Saturday, January 16, 2021

Roads might be empty, hospitals are not. Electric skateboarding during COVID-19.

If your city is not affected by a lock-down at the moment, it could be soon. Corona virus is now a global pandemic. With most people working at home, roads have been mostly empty. Giving owners of electric skateboards, onewheels and electric scooters the rare opportunity to cruise around more freely.

You should quarantine yourself during these times as much as possible, but a ride once in a while should be possible if you calculate your risks and take precautions. Roads might be empty, but hospitals are not. They are overcrowded with all focus on COVID-19. This is a bad time to go to the emergency room because you broke your leg.

Even a pro like Tony Hawk falls from time to time, and that’s on a regular skateboard. Our little electric powerhouses can reach speeds of 40 km/24 miles easily. Protect yourself as much as possible, and even a little more during the corona crisis. Take extra care to prevent an electric skateboarding accident.

Things to keep in mind when riding during the crisis:

1. Take less risk when riding.
Cruise around at speeds that give you a chance to recover from a fall by running it off. Don’t push yourself to the limit with carving or tricks. Stop filming yourself if that distracts you. And don’t grab your phone until you are standing still. Know your limits.

2. Only ride on smooth, clean and mostly empty roads.
Even if you are a off-road animal, stick to smooth concrete roads. If you have a AT board, treat it like a street model. Stay away from gaps and dirty roads full of with sticks and stones. Take a reserved attitude when riding in a crowded area.

3. Wear safety gear
Helmets! This can be a full-face helmet or a regular one. As long as it’s made to handle concrete impacts and not just snow. Safety standards to look for: ASTM F14922, Snell N-942. If you are on a tight budget, a TSG helmet goes for just €40.

Chances are you already own a pair of Flatland 3D E-skate Gloves. A mandatory accessory for every electric skateboard rider. Whatever gloves you buy, get something that also offers some wrist protection. Protective knee pads are also a must have, they can reduce an emergency room visit to just having a bruised knee.

4. Don’t ride alone, but keep your distance too.
If something happens, it’s good to have a buddy around that can help. Keep in mind that you should keep at least 1,5 meter distance at all times to prevent spread of the virus. Don’t shake hands when you meet up on grouprides, just wave.

5. Always wash your hands for a minimum of 20 seconds.
Not really a tip linked to skateboarding, but just wash those hands. The combination of keeping your distance and washing hands with soap is creating positive results in pushing back the spread of the virus. So wash before and after your ride.

These are some tips to keep you out of the hospital. If you have any suggestions for other riders, drop a comment.

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Nelson is a writer for LooksDangerous and currently rides a Boosted Mini X, Exway X1 Pro and Segway ES2. Co-founder of dutch lobbygroup LegaalRijden, which focusses on legalizing ESK8 in the Netherlands.


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Roads might be empty, hospitals are not. Electric skateboarding during COVID-19. 2
4 months ago

Kevlar shirt with protection pads in elbow,shoulder and back is also a must have(surely for the “speed-junky’s …)
You can buy this in almost every chopper/skate shop.

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