Contrary to what many believe, skateboarding is not losing popularity. It’s actually gaining it. In the past few years, there has been a resurgence in the sport. Skateboarding is also becoming more mainstream, with celebrities such as Justin Bieber and Lil Wayne often being spotted riding around on their boards.
Despite the fact that it is often seen as a rebellious activity, skateboarding can be a great way to stay fit and active. It’s also a very social sport, with many skate parks becoming hotspots for young people to hang out and meet new friends.
Is Skateboarding Losing Popularity?
Although the popularity of skateboarding hit an all-time low in 2012, recent trends show somewhat of a resurgence. The pandemic sheltered a lot of people and gave them a lot of time. With this, many people decided to take up new hobbies.
The skateboarding market was lucky to be one of the many markets that flourished. The global skateboard market rose to USD 2.3 billion in 2020 and is forecasted to rise to USD 3 billion by 2028. However, some people are still skeptical about the future of skateboarding. The fact that it’s an activity that is often associated with rebelliousness and counterculture doesn’t help its case.
The 2020 Tokyo Olympics also had a hand in bringing more popularity to the sport. When skateboarding was announced as an official sport, many people were surprised. The Olympics are typically known for more traditional sports. However, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) saw skateboarding as a way to appeal to a younger audience.
Where is Skateboarding Most Popular?
The United States is the most popular country for skateboarding. Just over 10% of all skateboarders in the world are from the USA.
Some other countries that are popular for skateboarding include:
While some countries don’t have many skateboarders, it’s possible to find skaters in any country. Skateboarding builds a community and is an excellent source of exercise. Many cities see the value in having young people skateboard because it keeps them active.
Skateboarding Popularity Statistics
- Skateboarding is becoming more popular
- From 2020 to 2021, the number of worldwide skateboarders grew by 18% (from ~70 million to 85 million)
- Although not as many youths are beginning to skateboard, older people are beginning to skateboard more
- The skateboard market grew from approximately $1.9 billion in 2018 to $2 billion in 2020 and is forecasted to get to $2.38 billion by 2025
Skateboarding Age Group Statistics:
Ages 6 to 17 account for nearly 10% of all skateboarders. However, the number of youthful skateboarders is declining. Back in 2006, the skateboard age group 6 to 17 years old used to account for 19.3% of all skateboarders.
However, there are many professional skateboarders who make a living from the sport. These athletes often start skating at a young age and dedicate their lives to perfecting their craft. Neal Unger is the oldest professional skateboarder, born in 1957.
Skateboarding Gender Stats:
- 75% of skateboarders are male
- 25% of skateboarders are female
How Many Skateboarders Are There?
Did you know that 85 million people around the world participate in skateboarding? While this is traditionally considered to be an American sport, its popularity is exploding globally. In fact, more than half of all U.S. skaters live in California and more than 75% are under 18 years old. This makes it the 6th most popular sport worldwide!
Previous Declines in Skateboarding Popularity
Skateboarding is somewhat of a cyclical sport when you think about it. It’s not nearly as popular in the winter but then comes back in full force in the summer. It’s hard to go out on a nice day without seeing a few people with skateboards.
The market is cyclical too. Every decade or so skateboarding loses traction and popularity and then starts making a comeback.
Skateboarding lost some of its steam in the 1960s because of the overproduction of low-quality goods. Instead of worrying about the quality of their skateboards, companies only cared about mass-producing them. Unfortunately, this led to many people being injured from poorly made boards and a bad taste in their mouths.
Although the 70s were seen as a golden era for skateboarding, there was one thing in particular that caused the sport to go into its own recession. As the sport exploded, everyone wanted to build skateparks to capitalize on the market. Many skatepark owners were forced to close their businesses as the end of the decade neared due to skyrocketing insurance rates. Demo teams came in and destroyed the parks, taking away from the growth of the sport.
The recession in the early 90s sparked another decline in skateboarding popularity. The worldwide recession caused many skateboard companies to shut their doors forever and even more skateparks closed down. Read more about the skateboard history timeline.
Skateboard Brands That Died Off (RIP)
- Sheep Shoes
- TV Skateboards
- Termite Skateboards
- Sixteen Skateboards
- Hawk Shoes
- Adio Footwear
- 88 Footwear
- NSS (Nice Skate Shoes)
- Ipath Shoes
- Nadia Footwear
- Epik Footwear
- Kastel Footwear
- Fourstar Clothing
- TSA Clothing
- Krew Apparel
- Counter Culture
- Dub Brand
- Droors Athletics
- Randoms Hardware
- Kreper Trucks
- Monster Trucks
- Mercury Trucks
- Z-Roller Trucks
- Phantom Trucks
- Hubba Wheels
- Autobahn Wheel Company
- Gold Wheels
- Bootleg Skateboard Co.
- Milk Skateboard Goods
- Rasa Libre
- Mad Circle
- City Stars
- Expedition One
- Invisible Skateboards
- The Firm
- Planet Earth
- Maple Skateboards
- Hell Rose
- ATM Click
- Selfish Skateboards
- Bulldog Skates
- Uncle Wiggley Skateboards
- Circle A
Online Skateboarding Searches Have Gone Way Down
As seen in the image above, searches on Google have been way down since 2004. The top countries that look up skateboarding include New Zealand, Australia, the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Although search traffic is down, the sport is still growing.
It’s interesting to see the cyclical nature of skateboarding and the ebbs and flows of its popularity. What’s even more amazing is that, despite some declines in interest, the sport continues to grow. This could be due to the many technological advances that have been made in skateboarding over the years – from better boards to innovative tricks that are constantly being invented. Whatever the reason, it looks like skateboarding isn’t going away anytime soon!