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Thread: "Female Skaters"

  1. #1

    Default "Female Skaters"

    Hi all,

    I've got a sneaky suspicion this topic may have been done to death......so if I'm going over old ground, apologies and please direct me to the appropriate thread!

    A recent tweet by Sidewalk pointed me in the direction of Rogue Skateboards. I checked it out and me and my 14 month old daughter went on to look at some of the videos on youtube. We looked at Lacey Baker as well who is amazing.

    I tweeted Jenny Selby's website - "documenting female skateboarders"

    Got a reply - "would men say hi, I'm a male accountant"

    Initially I felt, well, skating's very male dominated, so pointing out that an individual's website promotes specifically female skateboarding can't be a bad thing?

    Anyway, it would appear it can be?

    I'm not completely ignorant to think that I don't have some preconceived notions about the differences between the sexes, some conscious, some unconscious. But I never felt I was overtly prejudiced!

    So anyway, this reply got me thinking (I apologised btw). I would be very interested to hear people's opinions on this. I know this forum has old and new heads on it. For my part, I'm an old head! When I was skating regularly, it was basically Elissa Steamer and that was it. (I must admit I didn't really go out of my way to research other female skateboarders.)

    Can it be a good thing to mention a skater's gender? I suppose it would depend on the context. In the internet age is it less relevant? If you don't mention gender, will young women (non skaters) bother to follow the link?

    Thanks for listening!

  2. #2
    Übermensch Freshkid's Avatar
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    Not that I give a shit either way, but do you think if a female became the world's number one skateboarder (by whatever measure you wish to use) that women would ever shut up about it?

    I call it black president syndrome.

  3. #3
    Ultra King wayoutskates's Avatar
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    i think the reply you got was pretty ill thought out (not freshkid's, although the same could be applied ). like you said yes, skateboarding is a hugely male dominated thing, so therefore gender involvement does become a bigger deal. was it a male of female who replied? sounds like possibly either an overly liberal for the sake of it, feminist 'no mention of gender bias ever', or idiot male 'why do women think they get special treatment' point trying to be made

  4. #4
    Ultra King jimvo's Avatar
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    I think it's fair enough to promote 'female skaters' since there are so few of them. Personally it stokes me to see girls skating. Though I imagine the category 'girl skater' can be annoying if it's a label the female in question doesn't really want.

  5. #5
    Mini Goon
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    Could have been Vanessa Torres at the other end of the email?

    Would be ace if female skating got like surfing with ladies everywhere in bikinis!
    More are on it, my birds been skating for a while and doesn't feel she get's treated differently.

  6. #6

    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    No different from any other sport where male and female players compete on a different circuit, right? Tennis, soccer, athletics etc. Why can't you distinguish between the two when clearly such a distinction exists?
    That differntiates from the employment market which is unified and where gender discrimination is suspect. Although there exist science research awards that are female only. Ooof way too complex a debate for 9 am.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    Why is it that there are far fewer female skateboarders than snowboarders, proportionally speaking? The barrier to entry for snowboarding is pretty high right? Costs a lot, very few locations, not really visible outside its circle. Yet the participation rate is something like 20-25% female.

    Maybe i've got this backwards? The barrier to entry for skateboarding is much lower and this results in a higher participation rate by males?
    LJ

  8. #8
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    Only if you're looking at participation/entry primarily as 'buying the kit'.
    For lots of people, going snowboarding is the same as going on holiday.
    Going down your local Sainsbury's - regardless of your gender - to learn to push doesn't really have the same level of leisure/glamour does it?
    Last edited by anonymity; 3rd October 2012 at 04:58 PM.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    *EDIT* basically what Anon said.

    Snowboarding is a holiday thing. Most people who snowboard start out on a family ski holiday where they have a choice between Ski-ing, Snowboarding or doing fuck-all. Many of the girls who opt for snowboarding take if further because they start on a level playing field having lessons with their male peers and let's face it: you're much less likely to end up with scabby knees on snow.

    If families went on skate holidays and forced their kids to have either rollerblade or skateboard lessons, there would be a shit load of girl skaters.
    Last edited by hoorayforthecornet; 3rd October 2012 at 05:09 PM. Reason: beaten to it. pesky work getting in the way of me posting on here

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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    Quote Originally Posted by hoorayforthecornet View Post
    Snowboarding is a holiday thing. Most people who snowboard start out on a family ski holiday where they have a choice between Ski-ing, Snowboarding or doing fuck-all. Many of the girls who opt for snowboarding take if further because they start on a level playing field having lessons with their male peers and let's face it: you're much less likely to end up with scabby knees on snow.
    So basically: middle-class sport + boyfriend affect + it's easier? I dunno, that seems far too simple to me (heck, maybe it *is* that simple).
    LJ

  11. #11
    Ultra King wayoutskates's Avatar
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    except that isn't what he said in the slightest

  12. #12
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    Quote Originally Posted by wayoutskates View Post
    except that isn't what he said in the slightest
    Ugh, pardon my misinference.
    LJ

  13. #13
    Ultra King voodoo's Avatar
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    Are boys allowed on the netball team at school these days? So sexist!

  14. #14
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    Quote Originally Posted by lawrencium View Post
    So basically: middle-class sport + boyfriend affect + it's easier? I dunno, that seems far too simple to me (heck, maybe it *is* that simple).
    hahah, not really but kind of. If you ask any marketeer working for Roxy, Nike or Burton they will probably tell you that's the way it is, while selling shed-loads flowery girly products with fur linings and soft colours, maybe they are right, but my experience is very different.

    Both me and my sisters skied from a very young age (we grew up near Aviemore) and one of them has got more into snowboarding over time. I still do both. We are not in the slightest bit Middle class and none of the girls I know who like snowboarding are toffs who wear pink furry boots or glittery goggles. The real difference is that you have to go to the mountains to snowboard, once you get there, half the people around you are female and half of them are shit, you are all on holiday so it's much easier to drop your inhibitions and have a go, everybody has a laugh for the first week and many girls keep it up and get good. It's not really a cultural or class difference it's just the opportunity to have a go and learn in a context that's comfortable and fun, something that we all had with our mates when we started skating but many girls never really get. That and the fact that is IS easier to learn and less harsh on your body.

    With the massive increase in skateparks and organised learn-to-skate programs, young girls are getting the chance to have a go at skating all over the country and I see more of them all the time who get really into it. we may lament the death of street skating, but the inclusive nature of public parks is a big plus as far as leveling the gender gap is concerned. Maybe that little girl on a scooter that nearly killed you one time will ditch the scooter and become a proper gnarler one day.

  15. #15
    Mini Goon
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    Default Re: "Female Skaters"

    skateparks are also feeling not so different from mountain slopes.. ok, that sounds ridiculous but when you look at the parks around the country these days, its easier for woman to flow and cruise about big bowls and downhill snake runs, that are smooth as silk.

    I think it would be rad to see a comp with judging on style and speed, rather than just tricks, much like surfing and old school skateboarding shi haha

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