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Learn To Skate This Summer

  • May 16, 2021

“Learning from people who just knew how to skate, they were showing you from their point of view,” said Dean. “Being an instructor and understanding body rotation, edges, weight transfer, control, balance and coordination is different.” Her adult clientele are a mix of people who skated during their youth but haven’t done it in decades, true first-timers, and those that can get around the rink but want to enhance their footwork.

Dean is also a former boxing champion, personal trainer and motorcyclist, but she has a simple reason for personal and professional focus on roller skating: “It makes you feel like a kid.” Even so, recapturing a bit of childlike joy can be a fraught experience once adult anxiety sets in. “We’re all coming into a new environment, we’re nervous, we’ve got preconceived notions — I’m aware of all that,” she said. She advises new students to maintain a positive attitude and refrain from judgment — of themselves or others.

Jitters and other concerns notwithstanding, instructors like Dean and O’Neal Ellerbe, a former professional skateboarder, find that adults continue to turn out in large numbers to conquer their fears on wheels. Ellerbe, the founder and lead coach of Skate-Everything School, has skateboarded with students up to age 60. “I think Covid was a big steppingstone for a lot of people,” he said. “It gave them the courage to step out of the box and try new things.”

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