According to Redbull, Skateboarding is the activity that has come to define urban cool. Since its creation in 1960s California, skateboarding’s simplicity and accessibility has seen it flourish right around the world. Through highs and lows of popularity, skateboarding has today become a multi-billion dollar industry whose leading practitioners are famous throughout the world via the mediums of video, gaming and huge brand endorsements. 2021 will see skateboarding cross a huge cultural threshold as it debuts on the greatest athletic stage in the world.
Skateboarding may be one of many popular sports around the world, but there has never been an-ever shining light unto our regions and the skaters breaking boundaries and carrying the African skate culture forward. With that said, here are four skate crews doing just that; Soweto Skate Society, Skate Nation Ghana, WAFFLESNCREAM and Girls Skate South Africa from different parts of the African continent, mainly Nigeria, Ghana and South Africa.
Soweto Skate Society
Soweto Skate Society is the reigning skate crew in our region as it was founded 12 years ago by the Bakers Man and this crew stems from Baker’s Man’s vision of making skating a popular sports activity in the township, in Soweto. By doing that he wanted to simultaneously bring the community together. The skate crew has worked with Adidas for the Adidas Forum campaign and Baker’s Man’s visions and dreams of making skateboarding a popular sport in the township came to reality and it’s beautiful to witness.
This skate crew, well the founder has made his way to Nigeria and was seen hanging and skating with Nigeria’s WAFFLESNCREAM skate crew. They are individually and collectively driving the skate culture in Africa forward with heel flips and flip tricks.
Skate Nation Ghana
Founded in 2008 by Joshua Ganyobi Odamtten, SKATE Nation Ghana is a skate crew that brings together people of all ages, genders and backgrounds to have fun skating. SKATE Nation Ghana is said to be a not-for-profit, community-based organization bringing skateboarding to the youth of Ghana and linking skateboarders around the globe together to share ideas and create an impact by helping others develop active lifestyles through skateboarding.
They can be found at Freedom Skate Skate, in Ghana. They worked a short while ago with Facebook to tell the story of Joshua and sandy through a short film and talked about how they used Facebook as a platform help to build an emerging skateboarding culture in Ghana.
WAFFLESNCREAM is Nigeria’s first skateboarding company, serving as the very first hub for skate culture and extreme sports in the West African region. It was founded in 2012. They aim to grow the culture of skateboarding within Nigeria, by supporting youth who show talent and interest in the sport. Over the years they developed an informal skating structure within the city of Lagos and cities in the West African region. Oftentimes documenting these sessions, meeting new skaters and growing our skate community along the way.
Their flagship store opened its doors in 2017, serving as a safe space for the Lagos underground scene, Nigerian youth of different backgrounds congregate – further nurturing this fast growing subculture.
Girls Skate – South Africa
Sharne Jacobs a freelance graphic designer founded one of my favourite skate communities, Girls Skate South Africa, defined as a community organisation operating throughout South Africa with headquarters in the thriving Johannesburg Metropolitan. Jacobs wanted to diminish the intimidation and stereotypes of being a woman doing a male dominated sport and that has been working effectively for her.
“Girls Skate South Africa has helped me grow so much and I am so grateful, I love what they are doing for the ladies that are skating. Hosting sessions, creating a safe space for women in skateboarding, helping us out with skate shoes and skateboards. I’m happy to be part of them” said Mmabatho, one of the members of Girls Skate South Africa.
[…] I have mentioned in the Four Skate Crews Carrying Skate Culture in Africa Forward article, Skate Nation Ghana was founded in 2008 by Joshua Ganyobi Odamtten and it is a skate crew […]