Lizzie Armanto is one of the best female skaters around and she’s breaking down some walls for girl skaters. With all her recent coverage, it’s great to read what she has to say about girls in the skateboarding world. Some of it is a wake up call while other parts of it are enlightening. Let’s take a look into some major points that she makes in her recent interview with i-D Vice.
In the world of skateboarding, it’s undeniable that it is mainly geared towards men (for now). Most ads and products are meant to catch the attention of the majority male population that partake in skateboarding, so what is there for us girls? Lizzie makes a great point and talks about how major companies will instead hire models for high fashion “skater culture” ads (such as Coach or other high end clothing) as opposed to using actual girl skaters. She says that sometimes it ends up “making girls skateboarding look stupid”, and she has a point. I would much rather see a girl who shreds modeling clothing or other products as opposed to a model who is standing on a board with high-heels on. The reality though is that skateboard marketing isn’t geared towards women yet, and the girls they do use are merely “props”. From high fashion editorials that try to “be hip” to ads that actually market skate products, it’s clear to see what type of audience those ads are trying to reach. Seems kind of dull for girls right? Well Lizzie continues her interview with a more positive solution that is making it’s way into skateboarding.
Inspiration and support are the keys to breaking down barriers in the skateboarding world today. Lizzie mentions how inspiration is important, AND it’s becoming two sided; “It’s not like girls only get inspired by girls and boys only get inspired by boys” she says, making a great point. Skateboarding started as an “outcast” activity where people bonded over it because they all had a common interest. It’s starting to become like that again today in that people just get stoked on other skaters. We rally together, skate together, and encourage one another because skating in general makes us all excited. Personally, I am hugely inspired by the guys that I skate with and similarly, those guys have looked up to girl skaters, such as Lizzie or Julz Lynn. While there is still a smaller scene of girl skaters compared to guy skaters, it’s undeniable that the support for all genders is growing and changing for the better.
With this in mind, Lizzie makes one final point that might be the most important of all. Regardless of who you are, you should skate because it makes you happy. Lizzie talks about how skateboarding puts people into a “crazy culture and community” all while being rewarding as well. I think it’s most important to remember that at the end of the day, we all have a common denominator and that is skateboarding. Regardless of what makes you you, we are all crazy enough to keep skating, keep hurting ourselves, and then get back up to keep skating some more.
Girls who skate, look up to whoever you want to, show support and positivity for your fellow shredders, and keep striving for the best. We have great examples like Lizzie that show us what skateboarding is really about and that’s happiness. No matter what gender bias or negativity surfaces in skating, just remember it’s all temporary and not worth the time. Your happiness is what matters and skateboarding provides that, 110% guarantee.
On that note, I’ll end this off by saying thank you skateboarding. Now get off the computer and go skate!
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