There are lots of sports people compare to one another simply because they are so similar. Football and rugby, wrestling and boxing, etc. But has anyone ever seriously considered how skateboarding and golf are alike? I highly doubt it, but I think an attempt to show that the two are just as similar as any other two sports is worth the effort. I’ve put together a list of similarities that the two sports share to illustrate my point.
- Emphasis on Individuality. Neither one is a team sport. The success a person has competing or playing/skating for fun is entirely dependent on his or herself. No one can hit a good tee shot or do a kickflip for you. A person must take the time to learn a proper technique. This almost certainly requires hours of practice and possibly even lessons from an experienced instructor.
- Tiered Professional Structure. In golf there is a senior tour, two pro tours (European and PGA), an amateur tour, and a women’s tour. In skateboarding there are contests for veteran skateboarders, two main professional tours (Street League and Dew Tour), amateur contests and women’s contests. In both sports, there are a small handful of elite, heavily-endorsed, well-paid professionals followed by a larger set of regular professionals who are extremely talented but not elite. After them there are pros who pop up every once and a while and can barely get by on the endorsements that they have. Finally there are amateurs who are all striving to become professionals themselves.
- Vacations. Golfers will frequently get together with their friends and travel long distances to play some of the worlds greatest golf courses. Skateboarders will travel with their friends to skate the world’s best skateparks and spots. Many golfers will travel to places like the UK, Arizona, Hawaii, and Florida on their vacations while skateboarders will travel to Oregon, Southern California, Spain, or Australia on theirs.
- Endorsements. Both sports are dependent on endorsements to support competition and professionals. Its not uncommon for an athlete from either sport to have a dozen sponsors that supply various pieces of their equipment, clothing, and more.
- Media presence. Skateboarding and golf each have numerous magazines featuring the top pros. They both have hundreds of websites dedicated to various facets of the game. Both get major television coverage as well.
- Video Games. What are the two most successful sports video games aside from the Madden franchise? Tony Hawk and Tiger Woods games.