On the right track: Skateparks pop across Bengaluru

Skateparks in B’luru are on the rise with youngsters showing an increased interest in skateboarding
A skater at The Cave, Yelahanka
A skater at The Cave, Yelahanka

If you want to hop onto a skateboard, you’re in luck. With many Bengalureans showing an increased interest in skateboarding, skateparks are popping up in the city. These locations have always been a part of the culture in the United States of America but are slowly making their way to Bengaluru. Two of them are already up and running in Sarjapur and Yelahanka. Spread over thousands of sqft, these spaces give the thrill of strolling down on flimsy boards.

Skateboarding has grown to so much more than just a sport deemed to be deviant or a mode of half-hearted travel. Today, it is a popular pick among Gen-Z, which is highly inspired by both social media and the pandemic. Not to forget, the inclusion of skateboarding as an Olympic competition.

Take, for instance, The Cave, established by Holystoked Collective, a group of like-minded skateboarders, who have started a company in the hope of spreading the skateboarding culture and establishing skateparks for more freedom for skateboarders. Their establishment, The Cave, in Yelahanka, adjoining their skateboard essential shop, is touted to be the only free skatepark in the city. Tarun Teja, who works at the store on the premises, says, “New people come in every other day along with the park regulars; the park sees at least 50-60 people per week.”

The Cave has become a household name for anyone who would call themselves a skater in the city. Skaters of all ages at all times of the day, every day assemble with the sole intention of skating and sharing their skate culture. The second skatepark is in Play Arena, Sarjapur, and is supposedly the largest skatepark in India – 16,000 sqft of concrete with two bowls, lights and a pro-shop for supplies. Workshops are held there for all ages of skaters to learn at the hands of the veteran.

Melvin Mathew (20), a budding skater, says how the time at the skatepark has changed his journey as a skateboarder. “Before I found out about The Cave, I could only practice skateboarding on my terrace or in my garage,” he says, adding, “It’s like a second home to me now.”

Despite living in Koramangala, Mathew makes time to head to The Cave at least once a week. “My friends and I look forward to the weekend just so we can go skate. It feels different,” he says. The importance of these skateparks is evident, with the only other possible place to skate being their own homes or Cubbon Park on a Sunday. Aryan Khanna(20), another amateur skater in the making, tells us how he’s been growing. “I just began skating but I credit most of the progress to The Cave, the environment there pushes you to be better, it’s an amazing feeling,” says Khanna.

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The New Indian Express