2018, 05:16:20 AM
Started actually skating when I was 11. I'm 19 now and after years of putting in hard work and legitimately trying to get better, I still suck.

I'm surprised that you're that young, and also that young people are still using internet forums. I presumed it was slowly becoming a thing of the past.


My short answer is early twenties. I still have hope for myself, but I probably reached my peak (so far) at like 22-24ish.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: Lame_Nigga on April 07, 2018, 07:43:24 AM
Anytime I was single for a prolonged period of time, so like 19-21, and then a resurgence from 23-24.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: Dr-Feelgood on April 08, 2018, 12:06:56 PM
It was definitley a slow process for me. Me and my friends started out just cruising which turned into ollieing up and down gutters then over things then flatground kickflips which slowly progressed to jumping down stairs only 2-3 sets to get comfortable, all this was probably within a year of actually trying these things but it took a while to even get comfortable and from there just the natural order of progression. Some of my friends from that era can not skate for months and come back and shred, just pure natural talent, if i dont skate for a few weeks, ill come back all rusty and take a minute to find my feet.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: planman on April 08, 2018, 03:55:50 PM
Started actually skating when I was 11. I'm 19 now and after years of putting in hard work and legitimately trying to get better, I still suck.

I'm surprised that you're that young, and also that young people are still using internet forums. I presumed it was slowly becoming a thing of the past.


My short answer is early twenties. I still have hope for myself, but I probably reached my peak (so far) at like 22-24ish.

They certainly are a dying form of communication; I first hopped on slap when it was a bit more prominent than it is now (about seven years ago) so that's probably part of it, and also I guess I'm just a bit of an anomaly.

The sentiment about skating something you might not be totally comfortable with is very true. That's essentially the only way you learn when you're younger, but if you slow down and start settling, you'll plateau (which is why I still suck). Yeah you'll get hurt trying shit, but you gotta pay your dues. Also, a lot of it is just repetition and talking to other skaters. My friend also told me that he's gotten a lot better once he started filming himself.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: behavioralguide on April 09, 2018, 07:18:31 PM
I'm a late bloomer and that's ok
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: j....soy..... on April 09, 2018, 11:52:40 PM
I got ok when I was 15-17....then I sucked all the way through into my late 20's when skating kinda loosened up in what was acceptable and I could claim being good for someone old. 

It's easier to be shitty now than fifteen years ago. 

My advice is do both...skate with your friends to get stoked and fuck around by yourself to get past your bullshit.  Having skating around is the best, and as I got older I'm less anxious about how I'm doing and more so just happy I'm there.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: gsosa on April 10, 2018, 02:28:20 PM
Started actually skating when I was 11. I'm 19 now and after years of putting in hard work and legitimately trying to get better, I still suck.

I'm surprised that you're that young, and also that young people are still using internet forums. I presumed it was slowly becoming a thing of the past.


My short answer is early twenties. I still have hope for myself, but I probably reached my peak (so far) at like 22-24ish.

They certainly are a dying form of communication; I first hopped on slap when it was a bit more prominent than it is now (about seven years ago) so that's probably part of it, and also I guess I'm just a bit of an anomaly.

The sentiment about skating something you might not be totally comfortable with is very true. That's essentially the only way you learn when you're younger, but if you slow down and start settling, you'll plateau (which is why I still suck). Yeah you'll get hurt trying shit, but you gotta pay your dues. Also, a lot of it is just repetition and talking to other skaters. My friend also told me that he's gotten a lot better once he started filming himself.
this happened to me, I started learning shit and then I settled and avoided going out of my comfort zone, I used to skate alone all the time and not really with friends. Im 25 now, and am decided to start trying again like a year or so ago, and it is way more fun this way. I guess Im decent, not bad by any means but not really good (or atleast as good as I would like to be). Ive been told I have good style so that somewhat gives me an advantage to my  limited bag of tricks
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: redcurb12 on May 08, 2018, 04:27:11 PM
i'd say early 20s when I started skating street spots and parks with a crew of guys that were a lot better than me. i'm 28 now and a lot of tricks have come and gone since then but i'm a better all around skater now
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: streetsoup on May 21, 2018, 06:29:14 PM
It happens overnight randomly.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: emchen on May 22, 2018, 06:31:05 AM
Thanks for the input y'all!

So yeah, I figured it out: skating is not my thing and I'm never gonna get good (but I can still get better). It's been 7 years now and if it was meant to happen, it woulda happened by now.

Still fun tho, and it sure beats going to the gym.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: cosmicgypsies on May 22, 2018, 07:38:34 AM
ive been skating for easily 10 years on and off and i still struggle with basic flatground shit and i dont really take tricks down sets etc.

i enjoy skating transition/ramps, learning/thinking of new/lesser seen shit etc, just having fun nothing too serious. it's funny actually i started doing these layback front rock slides at the park and now everyones doing them  ;D
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: rEVOLVED on June 08, 2018, 11:31:37 PM
Thanks for the input y'all!

So yeah, I figured it out: skating is not my thing and I'm never gonna get good (but I can still get better). It's been 7 years now and if it was meant to happen, it woulda happened by now.

Still fun tho, and it sure beats going to the gym.

Some would say working on your weaknesses is a waste of time. I'm a terrible singer, decent guitarist, and incredible drummer. But I still play more guitar than I do drums, because I have two small kids now and drums are too loud most of the time. When I used to lift, I was incredible at it. But I can't stand being in a gym now. I definitely peaked between ages 17 and 20. I took nearly a decade off after too many stupid injuries. I'm recently back on a board, and I feel like I'm somehow a lot smarter now and that's helping me figure out why certain tricks aren't working. That, and YouTube.

If a particular trick is troubling you, FILM YOURSELF! I've been skating for like 2 weeks now, and my ollie got so much better today after I filmed it. For some stupid reason, I was crouching down far enough to have my back knee almost hit the ground. Which took all the attention away from the fact that my front foot wasn't sliding forward. And I was trying to pop from a super unstable stance. I ended up putting less effort into it and had a much better time.

It also helps to figure out your goals before a session. For me right now, I want to have fun and not get seriously injured. So I'm skating flat, rocking some manny pads, and staying the hell away from stairs and flip tricks. I have a blast getting up bigger obstacles, even if it is just with an ollie. I'll progress back to where I used to be when I'm ready, but I need to build some core strength and relearn the basics. If I go out and have fun with a few buddies, all is well!
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: B. Hopper on June 09, 2018, 11:45:28 AM
  Right away. First week I was having as much fun as I do now.  Kid you not.

This. Since 1980.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: Trashcon on July 05, 2018, 02:30:29 AM
Never. Been skating for about 17 years. Hoping to get good in 5.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: super-basic on July 06, 2018, 05:20:40 AM
I started when I was 19, I'm 36 now and I'm probably the best I've ever been.

I started getting a lot better when I went back to college and started taking a lot of math classes when I was 31.

I figured out how to figure things out better, if that makes sense.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: the snake on July 06, 2018, 06:35:43 AM
  Right away. First week I was having as much fun as I do now.  Kid you not.

This. Since 1980.
same. since 1990.
Title: Re: when did you start getting good?
Post by: S. on July 06, 2018, 08:00:50 AM
I started when I was about 14 years old. I am 33 years old now. I've always felt like I was not very talented at it, but I have always been very obsessed with it. I feel like over the years skating has had very different functions in my life. I used to zone out and live myself out through moving on my board and trying to learn new tricks for the first few years. During those years I was very withdrawn in general. Just sort of emotionally numb and withdrawn into myself. I skated with other people, but I was barely able to talk to them. Then I left home for one year and stayed with a host family in the mountains Colorado. My host brother also skated and we built a mini ramp in the back yard. I learned my first few tranny tricks on that ramp and we took trips to various skateparks in Denver and Boulder on the weekends. That was one of my best years. When I came back to my family in Germany I was very depressed for some time, but I would cope by skating alot. The year away from my home made me way more sociable and the people I used to skate with became good friends and skating became a much more social experience.
When I started university I went through another numb phase and I skating became a more direct outlet for emotions again. I had moved to a bigger city so I learned alot of new tricks and explored the city skateboarding alot. When I had settled into student life I went on a 4 months long solo trip to South America. I skated the same bowl in BogotŠ every other day for two months which really improved my tranny skills. I also skated the bowl in Quito for two weeks. One year after I was back my long term girlfriend broke up with me so I skated all the time again really pushing myself. I think at that time I skated my best. I was about 26 then. I was hurt for almost two years with arthritis in my ancle from 29 to 31. I think that happend because I would skate hung over all the time and I had pushed myslef too much, not taking enough rest between sessions.
After physiotherapy and some lifestyle changes the ancle gradually improved. I have been able to skate at a hundred percent again for more than a year now. I am almost as good as I was during my best when I was 26 years old. I get tiered more quickly and skate less street, but I am more consistent with my skating than I have ever been. Recently I have even competed in a few local contests and won some prizes here and there. I had too much social anxiety to do that when I was young. It was just way too scarry to be judged by a big group of people doing something which was so intimate to me.

I guess I gradually improved just from doing it obsessively for such a long time. The amount of time I have spent skateboarding I should be really good, but I am not. It has always been fun though and it has helped me deal with some heavy issues in my personal life.