Selecting a gift for a skateboarder is no easy task. Most skaters are very particular about their boards and other equipment, so unless you know them and the sport extremely well, avoid going this route. The nature of your gift also depends upon the age and experience level of the individual skater. It may be easier to buy for beginning skaters who may not be as picky about brands or styles, but you still need to know a little something about the sport.
Listed below are a variety of more general gifts that would be appreciated by nearly any skateboard enthusiast. Just remember to keep in mind the skill level and age of the recipient, as well as how much money you are looking to spend.
(1) Magazine Subscriptions. Skateboard Magazine and Transworld Skateboarding are two popular publications, which feature interviews with pro skaters, skateboarding news and tips, and some really great photography. A magazine subscription is a great idea if you want to buy a cool gift but you’re not looking to spend a lot of money. Twelve issues of Skateboard Magazine costs only about $15, a huge savings from buying individual issues off the rack at $3-$4 a pop.
(2) Skateboard Videos, which can be purchased at skate shops and on the Internet, are also a popular idea. Most skate companies release new videos on a fairly regular basis, so there are quite a few to choose from. The DC Video, which features Danny Way breaking two skateboarding world records is a classic that every skateboarder should have in their video library. “Yeah Right!” produced by Girl is another very popular choice.
Two actual full-length films that most every skater would love to own are Dogtown and Z-Boys & Lords of Dogtown. Both films deal with the history and lives of the legendary Zephyr surf and skateboarding team. While Dogtown and Z-Boys is a documentary and Lords of Dogtown is a feature film, it has been said that both films do a nice job of staying true to the actual events that they portray. However, due to content, these films may not be appropriate for very young skaters.
(3) Tony Hawk’s Project 8 is a great idea for skateboarders who also have a little gamer in them. This game is available for nearly every gaming system on the market. Supposedly, this newest Hawk game blows the previous versions out of the water.
(4) Disposable; A History of Skateboard Art is a book that features over one thousand skateboard graphics from the last three decades. Those of you who are familiar with skateboarding know that skateboard artwork has been an important part of its history and aesthetic. Older skaters especially might appreciate the nostalgic value of this book.
(5) Selecting skateboarding shoes and apparel is sometimes a bit easier than picking out an actual skateboard setup, but can still be problematic. Most skaters are very loyal to certain brands, and might refuse to wear anything else, so make sure you do your research before you hit the shops. Obviously, whenever you buy clothing or footwear for someone else, you need to make sure that you know what sizes you are looking for.
(6) Gift cards or cold hard cash make great gifts for picky or experienced skaters. However, you still want to know what brands they prefer so that you can select the appropriate retailer. If there are no skate shops in your area, there are many popular retailers selling skateboards and skate apparel online.
(7) Skate camp. Various locations offer camps and clinics for skateboards to learn new tricks, enhance their skills and make new friends. A visit to a skateboard camp could be a once in a lifetime experience for many skaters and would make an awesome gift. Ask about camps in your area at your local skateboarding shop or visit www.skateboard.about.com for links to information about various camps and clinics.
(8) If you have the room, skateboarding ramps and rails are great gift ideas. I don’t know of any skater who wouldn’t appreciate having his/her own ramps and rails to practice on. To purchase, visit your local skate shop, sporting goods store or go online. If you’re handy and have the time, you might attempt building them yourself.
(9) A video camera might seem like an odd addition to this list, but most serious skateboarders like to video tape their sessions, so that they can evaluate their riding skills. Not only is it a great way to record how your skills improve over time, but it’s also fun and rewarding to be able to watch a great session or share it with your friends and family.
(10) Skateboard furniture may also seem like a strange addition, but it could make the perfect gift for the skateboarder who has everything. Several different companies make some really cool furniture using skateboard decks. While the furniture is functional, some of it is more for show than for everyday use. For example, chairs made from skateboards, as you can imagine, are not going to be as comfortable as your La-Z-Boy.
Skateboard furniture can also be pretty expensive, so you want to be sure that your boarder would appreciate it. Many skateboarders save their old decks, so if you’re a somewhat creative person, you could make the furniture yourself. Not only would it be much cheaper, but utilizing their own boards would make it a more meaningful gift. Of course, you would need permission before confiscating all of their old boards, which might give away the surprise. For examples and information on where to buy skateboard furniture visit www.skateone.com.