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kottke.org posts about skating

Tyshawn Jones The General

Ooops, guess we’re doing two tonight. Goodness. Compare this to the video from last night. Tyshawn Jones is just getting so much speed up for these tricks. It’s like a different sport. Both so great to watch.

Saw a quote from Tyshawn Jones where he said he grew up watching this Andrew Reynolds - Baker 3 video and you can see the similarities in the size/speed of the tricks. (Frontside flips at :30 and 4:45ish, hooo boy.)

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Gou Miyagi Skates Very Mellow

I like the skate videos where the skaters show how high or fast or far they can go and the control they have over their bodies while flying through the air, but I also like the videos where the skaters put their feet on the ground sometimes and use the board as more than something to ride on, as a prop. Gou Miyagi does a lot of tricks like that, riding up to a set of steps, running up the rail, sliding down on his butt, and landing on the board, and skating off, things of that nature. It all looks very nice.

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Brutal Lyon 25 Stair, Destroyer of Action Sport Dreams

I love Australian pro skater Ricky Glaser’s narration of all the videos he could find of people attempting to jump a famous set of 25 stairs in Lyon. Aaron “Jaws” Homoki (no relation), was the first to do it despite injuring himself on the stairs previously. At 6:15 the scooter carnage starts, “Like is he alive after that?” We can also appreciate Glaser’s criticism of the camera work at about 9:50. This is truly a masterpiece.

By the way, you may have heard of Ricky Glaser, as he is the world record holder for most kick flips in a minute, 36, which is just about 3 per second if my math is right.

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Wild Ice Skating

an ice skater stands on very clear blue lake ice with mountains in the background

Winter is winding down here in the northern hemisphere (though you wouldn’t know it from the foot of new snow outside my window), but for practitioners of wild ice skating, spring can bring favorable conditions.

But the problem with Nordic skating or any kind of wild skating — which is defined as outdoors and on naturally formed ice, regardless of the style of skate used — is finding good ice. Wild-ice seekers extol late fall and sometimes spring for freezing conditions without snowfall, which degrades ice.

Instagram is full of amazing videos of wild skating. When they lower the water level in an icy reservoir, you can even go downhill skating.

Listen to the ice on this one! It reminds me of one of my all-time favorite videos that I’ve posted to the site: The Wonderful Sounds of Skating on Black Ice. (thx, caroline)

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The Wonderful Sounds of Skating on Black Ice

Recently frozen lake ice has some interesting properties: it looks completely black and makes some interesting sounds when you skate over it. Swedish mathematician MÃ¥rten Ajne is a black ice skating enthusiast and he demonstrates his technique in this National Geographic video. You’ll want to turn up the sound or use headphones…the ice sounds like a cross between sci-fi phaser fire and getting pinged by sonar in a submarine.

The most desirable condition is virgin black ice, when a lake has caught its first ice cover and it has grown just thick enough to bear your joy. In favorable weather conditions this will take two days after freeze-over.

Five centimeters [2 inches] is often the limit [to how thin it can be]. If you’re close to shore, you can go thinner, up to about 3.5 centimeters, before it breaks. That’s for fresh, cold black ice. Brackish ice, which contains salt, needs to be thicker and is more difficult to assess.

At one point, Anje measures the ice with a caliper — it’s only 45 mm thick — but what really illustrates the crazy thinness of the ice is that you can see the surface flex as the water moves under it (wait for him to skate by the camera at ~1:42 in the video) and the ice cracking behind him (at ~2:02). Whaaaaa?!! (via the kid should see this)


Skating with style

We are truly in a golden era of skateboarding videos (again). The easy access to relatively good camera equipment on one side, and easy video distribution via the web on the other, have created a perfect storm in the last 4 or 5 years of gorgeous, highly stylized skateboarding videos. What am I saying, skateboarding videos have always been awesome.


Skating with shadows

I’ve seen skateboarding dogs, but I’ve never seen a skateboarding shadow before. The video feels like a dream sequence in a movie, a movie where some evil wizard turns the boys of Dogtown into shadows.


Slow motion skating

There’s angles/close ups in this video I’ve never seen in a skate video before.


All in together now

It’s been great posting for you all the last week+! Thanks for the good times. I couldn’t pick just one video for you tonight, so here are 3. Watch them all, but not at the same time.

This one makes me tense.

This one was filmed in 8 hours in Brooklyn. Pretty, pretty, pretty.

This one was filmed AND edited in 4 hours in Boston. (I love everything Paper Fortress does.)