Youth camp has built new skateboarding community in Asia – OCA
The Olympic Council of Asia’s Skateboarding Youth Camp came to a close on Friday 9 August at the Longjiang Sports School in Nanjing, China.
The camp, which opened on July 29 and ran for 12 days, attracted 35 skaters and 19 coaches from 19 National Olympic Committees across Asia.
It was organised by the OCA in cooperation with the International Olympic Committee’s Olympic Solidarity and held under the auspices of the Chinese Roller Skating Association and World Skate Asia, Nanjing Sports Bureau and Long Jiang Sports School.
The Director General of the OCA, Mr. Husain Al Musallam, said the OCA was proud to host the first skateboarding youth camp in the Olympic movement.
“The OCA/OS Asian Skateboarding Youth Camp proved to be a big success and highlighted the popularity of skateboarding across Asia,” he said.
“The OCA included skateboarding for the first time in our Asian Games in Indonesia last year and this youth camp continues the momentum on the road to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, when the sport will make its debut.
“We have been very impressed with the high standard of the skateboarders at the youth camp, as well as their passion for the sport and their determination to improve. We feel the future of skateboarding in Asia is in good hands.”
The youth camp also introduced different aspects of the Olympic movement to the participants, with seminars on anti-doping and Olympic values.
“The OCA recognises the importance of education and knowledge from an early age,” added Mr Al Musallam.
“We also arranged visits to the Nanjing Olympic Museum and to tourist hotspots, notably the historic city walls, Xuanwu Lake, Confucius Temple and Qinhuai River, to expose the participants to the rich culture and history of China.
“We are sure that this youth camp has established a bright, new skateboarding community in Asia and the OCA will provide all support for our Asian athletes to reach the top.”
The course, for athletes aged 18 and under, focused on the Street and Park styles of skateboarding and was led by chief instructor Gen Ogawa, the technical operations manager for skateboarding at Tokyo 2020.
“I think that everyone has been getting better and better,” said Mr Ogawa. “This was seen in the Park and Street competitions held in the last two days.
“I was really surprised and happy to see that many people have already moved their skill up. I think we will see some of the skaters who were here in Nanjing at the Olympic Games in Paris in 2024. They are very young and still have time to learn.”
The OCA holds the Asian youth development camp in a different sport every year as an Olympic Solidarity-funded project and invites two athletes – one female and one male – and one coach from its member National Olympic Committees to attend.