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February 12, 2024 3 min read

Skate Culture and Community

Roller skating is more than just a hobby or a sport - it's a culture and a community that has been around for decades. Whether you're a seasoned pro or a newbie lacing up your skates for the first time, roller skating is a fun and exciting activity that brings people together from all walks of life. In this blog, we'll dive into the roller skate culture and community, exploring its history, top trends, and the importance of inclusivity.

History of Roller Skate Culture

Roller skating has been around for over a century, with the first recorded roller skate patent dating back to 1760. But it wasn't until the 1950s and 1960s that roller skating really took off in popularity, especially in the United States. Roller rinks popped up all over the country, and the disco era brought a new level of glamour and excitement to the sport.

In the 1970s and 1980s, roller skating continued to be a popular activity, especially among African American and Latinx communities. Skaters would gather at roller rinks, parks, and other public spaces, often incorporating dance moves and music into their routines.

Today, roller skating is experiencing a resurgence in popularity, with a new generation of skaters embracing the sport and creating their own unique styles.

Top Trends in Roller Skate Culture

One of the most exciting things about roller skating is the constantly evolving trends and styles within the community. Here are some of the top trends in roller skate culture right now:

  1. Outdoor Skating - With the pandemic limiting access to indoor roller rinks, many skaters have taken to outdoor skating. From city streets to parks, outdoor skating allows for a different kind of skating experience and a chance to connect with nature.

  2. Jam Skating - Jam skating is a style of skating that incorporates dance moves, acrobatics, and other tricks. It's often set to music, with skaters freestyling and improvising their moves.

  3. Skateboarding Crossovers - Skateboarding and roller skating have a lot in common, and many skaters are incorporating skateboarding moves into their roller skating routines.

  4. Retro Vibes - Roller skating has a rich history, and many skaters are embracing retro vibes with their outfits and skates. From 70s-inspired disco looks to 80s neon colors, retro style is a big part of roller skate culture.

Inclusivity in Roller Skate Culture

One of the things that makes roller skate culture so special is its focus on inclusivity and community. Roller skating is a sport that welcomes all ages, genders, and skill levels, and many skaters find a sense of belonging within the community.

However, it's important to acknowledge that roller skate culture hasn't always been as inclusive as it should be. Historically, roller skating has been dominated by white, cisgendered, and able-bodied skaters. But in recent years, there has been a push for greater diversity and inclusivity within the community.

Organizations like the Skate Kitchen, a group of female-identified skaters, and Black Girls Skate, which focuses on creating safe spaces for Black girls and women, have been instrumental in promoting diversity and inclusivity within the roller skate community.

In addition to these organizations, many individual skaters are using social media to showcase their talents and connect with others within the community. By sharing their stories and experiences, these skaters are helping to create a more inclusive and welcoming space for everyone.

Conclusion

Roller skating is more than just a fun activity - it's a culture and a community that has been around for decades. From its early days in the 1950s to its current resurgence in popularity, roller skating has evolved and changed over the years, with new trends and styles emerging all the time.

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