(Andy Macdonald) Where as with most sports its like, If you want to hit home runs, this is how you do it. Theres a right or wrong. Like, heres the proper golf swing. Theres all kinds of videos, and training, and everybody and their brother has a way to teach you how to properly hit a golf ball so you can hit it the farthest. Nobodys going to tell you that in skateboarding. Theres fundamentals, like heres how to keep your balance, you gotta keep your knees bent, lower your center of gravity - thats like a fundamental basic or whatever. But theres no right or wrong. If you dont want to learn any tricks you dont have to. You can just cruise around. And if you like the feeling of just cruising around, have at it. No ones going to think any less or more of you because you do that.
(Cave) What kind of gear would you suggest?
(Andy Macdonald) Number one is a helmet. You gotta protect your dome, thats most important. As far as a board theres all kinds of entry level skateboards that you can get. Of course Im going to suggest getting an Andy Mac board! Those are the best! (laughs) Now, I really would suggest people just stay away from getting this one that they found at the toy store because it was cheap, because you get what you pay for. To have a good experience your first time skateboarding you need to do your research enough to have a board that responds well, like a board thats big enough for you, a board thats gonna turn when you want it to turn, the wheels that are gonna roll. A lot of toy stores these days make boards that LOOK just like skateboards but arent really skateboards in that they dont roll or turn when you need them to roll or turn! It just wont provide you with a good first experience skateboarding. Thats the whole idea. You get out there and youre like, Wow, this is fun! Thats why we all do it.
(Cave) Yeah. What motivates you for skateboarding?
(Andy Macdonald) These days its just the progression of it. I used to want to be able to ollie as high as my brother can. I was skating around town with my brother and he could jump over trash cans and I couldnt. Definitely skating with people who are better than you pushes your own limits, you know? Thats the cool thing about skateboarding, its all about pushing your own limits. These days its all about progression for me, I get motivated to figure out what new, harder challenging or technical trick or routine I can put together from one competition to the next, or from one practice session to the next. Be it a brand new trick that I invent, just laying around in bed thinking, Well, what if I did this, or The variations are pretty infinite in the ways that your body can flip and spin and your board can flip and spin underneath you. And then when you think youve got that all mastered no one will ever really master all that, but when you think youve got it all, well now you have to do it switch stance! Meaning, you can bat home runs hitting righty, but can you bat home runs batting lefty? And its like learning to skateboard all over again.
(Cave) How many tricks have you invented?
(Andy Macdonald) Its hard to say. Theres so many intricate variations. I mean, the board flips off your toe as opposed to off your heel - its a totally different trick. If you grab it with your left hand as opposed to your right hand its a totally different trick. Big ones, I was the first to do a backflip on a skateboard.
(Andy Macdonald) That was neat.
(Cave) When did you do that?
(Andy Macdonald) I did that in 97. It was just in an era when skateboarders and BMXers were sharing a lot of the same courses for competition. And BMXers could do backflips because they have handlebars and they can just pull back on them when they leave the jump. Inliners could do it because theyre strapped in. But skateboarders couldnt figure it out because were not strapped to our boards. So it was a matter of figuring out how to come off the ramp in such a way that the board sticks to your feet as you start to flip and you reach down and grab it.
(Cave) Thats awesome! So, what do you do for fun besides skateboarding?
(Andy Macdonald) If its a board and you stand sideways on it, Ill give it a shot! Im definitely not a surfer, but Ill paddle out sometimes with my friends who are surfers. Ive been snowboarding as long as Ive been skateboarding, I just never get to do it. I get to do it like 2 or 3 times a season. Wake boarding. I have a trampoline in my backyard, I just like being in the air. Anything that gets you in the air! (laughs)...
Interview concludes on page 3...