tony hawk foundationIn the past, many BMXers viewed skaters as their mortal enemies. That’s because less than ten years ago half of the skate parks in the US didn’t allow bikes. And even when they did, it was usually only on certain days and at certain times. Unfortunately, BMXers wrongly associated skaters with the policies that excluded them from those parks.

The truth is that those policies originated from park operators and builders who believed that mixing bikes with skaters was unsafe and that bikes damaged the parks. Those beliefs have largely been disproven and more and more parks are now bike friendly. But there’s more work to be done.

In an effort to get bikes into more parks, will support the Tony Hawk Foundation. That’s because its purpose is to help communities build skate parks through grants and advice that facilitate successful park operations.

Here’s what the foundation states on its website in the FAQ section about allowing bikes.

Q -Does Tony Hawk Foundation support BMX in skateparks?

A - Yes. Any skatepark is likely to attract BMX riders. When policy prevents BMX riders from using the facility, it can lead to a culture of division and denial. It’s important that BMX riders are present or represented throughout the skatepark advocacy process. With BMX riders involved in the skatepark-advocacy process, their very presence redefines the skatepark as a facility for all youth, rather than catering to a special-interest group (the skaters). This makes the skatepark project politically more appealing.

To learn more about the Tony Hawk Foundation, including how to get involved in having your community build a skatepark click here.