Recently I saw an ad campaign for a feminine hygiene product about the phrase, “Like A Girl”. Males and females of all ages were asked to demonstrate what it means to do something like a girl. The adults of both genders and the young boys acted out activities like a girl with daintiness, timidity, and lack of skill. The young girls, however, demonstrated any activity like a girl with the utmost power and confidence. What does that say? I believe it reveals that we still have a lot of work cut out for us to change the world’s perception of females, but we are well on our way. The fact that many young, feisty girls have the ability to see themselves as equals to males is outstanding and inspiring. We must do everything we can to keep this trend growing.
Obviously, women have come incredibly far in the past few decades – can you believe that there was a time not long ago when we were not allowed to vote? When the only role we were allowed to pursue was to be a housewife; cooking, cleaning, and taking care of the family? When physical activities, education, and leadership were not an option for us? Clearly we have come leaps and bounds since that time, but I believe that there are still so many issues deeply rooted in society that we need to realize, address, and take a stand against. Ride on, my sisters. We are in the middle of a movement.
Every female that I see on a skateboard brings so much joy to my heart. To me, it doesn’t matter if these girls are just learning to push, or if they are totally ripping. I’m simply stoked that these ladies found the courage inside of themselves to break through the ridiculous wall of gender roles that still exists everywhere today. So much of the population is still under the impression that skateboarding is “too physical” and “too dangerous” for females. What!? They want us to keep our “fragile” bodies unscathed to fit into their ludicrous idea of what a beautiful woman is. Girls, I encourage you to use your body in every way you can! Wear your scars with pride! Do it for yourself, for your own well-being, and for our future. We all have the power within ourselves to stand up against what society wants us to be. We’re putting up a hell of a fight, and we have to persist.
Sexism is everywhere, and “sex sells” couldn’t be a more bogus statement. For every ounce of progression women have made towards equality, advertisement agencies are negating with their sexist campaigns. What bothers me the most are the Photoshopped images of unattainable female bodies and sports ads that portray women as only ornaments to the male athletes. I’m sure like many of you, this is the type of media I grew up with, and have watched drastically increase over time. This type of imagery has been ingrained in my mind like brainwash. The enormous pressure to be pretty, thin, petite, delicate, and unblemished – to be desirable to men – stems an endless slew of very unhealthy issues. We must unlearn what we have been taught.
People will call us crazy feminists for this. They will continue to tell us to get back in the kitchen. They will mock our athleticism. The truth is that they are scared that we are waking up and realizing our power. We are not just cute decorations, we are not pieces of meat to be gawked or hollered at, we are not here to cater to the men. We are equal in every way and we don’t deserve the mental torture of this ongoing sexism. Gals are ripping harder than ever, on boards and in life. If you don’t have something nice to say about that, keep your mouth shut. Seriously. The choices women make, whether it’s what we wear, how we act, or what activities we participate in, don’t warrant a peep of negative feedback. We are stronger than ever for being brave enough to stand tall against all odds and pursue whatever we damn well please. So ladies, let us be this change that we want and need to see in the world. I’m extremely proud of everyone associated with Longboard Girls Crew – our badassery is history in the making. Let’s grow the ovaries (not balls) to continue to destroy the irrational role that is expected of us!
Happy to introduce you to this fourteen year old LGC The Netherlands rider Nadya Doerga! She’s only been skating for a year and already kills it. Film & edit by rider Kim Ofnietdan. Enjoy!
Promoting gender equality through surfing!
In celebration of May as Women’s International Surfing Month and recognition of the unique positive impact surfing and the ocean can give to women and girls, a special part of the Surf + Social Good Summit is our Girls Make Waves Action Day. Dedicating a full day of the three-day Summit to celebrating the achievements and addressing the challenges for surf as a force for women and girls globally, we will mix speaker series, workshops and surf lessons to embolden our call for action and pave the path ahead.
This special event focuses on how access to and the experience of surfing can promote self-empowerment for women and girls.
The Girls Make Waves Action Day Will:
Create Communities of practice:
• Engage with female surfers from countries where social development for women is of significant need promote social good causes.
• Bring together organisations and the women and girls they hope to benefit to build an integrated, digital storytelling platform with an online mentoring program
Identify key insights and priorities
• Inform an innovative research agenda for gender, surf and development initiatives, so that ultimately more girls and women will be able to benefit from surfing
Launch Pilot Programs
• Girls from developing countries positioned as “surf for social good” ambassadors upon returning to their home communities
• Key program in Papua New Guinea, Pink Nose Surf, launched targeting female empowerment via surf
Next Step in “Sport for Gender Equality”
Sport has demonstrated its transformative power in addressing social challenges, particularly toward advancing gender equality. Organizations from the United Nations, USAID, DFID, and more have propelled it as a major tool in international gender empowerment. Surfing is the next wave in this movement- harnessing the power of the natural resource of water, surfing unifies individuals and overcomes barriers. The Summit aims to collate examples of best practices and surfing’s successes as a tool for social good and set priorities for its continued progress.
Collective Vision of the Summit Leadership
The five organizations hosting the Summit, Waves of Freedom, A Liquid Future, Beyond Surface the International, Little Seeds Surf Coaching, and Salt Gypsy are all social enterprises founded and managed by women. As the driving force for the Summit, these women are personal and professional advocates of the empowerment of women and girls; they came together from far corners of the world realizing common challenges and a common platform for a solution: surfing.
Mixed Model Agenda
An action-packed day will mix speaker series, interactive workshops and surf lessons using specialized learning model for women and girls.
• Create a safe space to engage and connect participants and prioritize challenges and opportunities
• Key topics include gender identity and the portrayal of female surfers in the media, women’s surfing history, surfing as a vehicle for marine education
• Guest talks from professional and everyday surfers, sharing their experiences across cultures, showcasing personal journeys and gender-specific challenges
• Speakers such as Ishita Malaviya, India’s first woman of surf and Cori Schumacher, world longboard champion and women’s rights activist from the USA, Dr. Easkey Britton, the first woman to surf in Iran
Surf Lessons and Skills Development
• Introducing an experiential and active learning process that encourages participants, integrating leadership and team-building skills and exercises
• Practical surfboard and equipment repair demonstrations
Support of this Movement
In addition to participants in the Summit as a whole, a unique focus for the Action Day is to facilitate the participation of female surfers from countries where social development for women is of significant need. In order to support the participation of local female surfers and participants from developing nations we are seeking funding for travel bursaries/grants. Our goal is to support 8 girls to attend from the Middle East and Asia-Pacific regions. We have located these girls through our partner organizations’ programs in their countries. We anticipate the average cost per girl for one day of attendance (including travel, accommodation, food, and surf equipment) would be US$2,000.
Surfing holds an incredible potential for girls and women to spark social change from our unique and diverse social and geographical locations.
For more info and inscriptions please click here
The current IDF Downhill World Champion and all-around amazing soul Elena Corrigall takes over longboard media being beautifully featured in Skate Slate TV with a rad video & taking the cover of Concrete Wave Magazine.
Not only she pushes herself and the women in the sport getting competitive in Open categories but she’s also concerned on making a strong, positive impact in other peoples lives. That’s one of the many values we share and makes Elena an outstanding role model.
Elena also just got the cover of Concrete Wave Magazine’s new issue with some rad photos and an amazing interview done by Katie Neilson.
Elena, we absolutely love you. Keep rocking, pushing the limits and inspiring the world!
Our Co-Founder & Managing Director Valeria Kechichian was invited by Women in Board & Action Sports (WIB) to give a conference during the Annual WIB Luncheon during ISPO Munich, one of the biggest Action Sports Trade Shows in the world.
The theme of the Conference was “And Now?” referring to the crash in the Action Sports Industry and where we should head to. Please take some minutes to check this out:
Valeria talks about LGC, why and how she supports and promotes Women in Action Sports, the shift the Industry and society must do in order to achieve real happiness and providing healthy role models to society.
These are some of the best quotes of the speech:
“Greatness is on the way you do things, greatness is on how much love you put on things. By greatness I mean doing things that are bigger than us, things that will influence positively in other people. Greatness can go from fighting human trafficking to supporting any kind of charity to raising your children surrounded with love and teach them about actions and consequences and respect. THAT is greatness… Doing things that influence other people positively, being the best you can be so that that people can be the best they can be, inspire other people to be their best by you being the best you can be”
“Cause greatness comes to the thinkers and the changers, greatness comes to the people that are not afraid to fight, to fight hard and to work harder, even if that means fighting alone”
“Sometimes they will make you doubt in what you believe and the work you do, but as said if you’re really working for a greater good, things will work out. Just keep working hard”
“As women in the boardsport industry we have the responsibility to be that change we want to see”
“We have the responsibility to create real role models, not airbrushed models we see on magazines. Those people are not real and we all know how influential is if we find a role model.. the impact this have on us so let’s become the role models we want to see. We don’t have to be public figures just good moms, god co-workers we have to vibrate in love”
“To all the companies, support the female athletes. Choose the smart, choose the talented, and not the pretty”
“Cause if we depend on what mainstream role models are giving to us, we’re completely fucked and we know it”
“Let’s work on change cause I believe we can do this. We have so much potential inside us, all of us, so much potential. Be the change you want to see”
The main is message: BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE
Come on friends, let’s keep working for change!