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Streetboarding in action
by James Tiller
A UK streetboarding tour back-flipped its way through Bournemouth last week. BBC Dorset's Blast reporter James Tiller headed down to Kings Park to try it out for himself...
Streetboarding. Ever heard of it? Neither had we, so to find out more, BBC Dorset went to check out the 2007 UK National Streetboarding Tour when it came to Bournemouth.
It's described on the official streetboarding website site as 'unlike anything else - just streetboarding', but a good starting point for a comparison is skateboarding, in as much as it involves riding a board on wheels.
Advanced streetboarders can do this!
But the difference is that streetboarding, which is also known as snakeboarding, is the skill of riding a board made up of two articulated footplates, both connected with a crossbar - so it looks like it's much more difficult than skateboarding.
It's found popularity with people from many different extreme sport backgrounds, especially those from snowboarding, where it can act as a useful cross-trainer as it helps to develop technique and balance on the board.
Streetboarding began in California in the early 1990s, although prior to that a form was also developed in South Africa.
Several of the UK’s top boarders were in Bournemouth for demonstrations, including current World champion Max Anderson.
Streetboarding champion Max Anderson
However when watching the guys in action I could not help but marvel at the boarders like Max whose tricks at times were amazing.
So what about the danger aspect? "I have smashed my wrist and also damaged my ankle but we are supposed to wear protective clothing to prevent any serious damage" says Max.
There was certainly no danger hurting myself as I could barely move on the board. In fact the only danger I faced was getting in the way of the serious boarders as they cruised past while I was struggling to learn the basics.
Instructions from expert Neil Thompson
The man behind the tour, Neil Thompson, believes it's important to use the sport not only as a cross trainer for snowboarders but as a boarding sport in its own right.
Neil, from Streetboards UK, said: "It is our mission to promote and develop streetboarding as a recognised action sport within the UK and throughout the world."
last updated: 04/04/2008 at 10:36
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Have you tried streetboarding? Tell us about how you got on. Leave your comment below.