INDEPENDENT NEWS

‘Push Play’ by legalising skateboarding

Published: Fri 5 Nov 2004 09:16 AM
‘Push Play’ by legalising skateboarding
Green MP Mike Ward says the best way for the authorities to support Push Play Day tomorrow is to get ‘down with the yoof’ and support skateboarding and push scooters.
Mike, 62, supports Push Play Day and Trevor Mallard's resulting call for additional physical activity in schools, but says more could be done to make playgrounds and streets more exercise friendly.
“Schools and councils would go a long way towards legitimising exercise among the young if they took down ‘No Skateboard and Scooters’ signs,” said Mike, the Green Party’s Sports, Fitness and Leisure Spokesperson.
“With skateboards, scooters, skates and cycles all providing fun and excellent exercise, self-propelled transport has never been more attractive.
“If turning the entire school playground into a free-for-all for wheelie things sounds too extreme, establishing a wheelie zone with its own kaupapa could keep the kids fit without the crashes or collisions.
“It is time to reverse decades of effectively making much of our environment off limits to exercise. Traffic calming and basketball hoops in every cul-de-sac and a half pipe in every neighbourhood just might prise the most dedicated computer nerd away from their keyboards.
“It should not be beyond the imagination of communities to come up with a whole new generation of active fun, active transport and active learning.”
“Schools could turn their walking buses into skating, scooting and biking buses.”
The Nelson-based MP said that you need look no further then Broad Green Intermediate to see the advantage of creating safer cycle routes. Over 60 per cent of the pupils cycle to the Nelson school following the completion of the Railway Reserve cycling and walking track.
Mike is planning to increase his own activity level this month in preparation for his 23rd Coast-to-Coast in February. He will be taking part in the Green Spring Bike Rally in Carterton this Sunday and starts the North Island leg of his New Zealand trike tour at North Cape on the 19th, a mission that includes the bike race around Taupo on the 27th.

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