Self-proclaimed tomboy Lauren Perkins taught herself how to skate, and by the age of 12 she had become so skilled that she won first place at a Gravity Games amateur contest, beating 45 boys. These days, the Californian native is on the etnies team and one of the top up-and-coming female skaters in the world. We find out what makes her tick...
How did you get into skating? I started skating in 1998 after a skatepark was built by my house in Huntington Beach, California. It looked like fun, so for my 8th birthday my mom and dad bought me a skateboard and the rest, as they say, is history.
When did everything turn serious and you decided to commit yourself to skating full time? I would say when I was 12 or 13 years old and I was competing in contests against 50 boys and winning! Then I realized 'wow, I could do this as a profession'. Shortly after I started doing girl pro contests and everything started happening after that.
Did you find it pretty hard to break into a male-dominated sport? For me no, because I was so young when I started I didn’t think twice about it.
Can you give us a run down of your average day? I'll wake up and first I'll grab some coffee and breakfast, then I'll usually hangout with my nephew who lives across the street. I'll check my emails before heading over to the skatepark at around 12pm. I'll skate for a few hours then work out with my trainer at 4pm. Then I'll head home to shower before grabbing dinner with my mom or my friends. After that, I'll come home and watch some TV before passing out!
And if you could have the perfect day, what would it include? My normal days are pretty much perfect days. As long as I get to see my family and go skate I'm pretty stoked.
What are your plans for this summer? I'll be traveling with Oakley for a women’s video that they're filming. I'll also be taking part in some contests, shooting photos and finding some time to hang out at the beach.
What’s your favorite place to skate? Barcelona, Spain.
Do you still get nervous before a big contest? Sometimes, but for the most part no.
You must travel a lot in your line of work: what are your suitcase essentials? Clothes obviously, but besides that my face wash, toothbrush and hair product because with out it I’d have a fro! My computer and cell phone need to be with me too, so that I can keep in touch.
What have been your biggest career setbacks? Hurting my ankles.
What have been your best achievements so far? In 2002, then two months shy of my 14th birthday, I took first place at the All Girls Skate Jam in Huntington Beach, California, competing against some of skateboardings top female pros. I was also the first female skateboarder to grace the cover of SG Magazine.
Who or what are your inspirations? My mother, God, and other skaters.
What affect does your career have on your personal life? I have to do a lot of traveling, which sucks sometimes because I don’t get to hang out with my friends and family as much as I would like. But for the most part that’s the only down side. I love what I do.
How do you relax when you get the chance? I just started getting into yoga and when I have free time, I also like to ride my Yamaha YZ80 motorcycle, surf and snowboard. I catch up on sleep a lot too!
What’s up next for you? I'll be heading to Australia with Oakley. Can't wait!