Oldest Skateboarders in the World

10 Oldest Skateboarders in the World

Skateboarding has come a long way from being a niche sport with its own alternative sub-culture. While the industry is still fairly small, skateboarding has exploded in popularity over the years, crossing over into the mainstream. In fact, skateboarding is set to make its debut at the 2020 Olympic Games (which has been postponed due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis). Each year, new skateboarders make their debut, but some of the sports oldest athletes are still going strong. All of the skateboarders on this list have been skating for decades and some have risen in the ranks to become skateboarding legends.

As of February 2021, the information on this list is as accurate as possible an will be updated as needed.

11. Daewon Song (February 19, 1975 – Present)

Current Age or Oldest Age Reached (as of February 2021): 45 years, 11 months, 29 days
Country of Origin:  Seoul, South Korea (grew up in Gardena, California, USA)
Start of Professional Career: early 1990s
Current Sponsors: Thank You Skateboarding, Spitfire, adidas, Tensor, Andale, Glassy, MOB, Loud, and Matix

Daewon Songphoto source: Flickr via Chad Santos

Daewon Song is another longtime skateboarder who used skateboarding as an outlet to deal with a turbulent childhood. Song has been skating since he was 14 and received his first sponsorship not long after from a local skate shop. It didn’t take long for Song to make a name for himself and bigger sponsorships soon followed. Many people in the skateboarding industry consider Song to be one of the greatest skateboarders of all time.

Did You Know?

One of Daewon Song’s more recent business ventures was starting Thank You Skateboards in 2018 with fellow skater Torey Pudwell.

10. Jamie Thomas (October 11, 1974 – Present)

Current Age or Oldest Age Reached (as of February 2021):46 years, 4 months, 6 days
Country of Origin:  Dothan, Alabama, USA
Start of Professional Career: early 1990s
Current Sponsors: Zero, Thunder, Spitfire, Official, Ollo Clip, Active, Mob, and Bones

photo source: Facebook via Zero Skateboards

Jamie Thomas is another skateboarding legend who has managed to build several skating brands. Thomas, who is originally from Alabama, moved to the skateboarding capital of the world, California, when he was 17 in the early 1990s. By the end of the decade, Thomas founded Zero Skateboards through skateboard distributor Tum Yeto. A few years after that, Thomas started Fallen Footwear, and ran the company until its brief closure in 2016 – Fallen Footwear was revived in 2018 by Town Collection and Thomas is no longer involved with the company.

Did You Know?

In 2006, Jamie Thomas was presented with the Southern California Regional award for ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ from business leaders, Ernst & Young.

9. Rune Glifberg (October 7, 1974 – Present)

Current Age or Oldest Age Reached (as of February 2021): 46 years, 4 months, 10 days
Country of Origin:  Copenhagen, Denmark
Start of Professional Career: 1992
Current Sponsors: Flip, Monster, Volcom, Indy, Nike SB, and Pro-Tec

Rune Glifbergphoto source: Flickr via sk8.net

Rune Glifberg, aka “The Great Dane,” originally hails from Copenhagen, Denmark and has been skating since he was 11 years old. Glifberg competed in his first professional contest in 1990 and two years later he started his pro skateboarding career. A few years later, Glifberg moved to California to pursue his skating career full time. While many of the other older skateboarders on this list no longer enter contests regularly, Glifberg still competes annually. Even after all these years, Glifberg can still keep up with skaters half his age and in 2019, he placed second at the Vans Combi Pool Party Masters Finals.

Did You Know?

Rune Glifberg is one of only three skateboarders who has competed at every X games and he has won 12 X Games medals.

8. Ronnie Creager (January 14 1974 – Present)

Current Age or Oldest Age Reached (as of February 2021):47 years, 1 month, 3 days
Country of Origin:  Orange, California, USA
Start of Professional Career: early 1990s
Current Sponsors: HSD Skateboards, Etcetera Project, Es Shoes, Mob Grip, The Pro Standard, Trick Rings, and Happy Skateboarding

Ronnie Creagerphoto source: Facebook via éS Skateboarding

Ronnie Creager, who is now 46 years old, has been skateboarding since he was three and has been pro since the early 1990s. Over the years, Creager became known for his technical street skating, which involves ledge structures. In 2011, Creager produced a ledge skateboarding instructional video segment for TransWorld SKATEboarding magazine. That same year, Creager launched his own skateboard accessories brand, Etcetera.

Did You Know?

One of Ronnie Creager’s earliest sponsors was Blind Skateboards and he remained with the company for over 20 years – eventually becoming a senior member of the team – before parting ways in 2014.

7. Steve Berra (May 10, 1973 – Present)

Current Age or Oldest Age Reached (as of February 2021):47 years, 9 months, 7 days
Country of Origin:  St. Louis, Missouri, USA
Start of Professional Career: early 1990s
Current Sponsors: The Berrics, DC Shoes, Grizzly Griptape, and Skullcandy

Steve Berraphoto source: jenkemmag.com

Besides Tony Hawk, Steve Berra is one of the most successful skateboarders ever, who managed to turn his love of skateboarding into a multi-million dollar empire. Berra says that he grew up poor and that he decided to pursue a skateboarding career when he was 14. After moving to California when he was 18, Berra was mentored by Tony Hawk. After many decades a professional skater, Berra co-founded The Berrics website with fellow skater Eric Koston. The Berrics is now the go-to place for all things related to the skateboarding industry.

Did You Know?

Outside of skateboarding, Steve Berra has dabbled in acting, directing movies, and screenwriting.

6. Jeff Grosso (April 28, 1968 – March 31, 2020)

Current Age or Oldest Age Reached (as of February 2021): 51 years, 11 months, 3 days
Country of Origin:  Arcadia, California, USA
Start of Professional Career: 1980
Current Sponsors: N/A

Jeff Grossophoto source: Hypebeast

Until he recently passed away in March 2020, Jeff Grosso was one of the oldest active skateboarders in the world. Grosso began skateboarding when he was only five years old and turned pro when he was 12 in 1980. Two years later, Grosso landed his first sponsor, Vans, and worked with the company for many years. Although Grosso was still a prominent skater in the 1990s, he developed problems with substance abuse and dropped off the scene for several years. Grosso got sober in 2005 and picked his professional career back up and had been skating again since then.

Did You Know?

Jeff Grosso was known as the unofficial skateboarding historian and he hosted a popular YouTube show called “Love Letters to Skateboarding.”

5. Tony Hawk

Current Age or Oldest Age Reached (as of February 2021):52 years, 9 months, 5 days
Country of Origin:  San Diego, California, USA
Start of Professional Career: 1982
Current Sponsors: Birdhouse, Vans, Independent, Bones, and Nixon

Tony Hawkphoto source: Flickr via TimothyJ

While the other skateboarders on this list are famous in their own rights, Tony Hawk is a household name and a pop culture icon. Like the other skaters on this list, Hawk received his first skateboard when he was just a kid. Hawk quickly fell in love with the sport and was considered a prodigy. He turned pro when he was 14 and by the time Hawk was 25, he had won 73 of the 103 pro contests he had entered. Hawk leveraged his early fame, into a lifelong career that now includes his own skateboard brand, Birdhouse, and a popular video game franchise, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater.

Did You Know?

In 1999, Tony Hawk became the first skateboarder to land a 900, which is two-and-a-half mid-air revolutions.

4. Steve Caballero (November 8, 1964 – Present)

Current Age or Oldest Age Reached (as of February 2021): 56 years, 3 months, 9 days
Country of Origin:  San Jose, California, USA
Start of Professional Career: 1980
Current Sponsors: Vans, Powell Peralta, Bones, Independent Truck Company, Skull Candy, Ohana Boardshop, and Protec Helmets

Steve Caballerophoto source: Wikimedia Commons

Steve Caballero is another skateboarder in his mid-50s who’s still going strong. Caballero began skating in 1976 when he was 12 and started taking skating seriously when he was 14. His first sponsor was Campbell Skate Park. After placing 5th in a national skate contest, Caballero was offered a sponsorship with Power-Peralta and became a member of the infamous Bones Brigade. Caballero is known for the difficult tricks and air variations he invented for vertical skating. He also holds the long-standing record for the highest air achieved on a halfpipe.

Did You Know?

Steve Caballero invented numerous tricks, including the fakie 360 ollie, frontside boardslide, backside boneless one, les twist, and switch inverts.

3. Lance Mountain (June 13, 1964 – Present)

Current Age or Oldest Age Reached (as of February 2021):56 years, 8 months, 4 days
Country of Origin:  Pasadena, California, USA
Start of Professional Career: early 1980s
Current Sponsors: Flip, Independent Trucks, Spitfire, Nike SB, and Stüssy

Lance Mountainphoto source: Wikimedia Commons

Lance Mountain recently celebrated his 56th birthday and is the oldest pro skateboarder on this list. Mountain started skateboarding in 1975 when his friend Enrique Esparza gave him his used board. After spending his youth honing his skills, Mountain went pro in the early 1980s, riding for Powell-Peralta. Mountain is considered one of the most influential skaters of all time and is the inventor of the eggplant and sadplant tricks.

Did You Know?

Lance Mountain is widely credited with inventing the fingerboard 1970s (a small skateboard that is “ridden” with a person’s fingers) after he used cardboard, pencil erasers, and a disassembled Hot Wheels toy to make a prototype. Mountain’s early fingerboard was featured in a Transworld Skateboarding magazine article.

2. Tony Alva (September 2, 1957 – Present)

Current Age or Oldest Age Reached (as of February 2021): 63 years, 5 months, 15 days
Country of Origin:  Santa Monica, California
Start of Professional Career: c. 1972
Current Sponsors: Alva Skates, Vans, Independent Trucks, and Fender (for music)

Tony Alvaphoto source: Hypebeast

Tony Alva is currently the oldest living professional skateboarder in the world at the age of 63. Alva is a legendary and influential skateboarder and is one of the original members Zephyr Competition Skateboarding Team, also known as the Z-Boys. His professional career began in 1972, but Alva first began skateboarding and surfing when he was just 10 years old.

Alva and the Z-Boys are credited with bringing skateboard to mainstream attention. He is also considered an originator of vertical skating and is credited as one of the first skateboarders to successfully pull a Frontside Air. In addition to skateboarding and surfing, Alva plays bass guitar and has been a member of several bands.

Did You Know?

In 1977, at the age of 19, Tony Alva started Alva Skates, the first company run and owned by a skateboarder, as well as being one of the first to use layered Canadian maple plywood in skateboard decks.

1. Neal Unger (1957 – Present)

Current Age or Oldest Age Reached (as of February 2021):c. 63/64 years
Country of Origin:  Anaheim, California, USA
Start of Professional Career: N/A
Current Sponsors: Sabre Trucks

Neal Ungerphoto source: nealunger.com

Neal Unger is currently the oldest skateboarder in the world at the age of 63! While Unger is the only skater on this list who isn’t a professional, he’s notable enough to have had some sponsors and has been featured in skating magazines and videos. According to Unger, he received his first skateboard in 1962 when he was just 5 years old. Unger has been skating non-stop since then. He also enjoys surfing and skiing.

Did You Know?

In the early 1980s, Neal Unger invented several of his own tricks, which he calls the Sissy Pop and Sissy Bounce Finger Flip – the latter went viral and others have dubbed it the Unger Flip.



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