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“I’m a 40-Something-Year-Old Skateboarder (and TikTok Sensation)”

In early 2021, under the name Aunty Skates, Oorbee Roy began posting her skateboarding videos to TikTok : dropping into seven-foot bowls; working on her ollies; helping her preteen daughter through a tricky move. Here, she tells us about taking up the sport in her 40s.In February 2021, we were in yet another Covid lockdown and everyone was so depressedit felt like a glitch in the matrix. The typical Toronto conversation tends to be: How are you? Good. You? Yeah. But people werent hiding it anymore. They were being really honest about how they were struggling, myself included. I wanted to spread some joy and positivity around, so I thought, Im going to start a TikTok account about my journey as an adult skateboarder.When I first met my husband in 2004, he had sprained his ankle skateboarding. After he got better, I used to watch him with envy at the skate parkit looked so coolbut I just figured, good for him; its too late for me. Then I had babies, and then they got a little older and started skateboarding, too. I didnt want to be the mom who stood around watching my whole family have fun. I said to them: I dont care if Im not any good. I dont care if I fall and people laugh at me. Im going to go out there and skate because its so much better than being on the sidelines.

@auntyskates #question from @auntyskates facing fears is tough business! #AdultSwim #AdultSkateTok #BeginnerSkaterGirl #FacingFears as – char

In 2018, at 43, I took a lesson after my daughters lesson. Getting on a skateboard as a grown adult is not easy; I fell a lot. But there was this adrenaline rush, and it felt liberating. I was hooked. When youre a beginner, you can get kind of nervous going to a skate park, but I thought, if I could drop into this bowl and do a run and get out again, Ill feel good about my skateboarding. Thats what I wanted to do, and so I skated as much as possibleas much as my body would allow.Its not all progress. Sometimes, its okay to plateau. It took me two years to figure out that plateauing usually means my body just needs a rest. My kids can skate for eight hours a day at summer camp, eat dinner, and then skate at night, and Im not physically able to do that. So we take a lot of Epsom-salt baths in our house. Weve got a therapy gun, a foam roller , Advil. Do my kids need any of that? No, they dont: Theyre made of rubber. But Im not trying to get into the Olympics, and if I do this right, I can skate for another 25 years.I want to show people, through my videos, through the skateboarding clinics that I put on in Toronto, that its never too late to skate. You get to forget about your problems. You get to focus on something that makes you feel good. Adults forget how to play. We tell our kids to get off the phones and go play outsidethen we shut the door and get on our phones. But we all deserve to play.Next: Youre Stuck in a Rut (Thanks COVID)Heres What to Do

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