Skateboarding has come a long way since the days when American kids rode in dehydrated swimming pools to hone their radical board skills. Today, skateboarder culture is so popular it even has a sub-culture: scooter riding. The Margaret River region has embraced the skate lifestyle by providing towns with purpose-built skate parks.
Skateboarding is more than a way for youth to pass time. For some, it’s a passion. It certainly is for Luke Ward, owner of the south west’s only core skate shop, Soggybones, located in central Dunsborough. Luke Grew up idolising professional skateboarders. While classmates had pictures of pop stars on their bedroom walls, he had posters of skateboarders.
‘There were no skateparks when I grew up. I learned in driveways and car parks,’ says Luke. The 30-year-old skateboarder owns the Soggybones brand with his brother, Justin. The Perth-born siblings come from board-sport stock: their grandfather was one of the original surfers catching waves at Yallingup, back in the day. It’d be safe to say that surfing and skateboarding is in their blood.
Luke passes on his skill and passion for skateboarding by coaching, mentoring and sponsoring up-and-coming skaters. His Tailtap Skate Clinics, which teach skateboarding technique and etiquette, are held at skateparks around Western Australia.
The Margaret River region boasts five skate parks, so grab a board (or scooter!) and get amongst it.