Montreal Games | The skateboard or the sport that never stops growing

Saturday morning. It’s premiere day at the TAZ, which hosts the first skateboarding competition in the Montreal Games. Stepping into the gigantic Skate park inside, it feels a bit like stepping into another world. As if time had stopped. All that matters is driving!

Posted yesterday at 18:50

Katherine Harvey-Pinard

Katherine Harvey-Pinard
The print

This is the first time that skateboarding has been integrated into the Montreal Games since the event was created in 1978. And it is the TAZ that is responsible for organizing the competition. A certain excitement hangs in the air at the skateboard park located on Papineau Avenue, in the Saint-Michel neighborhood of Montreal.

“We are proud! Says Ghyslain Gingras, head of operations.” We pushed, democratized the sport. We are less seen as tramps and we become a truly recognized discipline. ”

Delegations arrive approximately 45 minutes before the start of the competition, scheduled for 1:00 pm. Everywhere we look, 6 to 12 year olds are rolling around on their tables. They try the figures they intend to present to the judges.

Many have also simply come to spend Saturdays at TAZ. Like this three-apple-tall girl, proudly dressed in her pink skirt, concentrating on driving her scooter on the roulodrome.

Montreal Games’ skateboarding competition ambassador, professional skateboarder Jessy Jean Bart, is one of the first on the spot. She meets the young people, she has fun with them on the modules and on the ramps. Her smile is as bright as that of the dozens, even hundreds of young people present.

PHOTO CATHERINE LEFEBVRE, SPECIAL COLLABORATION

Everywhere we look, 6 to 12 year olds are rolling around on their tables. They try the figures they intend to present to the judges.

“It’s unbelievable,” he said The print. In fact, it’s everything I would have dreamed of when I was lad. When I started, there weren’t many youth competitions, not many skatepark. Seeing how much it has evolved is truly moving. ”

Éli Grenier-Cartier, from the Verdun delegation, is present at the competition. He is 11 years old, but he has been skateboarding for several years already. This is his first race. ” [Je suis] fatigue ! Very stressed out! “, He launches into all the whiteness of her.

  • Everywhere we look, 6 to 12 year olds are rolling around on their tables.

    Photo CATHERINE LEFEBVRE, Special collaboration

    Everywhere we look, 6 to 12 year olds are rolling around on their tables.

  • As soon as they enter the arena, the runners rehearse the figures they intend to present to the judges.

    PHOTO CATHERINE LEFEBVRE, SPECIAL COLLABORATION

    As soon as they enter the arena, the runners rehearse the figures they intend to present to the judges.

  • Among this crowd of board beginners, we find professional snowboarder Jessy Jean Bart.

    Photo CATHERINE LEFEBVRE, Special collaboration

    Among this crowd of board beginners, we find professional snowboarder Jessy Jean Bart.

  • One of the first to arrive on site, Jessy Jean Bart meets the young people, has fun with them on the modules and on the ramps.

    Photo CATHERINE LEFEBVRE, Special collaboration

    One of the first to arrive on site, Jessy Jean Bart meets the young people, has fun with them on the modules and on the ramps.

  • Skateboarding competition at the TAZ as part of the Montreal games;  ALICE PAITRE 8 YEARS

    Photo CATHERINE LEFEBVRE, Special collaboration

    Skateboarding competition at the TAZ as part of the Montreal games; ALICE PAITRE 8 YEARS

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When he learned that the skateboard was entering the Games, Eli wanted to be part of the first cohort of young athletes to take part in it. ” I hope [gagner] ! But I’ve seen a lot of people who were really good, so I doubt it. At worst, I’m having fun! ”

“All the basics to move forward in life”

Resilience. Transcendence. Discipline. Socialization. Team spirit. Courage. Humility. Determination. So many words listed by stakeholders, parents and coaches when asked what skateboarding brings to young people.

“I believe the skate has long been seen as something delinquent, explains Jessy Jean Bart. It was not part of school systems like sports studies. The fact that it was incorporated into the Olympics [en 2021], really pushed the sport. ”

PHOTO CATHERINE LEFEBVRE, SPECIAL COLLABORATION

“When I started, there weren’t many competitions for the youngsters, not many skatepark. Seeing how much it has evolved is truly moving, ”says competition ambassador, professional windsurfer Jessy Jean Bart.

The 34-year-old athlete, who has been a professional for six years, confronts young people whenever he gets the chance. He wants to guide them and help ensure that the sport is well regarded in schools so that it develops even more across Quebec. He also offers his Sparrow Sessions, inclusive skateboarding sessions, to young people from all walks of life.

“The skate it gives all the foundations for these young people to move forward in life, regardless of what their passion will be in the future, ”he says.

Ghyslain Gingras, who has worked for TAZ for 10 years, underlines all the efforts dedicated to the family aspect in recent years to democratize the sport. Parent-child courses are also offered.

PHOTO CATHERINE LEFEBVRE, SPECIAL COLLABORATION

Ghyslain Gingras, who worked for TAZ for 10 years

“The father is coming today knight the week and comes back with her boyfriend on the weekends, she says. We create a succession in sport in this way. ”

father-daughter activity

Luc Otter, 52, is one of the skateboarding coaches of the Ville-Marie delegation for the Montreal Games. Among his youth group is Lily Otter-Koller, his 10-year-old daughter. The two have been practicing this sport together for several years. The father is also involved in his daughter’s school to introduce skateboarding to as many young people as possible.

“In the summer we go [au skatepark] most weekends! “Says Lily, not very nervous about the second competition in her life.

“She likes it,” said her father. He has no stress. She has a lot of composure, I would like to be like her! ”

The duo trains all over Montreal. And sometimes even in California, where he has a family.

“It makes us feel good, we have fun,” says Mr. Otter. Lily is very active. She needs to move. When she’s not moving, she’s not okay. With the skate, brings out a lot of energy in no time. Moreover, it is very difficult. When you get something, you are proud of yourself. You can’t cheat, pretend. ”

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