Manufacturers started to experiment with more exotic composites and metals, like fiberglass and aluminium, but the common skateboards were made of maple plywood. The skateboarders took advantage of the improved handling of their skateboards and started inventing new tricks. Skateboarders, most notably Ty Page, Bruce Logan, Bobby Piercy, Kevin Reed, and the Z-Boys started to skate the vertical walls of swimming pools that were left empty in the 1976 California drought. This started the "vert" trend in skateboarding. With increased control, vert skaters could skate faster and perform more dangerous tricks, such as slash grinds and frontside/backside airs. This caused liability concerns and increased insurance costs to skatepark owners, and the development (first by Norcon, then more successfully by Rector) of improved knee pads that had a hard sliding cap and strong strapping proved to be too-little-too-late. During this era, the "freestyle" movement in skateboarding began to splinter off and develop into a much more specialized discipline, characterized by the development of a wide assortment of flat-ground tricks.
This is an interesting option because it is basically a hybrid between a blank and pro skateboard deck.  It’s like a pro board in that is has a “brand” and logo, but the cost is similar to blanks and they don’t sponsor the same quantity and caliber of professional skaters that other pro brands do.  While the logo is really cool and the rest of the parts seem to be high quality, you may not get the same brand recognition with Punisher as you would with other brands like Element or Toy Machine.  This deck is also 7.5″ which makes it a great choice for a younger beginner.  This is the perfect beginner skateboard for someone who doesn’t really care about the brand name, but still wants the style and performance of an above average professional skateboard.

Now you need to look at the wheels of your skateboard. There are dozens of different sizes, materials, shapes, and features of skateboard wheels, and it can get confusing for beginners. The most common type of wheel is a hard plastic wheel, and for beginners, you’ll usually see a “90a” level wheel. Professional skaters often choose even harder wheels, up to a 100a, because it gives them more “pop” for tricks. But somewhere between a 90a and a 97a is usually best for beginners.
In an industry as diverse as skateboarding, the sheer number of skateboard brands on the market can be bewildering. With a seemingly never-ending amount of new brands emerging, alongside the numerous pre-existing ones, the market can certainly appear over crowded and confusing at times, which is hopefully where this list of some of our favourite skateboard brands comes in.
Freedom Plaza has become a popular location for skateboarding, although the activity is illegal and has resulted in police actions.[5][115] A 2016 National Park Service management plan for the Historic Site states that skateboarding has damaged stonework, sculptures, walls, benches, steps, and other surfaces in some areas of the Plaza.[5] The management plan further states that skateboarding presents a persistent law enforcement and management challenge, as popular websites advertise the Plaza's attractiveness for the activity.[5] The plan notes that vandals have removed "No Skateboarding" signs and recommends the replacement of those signs.[5]
Fox and Deacon re-branded Deathbox in 1991 as Flip skateboards and announced the four man team as consisting of Geoff Rowley, Rune Glifberg, Andy Scott and Tom Penny. After nearly being put out of business when a flood destroyed much of their stock, Fox, Deacon and the four team riders began to plan their move from the UK to Huntington Beach, California in order for the brand to grow further.
Efforts have been taken to improve recognition of the cultural heritage as well as the positive effects of encouraging skateboarding within designated spaces. In 2015, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., hosted an event at which skateboarders accompanied by music did tricks on a ramp constructed for a festival of American culture.[68] The event was the climax of a ten-day project that transformed a federal institution formerly off-limits to the skateboarding community into a platform for that community to show its relevance through shared cultural action in a cultural common space.[69]
I'm not talking about mall chain stores, like Zumiez; I mean a locally owned and operated skateboard shop. Look around at what they sell, and talk to the staff about the different brands. Of course, they may be biased toward the brands they carry, but chances are you'll learn something that will help you make a decision. There are some big-name board brands that you'll find in most shops, but there should also be some smaller brands you may not have heard or seen around town. There might even be a a local skater or manufacturer that you could support. 

Jump up ^ Williamson, Elizabeth (October 11, 2013). "Skateboarders See a (Kick) Flip Side to the Government Closing: With Washington Plazas Empty and Patrols Down, a Banned Sport Is Suddenly On" (video). The Wall Street Journal, U.S. Edition. Retrieved March 30, 2017. One positive thing about the gov't shutdown – spots at gov't buildings are now skateable – Darren Harper, Pro Skateboarder, via Facebook.
Founded by English freestyle skater, engineer and skateboarding entrepreneur Jeremy Fox in 1987 (Fox is also reputed to be the first person to import skateboard specific footwear ‘Pro-Keds’ into the UK) Deathbox in its heyday was one of only a handful of European brands that ever controlled enough market share to be a significant player in the skateboard industry.
Since its inception in 1990, Alien Workshop has gone through a number of changes of ownership, first being bought by Burton Snowboards in February 2008, then purchased from Burton by original Alien Workshop rider and reality TV show star Rob Dyrdek in January 2012. Following Dyrdek’s purchase of the brand and its umbrella company DNA Distribution, (also incorporating Habitat skateboards, Habitat footwear and Reflex bearings), an announcement was made in October of 2013 that Dyrdek would remain as a minority shareholder of DNA Dist, with the majority of shares purchased by Pacific Vector Holdings, (also owners of No Fear clothing and Gatorz sunglasses).
The Golden Dragon 2 can also reach very high speeds thanks to the smooth ride skateboard wheels that have been incorporated into the design. Many people report this skateboard to hold up very well, even after several seasons and years of use. This makes them perfect skateboards for adults and kids that are looking to use the board very regularly for practice purposes.
Welcome is doing everything the way that people would probably tell you not to when it comes to how they run their board company. With no real full-length project out since it became a company, and with no pros to name, but boasting a full roster of official riders, Welcome is as unorthodox of a skate company as it gets. They don’t even make a single board in the traditional popsicle shape most boards are made today.
You know how people say shit like: Ernest Hemingway is “a writer's writer” and it's not really clear what that means, but you sort of get it? Well Anti-Hero is a skater's skate brand. Founded by underground hero pro skater Julien Stranger, Anti-Hero is a direct expression of his attitude towards the skate industry, which is basically that skateboarding is life and fuck everything else. Anti-hero has a reputation for being one of the gnarliest skate brands around, thanks in part to their team of heavies which includes John Cardiel, Tony Trujillo, and Chris Pfanner.
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