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Fat People Can Skateboard (With A Few Exceptions)

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While skateboarding isn’t easy for people who are overweight, this shouldn’t discourage you from trying.

Fat people can skateboard but be carefull when you’re over 350 LBS. Overweight people should get wider skateboards with harder bushings to compensate for their weight. Wear quality protective gear and start with the basics. Most quality skateboards can handle up to 350 LBS, but you’re more likely to snap a skateboard when you’re overweight.

If you’re over 230 LBS I recommend getting a wider skateboard setup around 8.25″ or 8.5″. Over 280 LBS requires at least an 8.5″ deck, even wider if you just want to cruise or skate bowl.

Most important thing is to be repsonsible and asses the risk, sometimes it’s better to lose a few pounds first.

Can Fat People Skateboard?

Yes, fat people can skateboard. Being overweight comes with its own set of challenges, but they can easily be overcome. Given the right equipment, time, guidance, persistence, and support, overweight people can excel at skateboarding quickly. 

The social pressure of skateboarders looking a certain way holds back most overweight people from the sport, but even skateboarders that aren’t overweight sometimes experience this kind of pressure.

You can choose to start learning at placing where there aren’t many people around if this bothers you.

Things To Consider As An Overweight Beginner Skateboarder

Skateboarding as a fat person requires you to do your due diligence before you hop on a skateboard. Get a strong wide deck and hard bushings (those plastic things that make the trucks turn). Check out my bushings weight chart, typically you want the hardest bushings (100A) if you’re over 275 LBS:

Weight poundsWeight KGFlexyMediumStiff

Consider decks Like Santa Cruz VS, Lithe Nex, or Powell Peralta Flight. They deal with impacts way better than a regular 7-ply hardrock maple deck.

Santa Cruz VX skateboard deck

Choose The Right Board

Make sure to get a board that can support your weight, so no cheap Amazon stuff. Look for boards with a wider deck and bigger wheels; these provide more stability and support. 

Most boards have weight limits set but I assume this is to keep brands from being sued, the reality is that most boards can handle much more weight. If you want a complete go for a Birdhouse skateboard and make sure the deck is made of hardrock maple, avoid birch decks!

Wear Protective Gear

Overweight people are at a higher risk of an injury and are more prone to getting a more serious one. We suggest you get yourself a helmet, knee pads, and elbow pads. Besides, learning how to fall is important and you might want to wear some pads while you’re at it.

Start Slowly

Taking things slowly as you begin skateboarding and being patient with yourself is important. Start with learning how to balance and how to push. Gradually work towards more advanced tricks as you gain confidence and experience.

Focus On Balance

While not mandatory for skateboarding, you can try to workout. From my own experience, hitting the gym made a huge difference. Not that it made me a better skater, but I am able to skate much longer without getting tired.

Secondly, keeping your balance is important. If you are really dedicated you could practice balance exercises on and off the board. Exercises like yoga, Pilates, or balance training into your workout routine to improve your balance and coordination. You could also create your own balance board.

Find A Supportive Community 

Obviously if you have a supportive local community, that’s the best place to start. Skateboarding with others will make you progress much faster. This is also a great moment to give a shoutout to a community like Chub Rollz

Lastly, check online for groups near you and put in a request to join. Ask for advice and tips, Reddit also has a few subs you should check out like /r/newskaters.

How Much Weight Can a Skateboard Hold

While there is a skateboard weight limit, most overweight people shouldn’t worry too much about the specifications you often see when shopping for a skateboard. Skateboard won’t just break from simpy riding or standing on a skateboard but are more likely to snap when you’re not landing a trick near the the truck bolts.

It does become a problem when you can barely walk, but if that’s the case you should think twice about learning to skateboard.

Skateboard Weight Chart

MicroMiniSmallMid SizeFull Size
Deck Width6.5”-6.75”7”7.3”7.5”-7.6”7.7”-10”
Age5 and under8 and under9-1213 and overAdult
Average Weight45lbs59 lbs and under63-89 lbs102 lbs-152 lbs195 lbs
Height3’4”3’5”-4”4”4’5”-5’2”5’3”-5’6”5’7” and over

This is a typical skateboard weight/size chart you often see but I would take it with a grain of salt. Skateboards can deal with a lot of weight as long as you don’t do anything crazy. Typically you should get a wider board and if you fear snapping a deck, check out our selection of strongest skateboard decks.

Skateboarding Learning Curve For Overweight Skateboarders

The learning curve for overweight skateboarders can varies depending on several factors, such as your level of fitness, previous experience with balance-based sports, and proper gear.

It is more difficult for overweight individuals who get into the sport to learn and excel than it is for regular people. It also takes more time and effort because you don’t want to rush anything.

The higher center of gravity for overweight skateboarders makes it difficult to find balance and coordination which is rather important. Fatigue and injury are two other things that overweight aspiring skateboarders may experience more than others. 

All of this may sound daunting, but nobody ever said skateboarding is easy. With persistence and practice, you can get better at skateboarding. This goes for any new skater, though being overweight makes it more challenging.

Skateboarding is a fun and rewarding way to improve your fitness and as a bonus you lose weight, given you also keep an eye on the calories. At first it will be a frustrating experience and it’s important not to beat yourself up, skateboarding is just not that easy to learn.

Consider A Cruiser or Longboard

Pantheon Pranayama longboard

If you just want to learn how to ride and become good at just cruising your local area, consider a longboard or cruiser. They are much more forgiving and way easier to learn how to ride. The decks are wider and offer a lower center of gravity, making balancing a lot less challenging.

The bigger and wheels make it easier to control and another huge benefit is that you don’t have to push as often. When you are quickly out of breath, it really makes a huge difference.

Skateboard ‘Tricks’ For Overweight People

I wouldn’t start doing tricks until you feel very comfortable riding a skateboard. Just start with balancing and carefully pushing before you decide to take a skateboard around town for a spin.

A little bit of cruising and carving is a ton of fun, a few manuals or hopping curbs should be doable after a couple of weeks/months. This depends on how often you practice and some just progress faster than others.


Cruising means just riding a relaxed pace and not anything too gnarly. Short commutes are also a great excercise, and skateboarding can help you to lose weight. This is a good starting point for overweight skaters who are new to the sport and want to focus on improving their balance and coordination. 

In your initial days, we suggest you practice cruising and measure how long you can cruise. Make sure the time increases daily to see the improvement and gather motivation objectively. 


Once cruising is mastered, you may move on to carving. Carving involves making smooth turns while riding the skateboard. This is a fun and low-impact trick and is a good way to add some variation to regular cruising. 


Once you have established control over your board and learned how to maneuver, you should go ahead with a manual. This trick involves riding the skateboard on its rear wheels without touching the ground with the front wheels. 

Overweight Pro Skateboarders

Since skateboarding is often associated with lean and athletic bodies, there is a dire need for more representation of overweight people within the sport. We looked for some overweight professional skateboarders who, despite their weight, skate better than many skateboarders.

Steve Olson

Steve Olson is a professional skateboarder known for his distinctive style and personality. Olson has been known to be one of the pioneers of the sport and has been a fixture in the skateboarding world for decades, all while being overweight.

Kris Markovich

Kris Markovich has been skating since the late 1980s and is known for his powerful skating style and ability to tackle challenging terrain. He has been sponsored by multiple major brands and is famous for a trick that most overweight people may feel is not ideal for them, the Kris Kross. 

Tony Cox

Tony Cox has been skating since the 1970s and is known for his smooth style and ability to flow effortlessly from one trick to another without his weight being a barrier. 

John Cardiel

John Cardiel is a legendary skateboarder known for his powerful and fearless skating style. Despite suffering a serious injury that paralyzed him from the waist down, Cardiel remains an inspiration to skateboarders worldwide.

Andy Roy

Andy Roy is known for his unique style and ability to make even the most difficult tricks look easy. He has displayed fearlessness and aggression in most of his tricks on the board. 

Final Words

At first I wanted to avoid using the word fat, but it’s what people search for so there you have it,. Nonetheless, by now you should know that fat people can skateboard. I don’t know the background story of the guys featured in the videos here. Maybe they already skated before, maybe not. The thing is you can skateboard even if it’s just cruising around town.

Bowl skating is another great option once you learn the basics. It’s an incredibly fun workout and less risky than bombing the hills or tre-flipping stairs. Consider a cuiser or longboard at first to learn skateboarding faster. Once you got the basic down, move on to basic skateboard tricks.

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