The average person doesn't know too many skateboarders, but they likely know the legends. Today we compiled a list of the 25 best skateboarders of all time - you'll probably recognize most of them.
Emulating one of your heroes is a perfect way to get inspired to hit the vert ramp, or do some street skating. So go grab a board, and skate on! 🛹🤙💪
[Try these easy skateboard tricks, and up your game.]
3 rad boards to emulate your heroes
Santa Cruz Screaming Hand
- Why it's rad: The classic design from Santa Cruz - always wins.
- Buy at Amazon
Powell Peralta Ripper
- Why it's rad: Another classic design, rides like a dream.
- Buy at Amazon
Powell Golden Dragon
- Why it's rad: Another great board, we loved riding it.
- Buy at Amazon
1. Tony Hawk
Is there anything Tony Hawk hasn't done? Not only is the best skating video game named after him (Tony Hawk's Pro Skater) - he did the first 900, and took skateboarding ten levels past where it previously was - which has made the skating world better for everyone involved.
2. Mark Gonzales
Gonzales is possibly the most creative skater in history. He also helped helm the famous Video Days skate video by Blind - a company he co-founded.
Gonzales was also named the Most Influential Skateboarder of All Time by Transworld magazine. Hard to argue with a distinction like that.
3. Stacy Peralta
Peralta went from being the best ranked skater in the world, to forming Powell Peralta, which became one of the most successful skateboard brands of the entire 1980s.
He also formed the Bones Brigade - which made the first ever skate video. Members of this team went on to revolutionize the world of skateboarding.
4. Rodney Mullen
A true legend, Mullen entered all but one contest he entered as a pro. He also invented almost every trick you know and love - including the ollie itself, the kickflip, the heelflip - and pretty much everything else, too.
5. Danny Way
Danny Way holds the record for fastest speed on a skateboard (over 70 MPH), and has bomb-dropped with serious height. If you're looking for a daredevil, Danny Way will undoubtedly be your favorite skateboarder.
6. Alexis Sablone
With 3 X Games gold medals, Alexis has become one of the best female skateboarders in history. She prefers to skate street, and is quite good at it, as well.
7. Elissa Steamer
Elissa Steamer will likely always be best-remembered as the only female skater in the first Tony Hawk's Pro Skater game. However, she also has won multiple X Games gold medals - and is a very influential figure in the world of women's skateboarding.
8. Rob Dyrdek
The co-founder of Alien Workshop, Dyrdek is not only a talented skater - he's also a very talented businessman. He's also been a TV fixture for over a decade, easily making him one of the most important skateboarders of all time.
9. Jamie Thomas
Jamie Thomas is not only an incredible skater - he also founded Zero Skateboards. Thomas was also put in the first Tony Hawk's Pro Skater game - making him essentially immortalized forever.
[Check out why bearing spacers make a big difference for your board.]
10. Kris Markovich
No one had a bigger impact on street skating in the 90s, than Markovich. He has switched sponsors so many times though, that unfortunately that has become his enduring legacy.
11. Andrew Reynolds
Recruited by Tony Hawk himself, Reynolds has been a legend for decades. Now sober and more relaxed, Reynolds has earned his place to ride off into the sunset in the skateboarding world.
12. Alan “Ollie” Gelfand
The inventor of the ollie, Gelfand is a legendary figure in the skateboarding community. He went from being an unknown, to an absolute legend - all because of one trick.
13. Tony Alva
The pioneer of skating empty swimming pools, Alva has been the inspiration for numerous skateboarding movies. He was also the first skateboarder to form his own company - which has made him an absolute legend in the skateboarding community.
14. Bob Burnquist
Bob Burnquist has done a ton of crazy things on a skateboard. It's hard to even list all of his accomplishments - but check out the incredible vert run he did way back in the day, during an X Games competition.
[If you want to upgrade your ride, check out these awesome Gullwing trucks.]
15. Bucky Lasek
Lasek has won 13 medals in the X Games, and is a true California legend. He also does rallycross, making him a true double threat.
16. Eric Koston
Koston has done many signature moves, like the K Grind. He was also immortalized in Tony Hawk's Pro Skater - making him famous even beyond his own lifetime.
17. Nyjah Huston
Huston has won tons of money skateboarding, and is very creative when it comes to new tricks. After wowing the X Games at age 11, Huston has gone on to be more successful than almost anyone in the history of the sport.
18. Andy Anderson
One of the most creative skaters in history, Andy Anderson has done tricks no one else has done. He also regularly invents all kinds of new stunts, and is possibly the new Tony Hawk - depending on who you talk to.
19. Rune Glifberg
With 12 X Games medals, Rune Glifberg is a true legend of the sport. He has been a great skater for decades, with there hardly being anything he hasn't accomplished - and he was even featured in Tony Hawk's Pro Skater.
20. Chad Muska
Chad Muska became famous via the Tony Hawk's Pro Skater games - and for good reason. With his trademark backpack on, Muska is a true one of a kind.
21. Lyn-Z Adams Hawkins
Lyn-Z has done what very few women have ever done in skateboarding. Known for getting massive air, she's also the only woman to ever land a 540 McTwist.
22. Geoff Rowley
Immortalized in Tony Hawk's Pro Skater, Rowley worked his way up from nothing, to become a true legend. Check out the below video, to see just why Rowley has become famous in the world of skateboarding.
[Longboard vs skateboard - which is better?]
23. Natas Kaupas
An accidental skate superstar, Kaupas was first a surfer. After he won a skateboard as a prize in a surfing contest, he switched over - and the rest, as they say, is history.
24. Christian Hosoi
Tony Hawk's most famous rival, Hosoi launched himself into rock star status in the 1980s. He got himself into drug trouble, however, and missed some of the early X Games competitions.
Making the Marina Del Rey skatepark famous, Hosoi earned respect from much older competitors. Hosoi also invented the Christ Air and Rocket Air - proving just how innovative he is.
25. Daewon Song
Daewon is a skater's skater. He doesn't love to promote himself, but he has tremendous skills.
During COVID, he even used the inside of his house like a skatepark. Discovered by Rodney Mullen, Song continues to rule the streets (and ramps).
[Find the best skate board park, so you can shred comfortably.]
10 Other Great Skateboards To Buy
This complete skateboard from CCS is a great choice for just about anyone. Great for beginners, teens, or adults - it is the definition of a 'catch all' product.
While experts may want something more advanced, this board comes in a wide variety of colors, and is fully assembled. Hard to beat this one, and easily our top pick for a complete skateboard.
This complete board from Benewell is affordable, and is great for kids, teenagers, or even adults. While it's certainly not the most complex or expensive board on the market - that's sort of the point.
It comes ready to go, and is backed by tons of great reviews. We highly recommend this as a gift for anyone who wants to get into skateboarding - you won't regret it.
This awesome minimalist board comes ready to go, and has a great design. Perfect for experts or beginners, it will have you ready to hit the streets in mere minutes of your package arriving.
We like the panda design the best, but there are also lots of other great choices. Reviewers have noted that it can be a little narrow for some riders, so be sure to take that into consideration.
This beginner's board from WhiteFang may not be great for those very advanced in skateboarding - but it's absolutely perfect for newbies. Backed by a metric ton of five star reviews, it's a great choice for a child or adult.
The price is also right, making this a great gift option for any family or friends. Reviewers have also noted that most deliveries only take 2 days - meaning you'll be up and running in no time.
Okay, this pick may not be for adults, but it was simply too awesome not to include. Spidey has never looked so good, as the bottom of your board will be covered in lots of Marvel goodness.
If you have a little one, this is a perfect way to get them started on a board. Additionally, the price is definitely right - making this a no-brainer for anyone out there.
This affordable board from Jecolos is great for kids, teenagers, and adults. It's also backed by tons of great reviews, meaning you can feel safe making a purchase.
While experts and some more serious skaters may want to opt for more, this choice makes for a great gift. We like the ice and fire design best, but the great thing is - there are plenty of different designs to choose from.
This beginner board from Blind is yet another winner. With lots of color and design options, there is truly something here for everyone.
While not the most affordable option on our list, it is worth the extra cash. This board will last a lot longer than many, and it comes ready to skate on, right out of the box.
This classic board from Santa Cruz comes complete, and totally ready to go. Backed by lots of great reviews, you can feel safe buying this board.
Perfect for youngsters or adults, this board is well-crafted but still affordable. We highly recommend it, and it's a great complete skateboard for any beginner (or even intermediate skaters).
This awesome bamboo skateboard comes complete and ready to go. We love the unique look, especially the orange wheels.
Reviewers have noted how sturdy and flexible this complete board is, so it will be great for beginners, and hold up for a very long time. The only adjustment you may have to make, is to slightly tighten the trucks. Highly recommended.
This one is not a traditional complete skateboard - it's electric! Just like a Tesla, it offers superior performance, while still remaining affordable.
This board comes complete with a wireless LED remote, and can go about 20 miles per hour. Of course, make sure you're careful - but if you are, this board is a total blast!
[Check out the best shortboard skateboard, if you need a new ride.]
Other Factors To Consider
Whether you are a professional skateboarder, olympic athlete, or a first time skateboarder, you might enjoy watching skateboarding videos. The best video content includes street skaters, skateboarding tricks, freestyle stunts, professionals like Chris Cole , Rodney Mullen, and Paul Rodriguez, and highlights from Dew Tour and X Games.
YouTube has video parts from all the best world skateboarding championships. Championship events have been held in Tokyo, Brazil, Canadian cities, Los Angeles and other cities in California.
The best skateboarders are able to get sponsorships from a variety of skateboard companies, video game companies and brands (like Nike SB and Birdhouse). Brand logos can appear on their skateboard deck, the frontside of skateboard helmets or on apparel.
Amazon alone has a ton of great skateboarding gear, and you’ll frequently see some of the best skaters in Thrasher Magazine, as well as having their face or name plastered on gear like grip tape. There are even skater-owned parks, like The Berrics.
Skateboarding has become a truly global phenomenon, with Brazilian skaters getting sponsorships now. While you might be able to skate handrails, it’s likely not at the level of a skater in Street League Skateboarding.
[See the best women skateboarders, that are tearing it up right now.]