Skateboarding, even in 2017, has never really been the most inclusive place. Of course, skaters are historically often seen as outsiders themselves, but when it comes to letting women in, it’s always been a bit of a struggle. Which is why the fact that Nike SB added Lacey Baker to their team is kind of a big deal. Though she seems pretty humble about it.
Baker is just 25 years old, but has been skating most of her life. Although she used to work a day job in graphic design to support her skating career, she recently left her day job to focus on skating. So it’s a good thing she started to explore some shoe brands to team up with (she used to skate for Element, too).
It’s refreshing to see a queer woman join the crew, especially since skating culture has led to anti-gay hate crimes and discrimination in the past. (Jay Adams, anyone?) But Baker told Vogue that she hasn’t faces any of that. Actually, the opposite. She said:
Baker’s also not frustrated with women’s role in the skating world. It’s getting better, she says.
“Women have been skating since the beginning of skateboarding, and there’s always been less recognition, though that applies everywhere. It’s a long road. If there’s a comparison, it’s like how skating was for guys in the ’80s-slash-’90s,” Baker said, noting that it was hard to get skateboarding recognized as a sport, in general.
If there are more female skaters, it’s in part due to how hardcore Baker is. Good thing she quit her day job.