When I'm on a skateboard, I forget all the stress and feel so free. From a small kid who started skateboarding because it looked cool, I have now been skating for 25 years. Skateboarding has become everything in my life.
Watch the Video: Geng Jakkarin - Skateboard to Breakout of Your Comfort Zone Script.
Geng Jakkarin Petchvoraphon
Hello, I am Geng Jakkarin Petchvoraphon. I am a Professional Skateboarder, and a former skater in the Thailand National Team. When I was 12 or 13, I had a chance to skate with people who were older and more experienced and I really wanted to improve. That motivated me to practice and to learn and fine tune skills and tricks. Then fellow skateboarders began inviting me to contests in the provinces like Phitsanulok and Chiang Mai.
Thailand National Skateboard Team
I was 13 when I attended my first contest and I was the first runner-up in the amateur category, the lowest tier. When I was in the last year of high school, I entered a contest to qualify for the Thailand National Team to go to the Asian X Games in Malaysia. It was a single-round qualifier with 100 contestants. Only the winner and the 1st runner-up would qualify. With luck and a polished and practiced performance, I ended up as the 1st runner-up. That is how I got to compete at the Asian X Games.
Going to Malaysia in 2004 as part of Thailand National Team was an eye-opening experience. I realized that Skateboarding didn't just involve dedicated practice, but also that sponsorship played a big part. I saw how other countries did it. There were so many cool kids from across the world. I gained a lot taking part in the games and continued to represent Thailand through 2005 and 2006.
In 2010, I entered another qualifying contest and got back into the Thailand National Team. In 2010, I competed in world-class events starting with the AXC or Asian Extreme Association. I got the first prize for Best Trick. Now into world-class events, the Maloof Money Cup in South Africa was where the world's big names participated and my friend and I were the only Asians there. The result was satisfactory.
How do you do an ollie step by step?
The trick I am about to teach you is a basic trick for everyone. Before advancing to more daring tricks, you have to be able to jump first. It's called "Ollie". Ollie is a jump where you strike your rear foot at the board's tail against the ground. And when you are about to jump, bend your front ankle and slide your front foot towards the nose and jump in one motion. That will make a perfect Ollie.
The tip is to put your front foot behind the bolts or in the middle. Line your rear foot that will 'pop' the tail at the centre of the board. Not too far out. Just line it in the centre. First thing is you need to 'pop' or strike the tail to the ground. Just like this. Once you are used to it and not afraid of falling, strike it harder. Bend your front ankle a bit. Slide up to the nose.
70-80% of this trick is on your rear foot. Gather your force into striking the tail to the ground. The greater the hit, the higher your jump will be. Your upper body needs to be parallel to the ground, especially your shoulders. Don't bend them. This is an issue for many people. So let's try and practice this.
Getting Sponsored to Make Skateboarding Videos
Around 2007, I felt rather saturated from all the contests. So I tried something new. I started making 'street skateboarding' videos. Then some sponsors were interested. They sent me to participate in various events and paid for my plane tickets. Being able to film in so many places opened up my world and travelling around the world to skate provided me with opportunities to meet many pro skaters. When I learn from a pro, my outlook and attitude changes, motivating me to be even better. I also loosen up more in contests and events, taking the pressure off myself so that I can compete as myself. That's all.
5 Skateboarding Tips to Help You Break Out of Your Comfort Zone
I want to share 5 tips for skateboarders who want to improve their skills or for those who want to turn professional.
Don't be afraid of falling
First, don't be afraid or shy of falling. For those who have just started or even those with experience, this is crucial. Falling or making mistakes on a skateboard is not failing. From my experience, those who aren't afraid of falling or those who try new stuff but fail, learn quicker. They learn new tricks from their mistakes better than those who are afraid of falling. This is very important.
Always Improve Yourself
Second, keep improving yourselves both on and off the board. You need to improve your level and skill on a skateboard. Of course if you want to become a professional skateboarder, this is something you must do. Off the board, you need to improve yourselves in other aspects too; language, concentration, patience, physique and discipline.
These are the things that will make you a professional skateboarder. When opportunity presents itself and you have improved in these aspects, you will have more chance of getting selected than others.
Think Out of the Box
Third, always think out of the box. For me, skateboarding doesn't require you to be like others or follow any standard form. To anyone wanting to improve their skill, I recommend that you be creative. By mixing in your best and favourite tricks, and arranging them into new combinations, your style will be more outstanding and memorable.
Are You A Version 1 or Version 2?
Fourth, get to know the first and second versions of yourself. The first version worries about techniques. The second version is a confident you who is ready to go with your own flow. This is very important.
Skateboarders who are trapped in Version 1 of themselves, are obsessed with technique; what to do for this trick, feet placement. They become too worried and that impacts their performance, making them not able to do what they set out to do.
The second version is a more confident version of yourself that lets you go freely with the flow. You have put in lots of practice, are confident and ready to just go with the flow. Believe it or not, most successful skateboarders fall into the Version 2 persona.
If you are aware of these two versions of being, learn to apply each when the time is right and at the right moments. You will then be even more outstanding.
Stay Hungry and Having Fun
Fifth, stay hungry and have fun. By staying hungry, I mean you need to constantly remain eager to keep improving your skills. It also applies to events and competitions. Don't be satisfied with winning a contest. Because if you stop there, you will not go any further and that will hamper your development.
As for having fun, no matter what you do, if you enjoy doing it you won't be bored and will want to continue and advance. Thus, by staying hungry and having fun, you will constantly improve.
In fact, throughout my life, I've applied negative energy to skateboarding. When I skate, I forget all the issues or problems. It's like a friend to me. When I fall or when I make whatever mistakes, it's normal and only natural because everyone does it. What is more important is that you need to get up, rise and fight, and succeed.
These are my lessons from skateboarding.
Video Talk: Skateboarding: Breaking Out of Your Comfort Zone