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Tony Hawk Biography

Skateboard Calmed Him Down, An Outsider In Both Worlds, Masters The Mctwist, Chronology, Awards And AccomplishmentsSELECTED WRITINGS BY HAWK:


American skateboarder

Tony Hawk is considered one of the greatest skateboarders in the history of the sport. From his first turns on a board at age nine, Hawk has consistently challenged physics, gravity, and his own body by accomplishing astonishing acts on a piece of wood attached to four wheels. The California native was instrumental in the evolution of skateboarding from the preppy recreation of the 1960s to the daring and extreme test of physical limits and mental creativity it has become. In seventeen years as a professional skateboarder, Hawk has invented more than eighty tricks and competed in an estimated 103 contests, winning seventy-three and placing second in nineteen. He quit competing in 1999 after landing the first-ever "900"—which is two-and-a-half mid-air spins on the board.

Hawk was an accident; his parents were both in their mid-forties when he came into the world on May 12, 1968, in San Diego, California. Hawk's two sisters were already in college when he was born and his brother was a teenager. Frank Hawk was a veteran of World War II and the Korean War, and Nancy Hawk took classes at night, eventually earning her doctorate. While Hawk's parents had aged into a relaxed style of childrearing, their youngest child was a self-described, high-strung "demon boy." He also was a gifted child who was pathologically determined and hard on himself when he could not achieve what he set out to do. He once had to be coaxed out of a forest by his father after striking out in baseball.


(With Sean Mortimer) Hawk—Occupation: Skateboarder, HarperCollins, 2000.

Sketch by Brenna Sanchez

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Famous Sports StarsExtreme Sports