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Balance and joy are two key elements of Red Panda Boards’ culture.

We’ve written about balance in this article here.

Let’s get to joy.

First off, let’s make it clear what joy IS NOT. It is not happiness, though happiness springs from joy. It is not a good mood, though joy sparks beneficial attitudes. It is not an elevated feeling—sometimes called euphoria or merely excitement—though it can cause those feelings.

Joy is much more than what it causes. Here are a few key ideas drawn from Jesus’ teachings and the apostle Paul’s writings, which better define what joy is over anything else.

  • Joy is a spiritual trait and is outside of us. We can’t conjure up joy. Joy comes to us, often through experiences and regularly through the Spirit of God (See Galatians 5).
  • Joy is organic. This means it needs to be planted, nurtured, and grown. We have to take care of the joy planted in our hearts, minds, and souls, ensuring it doesn’t die from lack of nutrition (of which skateboarding can play a part).
  • Joy takes time. BBecause it is outside of us and takes nurture, its development is not on our microwave, instant iPhone schedules. Honestly, nothing meaningful in life is immediate. It takes time and patience. Leading to…
  • Joy grows with other spiritual traits. It takes love, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, meekness, and self-control for joy to take root and mature. If you don’t have the other traits, you don’t have joy—you have good feelings.
  • Joy nourishes and strengthens our lives. Being a spiritual, organic, developing trait, we find ourselves being nourished and strengthened by its power once it grows. We see our minds and emotions balancing. And we find new strength to weather storms in life.

How does this apply to skateboarding? Watch this video and decide for yourself.

Having skated since fifth grade, we can say joy and skateboarding mirror each other in many ways, often feeding off each other.

  • Skateboarding is outside of us. While it’s not a spiritual trait, to skateboard means we have to step out of ourselves and do something new and challenging. As we embrace it, as with joy, it will take root and grow in our life.
  • Skateboarding is organic. To become good at it (like Ginwood Onodera), we have to spend time standing, balancing, pushing, and learning how to skate for it to change our lives.
  • Skateboarding takes time. Because it is outside of us and takes nurture/practice, its development is not instant. As much as we wish we could do what Onodera does, it takes time and patience. Leading to…
  • Skateboarding grows with other traits. To modify what we wrote above, skateboarding takes the love of exercise, peace of mind, patience to endure falling, kindness to the environment we skate, goodness to other skaters, gentleness with ourselves when we bail, meekness in restraining our anger, and self-control over emotions for the joy of skating to have its full development.
  • Skateboarding nourishes and strengthens our lives. Being a part of a community of other people who skate—around the world—means we are not alone in this world. This and the physical benefits of boarding should fill us with hope and wonder. Physically, it exercises muscles we either forgot about or didn’t know we had—the arches of our feet, glutes, thighs, and calves.

Joy and skateboarding go hand in hand, like surfing, skiing, snowboarding, or any other boarding sport. But with skateboards, you just have to go out in the front yard and do it. No boats or snow, or ocean are required.

Joy knows no age. And neither does aboard. If you can stand upright and move your legs in synch, all you need are shoes, a board, safety gear, and the desire to learn balance and experience joy at a new level.

See you soon,


Christopher F. Dalton

Christopher F. Dalton is a writer, author, illustrator, small business owner, but more than that he is a follower of Christ, a husband, a father of three stellar sons, and friend in need. He and his wife run Huck&Dorothy, an entertainment company.

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