Venice Beach, Los Angeles, California. Palm trees, wind in the hair, and the pavement humming under the wheels. The mecca of male-dominated skateboarding, but for women, it can be a quite dangerous place. Catcalls, uncomfortable flirts, and the ‘boys will be boys’ vibe that hangs in the air, create an unwelcome climate that has long kept girls away. But things are about to change.
Born in February 2018, GRLSWIRL is an American grassroots that aims to empower women through skateboarding and to create a community where girls of all ages and cultures can feel safe, strong, and independent.
Those eight girls are quickly becoming the symbol of a proper revolution.
It began with eight girls: Kelsey, Lucy, Tobi, Julia, Shannon, Lindsey, Myriah, Monroe, and Danielle. Eight unique people with eight different stories brought together by one passion. They skateboarded, got to know each other, and a couple of months later what had for so long been nothing but a dream, finally became real. And it’s growing bigger, as hundreds of women from all over the world feel inspired and represented by those eight girls that are quickly becoming the symbol of a proper revolution.
The Crew Is Getting Bigger
With nearly a hundred thousand followers on Instagram and an inspiring blog that benefits from daily updates, GRLSWIRL is real. Firstly limited to LA, it has quickly expanded to San Diego and New York, where new members have joined the mission and enlarged the community. Women gather together in skate group sessions that reunite people of different backgrounds, nationalities, and cultures. Here they have the opportunity to socialize, overcome their fears, and connect. They get out of their comfort zone and become part of a colorful community. But most of all, they learn how to go skateboarding.
In a video recorded and released by MSYFAO, Monroe Alvarez, one of the eight co-founders of the Californian grassroots, talks about the energy skateboard’s wheels generate when swirling on the asphalt. Moreover, she spoke about the sense of fulfillment and satisfaction she felt the first time she found the courage to jump on a board. A feeling that all women should be able to perceive and enjoy. A goal that GRLSWIRL encourages and promotes through group skating sessions and fundraising events that brought them to a refugee shelter in Tijuana, Mexico, back in November 2018.
With supporters coming from all over the world, GRLSWIRL has become an inspiring lifestyle, a motivational factor and an ambition to chase no matter where you are. And to join the community there is no other requirement but dropping in!
Cover and Pictures by SavelG