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  • Saghyna Ibraev

Stevenson Skating Saga

When passing the eternal pool area on the way to Atwood we see nothing but a flat surface, ledge and beam, but for several Stevenson students this simple groundwork provides the basic structure needed for endless opportunity. Let's get to know some of the skaters of Stevenson and what skating means to them.


Tyler Hwang is a Sophomore this year and has been skating on and off for around six years.

Coolest trick: Olly

Why he likes skating:

“I think it’s just a fun thing to do. It’s a hobby that I‘ve kind of been doing for a while."

Favorite skater social media presence: @robertneal_

Thoughts on skating community:

“Everyones really welcoming. I think if you’re a beginner no ones really judging you if you suck”

Thoughts on skating culture:

“I love it. I love the way that they dress and I kind of adopted that into my own style. Also, Nike made an entire brand based on skating. So I think it’s very interesting how they've incorporated skating into fashion and how that's just becoming a thing these days.

Rowan Ray-Yorro is a new junior and has been skating for around three years

Coolest trick:

“I don't really do tricks anymore, But I used to be able to do like a pop shove it”

Why he likes skating:

“I really like the community and the people who are all really nice and supportive.It’s also just easier to get around and it's fun. If you’re just starting out, they'll help you anyway. They are not going to make fun of you or anything.”

Favorite skater social media presence: @tonyhawk

“I don’t really keep up with skating social media, but I guess Tony Hawk”

Opinions on wheeled transportation policy:

“I think it’s kind of stupid that we can only ride next to the pool and in the parking lot, because it kind of defeats the purpose of using it as transportation”

Henry Parker is a third year student at Stevenson and has been skating for around four years.

Coolest trick:

“Lowkey, I’m not that good. So probably a little board slide”

Why he likes skating:

“I think it's a fun thing to do with my friends. And it's really entertaining and a good little bit of exercise”

Favorite skating social media presence: @sammy.balls

Opinions on wheeled transportation policy:

“I think it's really interesting because the kids could be doing so many worse things than skateboarding. It's a really harmless activity. Its like if you'd rather have kids not sit in their rooms all day, which they are already doing sitting on their phones. You just got rid of one of the only things that they actually do outside, which is skateboarding”


“just do it. It's a lot of fun”

Max Beallo is a new freshman and has been skating for almost two years.

Coolest trick: Backside Flip

Why he likes skating: He enjoys learning new tricks and its satisfying

Favorite skating social media presence: @dapperboydan

“He’s not known, but I look up to him a lot, because he does a lot of cool tricks”

Advice: “Go for it. No one is judging you just skate"


Although many students have expressed their dissatisfaction with the school helmet rule in the wheeled transportation policy, which states that:

“Students are required to wear a helmet when riding Wheeled Transportation on or off campus. The helmet must be a properly fitted and fastened helmet that meets the standards of the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) or the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).”

Nevertheless, when riding any motorized vehicle, such as motorized bicycles or motor-driven cycles, passengers and riders must wear a helmet as per the California Motorcycle Helmet Law. Breaking this rule can result in being stopped by law enforcement and being fined for a traffic violation, these fines can go up to $250 and you risk getting one year of probation in more serious cases. Understandably, this is for your own good because not wearing a helmet is an immediate safety hazard.

Mr. Clymo says, “Safety is a collective endeavour. I think that there are ways in which we need to love together as a community and that doesn't always mean you get to do what you want. Ultimately safety is another piece that you're always trying to quantify that's hard to do. So most of these policies, if not all, start from a place of safety. And how can we impact the largest number of people and design [the policy] from there”. Henry says that “Most people who ride skateboards are people who know how to do it and are comfortable, those who don't know how aren't really going to be riding all over the paths and stuff. They're gonna stay in the parking lot.”


Until the 1960s, many skaters made their own skateboards because the mass-produced ones were extremely primitive and as a result skating was considered a dangerous fad. Then in 1972, something revolutionary happened and the urethane wheel was invented by Frank Nasworthy which is still used to this day. The “Ollie” was also invented during this time by Alan Gelfald, and it is still the foundation for all proceeding skating tricks. In the late 70s skateboarding received global recognition when it traveled overseas to Germany, where Munich became a skating hub. In the 1980s street skateboarding was born as skaters began experimenting new and different maneuvers on the improved skateboard which was more concave and featured a wider deck. The popularity of skating also grew with the creation of vert skating, which is skateboarding on a ramp or incline. Social media and digital platforms also greatly helped in enlarging skateboarding’s audience as events such as the X-Games were televised and broadcasted; in fact Brandon Novak, Tony Hawk’s apprentice, was scouted because they saw a video clip that he posted of him performing a trick. The internet has played a significant role in connecting skateboarders from all corners of the world.


Skateboarding is the sixth fastest growing sport in the United States and in recent years the number of skateboarding participants has increased from around 6 million from 2011-2019 to 8.87 million in 2021 according to the Statista Research Department. Originally skating was promoted as an alternative to surfing in the 1950s during the off-seasons when the waves were bad and it was referred to as “sidewalk surfing”, then due to its accessibility it gained much more traction since you could skate almost anywhere. According to Mr. Clymo, “There are more skateboards across the pool from my office than there have been in the last couple of years [I think]. Everything goes in waves, and ultimately, that's why the policy feels new. Because [I think] there's an increase in incidents and use and therefore you have to re-publicize the rules. “Henry Parker says that “it's because skateboarding is more popular now than it has been in previous years.” But what made this unusual pastime grow into a $2 billion dollar industry? Arguably, the first step in skateboarding becoming ‘mainstream’ was Tony Hawk's “Pro Skater” video game which has turned into the ultimate franchise: admired by skaters and video game enthusiasts alike. In almost all branches of popular culture you can feel the influence of skateboarding; either in movies, clothing, video games, malls and music, the effect of skateboarding is undeniable.


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