Skateboarding is one of the most popular recreational activities among today’s young people. In fact, it’s difficult to drive down any street without seeing one or more kids out there having the time of their life. Unfortunately, skateboarding can be a dangerous sport if basic skills aren’t mastered early on. Anyone who is just beginning to take up the sport should heed a bit of advice to stay safe when skateboarding.
Learn How to Fall Safely
If you are going to skateboard, you should know that you will inevitably fall. Even those pro boarders who do some amazing tricks for audiences will fall often. It’s inevitable. Knowing this, it is imperative that you learn how to fall. Two tips on falling offered by the National Safety Council (NSC) are:
- If you feel a fall coming, crouch so you have a shorter distance to fall.
- Learn to roll on impact so your arms and elbows don’t absorb the shock.
If you want to master any advanced skills, you must first learn how to fall. It can’t be said enough. If you are going to skateboard, you are going to fall.
Helmets Are a Must
Knowing that you will fall at some point in time when skateboarding, it is imperative that you protect your skull. Brain injuries are among the most serious of all skateboarding injuries, so cool or not, wear a helmet! Also, for those who wear braces, there are mouth guards available to protect all that dental work your parents paid an arm and a leg for! You can learn all about protecting your braces on sites like Health Row, but if you don’t pay attention, you might knock out a few teeth those braces are attempting to straighten.
Practice in Designated Areas
According to The Inquirer, a Philadelphia tabloid, more than 50,000 reported visits to emergency rooms are reported each and every year with over 1,500 resulting in hospitalizations. Part of the problem is that kids don’t practice advanced tricks in designated areas. For example, you should learn the art of falling on a soft surface like a grassy field. Most kids practice falling on the sidewalks and streets where they will be using their board. That’s a huge mistake. Tricks you want to master should be learned at a skateboarding park that is set up to handle the type of skill you will be working on. You might want to show off a bit as you are mastering a new trick, but you won’t look too cool when you fall and break your leg.
You can stay safe while skateboarding if you take the time to learn the basics before showing off on the streets. Yes, you want to look cool with your friends, but again, you may elicit more laughter than applause if you don’t learn to skate safely. Your health is at risk – in fact, your very life may be at risk. If you have any hope of walking away from that board from time to time, keep your focus on safety. All else will come in due time.