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“Gizmo” and Nike SB’s Broadening of the Skate Community

Growing up in Florida in the 1980s, young Elissa Steamer was known around her neighborhood skateparks simply as “the girl who skated.” More than three decades later, Steamer has become a household name in skateboarding after being recognized as one of the first women to earn pro status. Nike SB's roster includes Steamer and other female riders who appear in the new all-women's film "Gizmo" (more on that below), but that’s only a slice of what Nike SB has accomplished to promote a more inclusive skate culture, drawing people from all backgrounds and all walks of life to pick up a skateboard.

1. Recognizing and Representing All Talents

Taking a year to produce and filmed by Nike SB alum Jason Hernandez, "Gizmo" (the nickname adopted by Steamer from her dad) is the first all-women’s skate video from Nike SB, featuring Steamer, Lacey Baker, Leticia Bufoni, Hayley Wilson, Sarah Meurle, Josie Millard, Nicole Hause and more, filmed in cities throughout North America, China, Western Europe and Australia.

2. Developing the Next Generation of Skaters

Nike SB is an official partner of Skate Like A Girl, a nonprofit organization that seeks to build a more inclusive skate community through youth camps, after-school programs, and skate nights at parks in Seattle, Portland and San Francisco. The support culminates in the annual Wheels of Fortune event in Seattle, which is in its tenth year and is the longest-running organized women’s skate showcase featuring female-identified, trans and gender non-conforming riders from around the world.

3. Supporting New Platforms to Expand Skate Culture

The influence from skaters like Steamer transcends to other team riders from Nike SB, who use their success to spark conversation around broader issues in sport culture, both inside and outside of competition. For example, the addition of women’s skateboarding to next year’s summer event in Tokyo brings U.S.A. riders Lacey Baker and Nicole Hause to compete on a new stage alongside their male counterparts. In addition, Baker's used her renowned technical skating as a platform to champion the female and LGBTQIA community. In 2017, Baker’s insights on what she preferred in a skate silhouette (she’d formerly modify men’s skate shoes to improve fit) led to the Women’s Nike SB Bruin High, the first Nike skate shoe designed for women.


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