Skateboarding (in general): getting organized

International Skateboard Slalom Association

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Hans Koraeus
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Skateboarding (in general): getting organized

Post by Hans Koraeus » Wed Jan 05, 2005 1:35 am

There are a lot of things going on for the moment in our skateboard world. It seems like we have come to a point in our evolution where many are trying to organize skateboarding on a higher level. This is not a coincidence. But to know the source of this trend is hard to say.
- Is it the skaters themselves wanting to create a bigger sport to be able to have better possibilities to skate and have fun and maybe for others to make professional careers?

- Is it from organizers seeing advantages with building up a bigger scene and facilitate getting sponsors?

- Is it the administrators needing help getting their voice heard in skate related community projects like building skate parks?

- Is it the skateboard business wanting to create a bigger scene for better profits?

- Is it from other interests seeing a potential in the big skateboard community? I’m thinking for example of the International Olympic Committee seeing the interest among the younger generation decline for many of the current Olympic sports. Maybe sports TV and media as well wanting to serve a new up growing generation.
No one of the above or other wild guesses will make it happen alone but maybe is it that more and more reasons like the above have been building up. And with more and more pieces the picture gets more and more clear. And when it finally does, things can happen very quickly. There have been thoughts about organizing skateboarding in an International Skateboard Association but it is hard since skateboarders have this very strong feeling of freedom and that getting organized will make you loose it. I believe that you can have both. We can be organized and be "free" skateboarders at the same time.

Because skateboarders have not had any large high-level organisation one way to move forward for some has been to jump in to other existing organisations, like Roller Associations. And yes, maybe it could work if having sections for Rollerskates, Inlines, Skateboard, snakeboards, luge and the likes. But in my view this is only second best. The very best would of course be if skateboard could stand on its own legs with sections for downhill, slalom, flatland freestyle, street and vert.

It has been olympic talks among both roller people and skateboarders. Now it seems like the International Olympic Comittee has given an application to the International Roller Association and that they have been trying to contact the skateboard world (which is not easy because who is speaking for all the worlds skateboarders?). Maybe it’s time that someone did? But this is of course a painful project.

My dream. An International Skateboard Association with international sub associations for Downhill, Slalom, Flatland, Street and Vert. National Skateboard Associations with sub sections/associations for Downhill, Slalom, Flatland, Street and Vert. And then the sub-national Skateboard Associations and clubs attached to each national association. There should be a strong link between the international sub associations and the national sub sections/associations.

It is almost impossible to do this puzzle in one single step. That is why we should concentrate to create the pieces of the puzzle first. Then when we have most of the pieces we can maybe create the puzzle. ISSA is one of these pieces. National skateboard associations are too. And so are also all other sub-national associations/clubs.

The big philosophical question in the end will be: Are we Rollers or Skateboarders?

I think it would be very interesting to know what is happening in all the different countries concerning national skateboard and slalom associations. Maybe we could get some rumours of what is happening around the world? How are skateboard and/or slalom currently organized in your country (if it is at all)? Any rumours ideas about future steps?

Hans Koraeus
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Post by Hans Koraeus » Sun Jan 30, 2005 7:27 pm

Just came by this funny article about the Olympics: ... ympic'.htm. So skateboarding is under the Thrashin category? Doesn't look good for the slalom discipline. ;-)

Martin Siegrist
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Post by Martin Siegrist » Wed Feb 02, 2005 3:33 pm

a swiss organisation is planned! I'm dreaming of an association for at least slalom and downhill. it makes everything alot easier. sponsors for events and riders, money from the government for ahtletes who go to competitions in foreign countries and so on and on and on.....

Chris Eggers
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Post by Chris Eggers » Wed Feb 02, 2005 5:47 pm

Tony Hawk once said: "Skateboarding does not need the Olympics, but the Olympics need Skateboarding"

I think his statement remains true.

fabrice andré
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Re: switzerland

Post by fabrice andré » Wed Feb 02, 2005 5:56 pm

Martin Siegrist wrote:a swiss organisation is planned!
can you tell me more about that ? (by private msg by example)


Hans Koraeus
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Post by Hans Koraeus » Sun Mar 13, 2005 1:58 pm

Just saw this post on NCDSA about the Olympic fever. If we can't even get ISSA going for us then just forget about Olympics. We are small, but it can be balanced up by being well organized. The question is not wheather the Olympics is ready for us. Are we ready for the Olympics? And before that maybe it's a good idea to already start getting recognised and noticed by the skateboard world itself. As I have said before. Lets's get our shit together. Then we can start throwing it around.

My idea: "Forget about the Olympics. Let's work for a skateboard Olympics instead. A week with just skateboarding in all its forms." Maybe, I say maybe, then slalom could get considered...

Maybe Tony Hawk is right that "Skateboarding does not need the Olympics, but the Olympics need Skateboarding". But the scary thing then is... does that mean skateboarding do need bmx, inline, rollers and the likes?
Don Bostick wrote:NO, I'm not in charge of what skateboard events may be included in the Olympics.

NBC has been the guiding force in directing the International Olympic Committee (IOC) towards vert skateboarding. Street is not in the running, as it is considered too difficult for the public to understand. The fact that skateboarding is even being considered, is because of the huge impact and success of the snowboarding Halfpipe event at the past Winter Olympics in Park City, Utah. The success of ESPN X Games, the Gravity Games and various Action Sports events around the world have made an impact on the IOC. NBC has a long term contract with the IOC, so they are trying to get Action Sports into the Olympics. The feelings is that the Olympics need to stay in tune with the times. Action Sports meaning; skateboarding, BMX Freestyle and Aggressive Inline. Vert is what excites NBC. It's really that simple.

Last year the IOC contacted Gary Ream the owner of Woodward Camp, about Action Sports in general. Since Gary has been involved with Gymnastics for many years on an Olympics level, and the fact he has been involved with Skateboarding, BMX and Inline, he was a logical connection. Gary and Mike Jackie (a former President of USA Gymnastics and the USA Skiing) meet with the IOC in Switzerland. The IOC is very interested in Action Sports and they originally asked Gary and Mike to help them so they would be dealing with the correct people from the various sports. The first thought was to organize an Action Sports Federation that would be the International Governing Body for Skateboarding, BMX Freestyle and Aggressive Inline Skating. Gary then called a meeting that included many different facades of each sport. With Skateboarding, all of us that were in the meeting wanted no part of being involved in an Action Sports Federation. We're skateboarding and we have our own identity, no one was going for it. In fact no one wanted skateboarding in the Olympics. Gary informed us that the IOC and NBC want it in (eventually) and that if it is going to go that direction, we as an industry should have some control on our sport and therefore get involved. The results was the creation of USA Skateboarding and the International Skateboard Federation.

We have since created a board of directors and USA Skateboarding is going to apply to the US Government as the official NGB or National Governing Body for skateboarding, a non profit association. We have had around 6 meetings and the body of the association has slowly been growing. Myself, Tony Hawk and Jim Fitzpatrick were voted in as Vice Presidents. Gary Ream is the President. The board of directors include: World Cup Skateboarding, International Association of Skateboard Companies, Skate Park Association of the United States, Chris Miller, Bryce Kanights, Charlie Wilkins, Neal Hendrix, Andy Macdonald, Buster Halterman and Dave Carney. As you can see, all skateboarders. If in the future there is any money to be made from the Olympics, then USA Skateboarding will benefit. Funds will be directed towards skateparks and training facilities as well as different programs.

We have also had 3 International Skateboard Federation meetings. The first taking place almost a year ago in Vancouver, Canada in May of 2004. We had representatives from Europe, Asia and North America. The second meeting was held in Dortmund, Germany, where we had representatives from S. Africa, almost every country in Europe (Russia also). Gary Ream was voted in as President and I was voted in as 1st Vice President. The main goal of the federation is to set up each country with an official National Governing Body, so that if skateboarding does go to the Olympics, each country is set up properly to deal with the future business.

As USA Skateboarding grows, I'm positive that downhill, slalom and freestyle will be included. We are not trying to exclude anyone, but it takes some time to grow.

After all the meetings that I have been to, in my opinion Skateboarding will not be in the 2008 Olympics. From all indications, It's more likely that BMX Vert will get in. Believe me, the IOC is moving on this but they want to do it right. We're just aren't ready. Something else you should know is that I was opposed to vert for the very same reasons that John O mentioned. There aren't vert ramps all over the world. Street skating is every where and in my opinion, street should be representing skateboarding as it is more assessable to everyone and world wide it's what's happening.

I still love racing and I'm thrilled that DH and Slalom is growing again. I still believe that there is a long way to go. Get the kids into it and you'll have something. Without the kids it ain't going to happen.

I'm open to discuss my position in skateboarding with anyone at any time.

Don Bostick

Jani Soderhall
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Post by Jani Soderhall » Sun Mar 13, 2005 6:28 pm

If skateboard gets into the Olympics and Paris wins its bid for the 2012 Olympics, can I get a position as an organizer? I always wanted to participate in the Olympics, but I think by that time I'd better limit myself to being an offical - it'll be better for the image of the sport.

Maybe its not unrealistic. What a cool thought!


Paul Price
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Post by Paul Price » Mon Jun 11, 2007 3:50 am

Well now it may be happening Jani

LONDON, England -- The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is keen for skateboarding to become an official sport at the 2012 London Games.

The IOC said on Friday that it had held discussions with cycling's world governing body about taking skateboarding under its wing so it could be introduced into the 2012 program.

It is part of a move by Olympic chiefs to modernize the Games with sports and disciplines that appeal to young people.

The IOC has already added snowboarding to the Winter Games and BMX cycling for next year's Beijing Olympics.

"The IOC wants to make the program relevant for young people," IOC spokeswoman Emmanuelle Moreau said.

Moreau said officials of the International Cycling Union (UCI) met with the IOC sports department this week to discuss their proposal for adding skateboarding to the London Games.

The IOC does not recognize an international skateboarding federation, so the sport would first need to be adopted as a discipline under the UCI umbrella.

After that, the UCI could make a formal proposal to the IOC for its inclusion in the Olympics.

The proposed venue for skateboarding in London would be the velodrome in the Olympic Park.

"We are doing our best to introduce skateboarding for 2012," UCI sports director Olivier Quejuiner told the London Evening Standard.

"We have a clear strategy ... The venue could be wonderful. All we need now is the green light from the IOC. Technically, logistically and in terms of cost, it would not be a problem to stage the event in 2012."

Twenty-six sports are on the London Olympic program. While it is too late to add any sports, new disciplines can still be brought in.

Skateboard is currently one of the feature at the extreme sports X Games featuring "vert," "street" and "big air" events

Jean-Sébastien Dennebouy
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Post by Jean-Sébastien Dennebouy » Mon Jun 11, 2007 7:42 pm

In France we are connected with the roller sport federation, which cover different roller skating sports, skateboard, and for our part, downhill sports (this is the CND in France, gathering together slalom skateboard with downhill longskate, streetluge, mountainboard, downhill roller and buttboard.)

As in France we see the results of the official recognition of skateboard in terms of authorizations, organization, help from the citys and administration, we talked to Claude Regnier about the possibility to create or join an existant international structure. To be endorsed by a bicycle structure is not normal. They take the initiative in the recover of skateboard for Olympics Games only because there is money under there.

For that, above all ISSA need to be created officially, as an association, in a country (wherever you want, in France it would take 10 minutes an 35 Euros)

Paul Price
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or maybe not

Post by Paul Price » Wed Oct 10, 2007 1:58 am

This article appeared in the London Evening Standard 10th October 2007

Here is the article:

to find the article search on 'skateboarding' in

Wheels fall off 2012 skateboard event
Matthew Beard, Sports News Correspondent

Attempts to introduce skateboarding to the London Olympics have failed, it emerged today.
The International Olympic Committee had been keen to boost the youth appeal of the 2012 Games by giving the sport its debut in London.
But plans for the International Cycling Federation to adopt skateboarding as a "wheel-based" sport have faltered.
The proposals did not even make the organisation's agenda at its recent annual congress in Germany.
It canvassed opinion among its federations around the world, but they failed to give their unanimous backing and without the endorsement of a current Olympic sport, skateboarding's chances were dead although it may feature as an "exhibition" event.
The federation remains in talks with the IOC about introducing an additional form of BMX for London.
The cycling sport will make its debut at next year's Beijing games but, by 2012, a "freestyle" discipline could be added.
Skateboarders have been divided over the idea of taking part in the Olympics. Some would have welcomed the exposure, others said it would lead to a conformity that should be anathema to the sport that grew out of the Californian surf craze.
Kevin Parrott, secretary of the UK Skateboarding Association, said there were concerns that its introduction was being rushed.
"It has taken a long time to get competitive skateboarding right - both in the tone and technical aspects. The timetable to include it in the London Olympics was clearly too tight."
An IOC spokeswoman said: "BMX freestyle would be easier to introduce, as it already exists as a sport in the programme."
Under IOC rules, the deadline for a completely new sport at London 2012 passed in 2005. A loophole exists for a sport to be introduced as a "discipline" if it is adopted by an existing Olympic sport. New disciplines for London must be agreed by 2009.

Ramón Königshausen
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Post by Ramón Königshausen » Wed Oct 10, 2007 2:56 am


Feel the flow – Airflow Skateboards

Real skateboard wheels come in green – ABEC11

Enjoy the ride – GOG Slalom & DH Trucks

Martin Drayton
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Parrot bearing bad news...

Post by Martin Drayton » Wed Oct 10, 2007 9:19 am

Is it time to go hat in hand to the waterproof make up wearing, nose-clipped synchronised swimmers that edged us out in the vote to be at the LA Games of '84?
Now, theres a REAL sport....

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