Sormiskeittaaminen?!? Mitä se on?

Sormiskeittaaminen on rullalautailun kasvava alalaji, jossa temput tehdään jalkojen sijasta sormilla eli etusormi on takajalka ja keskisormi on etujalka. Sormiskeittaamista tapahtuu mielestäni ainakin kolmella eri tasolla, joista yksi on satunnainen leikkiminen muovisilla Tech Deck sormiskeittileluilla. Toinen on lähinnä varusteurheilua, eli kehuskellaan uusilla rampeilla, laudoilla sun muilla ja kolmas on näiden kaikkien "yhdistelmä", jossa kehuskelemisen sijaan käytetään ramppeja hyväksi, sillä niihin menee aika paljon rahaa.

Suomessa Tech Deck -leluskeittejä saa Marketeista, mutta esim. Berlinwoodin ammattimaisesti tehdyt hyvät ja laadukkaat laudat saat tällä hetkellä vain kahdesta kaupasta ja ne ovat DOH FB SHOP ja Ponkes Web Shop. DOH on erikoistuneempi ja asiantuntevampi pieni yritys kun taas Ponkesista saa isompia ramppeja sun muita.

Tässä Wikipedian tarjonta aiheesta:

perjantai 28. tammikuuta 2011

"In The View" With Mike Schneider (in english, finnish one coming soon)

TL: Hi Mike, how are you doing at the moment?

MS: Hi Tomi, I'm doing well. Pretty busy as usual but it's all good stuff! Thanks for the interview.

TL: Let’s start with some basic information for those who doesn’t know you that well yet. How long have you been fingerboarding and what made you start fingerboarding?

MS: I've been fingerboarding about 8 years now, since fourth grade. I started cause I liked skateboarding and a lot of kids in my class would play with techdecks. I finally got my own techdeck, and I loved fingerboarding ever since I started.

TL: What kind of image do you have in your opinion? Is there some kind of misunderstandings that you would like to correct or would you like to tell something about you that isn’t “common knowledge”?

MS: I'm not really trying to set an image or anything. I just be myself, fingerboard, have fun, do my best with flatface, and it all comes from there. I guess there's a lot of things people make up or misunderstand, but that happens with pretty much everyone. Advice: don't judge someone especially if you don't know them personally.

TL: You’re a founder / CEO of FlatFace Fingerboards, could you tell shortly how that thing started and how well has your company done these past years?

MS: FlatFace has been doing extremely well lately, which I am very happy about. It started off roughly and barely continued, so I'm pretty lucky I got where it is today. It started as me just making boards and people wanting to buy them, and it grew from there. I really just love making things which is what pushed it along. 
TL: Where do you think fingerboarding is going? Is it in the right tracks or should some re-arrangements be necessary?

MS: Fingerboarding is growing a lot. Overall it is all good things that are happening, positive events and people with good vibes are the most important. Try not to involve yourself with the companies that are clearly outsiders trying to make some quick cash, and support the real dedicated fingerboard companies like blackriver, and basically any legitimate company run 100% by fingerboarders! Remember that it's not just the product, but it's who/what it stands for that is just as important in such a tight community like fingerboarding, and even in skateboarding!

TL: Do you have any fingerboarders that you once looked up to or still look up to? Who are your favorite fingerboarders?

MS: I look up to a lot of fingerboarders. Too many to name, but just about all my friends and anyone who is truly having fun fingerboarding is an inspiration to me.

TL: What has been the hardest trick you have learned to do with a fb? And what trick(s) is / are the easiest ones?

MS: I don't like to compare tricks and difficulties, I'm not sure how to answer this one. Of course I get stoked if I land something super hard, but it's just as much fun to do simple clean tricks, so just whatever's going on :) I guess manuals are one of the easiest!

TL: I’ve noticed that you spent a lot of time in Germany, is it because there’s more often events and such, is it the atmosphere, do you have a girl there or do you promote your company there?

MS: I love going to Germany for the people, atmosphere, and of course the awesome events. I've made friends with some of the greatest people from all around the world,  and it's so much fun there. Always positive energy and great things happening. It's absolutely amazing what blackriver is doing out there and worldwide.

TL: Do you have any advices to beginners in the scene? Is there some rules they should follow or should they approach the game as they please?

MS: My advice is to have fun and enjoy it, because that's really what its all about. Too many kids get worked up about games of skate, sponsors, comparing themselves to others, but the true fun is just fingerboarding any time you feel like it and enjoying it. 

TL: By the way, how old are you at the moment? I remember that you were 16 years old or something when you started Flatface company, is that correct?

MS: I'm 17 now, I'll be 18 in March. I started flatface in 2003, a couple months after I started fingerboarding. As I said before it wasn't supposed to be some big company or anything when I started, it was just me making boards and tuning trucks, cutting up griptape, etc. 

TL: I stand corrected ;) Do you give back to the community from your success? Meaning that do you arrange events and stuff with the money that you make with your company like Blackriver-Ramps does?

MS; Yes, absolutely. My favorite way to do this is the Rendezvous. When I first started fingerboarding almost no two fingerboarders ever met eachother around here and over the years I've been holding the Rendezvous events which have had hundreds and hundreds of people all who share the same passion. It's also helped the US scene grow by inspiring other meetups and events which is great. I also give back in sponsoring my team, and countless amounts of free stickers. Every order from Flatface comes with free stickers, which by the way are not free for me ;). FlatFace also sponsors a lot of events and contests.

TL: Do you think that sponsors are over-rated? Cause there’s tons of kids out there wanting a sponsor but I’d guess that none of them really knows how the sponsorship really works. It’s not like you get new decks, trucks and wheels every week (at least I know I don’t ;D) so could you explain about being sponsored to the beginners in the scene?

MS: Being sponsored is definitely way over rated. I have people asking me every single day, no matter how much I say I'm not sponsoring. It's highly desired, but as I said earlier it is really not needed. It's also unrealistic for every kid to be sponsored, there's simply way too many people, and then it wouldn't be something special anymore. Also most companies don't sponsor someone who comes up and asks them to. It usually happens if you're recognized from online, events, or personally know them. Anyways my advice is to not seek sponsors, just fingerboard and maybe one day a sponsor will come to you. And if not, it really doesn't matter! It may be encouraging to be "sponsored" but fingerboarding is really the same amount of fun either way.

TL: So true. How is the scene evolving in the States? The fingerboarding “boom” has just arrived here in Finland and more beginners show up from nowhere from time to time. Do you have any tips for me on how I could improve the scene? I do tutorials in finnish and write a blog in finnish and our “company” (not yet a real company but soon) DOH FB Elements will start to arrange fingerboarding events as soon as we get our own company rolling.

MS: The US scene is growing a lot! Tons of great products are always popping up, and there seem to be more fingerboarders than ever. The last few Rendezvous' have been way bigger than earlier ones. I'd suggest having events in Finland like you said. Fingerboarding with others is a great way to have the most fun with it and meet new people who share your interests, so events are one of the best ways to spread fingerboarding.

TL: Is there something that you took for granted few years ago that you have learned to appreciate as you’ve gotten older? In other words is there anything regarding to that that you would like to tell the beginners and all young fingerboarders?

MS: Fingerboarding has come a long way since I started. It used to be almost legendary to hear of someone who has a Berlinwood or some Blackriver ramp from Germany. Bearing wheels used to be a dream. Now it's common for kids to have like 5 berlinwoods with blackriver trucks and bearing wheels. Not that it isn't good, but it's definitely not needed to have 23546576 of everything. It seems like some kids care more about the products they have than actually using any of them. Don't stress about impressing people, just get a nice setup you enjoy and have fun fingerboarding with it! And cherish your blackriver 'cause years ago it was nearly impossible to get!

TL: Do you think that fingerboarding is too competitive sport or is it playful competitiveness that surround the sport?

MS: I feel like the younger kids seem to be more competitive with it, as they grow older it's more relaxed and fun for everyone. It depends on the person, but some are just more competitive than others. At a contest it's fine, but it varies from person to person depending on their attitude anyways. Playful competitiveness as you said, is absolutely fine.

TL: Do you think that personality and character counts more than skills in fingerboarding? We (DFE) will sponsor only nice dudes and leave the arrogant fingerboarders without free stuff no matter how good they are. What do you think of our solution?

MS: I also only sponsor people who have great personalities, as well as fingerboarding skills. I'd much rather sponsor someone who's clearly having fun with it than someone who can do every trick in the book robotically but doesn't show creativity or friendliness with it. Style is an important factor because it really goes along with the individual. There's a lot that goes into choosing who to sponsor, but it's often the most pushy or competitive ones who seem to get left behind. 

TL: I have to ask now that I have the opportunity that which part of the DOH presents FB 4 FUN movie was your favorite? Who do you recommend the movie to? By the way thanks for adding the trailer as your favorite since it got a lot more attention after that.

MS: Thomas's part was definitely my favorite. The amazing fingerboarding put the perfect touch to a well filmed / edited part which was out of the ordinary. This part was super unique for sure, one of my favorite fingerboard parts of all time.

TL: I do so agree with you on that! As soon as I got the part I knew that it was the ending part for the movie. I have to give credits to Martin E. who filmed and edited the part. He did amazing job. And I think that Thomas and Martin came up with the idea for the part from OOB's song if I remember correctly.

TL: As Joaquin Méndez said in the ending credits that “fingerboarding gets more fun when you grow up”, do you think that’s true?

MS: I don't know, but I'm having tons of fun with it now as I always have been. Occasionally in the past I'd get bored of it for a week or two but not bored enough to stop or anything. It varies a lot but I'd always been having fun with it or I wouldn't have gotten to where I am today. I guess as fingerboarding progresses there have been a lot of opportunities arising, so maybe it does get more fun as you grow up. For example me fingerboarding with a bunch of friends in germany is a lot different than fingerboarding by myself at my desk in 2005 or something.

TL: Does fingerboarding need more DIY projects like the movie I made? It takes a lot of work but at least in my case it was well worth it. Is there coming a new Flatface movie at any time soon?

MS: We absolutely need more projects like yours. I really enjoyed your video and it also reminded me a lot of the old days, where videos like yours were pretty common. Companies like blast and vegas back in the day would make team videos that came out online, and were so much fun to watch. Now everything is just youtube minis, but I appreciate full lengths a lot as they're really inspirational. There will definitely be a flatface dvd 2, but not for a while. I gotta get on that!

TL: Would you be interested in making a small clip for my next movie? It will take a lot of time before I’m ready to go through that again but I’m sure that I will make another project but this time with more people in it. I’d like the movie to feature some bigger names but some unknown talented riders too, just like in the first movie. 

MS: Good plans. I'd definitely like to film a part for it! Keep me posted about that.

TL: Cool, I sure will. Now it's time for the "last question". Do you have something else to say to Finnish people who are thinking about getting a fingerboard? It’s easy to go extreme and practice all day long 24 / 7 so should it be like that cause it doesn’t sound like much fun. I had a phase where I did nothing but fingerboard so that’s why I ask. What about you, have you gone overboard with your hobby?

MS: Everyone should get a fingerboard if they like it, even just a little. You don't have to use it every day or call yourself a fingerboarder, lots of people just have them to mess around with when they're bored. Its up to you how much you use it and how seriously you take it, and it varies day to day for everyone. Even a lot of "pro" fingerboarders who everyone knows won't be shy to tell you if they haven't fingerboarded in a  week or two, it's normal to not fingerboard 24/7. On the other end of the spectrum you may find yourself fingerboarding for hours and hours! 

TL: Thanks Mike for this interview. I know many people will be pleased to be able to read your interview in Finnish and also in English. 

MS: I'm glad we could do this interview! Hopefully a lot of people enjoy it, as I get a lot of questions but not enough time to talk to everyone. Thanks for doing everything you're doing, it's awesome. Best of luck with continuing success with your video and all future projects, and I'd love to be involved in them so let me know what you plan :) Thanks again for the interview!

TL: I appreciate those kind words but thank you cause you have done so much already to the scene and propably will continue to do so but I will keep trying to do my best to help the scene grow here in Finland cause it's a wonderful and creative activity and it can keep kids away from bad activities like drugs and alcohol. Oh well, that was it! I wish you all the best in life in general and with the fingerboarding scene and business! Keep doing your thing Mike and I will keep doing mine, peace!

You see now that not all North Americans are stupid, greedy and ignorant ;) Just kidding, blame the government not the people. Mike seems such a nice guy, down to earth and generous. Just like all (exception makes the rule) the foreign fingerboarders have been whom I’ve met. It seems there’s some kind of a connection between being nice and fingerboarding… Not! It’s just that stupid people don’t get to positions like that. It pays to be kind and generous. We should all work on that. Well, I hope you enjoyed this “In The View” With Mike Schneider. Finnish version of this and Thomas Hansen’s interview will be coming soon.

(C) Tomi L / Fingerboarding For Fun In Finnish

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