Who Invented The Skateboard? Who Really invented It!

People frequently say that Larry Stevenson invented the skateboard. In the early 1960s, he created a skateboard that resembled a miniature surfboard. However, other different kinds of skateboards were produced far earlier than the 1960s, and many claims to have been the original inventor of the skateboard.

Skateboarding is a popular board sport that has inspired skaters to transform their hobby into a legitimate career. It can generate a lot of excitement among the players while also making them wonder who invented the skateboard.

This informative article will tell us how, when, and who invented skateboard and some interesting facts. If you are a skateboard lover, make sure to read the full article!

Is Skateboarding a Sport?

Skateboarding is an Olympic sport that has become a professional sport while retaining its independence from traditional team sports. It’s actually a recreational activity that involves trick riding. Riders display their talents or commute while standing on a flat board, usually constructed of wood, with four wheels attached underneath.

Who Invented Skateboard
Who Invented Skateboard

What Purpose Does A Skateboard Serve?

Skateboarding is a board sport in which the participant rides a short, thin board that is often made of some composite material and has a set of small wheels attached to each of the board’s ends.

The rider gives themselves forward momentum by planting one foot on the board while simultaneously driving along with the other foot on the ground. In most cases, they will stand on the board upright or crouched. A wide variety of feats can execute from either of these positions.

Skateboarding can be done for many purposes. For example, pure recreation, as a method of transportation, as a form of artistic expression, or even a vocation for those talented enough to do it.

When Was The First Skateboard Invented?

Surfers in California invented the first skateboard ever in the early 1940s to discover a means to surf on land. The skateboard was created when roller skate wheels were mounted to wooden boards. Skateboarding has grown tremendously in popularity worldwide since the 1950s when the first mass-manufactured skateboards were produced.

Who Invented Skateboard?

In 1958, Bill Richards skateboard inventor, created the contemporary skateboard. A wooden board has skateboarding wheels connected to it. This was first offered for sale in 1959 under Roller Derby Skateboards.

These had exceptionally thick boards, clay wheels, and narrow trucks. Due to their poor grip, these skateboards were almost as secure as modern skateboards.

Another creator of the skateboard is Larry Stevens. In 1969, Art Hee created the kicktail, which gave skaters increased control and maneuverability.

One of the first businesses to employ clay wheels rather than metal wheels was his own, Makaha. People are now able to maneuver their boards more easily.

Alan Gelfand uncovered Ollie in the late 1970s. It is a crucial component of practically every current skateboarding skill you learn and enables skateboarders to jump while still on the board. These pioneers transformed skateboarding into what it is now by creating the tapered design.

What Is The Origin Of Skateboarding?

who invented skateboard?
who invented skateboard?

Skateboarding has existed for more than half a century. Some believe it began in the 1950s as a way for surfers in California to pass the time when the waves remained flat. Others suggest it developed in the 1970s as a way for New York City youths to escape traditional sports.

Skateboarding has turned into a global phenomenon, regardless of where it began. Skating is now enjoyed by millions of people, whether for recreation or competition. And, as professional skateboarding grows, the sport will only grow in popularity.

Skateboarding will continue to be popular in the years to come, regardless of whether or not you only dabble in it sometimes. So, where did this one-of-a-kind and well-known game come from? Let’s look into skateboarding’s history to discover.

Skateboarding initially appeared in the 1920s, when children in California began using wooden boxes or boards to which roller skates were attached. They climb slopes and sidewalks while performing stunts such as spins and jumps. This practice was known as “sidewalk surfing.”

Larry Stevenson is credited with designing the first high-quality skateboard and patenting the double kicktail. Stevenson also arranged the first skateboarding events and had the first skate team.

Skateboarding grew increasingly popular in the 1950s, particularly in Southern California, and this is widely regarded as the birth of modern skateboarding. 

Around this period, surfers started manufacturing their boards to practice riding them even when there were no waves. They will skate on hills and sidewalks by attaching roller skates to wooden pieces.

Some say skateboarding began on the East Coast in the 1960s when surfers from California visited New York City to educate children on how to skateboard on the sidewalks and concrete. Unfortunately, there is no substantial evidence that this occurred.

In 1964, the Hobie Cat Company began producing a device known as the “Hobie Skateboard.” It immediately gained popularity and comprised roller skates fastened to a wooden board. Skateboarding became increasingly popular because of the first skateboard that was mass-produced.

Skateboarding’s popularity diminished in the late 1960s and the early 1970s. This was due to various circumstances, including the popularity of other sports like BMX biking and inline skating. However, the development of urethane wheels helped skateboarding resurge in the middle of the 1970s.

This improved wheel enabled smoother riding and greater mobility, making skating more enjoyable. Furthermore, the punk music scene of the 1970s frequently embraced skating as a means of rebelling against the mainstream. 

As a direct consequence, skateboarding became favored by punk rockers and other teenagers searching for an alternative to conventional forms of athletic competition.

Skateboarding is becoming famous among individuals of various ages and backgrounds. It has blossomed into a worldwide sensation, with professional tournaments and millions of fans. From its humble beginnings, skateboarding has grown into a global phenomenon.

Who Made Skateboarding Popular?

Skateboarding first gained popularity in the 1950s and 1960s as a way for surfers to surf waves even when conditions weren’t ideal for surfing. As a result of the advent of the skateboard, “sidewalk surfing” evolved.

It eventually became so popular that skateboard firms like Makaha were founded, and by 1963, over 50M skateboards had been sold.

Skateboarding’s popularity has fluctuated throughout history, owing to its widespread perception as a risky sport with a high chance of injury.

However, the game was never completed and adapted during the recession. Skating witnessed significant growth following the launch of the X-Games in 1995 and the advent of worldwide skateboarding celebrities such as Tony Hawk.

A tremendous adrenaline rush is produced when the potential for serious harm, the drive to complete a challenging trick, and the strenuous physical requirements of the sports all come together. It’s exhilarating to finally nail a problematic trick you’ve been practicing for months. 

That feeling of excitement is another reason why skateboarding is such a popular sport. Skaters (both men and women) make this sport more popular with their outstanding per formance and board tricks.

Who Invented The Skateboard Ollie?

The Evolution of Skateboarding
the evolution of skateboard

Now you may think, who invented skateboard? Well…Alan “Ollie” Gelfand pioneered the skateboard ollie in the late 1970s. This is a fundamental skateboarding move that serves as the foundation for many more sophisticated techniques.

In its most basic form, an ollie is a leaping technique that enables skaters to hop over obstacles such as curbs. What makes Ollie so spectacular is how the skateboard adheres to the skater’s foot in mid-air.

Many assume that when they see photographs of skaters with 4-foot height, the board is somehow tied to the skater’s feet. No, it does not.

What’s even more impressive about Ollie is that the skater pushes the board enough to make it leap! Rotation around many axes is the key to this counterintuitive approach, and professional skaters adore using this approach in team sports.

What Did People Use Before Skateboards?

Regarding what people utilized before skateboards, various hypotheses exist. Some claim that the individuals rode on their feet, whereas others think they used wooden boards or wheeled barrels.

However, this assertion is not backed up by any complex data. Skateboarding has been practiced for millennia, and the earliest skateboards were basic.

  • In 1800, skating gained its actual popularity in America, and new skating techniques were developed. James Plimpton created the first four-wheeled roller skates in 1876, which greatly simplified and improved skating.
  • In the 1990, people started fastening metal plates to their shoes. So they could walk on smooth surfaces resembling polished wood floors. The original skateboards were built from wooden boards containing metal plates fastened to the bottom, leading to the skateboard industry’s birth.
  • The popularity of skateboarding continued to rise during the 20th century. Now it’s become a sport played by people of many ages and nationalities worldwide.

12 Interesting Skateboarding Facts

Who Invented Skateboard?
What Did People Use Before Skateboards

Skateboarding has a long and illustrious history, which is well known to us. If you are a skateboard fan, the time has come to learn some interesting facts that can easily blow your mind.

  1. “Sidewalk surfing” was the initial name for skateboarding

Surfers discovered they could practice their maneuvers without waves using their temporary boards. They will come upon concrete banks that resemble waves. Due to this, skating was initially known as carving and pavement surfing. In the 1960s, making large surf-style maneuvers was the predominant technique used.

  1. 85M people worldwide participate in skateboarding

Skateboarding is a famous American sport, but the culture surrounding it is sweeping the globe. California is where more than half of all US skaters, and more than 75% are under 18. With these figures, it ranks as the sixth-most played game globally.

  1. Skateboarding was barefoot in the beginning

Skateboarding was initially done barefoot, like surfing, because of the similarities between the two sports. Wrapping your toes all around the edge of the skateboard was one of the original techniques for performing a skateboard jump, also known as an “Ollie.”

  1. The first skateboards were made from wooden crates

The skateboard’s precise ancestry is unknown. However, the earliest models were roller skate wheels attached to wooden crates for downhill use. In the beginning, they used the entire box to use the top as a handlebar. This eventually developed into the earliest versions of the wooden planks and wheels that we are familiar with today.

  1. The first skate park was built in 1965

The first skatepark was constructed in Tucson, Arizona, in 1965. Its name was “Surf City,” and its shape resembled a contemporary park. Then, in 1976, skateparks began popping up all over. 

Both opened in 1976, one in Australia and one in Carlsbad, California. The first privately owned skatepark was established in 1977 and is still operating today at Kona Skatepark in Jacksonville, Florida.

  1. The wheel transformed into sports

Clay wheels, which were initially used on skateboards, were hefty and unreliable, and they needed to be more appropriate for the high-performance tactics we’re used to seeing now. 

They eventually gave way to steel, but the development of wheels, as we recognize them, only occurred in the 1970s with the discovery of polyurethane. Wheels made of polyurethane are lighter, more resilient, and provide better traction at high rates of speed.

  1. Invented by Alan “Ollie” Gelfand, Ollie

In 1978, Alan “Ollie” Gelfand became the first to perform a hands-free aerial while riding a skateboard with the nose slightly lifted. He was a Florida-born early-career pro skateboarder who relocated to California to further his career. 

While practicing at Skateboard USA Park in Hollywood, he learned a novel way to wind the board without using his hands to maintain it attached to his feet. It is advertised and given the name “ollie” by the skateboard media. It quickly gained popularity among street and vertical skaters and changed the sport.

  1. Rodney Mullen created most flip-and-spin moves

Because he was one of the original “flat ground” skateboarders, Rodney Mullen is referred to as the “godfather of skateboarding.” He was a typical young man from Florida who had a skateboarding obsession.

He utilized what he had seen Alan Gelfand perform in a bowl to complete the first flat-ground ollie. Skateboarding in “street style,” which takes place outside skateparks, is primarily done on flat terrain.

The kickflip, heelflip, pop shuvit, and tre flip are some of the modern flat-ground moves that Rodney Mullen pioneered. He worked on his tricks away from the skatepark.

  1. In the US, there are approximately 3,100 skateparks

Although skating is becoming more popular all over the world, the majority of skateboarders are still centered in the US. Here is where the sport originated, and Skateboards have been incorporated into several local governments’ communities. Currently, there are more than 3,100 parks only in the United States.

  1. In 2020, skateboarding made its Olympic debut

Any sport considers the Olympics a crucial turning point, and whether skateboarding is much more comparable to a sport or an art form is still hotly contested. Therefore, there was a wide range of reactions when it was revealed that skateboarding would be incorporated into the Olympics.

However, it served a positive purpose in that it officially recognized the skill and perseverance required of professional skateboarders. On the other side, skaters were worried that it would diminish the sport’s distinctive countercultural characteristics.

  1. Empty pools inspired skate park design

To save water, homeowners in Southern California drained their pools at the beginning of the 1970s. Skateboarders soon discovered that skating the bowl-shaped area of a pool was more enjoyable than skating any slope or embankment since it was similar to surfing large waves. 

The first skate parks were created to resemble those empty swimming pools because they sought more extensive and efficient pools to rehearse “carving waves.”

  1. Skateboarding is a multi-billion-dollar industry

The value of the worldwide skateboarding market has surpassed $2 billion. Pandemics, global competitive skateboarding, the Olympics’ inclusion of the sport, and social media platforms like SkateTalk have contributed to the sport’s record-breaking growth.

Final Words

Many believe that Larry Stevenson invented the skateboard in the early 1960s, which looked like a little surfboard. However, numerous different kinds of skateboards were developed significantly earlier than the 1960s, and many people claim to be the original creator of the skateboard. 

If you are here, you are likely already familiar with the history of the skateboard, including when it was first created and who invented skateboard. Apart from this, we have given some other important information for your convenience. Hopefully, you now know a lot about skateboarding. Congratulations!


When Was The First Skateboard Invented?

Surfers in California invented the first skateboard ever in the early 1940s to discover a means to surf on land. The skateboard design was created when roller skate wheels were mounted to wooden boards. Skateboarding has become grown tremendously in popularity worldwide since the 1950s when the first mass-manufactured skateboards were produced.

Who were the Zephyr skateboard team or Z-Boys?

The Zephyr skateboard team, also known as the Z-Boys, were a group of young skateboarders who gained prominence in the 1970s. They hailed from Southern California and revolutionized skateboarding with their unique style and innovative approach.

What were Larry Stevenson’s contributions to skateboarding?

Larry Stevenson, the founder of Makaha Skateboards, made significant contributions to skateboarding. He introduced clay wheels, which revolutionized the sport by providing a smoother ride and better traction. Stevenson also played a role in the introduction of the kicktail, which enhanced maneuverability on skateboards.

Who was the first female skateboarder?

Patti McGee was the first woman to skateboard professionally. In 1964, she was also the first woman to win the Women’s National Skateboard Championship. She was a pro for Hobie Skateboards by 1965 and toured the country exhibiting the new sport sweeping America.

Who invented skateboard tricks?

Rodney Mullen, a United States skater, is considered the most influential of all skaters. Between 1997 and 2008, he came up with around 30 different skateboard tricks.

What was the first skateboarder’s board made of?

Skateboarders started to make wooden school boards. Roller skates and surfboards are often used to make these boards. In the 1950s, a surfer did the oldest known skateboard trick by attaching his board with his feet and rolling it down a hill. Improved boards and methods in the 1960s made skateboarding mainstream. Skateboarding is enjoyed worldwide by all ages

Norman J. Wells
Norman J. Wells

Hello, my name is Norman J. Wells I am the founder of Get skater which is my blog.

I specialize in skateboarding and offer skateboarding services to businesses of all sizes around the world, ultimately improving their bottom line by teaching creative solutions to their problems. Shoot me a quick email to see how I can help you!

Articles: 131

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *