Written by Chris K | 4/15/2022
Some of the best skateboarders do vert skateboarding, while others jump huge gaps and stomp stairs or treat any terrain on the street as a skating obstacle. Some skateboarders have started the best skateboarding brands and changed the world of skateboarding forever. At the same time, other skateboarders invented some of the most popular skateboard tricks in modern skateboarding culture.
With so many legendary skateboarders out there, who are the best skaters of all time? And how have they influenced and made the skateboarding scene what it is today and in the future?
Whether you are looking for the most legendary skateboarders, the best street skaters or skateboarders that you admire, check out the list of the best skateboarders of all time below.
The Most Legendary Skateboarders of All Time
The skateboarders that made this list are some of the most influential skateboarders of all time. The skaters who are the pioneers of modern street skating, the skateboarders who made vert skating what it is today, and the legends who created tricks that every street skater uses today.
Some of these skateboarders would have made the best vert skaters or best street skaters list, as well, but they belong to the most legendary skateboarders of all time. This list is in no particular order.
Tony Hawk is one of the best skateboarders on the planet. He is one of the most recognizable, iconic and famous skateboarders of all time.
Most of us grew up playing one of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater games and became obsessed. It is where I learned all of the vert skateboard trick’s names and tried to emulate them myself. In addition, Tony Hawk was known for making up tricks that we all wanted to copy.
If you ask anyone to think of a skateboarder, even if they aren’t into skateboarding, their first thought will be Tony Hawk. One of the best things about Tony Hawk nicked named Birdman is that no one recognizes him. I think it’s hilarious, and I feel like I need to study his face daily so I will recognize him if I ever run into him.
Tony Hawk was announcing skateboarders at the Olympics when skateboarding became mainstream enough to be considered an Olympic event. Like many, I was apprehensive about skateboarding being at the Olympics, but I feel proud now.
He became a pro skater at 14, and his career has expanded over 30 years. Tony is the pioneer of modern vert skateboarding. He has invented tricks like the stalefish, sacktap and the Madonna. At a competition, he also performed the first documented 900, a trick that is 2 ½ mid-air spins on a skateboard and did it again at 48 years old.
In 2011, Tony was named the second most influential skateboarder of all time after Mar Gonzales. Tony Hawk has won over 70 contests, more than any skater in history. He is one of the most influential skaters in history. I still consider him the number 1 skateboarder in the world.
Tony Hawk is the owner of one of the best skateboard brands in the world: Birdhouse Skateboards. Tony has over 18 video game titles, has appeared in several movies and started a successful skateboarding channel on YouTube called RIDE. He has also worked with Liquid Death and created the most hardcore skate deck of all time – a skateboard painted with his blood.
If you want to look up to any skater, it should be Tony Hawk. He started the Hawk Foundation, which is now named the Skatepark Project, which helps build skateparks all over the US.
Tony Hawk’s Sponsors include Birdhouse Skateboards, Vans, Independent Truck Company, Bones Wheels, and Nixon. He also has the Tony Hawk Pronto Skate Shoes by Lakai.
Achievements: Skateboarding Hall of Fame, Skater of the Year Thrasher magazine, X Games Gold, Silver and Bronze medals.
Videos: Powell-Peralta: The Bones Brigade Video Show (1984), Thrashin’: Skating competitor (1986), Powell-Peralta: The Search for Animal Chin (1987), Transworld: Uno (1996), Birdhouse: “Saturdays” (2017), (and many more)
Mark Gonzales, also known as The Gonz, is one of the best skateboarders of all time. He is a legend and is the pioneer of modern street skating.
Mark was one of the first skaters who skated handrails and was the first skateboarder to do big gaps and leap down huge stair sets. He changed the way street skaters skate today. He was awarded as the most influential skateboarder of all time and the Legend Award by Transworld Skateboarding Magazine in 2011.
Mark Gonzales started skateboarding at 13 and earned his first skateboarding championship at 14. He would mount vertical walls, do 360s, ollies, flip tricks, double flips, grinds, manuals, and slides. Mark would also do tricks like 360s out of manuals and grinds! He looked at all-terrain as a skatepark and turned everything into a skateboarding challenge.
Mark launched the skateboard company Krooked Skateboards and is on the Pro-Tec Skate Team. In addition, he created the Video Days skateboarding video by Blind Skateboarding, one of the best skate videos of all time.
Mark Gonzales has been sponsored by Krooked Skateboards, Adidas, Spitfire Wheels, Independent Trucks, and Supreme.
Achievements: “Most Influential Skateboarder of All Time” by the Transworld Skateboarding Magazine in 2011
Videos: Blind: Video Days (1991), Real: Non-Fiction (1997), Real: Kicked Out of Everywhere (1999), Krooked: Krook3d (2010) (and many more)
Rodney Mullen is a skateboarding legend and is one of the best freestyle skaters in the world. Rodney is, without a doubt, one of the best skateboarders of all time. Rodney has changed the world of skateboarding forever with the invention of some of the most common skateboarding tricks today.
Rodney Mullen has invented skateboarding tricks like the kickflip, heelflip, the Casper slide, the sidewinder, 540 shove-it, the impossible, the 360 flip, and the flat ground ollie. He truly revolutionized modern skateboarding, especially with the invention of the flat ground ollie, which is slamming the board’s tail onto concrete to get pop from impact.
Rodney, who is nicked named “Mutt,” is considered the best freestyle skater in the world. He invented what we know as street skating today, and he started with freestyle skating and transitioned to street skating. Rodney Mullen is a founding member of the Bones Brigade Team but left to join World Industries.
He has made over 20 skateboarding videos and starred in Plan B’s 1992 video Questionable. Rodney is also featured in several video games like American Wasteland and Pro Skater 4. He created the A-Team with Marc Johnson after starting up several skate companies like Almost Skateboards and Tensor Trucks. He also helped write The Mutt: How to Skateboard and Not Kill Yourself with Sean Mortimer.
Rodney Mullen has been skating longer than most skaters today, despite a hip problem in 2000. To get around it, he started to skate switch. He has no stance, so he rides regular or switch effortlessly. He practices freestyle and street skateboarding while mixing in other styles like vertical skating. Rodney is the greatest skateboarder of all time. Rodney Mullen is also the craziest skateboarder.
I recommend checking out this video where Rodney Mullen and Daewon Song outdo each other while skating.
Rodney Mullen has been sponsored by Powell Peralta, Plan B Skateboards, Almost Skateboards, World Industries, Tensor Trucks, Globe Shoes and Bones Wheels.
Achievements: Invented modern street skating tricks, including the Heelflip, Kickflip, Sidewinder, and 360 Flip. 30 Most Influential Skaters of All Time list, Transworld Skateboarding Readers’ Choice Award for Skater of the Year in 2002.
Videos: The Bones Brigade Video Show (1984), Rodney Mullen Vs. Daewon Song (1997), Almost: Round Three (2004) (and many more)
Is there any other skateboarder on earth known for doing extreme stunts? Danny Way is one of the best skateboarders of all time and can prove it because he has won the World’s Best Skateboarder award and Thrasher Magazine’s Skater of the Year award twice.
Danny is a beast on rails, mega ramps, jumps, big air and is a legend for breaking several skateboarding world records. He has jumped over the Great Wall of China and jumped onto a skateboard ramp from a helicopter! In addition, he was the youngest person to win the Pro Vert Skateboarding contest at the World Skateboard Associated Pro Vert Contest.
Danny made it to X-Games and won gold in 2004. He also has won the fastest downhill speed record for skating at 74.5mph. So if you love extreme skateboarding, Danny Way is your guy.
Danny co-founded Plan B Skateboards with Mike Ternasky.
Danny Way has been sponsored by Plan B Skateboards, Alien Workshop, Independent Trucks, DC Shoes, and Nixon.
Achievements: Thrasher Magazine “Skater of the Year,” World Record for Biggest Air & Long Distance Jump, Gold Medal at X Games, Jumped over the Great Wall of China
Videos: Powell Peralta: Public Domain (1988), H-Street: Shackle Me Not (1988), H-Street: Hokus Pokus (1989), Plan B: Questionable (1992) and many more.
Eric Koston is one of the best skaters of all time. He is a creative skater who has created K Grind and Fandangle moves while still being a very smooth and technical skater. Eric is known for skating unusual tricks on big handrails, ledges and gaps. He always brings something new to skateboarding and is entertaining to watch. Eric Kosten is a pioneer in the skateboarding world and a pro skater who can skate switch.
Eric co-owns Fourstar Clothing and “The Berrics” skatepark with Steve Berra. He is also featured in several of Tony Hawk’s video games, Skate 2 and Skate 3 by Electronic Arts. Eric won Skateboarder of the Year by Thrasher Magazine in 1996 and 2001.
While only a few of his videos are listed, he was in almost every skate video from the 1990s to the 2000s. During this time, he has won several Summer X Games competitions.
Eric Koston has been sponsored by H-Street Company, Lakai Footwear, Independent Trucks & Independent Skate Tools, Spitfire Wheels, Nike SB, Supreme, and Jessup Grip Tape.
Achievements: Won Summer X Games Gold, Thrasher Magazine’s Skateboarder of the Year in 1996 & 2001, Dew Action Sports Tour Gold in 2005 for Park and Street.
Videos: H-Street: Next Generation (1992), Transworld: Uno (1996), Girl: Mouse (1996), Girl: Yeah Right! (2003), Nike SB: “Chronicles 3” (2016), and many more
Steve “Cab” Caballero has won 31 contents over his 30 year skating career. Stacy Peralta recruited him to join Powell Peralta at age 14 and set the world record for the longest boardslide down a 44 step handrail in 1999. That same year he won the Skater of the Century title by Thrasher Magazine.
Steve is a founding member of the Bones Brigade and has been in videos like The Bones Brigade Video Show and The Search for Animal Chin. In 1987 he won both street skateboarding and vert skating titles at the World Championships in Germany. In addition, he set the world record for highest air achieved on the halfpipe at 11 feet which Danny Way later beat.
Steve is very likeable and known for doing complicated tricks and the air variations he created when doing vert skateboarding. He invented the Caballerial, a half cab or a full cab. He also did tricks like the backside boneless trick and the frontside boardslide.
Steve rides with a goofy stance and entered the Skateboarding Hall of Fame in 2010.
Steve Caballero has been sponsored by Vans, Powell Peralta, Independent Trucks, Bones Wheels, and 187 Killer Skateboard Pads.
Achievements: Skater of the Century Thrasher magazine (1999), Skateboarding Hall of Fame (2010),
Videos: The Search for Animal Chin and Bones Brigade: An Autobiography
Tony Alva is the pioneer of vertical skating, modern skateboarding, and modern skateboarding culture. He was the first of many things in skateboarding, including riding in empty swimming pools. Tony Alva was one of the first skaters who made pool skating popular. He joined the Zephyr Team in 1972 and was one of the Zephyr Competition skateboarding team members. He skated pools with skateboard legends Jay Adams and Stacy Peralta.
He was the first skater to own his own skateboard company called Alva Skates, one of the first companies to make decks out of Canadian maple plywood, which modern skateboards are made out of today. He also helped develop the first skateboarding shoes when he partnered with Vans.
Tony Alva started with surfing, so he surf skates but is known for doing freestyle, slalom, ramps, barrel jumping and pool riding. He was one of the first skateboards to do a front air in swimming pools successfully and was credited for the first front side air.
Check out his website to see the multiple collections of Tony Alva decks and completes.
Tony Alva has been sponsored by Vans, Fender and Independent Trucks.
Achievements: Won the Guinness World Record for Barrel Jumping in 1977, World Invitational Skateboard Champion in 1975, Won the Skateboard Magazines Skateboarder of the Year Award.
Videos: The Tony Alva Story, Dogtown and Z-Boys and Skateboard Kings.
Natas Kaupas is what every street skater wants to be. He made it seem like everything he could skate on and mounted a wall from a flat surface. As a result, he could launch himself and his skateboard without a transition. He is known for the wallride and the legendary fire hydrant trick.
Natas was the first skater to release a pro skater model shoe and was one of the first professional street skaters. He has always been super underground, steering away from the mainstream skateboarding subculture. He is so underground that while being in Tony Hawk’s Underground 2 – he is a secret playable character instead of a main one.
He is known for the Natas Spin, which is popping an ollie onto the top of a fire hydrant completed by a 720 ° spin with a rolling dismount which you can see in the skate video Streets of Fire which I linked above.
The best thing about Natas Kaupas and what makes him such a legendary and influential skateboarder is that he didn’t want to ride ramps or skate parks. Instead, he used everything around him, like throwing his skateboard up against a wall and riding off of it effortlessly.
Natas has a pro model skateboard by SMA and a pro model shoe by Etnies. Unfortunately, both are now vintage and can only be found on eBay or other used merchandise sites.
Natas Kaupas has been sponsored by Santa Monica Airlines and had a pro shoe with Etnies.
Achievements: Featured in Thrasher Magazine in 1984, Legend Award from Transworld Skateboarding in 2005.
Videos: A reason for living by Santa Cruz, Streets on Fire and Speed Freaks by Santa Cruz, On the Prowl
Guy Mariano has always been a legendary skateboarder. He has always been one of the best skateboarders since his first part in 1991’s Blind Skateboards “Video Days.”
Guy’s skateboard career has lasted over 30 years, and he has had many sponsors and his first deck sponsor with Powell Peralta. You can see his immense skills in the Girl Skateboards video “Pretty Sweet,” where he landed a switch 360 flip nosegrind on a handrail.
Guy co-founded Royal Trucks with Rudy Johnson, and the trucks are one of the best skateboard trucks you can get if you are into technical skating. Guy is now a part of April Skateboards and even has his own skate deck you can buy and feel like you can ride like Guy Mariano.
Guy Mariano has been sponsored by April Skateboards, Girl Skateboards, Powell Peralta, Nike SB, Thunder Trucks, Spitfire Wheels, Andale Bearings, and Grizzly Skateboard Grip tape.
Achievements: Won Best Video Park and Best Street Skater by Transworld Skateboarding, Wo
Videos: Girl Skateboards: Mouse, Blind Skateboards: Video Days, Girl Skateboards: Pretty Sweet, Guy Mariano Life on Video by The Berrics, Lakai’s Fully Flared.
Lance Mountain was a massive influence in skateboarding in the 1980s. He was one of the original members of the Bones Brigade, has won more than 50 competitions in his life and is still an active skater. He is a skateboarder willing to try anything and has invented tricks like the Sadplant, which can be seen in the video linked above.
Lance practiced pool skating with other legendary skaters like Tony Alva. He has been in a ton of skate videos created by Stacy Peralta, and he started The FIRM and Blitz Distribution and sponsored some skaters like Ray Barbee, Joe Gruber, James Qua, and Jon Humphries.
Lance is also one of the inventors of the fingerboard, which is pretty cool. You can learn how to do skateboard tricks like an ollie with your fingers rather than your feet as the board is tiny. I had a fingerboard when I was a kid and had no idea Lance created it.
Lance Mountain has been sponsored by Independent Trucks, Flip, Bones Skateboard Bearings, Jessup Griptape, Spitfire Wheels, Nike SB, and Powell-Peralta.
Achievements: 30 Most Influential Skateboarders of All Time by Transworld Skateboarding.
Videos: Powell Peralta: Bones Brigade: The Search for Animal Chin, Powel Peralta: The Bones Brigade Video Show, Skateboard Superstars, Thrashin’, and Stoked.
The Best Street Skaters of All Time
There are so many sick street skaters, including legends like Rodney Mullen, Mark Gonzales, Steve Caballero and Natas Kaupas. So many of the best street skateboarders are responsible for the modern street skateboarding culture by creating tricks, deck shapes and everything else. Other incredible street skaters include Elissa Steamer and Leticia Bufoni.
Pro Skater Daewon Song is known for his incredibly creative skateboarding techniques. He started skating on benches, picnic tables, and stairs and loves using weird obstacles to push his skating further. Daewon is entertaining to watch, but he is also really skilled in technical street skating, making him one of the best skateboarders of all time.
Daewon has excellent board control, and in 2017 he entered the Skateboard Hall of Fame. He is one of the most famous skateboarders while remaining humble and positive and thinking differently than many other skateboarders on this list.
Daewon is one of the best street skaters of all time and was named Skater of the Year by Thrasher Magazine in 2006. Adidas sponsored him, and they did a contest called “Daewon Did It,” where people submitted themselves doing tricks inspired by Daewon. It was cool, and I submitted my trick video.
Rodney Mullen mentored Daewon, and they started Almost Skateboards together. He also co-owns Thank You Skateboards with Torey Pudwill (the creator of Grizzly Griptape.) He also founded Matrix Clothing and was added to the Brick Harbor Skateboard Retailer Team.
He is also a playable character in American Wasteland and Tony Hawk: Ride video games.
Daewon Song has been sponsored by Almost Skateboards, Adidas Footwear, Matrix Clothing, DVS Shoes, Tensor Skateboard Trucks, Mob Griptape, Spitfire Wheels and World Industries.
Achievements: Skater of the Year by Thrasher Magazine in 2006, Skateboarding Hall of Fame in 2017, X Games Austin 2016, X Games SKB Real Street 3rd Place in 2011.
Videos: Love Child (1992), Rodney Mullen Vs. Daewon Song (1997)
Nyjah Huston is one of the best skateboarders of all time. He is insane at street skating and is one of the best street skaters on the scene. Nyjah has won many contests and is a 13 time X Games gold medallist and competed in the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
When Nyjah was growing up, he spent all of his days learning skateboard tricks as his parents owned a skate park. He has been in nearly 100 skateboarding contests since starting in 2004.
While many skateboarders think that Nyjah is too commercial, it has made him the highest-paid skateboarder due to deals with Nike NB and Monster. He has his own Nike NB signature shoe called the Nyjah Free 2. He even launched his own skateboarding company called Disorder Skateboards.
Nyjah skates goofy-footed and is a playable character in Tony Hawk’s Project 8 and Pro Skater 5. As a kid, he was sponsored by Element Skateboards and has been in Element Skateboarding films such as the Volumes of Elementality series video.
Finished first place in SLS, 5 world skateboarding championship medals, x-games
Nyjah Huston has been sponsored by Nike NB, Diamond Supply Co, Ricta Wheels and Mob Griptape.
Achievements: Thirteen time X-Games Gold Medallist, World Skateboarding Champion for Street, Street Skateboarding at the Olympics
Videos: H-Street: Nike: Element: Elementality Volume 1 & 2 (2005-2006), Thrasher: Double Rock (2009), Elemnt: Rise & Shone (2011), Til Death (2008), and many more.
You can thank Mike Vallely’s World Industries Barnyard deck if you’ve ever ridden a popsicle-shaped deck. Mike V was with World Industries when they created the second-ever double-kick skateboard design known as the Vision Double Tail. This deck shape became so popular that the deck revolutionized skate deck shapes.
Mike V, the lead vocalist for Black Flag, was first noticed by legendary skater Lance Mountain who bought him a new skateboard shortly after Mike was sponsored as an amateur with Powell-Peralta and had a signature Powell-Peralta skateboard.
He was on the cover of Thrasher Magazine in 1986 performing the handplant circle and is well known for street skating tricks like street grabs, fast plants, and hand plants. He was into street skating and vert skateboarding throughout his career. He could easily climb walls with no transition while at the same time doing tricks in the places like parking lots.
Mike V skated for New Deal Skateboards in the 1990s and was part of World Industries until 1991. He also road for Element Skateboards throughout the years. In 2011, he founded Elephant Skateboards and eventually started Street Plant, which is run out of his garage he aptly named “Garageland.”
Like most skateboarders on this list, Mike V is a playable character in the video game Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland, Tony Hawk Underground and Tony Hawk’s Project 8.
Mike Vallely has been sponsored by Street Plant, Powell-Peralta, Triple 8, Etnies Footwear, and World Industries.
Achievements: He was on the Thrasher Magazine Cover in 1986, Was inducted into the Skateboarding Hall of Fame, Won several X-Games Street Medals
Videos: Powell-Peralta: The Search for Animal Chin, Mike Vallely: Public Domain, World Industries Rubbish Heap, Thrasher King of the Road
Andy Anderson brings together a perfect mix of freestyle skating and street skating while staying down to earth. He skates like he took a bit of skateboarding skill from every legendary skater from every generation. Andy has a unique skating style as he blends classic tricks with modern skateboarding tactics.
One of the best things about Andy Anderson is that he is known for wearing a skateboard helmet. He is truly someone to look up to because he stays safe while quickly switching between street, vert and freestyle skateboarding while making it his own. He has tons of technical tricks and is insanely impressive when he skates.
Andy is on the Powell Peralta team and even has a pro skateboard deck called the Andy Anderson Heron Flight Skateboard deck. Wondering about the price of skateboards like Andy’s? I wrote about Andy’s deck with Powell Peralta. His video by Powell Peralta is the most viewed video on their channel.
Andy skated at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and ranked 16th place. He also ranked first place in Canada for bowl and street skating. Andy recently joined the Etnies Skateboarding team.
Andy Anderson has been sponsored by Powell Peralta, Etnies, Bones and Mini Logo. Andy’s skate deck with Powell Peralta makes a great gift for a skateboarder.
Achievements: He placed 16th at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, He won the Canadian Men’s Park final in 2020
Videos: Powell Peralta Presents – Andy Anderson Skateboarding, Andy Anderson: a Short Skate Film, Powel Peralta Presents Seen Him
Best Female Skaters of All Time
The world of skateboarding is dominated by men when it shouldn’t be. So many incredible women skaters prove they have the skills, talent, and passion for loving skateboarding to make it their career.
Professional Female Skaters like Patti McGee, who started skating in the 1960s to upcoming female skateboarders like Sky Brown, are inspirations to women and girls everywhere.
Female skaters need to be represented in the skateboarding community, and these ladies are just a few of the best female skateboarders of all time.
Leticia Bufoni is one of the world’s top street skateboarders, and she is an icon for women’s skateboarding. She is another pro skater who has a skate park in her backyard. Her most dangerous stunt has been doing an ollie down 17 stairs.
She was the first female skateboarder to ride for Plan B and the first female athlete featured on the Berrics Push project. Leticia has many firsts in women’s skateboarding, including being the first woman to sign with Nike SB and the first woman skateboarder to compete at the Red Bull Hart Lines.
Leticia has millions of fans on her social media, and her clean, consistent technical skateboarding makes it obvious why she is so popular. She is a five times X-Games gold medallist. In addition, she entered the Guinness World Records 2017 for most wins in the World Cup of Skateboarding and won gold at the 2015 World Skateboarding Championships.
You can find the goofy-footed skater as a playable character in Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 5 video game.
Leticia Bufoni has been sponsored by Plan B Skateboards, Nike SB, Red Bull, Bones Wheels, and Grizzly Grip Tape.
Achievements: 3 Times Gold medals for X-Games in 2013, The First woman on the cover of the Skateboard Magazine, Won 1st for Street League Skateboarding, One of The Most Powerful Women in International Sports by Forbes, Guinness Book of World Records for Most Wins of the World Cup of Skateboarding for Female Street Skating.
Videos: Leticia Bufoni – PUSH, Red Bulls Leticia Bufoni’s Backyard Skatepark
Lizzie Armanto is a legend to all skaters and is iconic to female skaters everywhere. She glid effortlessly on her skateboard and was one of the first women to do several tricks and compete in several competitions.
She can be found in a pool or skating on a ramp impressing everyone with her skills. She was on the cover of Thrasher Magazine, and she was the first woman to appear on the cover of Transworld Skateboarding.
Lizzie was signed with Birdhouse Skateboards and is still active on the team. She rides with a regular stance which you can see when you play her in Tony Hawk’s Shred Session video game.
Lizzie has won over 30 skateboarding awards, including winning gold at the first-ever women’s skateboard park event in X-Games in 2013. In addition, she was the first woman to be on the Transworld Skateboarding cover and was the first woman to ride the “Loop,” which is a 360° vertical ramp.
Lizzie skated for Finland in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, where she won 14th place in Women’s Park Skateboarding. In my opinion, Lizzie is one of the best skateboarders right now.
Want more Lizzie Armanto? Check out her skateboard with Birdhouse, her signature wheels with Bones or her pro skater shoes, the Sk8-Hi Pro with Vans.
Lizzie Armanto has been sponsored by Birdhouse Skateboards, Independent Trucks, Vans, Bones, and 187 Killer Pads & 187 Killer Pads Skateboard Backpacks.
Achievements: World Cup of Skateboarding champion, skated in the 2020 Olympics, the first woman to ride the 360 ° loop, and the first woman to appear on the cover of Transworld Skateboarding.
Videos: Underexposed: A Women’s Skateboarding Documentary, Monster Mentality, Cold Call: Lizzie Armanto
Lyn-Z Adams Hawkins Pastrana
Lyn-Z Adams Hawkins Pastrana is one of the best skateboarders in the world. She has paved the way for women skaters with her achievements in competitions. She was the first female skateboarder that could hit the Giganto-Ramp, which is just over six stories tall.
Not only that, Lyn-Z was the first female to land a 540 McTwist during a Quiksilver Tony Hawk Show. She was also the first female skater to skate the DC Mega Ramp. Lyn-Z started skating young and got over her fear of vertical drops when her friends pushed her down a ramp for the first time. Now she is known for skating vertical ramps with ease.
Lyn-Z has won the Women’s Vert Competition at X-Games and has won several competitions for vert, bowl, street and the highest wall. In addition, she is known for customizing the grip tape on her skateboard decks. Lyn-Z is also a playable character in Tony Hawk’s Project 8 and was the second woman to appear in a Tony Hawk game after Elissa Steamer.
Lyn-Z Adams Hawkins has been sponsored by Birdhouse Skateboards, Volcom, Etnies, Type-S Wheels, S-one helmets, K-Five Boardshop, and Oakley Eyewear.
Achievements: Won 3 Gold Medals at the X Games, was the first woman to skate the DC Mega Ramp, the first woman to land the 540 McTwist.
Videos: Skate Girl, Underexposed: A Women’s Skateboarding Documentary, Lyn-Z Adams Hawkins Vans Triple Crown in 2004
Elissa Steamer is one of the best female street skaters in history, and she is still killing it today! She is an inspiration to female skateboarders everywhere. Elissa turned pro in 1998 and was the first female skater to become a pro skateboarder.
Elissa has paved the way for female skateboarders. She was the first female skater to star in Tony Hawk’s video games and the first woman to have a street part in a significant skateboarding video. Elissa is an incredible skater on the streets or at the skate park. She can transition quickly and easily hits big ledges, stair gaps and grinds rails.
She dominated competitions and won Vancouver’s first major women’s skateboarding street competition at the Slam City Jam. In addition, she has won gold medals for street skating at the X-Games, won 1st place in the World Cup of Skateboarding for Women’s Street and won the 2004 Female Skater of the Year by Girls Magazine.
If you want more Elissa Steamer in your life, check out her skate decks with GNAR boards and Baker Skateboards.
Elissa Steamer has been sponsored by Gnarhunters, Baker Skateboards, Nike SB, Toy Machine, Zero Skateboards, and Etnies.
Achievements: Won 1st Place for Women’s Street at Slam City Jam, Won 1st at the World Cup of Skateboarding, Has Several Gold Medals for X-Games
Videos: Toy Machine: Welcome to Hell, Bootleg 3000: Elissa Steamer, Baker2G: Elissa Steamer, Toy Machine: Jump Off a Building, Baker: Baker 4
Best Vert Skaters of All Time
So many legendary vert skateboarders paved the way for other skateboards to do insane vert tricks. Vert Skateboarding legends include Tony Hawk, Danny Way, Steve Caballero, Mike Vallely, and Lyn-Z Adams Hawkins. They make vert skateboarding look effortless and inspire new skaters to take to the ramps to hit high air.
Best Vert Skaters of All Time
So many legendary vert skateboarders paved the way for other skateboards to do insane vert tricks. Vert Skateboarding legends include Tony Hawk, Danny Way, Steve Caballero, Mike Vallely, and Lyn-Z Adams Hawkins. They make vert skateboarding look effortless and inspire new skaters to take to the ramps to hit high air.
Bob Burnquist has been in all 52 X-Games competitions and has won over 30 medals during all of the competitions he has been in. In 2000, he won X Games best trick contest with the famous Fakie 5-0 and a Fakie kickflip off the grind bar.
He is well known for the success of the 900 trick and was the first person to land a fakie 900 in 2010. Bob’s signature move is the Fakie 900, a 900 degree reverse with a natural rotation.
Bob Burnquist is one of the most influential transition skateboarders in the world. He can clear 70-foot gaps and is known for his insane vertical tricks. In 2006, he completed a base jump after doing a 50/50 on a rail overhanging the Grand Canyon. He is also known for creating new stunts, inventing the Wee Willy grind, and is known for his one-footed grind.
Bob is known for his switch skateboarding and for dominating competitions. He was rewarded a 98 out of 100, which is the second-highest score ever given in X-Games. He had a flawless run that included many new and unnamed tricks that were never seen before.
Bob Burnquist is one of the best skateboarders in the world, but he also has a private skatepark in his backyard called Dreamland. Dreamland has a giant vert bowl, corkscrew, metal full pipe and a mega ramp of a 50-70-foot gap jump.
Pro skaters like Danny Way have skated the Mega Ramp. Tony Hawk and Bucky Lasek skated the vert bowl. I highly recommend checking out Oakley’s/Bob Burnquist’s “Dreamland” video, which was filmed at his backyard skatepark.
Bob Burnquist has been sponsored by Oakley, Flip, Ricta Wheels, and Independent Trucks.
Achievements: Skateboarder of the Year by Thrasher Magazine in 1997, Won Thirty X Games Medals, Won Vert Contest in 2001 X-Games
Videos: Flip’s “Extremely Sorry,” The Firm’s “Can’t Stop,” and Oakley’s/Bob Burnquist’s “Dreamland.”
Chris “Cobra” Cole is a famous regular footed skateboarder. He is one of the best skaters of all time. He has completed a ton of complicated tricks, including doing 360 flips down the staircase at Wallenberg Highschool in San Francisco, a backside 360-degree rotation down the Love Park Fountain in Philadelphia and a backside 360 kickflip down the Carlsbad Gap in Carlsbad, California.
Chris has consistently won medals from X-Games, Gravity Games, the Battle at the Berrics and eS Game of Skate. Chris Cole is one of the best skateboarders of all time as he is known for going huge, landing many tricks and clearing huge stair sets and gaps. In addition, he is one of the most skilled skaters who are still active. Some of the most challenging tricks he has completed include the 360 flip, backside flip, switch frontside flip and the backside 360.
He is also known for completing several complicated tricks in iconic locations worldwide, including a backside flip switch, frontside flip and backside 360 down the Love Park Fountain in Philadelphia, which can be seen in the Transworld in Bloom and Ride the Sky videos.
Chris is a playable character in several games like Skate, Skate 2, Skate 3 and Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD video games.
He owns Reign Skate Shop and used to be a shareholder of Zero skateboard company.
Chris Cole has been sponsored by World Industries, Circa Skateboard Shoes, eS footwear, Monster Energy, Spitfire Wheels, Grizzly Griptape, Zero Skateboards and Fallen Footwear.
Achievements: Thrasher Magazine’s “Skater of the Year” Award in 2005 & 2009, Won Gold Medals at X-Games, Gold Medal in Street at Gravity Games
Videos: Transworld in Bloom, Venom, VideoRadio, Dying to Live and Ride the Sky
Bucky Lasek is one of the best skateboarders of all time. He has competed in every single X-Games and has won 10 Gold Medals over the years. He is still competitive and competing today and recently won 4th for SKB Vert at the 2021 X Games. In 1990, he joined the Powell-Peralta team and debuted in the 4th Bones Brigade skateboarding video.
Bucky is known for vert skateboarding and performing incredibly complex tricks, including skating switch while doing vert. He is super progressive, has never rushed a trick and skates so smoothly. Bucky is the best transition skater ever. He is known for insane flips and tricks like the stalefish, mute, backside, frontside grabs, inverts and shreds ramps. Bucky loves doing combos and is the best transition skater ever. Everything he has done is an inspiration. He loves to challenge himself and has the discipline for skateboarding contests.
Buck has his own concrete skateboard park in his backyard called Lasekland. He has also been in several video games, including Tony Hawk’s Series: Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater.
Bucky Lasek has been sponsored by Powell Peralta, Rockstar Energy, Bones Wheels, Bones Bearings, Independent Trucks and Pro-Tec.
Achievements: Won 10 Gold Medals at X-Games, Won 1st at the Vans Triple Crown
Christian Hosoi had a rivalry with Tony Hawk, and the two legendary skaters would compete all the time in the mid-1980s. He went pro at 14 and was one of the top vert skaters in the 1980s. Christian had loads of time to practice skating as his dad was the Marina Del Rey Skate Park manager.
He joined Dogtown Skateboards and Sims Skateboards and is a playable character in Tony Hawk’s Project 8 video game. Christian was the inventor of a few tricks, including the rocket air and Christ air and had decks based on original shapes and more modern takes on classic skateboards.
Christian Hosoi went to prison for transporting drugs and became a born-again Christian. If you want to know more, you should watch Watch Rising Son, the Legend of Christian Hosoi. He also has a biography I recommend checking out – Hosoi: My Life as a Skateboarder Junkie Inmate Pastor.
Christian Hosoi has been sponsored by Powel Peralta, Hosoi Skates, Independent Trucks, Vans, Pro-Tec and Diamond.
Achievements: Has 13 First Place Finishes, Awarded Transworld Legend Award in 2009, Won the first SKB Park Legends at X Games in 2009 & 2010
Videos: Rising Son – The Legend of Skateboarder Christian Hosoi, Thrashin’, Speed Freaks
The Best Skateboarders of All Time
The skateboarders here are some of the best technical skaters or skaters that created the best skateboard brands and are just generally sick skateboarders.
Stevie Williams is a legend in skateboarding and a pioneer for inner-city skateboarding. He made the list of one of the 30 most influential skaters of all time by Transworld Skateboarding in 2011. In addition, Stevie helped make Philadelphia’s Love Park one of the top skate plazas in the United States.
Stevie was featured in Element Fine Artist’s Vol. 1 video as Lil’ Stevie in 1994. His first sponsor was DC Shoes, and he eventually teamed up with Reebok with his brand DGK Skateboards. He has also been featured in many skateboarding video games, including Evolution Skateboarding and Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland.
What makes Stevie one of the best skateboarders in the world is his effortless skateboarding. He is an excellent technical skater who easily hits and lands all of his tricks. Stevie founded one of the most successful skateboard brands, DGK, which has amazing skate apparel, skateboards, skate decks and skate parts.
Stevie Williams has been sponsored by DGK, Asphalt Yacht Club, Gold Wheels, Diamond Supply Co, G-Shock, Venture Trucks, Bones swiss, Grizzly Grip, and DC Shoes.
Achievements: 30 Most Influential Skaters of All Time by Transworld Skateboarding in 2011. Started one of the most successful skateboarding companies of all time, DGK.
Videos: The DC Video – Stevie Williams, Being Stevie Williams, DGK – It’s Official – Stevie Williams, The Reason, Da Playground
Chris Joslin’s switch frontside flips are next level. The way he stomps his tricks with so much energy and his ability to land heavy tricks on huge gaps is impressive.
Watch Chris’s skate parts in the Plan B True Part. He lands everything while still having insane pop and board control during the fastest tricks. He has the cleanest and quickest tre flips. He hits the nollie flip so hard and has some of the sickest tricks in skateboarding. It is hard not to be impressed with Chris when you watch him skate.
If you want to get your hands on Chris’s merchandise, he has a few skateboard decks with Plan B Skateboards and did a shoe collaboration with Etnies Footwear called Joslin 2.
Chris Joslin has been sponsored by Plan B, Etnies, Active, Grizzly Grip, Bones Wheels, Independent Trucks, Bones Bearings, and Rockstar.
Achievements: Nominated for Skater of the Year by Thrasher Magazine, Has 4 X-Games Medals, including one gold.
Videos: Plan B True, Chris Joslin: The Berrics Battle Commander, Album, Ode to London, My War: Chris Joslin
Chris Haslam is an incredible skateboarder. He is a legend for riding mini-ramps, ledges, gaps and handrails. If there is one video you have to check out, it is the Cheese and Crackers skate video he did with Daewon Song. It is a mini-ramp video set up by Almost Skateboards, and it shows off his skateboard skills so well. If you don’t become an instant fan of Chris Haslam after watching the video, you should watch it again.
In addition to riding with Daewon, Chris was a team rider for Deca Skateboards, Daewon Song’s skateboard brand. Additionally, he has been a part of the Almost Skateboard team, Bones Wheels Team and Globe Shoes Team. He even had his signature wheels with Bones Wheels which are sadly discontinued.
If you want to vibe with a Canadian Skateboarder, you will love Chris Haslam. He is incredibly friendly and giving. He started Brain Child Skateboards in memory of his fellow skater Ben Raemers and created his own grip tape company called Gypsy Grip.
Chris Haslam has been sponsored by Almost Skateboards, Independent Trucks, Bones Wheels, Globe Shoes, Swiss Bearings, and Left Over Hardware.
Achievements: Won Reader’s Choice Award with Transworld Skateboarding
Videos: Almost: Cheese and Crackers, Almost: Almost Round Three, Skate Canada 6, Deca: Second to None, Thrasher: Money for Blood
Aaron Jaws Homoki
Aaron “Jaws” Homoki is known for clearing huge gaps, jumping tons of stairs and for his ability to withstand massive drops. One of his most famous tricks, landing the biggest ollie ever, was on the cover of Thrasher Magazine. Later he ollied the Lyon 25, landing him a second spot on the cover of Thrasher Magazine in 2016.
People say Jaws has rubber knees as he can effortlessly land ollies off buildings and ollies off insane sets of stairs.
He has a regular stance and is a playable character in Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 5. Jaws also skated with Tony Hawk in Zero Gravity. How many people can say they performed weightless tricks? They did tricks in Martian Gravity, Lunar Gravity and finally Zero Gravity. I recommend checking out the video here.
Aaron Homoki has been sponsored by Birdhouse Skateboards, Independent, Bones Wheels, Bronson and CCS.
Achievements: Successfully performed an Ollie Melon grab on the Lyon 25, Was on the Thrasher Magazine Cover, winner of Thrasher’s King of the Road competition, and Won bronze at the 2014 X Games.
Videos: True Blue Retrospect, Bones – New Ground, Jaws vs the Lyon 25, Knees of Steel
Professional Skateboarder Andrew Reynolds, nicknamed The Boss, is very influential for young skaters. He started skating at 9 years old and was named Skateboarder of the Year by Thrasher Magazine in 1998.
Andrew was one of the amateur skateboarders in Tony Hawk’s Birdhouse team and had a skating profile in Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater video game. He loves to ride ramps and performs tricks and stunts, with his signature trick being a frontside flip.
In 2000, Andrew founded Baker Skateboards with Jay Strickland. Baker Skateboards is the best skateboard brand on the market. He also started Baker Boys Distribution which distributes skating products like Shake Junt.
Reynolds has signature skateboarding shoes with Emerica, but he has since left riding for Emerica Footwear in 2019.
Andrew Reynolds has been sponsored by Baker Skateboards, Vans, Spitfire Wheels, Independent Trucks, and Shake Junt.
Achievements: Skater of the Year by Thrasher Magazine in 1998, Best Video Part by Transworld Skateboarding in 2011
Videos: Birdhouse Projects: Untitled (1992), Tracker: Hi-8 (1995), Transworld Skateboarding: 4 Wheel Drive, Globe: Canvas (1998), Emerica: This is Skateboarding, Baker/Deathwish: Baker Has A Deathwish (2009), and many more
Did your favorite skateboarder make the list? There have been so many legendary skateboarders that have influenced modern skateboarding culture that it is hard to name them all. Furthermore, the list of the best skateboarders of all time will change as the new skaters become old school skaters and new tricks are created.
With Skateboarding joining the Olympics in 2020, skateboarding and skateboarding culture will change and become as popular as ever. I can’t wait to see what skateboarders emerge onto the scene over the next few years.