Skateboarding is now on the curriculum with students from The Ladies College the first to try their skills at the sport.
‘Extreme sports, particularly skateboarding, are great for girls to learn because it teaches them to overcome their fears and be brave,’ said Ladies College Head of PE, Helen Le Maitre.
‘It provides a sense of freedom, adventure and thrill, whilst giving them an opportunity to express themselves without the constraints and rules of other sports.’
Skateboarding was one of the stand-out new sports in the recent Tokyo Olympics and Guernsey Skateparks is determined to broaden the appeal of skateboarding and other similar sports. The organisation has been working with the Guernsey Sports Commission and the Youth Commission to improve access to the Jubilee skatepark and provide a pathway into the sport for all ages.
Skater Julian Cochrane is the new coach and is looking forward to working with other young people.
‘It’s great to share the love I have for skateboarding and give something back to the sport,’ said Julian.
The Year 11 students were really enjoying their second session at the skatepark.
‘It’s really great to make progress so quickly,’ said Emily.
‘It’s great having the instructor here encouraging me. I didn’t go down the ramp last week but now I feel much safer,’ said Emma.
Flik agreed; ‘it’s been good to have someone who is experienced to help us.’
Lexi was already an experienced rider but was enjoying being part of the session: ‘I’ve done skateboarding at home but it’s cool to be able to do it as part of PE,’ she said.
Helen said that Ladies College was keen to keep up with the latest trends and make sure the curriculum was current and up to date.
‘Skateboarding encourages risk taking and a sense of pride when a successful ride or turn is completed,’ she said.
‘It develops musculature and strength, whilst providing a good starting point for surfing. It also introduces them to a new community with other skaters.’
Other year groups from Ladies College and a number of other schools are now clamouring to have a go, so the skatepark looks set to busy in the coming weeks and months.
Who knows, Guernsey could be the breeding ground for a new generation of skateboarders following in the footsteps of 13-year-old Olympic bronze medallist Sky Brown.
Anyone interested in finding out more about skateboarding can contact Steve Sharman at the Guernsey Sports Commission at Steve.Sharman@guernseysports.com