Brazilian Girl Becomes Nike’s First Signed Female Skater

leticia-bufoni-nike-skater

There are a tonne of women doing amazing things in the world of sports, but it is still a very tough and winding road for females to achieve and earn the same type of recognition, and, let’s face it, prize money as men in some sports.

Skating is one of those sports where you think of great names like Tony Hawk, or popular personalities like Bam Margera. You don’t necessarily think of the women who are on a constant grind (pun intended) on the international skate circuit. There are a few exceptions to the rule, but it is these examples which will serve as a door-buster for other girls who can skate just as well as the boys.

Brazilian girl Leticia Bufoni, 21, has just become Nike’s first signed female skater in the company’s history. She is a three-time X Games gold medalist, and was previously signed to Volcom and Osiris since 2008. She signed with Nike SB, as in their skateboarding division (obvs).

The deal was announced on Friday, May 30, and signals a new dawn of women’s presence in the sport.

“Today, I’m entering a new chapter in my skate career as I’m excited and honored to announce that I’m joining the Nike SB family,” she wrote on her Facebook page.

“For us it’s amazing to have Leticia on the team and for Nike to be able to show the power of women through her eyes,” Nike Brazil spokeswoman Rochelle Rosenblatt said.

“She’s young and brings a lot of diversity to the team, not just because she’s a woman but because she’s one of the best Brazilian skaters. We plan to use Leticia in our campaigns and will be working closely with her, but this is all very new: we’re excited to see where it leads.”

leticia-bufoni-nike-skater

She has made the podium in every X Games Women’s Skateboard Street contest since 2010, winning silver in 2010 and 2012 and bronze in 2011, has been the top-ranked female skater on the World Cup Skateboarding circuit for four years running, and was a nominee for Female Action Sports Athlete Of The Year at ESPN’s 2013 ESPY Awards. Does she sound like a skater who doesn’t deserve the same attention as all the men out there?

Leticia plans on competing against guys whenever the opportunity arises, as she feels there is no reason she can’t. And it is important that younger female skaters see her a role model, because she is showing them there is no reason other’s can’t follow in her footsteps.

Another girl making big waves in the skate world is 12 year old Alana Smith. Yep, she’s 12. As in hasn’t even hit puberty, and isn’t even in high school yet! Alana just won the silver medal at the recent X Games in Barcelona, becoming the youngest competitor in a women’s final event.

Not only that, but she is also the youngest medalist in X Games history! Wow, go girl! No age is to young to be a history-maker in our eyes! Just so you know, the X Games started in Rhode Island in 1995, which means that is almost 20 years of history she just beat out.

She definitely puts us to shame, coz we certainly weren’t breaking any world records before we started high school.

ESPN recently featured an interview with Alana, where she talks about the importance of just being known as a good skater, not categorized as a “female skater”. It’s labels like this which can be a huge deterrent for other women, as it tells them they are not good enough to compete against both men and women, only in their own gender category.

It is so important we don’t place limits on girls and teach them they can be and do whatever they want, regardless of their gender, race, or socio-economic background.

We have to give props to our awesome friends at skater blog Girl Is Not A 4 Letter Word for letting us know about the interview with Alana, and for their continual support of women in the sport!

You can’t be what you can’t see, so let’s continue to push down the boundaries, refuse to take no for an answer if it in regard to “gender limitations” and be a source of encouragement, empowerment and inspiration to the next generation of girls who are watching us closely, looking for the right type of role models.

12 Comments

  1. Pingback: The Pink Helmet Posse Heralding A New Generation Of Female Skaters

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.