This week, we take some time out to talk to Michael Aho, a longboarder from Sweden about Longboard Stockholm and longboarding in his country and our continent.
Hello Michael, thanks for taking some time out for this
– Hey Gbemi, always nice to chat!
How long have you been longboarding ?
– I used to be a skater back in the day but quit and rediscovered Longboarding in 2009 and I’ve been hooked since.
Nice. Where do you skate ?
Where there is a good skate, but I’m from Stockholm/Sweden so mostly here.
How is the scene over there ?
It’s beautiful, we have a big group of riders doing downhill, freeriding, dancing and more here. There is always stoke and people skating and we run big weekly meets during the summers with a yearly big Gathering you should visit sometime. ;)
What’s the local crew called ?
We have some city groups and there is an über stoked group of hardcore riders called Stokeholm but we share a group called Longboard Stockholm where all riders are welcome to chat and find riders and new friends to skate with. We are close to 2300 members now which is pretty sweet.
That’s HUGE! What’s your role in Longboard Stockholm ?
Well, I try to unite people and make a lot of activity and meets happen, love it. I’ve been actively posting updates since I started the group 2009 and there is growing activity every day. I’m also creating as many events as I can from our Thursday cruise meets, High-valley downhill comps, dancing/freestyle competitions, film-shoots, charity engagement lately, Gnarlloween and last but not least our Longboard Stockholm ‘’The Gathering’’ event that attracted 4-500 riders this year on a perfect summer day where Stockholm is at it’s peak.
You’re the founder then, and you seem to be very active with the events, who else is involved ?
Well I don’t take pride as it’s a group for everyone and I’m working with friends and everyone interested to develop the local scene. I think It’s all about activity, meets and to have a great time and to share it with others. I’m for example working with an organisation called Roofy Safety Ambassadors that is an organisation working with a goal to increase the safety of the Longboarders. They are supporting us with first aid kits at competitions, helmets & protective gear for those interested.
I’m also working in an organisation called Longboard Sweden since 2010 which is supporting the Swedish Longboard scene and running a Swedish Downhill Cup with competitions all over Sweden with an Awesome hill called the Snake Mountain where the Swedish championship is battled.
There is also a Swedish Skate organisation called Stockholm Subsurfers that are developing the Swedish Skate scene, they are working on a new Mega ditch that look pretty sweet to a longboarder at the moment.
Loads of awesome ! You guys have a pretty severe winter, how do you keep the Stoke in subzero temperatures ? Do you skate ?
It’s soon upon us again, but we stand stoked over the winter and there is still lots of garage runs and other activities going on here and maybe even more activity online watching movies and longing to ride another awesome hill again. Last year I arranged a Longboard Movie Event where we premiered the Longboard Stockholm Documentary we recorded 2010 that you might have seen on Loaded Newsletter. We also saw the Longboard Australia documentary one of our Swedish riders are in and some awesome Sector 9 bombing and last but not least a set of unseen edits from the whole year that our members had been working hard on, It was an awesome event that didn’t cost a krona.
Awesome. So what do you have in store for this winter and next season ?
I was lucky enough that I made it to the Madrid Longboard meet this year (La Noche En Negro), and boy was it awesome. Inspired to say the least we hope to arrange a Longboard Weekend here next year with the best Stockholm can offer, pretty stoked about it already. Like that so many people are engaged in making longboard edits nowadays, including myself so I might plan another Longboard Movie event and maybe another local photo competition but I’ve been quite busy with Longboard Europe lately which is so much fun and so great so hope we can leverage more awesome products to all of the European riders and share the fun cross our borders.
It’s great to see this level of co-operation between European crews. Can you tell us about anything we can look forward to from Longboard Europe ?
Wow, just thinking about it excites me as there is so much we could do together but one pretty awesome example apart from running European events where we can share the stoke cross countries would be a Longboard Europe Roadtrip next summer. Oh man do I want to be on that bus. Madrid was unbelievable and the stoke to go next year over here is huge and If we can plan a visit to a big European Downhill competition and some other stops on the way that would be something even a busy father like myself can’t miss.
Ah you’re a father! Have your children started longboarding ?
It’s all new and beautiful and the 6 months have flown by so fast, but that little baby girl will surpass her father someday. It’s tougher to be spontaneous and go skate whenever you feel like it but I get my fair dose of skating and stoke with some good planning.
What does her father ride ?
I first bought a Sector 9 Sandwedge 2009 with Gullwing sidewinder trucks. I remembers I really wanted good turning capabilities then but bought another complete Loaded Dervish 2 weeks later Oh man we were skating every day and re-inventing the wheel back then with new longboard events. I quickly got into dancing and rode it hard for 1½ years. Then I bought a Loaded Dancer and a Bhangra and has been cross stepping everything Stockholm has to offer. Recently I’ve been riding a new Dr Longboard Freeride board and I’m freeriding all the way.
Who is Dr Longboard ?
He’s a friend and an event sponsor who is riding with the locals and creating night skates over here and a custom boardbuilder who makes boards with custom choices for the European scene. He also has a new Freeride board I’m riding and a new Downhill model that is pretty sweet to say the least.
It’s been great talking to you about your crew. Just 3 quick questions left now.
I’m all goofy :)
Would you rather be an Elk’s mind stuck in a lion’s body, or a lion stuck in an Elk’s body.
HAHA would have to with a lion in an Elks body, I’m quite tall and probably move like an elk also the Elks size does not make it smarter…
Any Swedish rider we should keep an eye out for ?
Yes, there are several as Erik Lundberg () already pretty high up there but Adam Persson won the Swedish Downhill championships and is doing well in the IGSA rankings. Martin Klawitter running for Sector 9 Sweden and the guys from urskog Longboards Philip Albiz with more on the Downhill Scene. We have many younger guys doing well on the Freeride scene here as Lamin Cassama for example ()
Nice. Great talking to you bro.
Always a pleasure!