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Skateboarding

Madars Apse meets the Ugandan DIY skate crew who invent their own tricks

Skate Tales visits skater Gose Gerald, who built a park from internet tutorials and kickstarted a scene that continues to make waves all around the world!
Written by Niall Neeson
3 min readPublished on
As we alluded to in the earlier Felipe Nunes episode of Skate Tales: skateboarding greatness is measured in heart and not skill. Skateboarding doesn’t require skill, to begin with, but it demands heart from day one.
The people who gain most from skating are those to whom it means most, and you will go a long way before you find more pure skateboarding passion than within our main man Gose Gerald and the Uganda Skateboard Society.
My main goal is growing skateboarding. That’s what I stand for
Gose Gerald
One magic facet of skateboarding is that it adapts to the landscape in which it finds itself. From the downhills of Brazil to the built environment of Japanese cities, this episode of Skate Tales sees Latvian pro skater extraordinaire and man of the people Madars Apse enlist Tyler Surrey to go and meet the skate crew who built their own unique park from plans off the internet, and then started to create their own moves!
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Let's go back to the beginning of this particular Skate Tale: Ugandan skate pioneer Gose Gerald discovered skateboarding purely by chance back in 2005. As a matter of fact, he'd never even seen one up until then – not even on TV. A Canadian NGO worker cruised down the street past him on a skateboard, and Gerald was dumbstruck. Six years later, Gerald founded the Uganda Skateboard Society, who then collectively decided to build their own skatepark with the help of foreign donors.
We had to go the ‘Do It Yourself’ way; the whole design is from the locals
Gose Gerald
The park has flourished since and the Ugandan skate scene has grown exponentially. The skatepark and the Uganda Skateboard Society are home to many of them. Not many foreign skaters have ever visited Uganda, but that doesn't mean that the skaters of Uganda are not making waves around the world. Tony Hawk has championed their unconventional approach to skating as one of the most refreshing and exciting things happening within the culture right now.
They have a lot of dreams – and they know that skateboarding will take them somewhere
Gose Gerald
Here in Uganda, Madars found the local skate crew ripping their own mini-mega ramp doing tricks with no name and learning from Uganda Skateboard Society members Rashid Sserunjogi, Trevor Kanyike, Shanitah Blessings, Brian Bukenya, Isaiah Kamulegeya, Michael Kato and Peninah Beluka what skateboarding has offered them, as well as their hopes as to where it may yet lead.
This is a very big opportunity for them; for the world to see [them] on all different platforms
Joseph Sserwada
Heart is the engine room of this whole skateboarding game of ours and this episode has it in a big way. Discover the story of a skateboarding grassroots movement fuelled and propelled by locals and locals alone in one of the world’s toughest places to be young. Click the player up top to watch!