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Primitive skills clinics at a skateboard camp?


Set on Sequoia Lake which borders Kings Canyon National Park, lives a skateboarding camp for kids, in the woods! Element YMCA Skateboard camp is a unique place because its not everyday that you see a bunch of city kids getting dirty in the woods, chasing squirrels, or even looking at a bear. In the past few years, a new program has arisen out of the skateboard camp that may sound like it has nothing to do with skateboarding at all. Founded by two lifelong skaters, Mike Kershner and Todd Larsen created a non profit organization that teaches primitive survival skills to skaters. Their clinic which is taught at skate camp every session is called Elemental Awareness.

Here Todd is teaching an Elemental Awareness group about good firestructure. He is transferring a flaming tinder bundle that he ignited from a coal made from a bow drill. Bow drill is one of the most popular things for kids to learn in Elemental Awareness. I guess it is embedded in us all to want to play with fire.

Mike watches this camper blow up a smoking tinderbundle which was made from all the surrounding dry vegetation. Whats cool is that this same kid can bust tricks on a skateboard.

A kickflip with a nature filled background.

There is also an intern program where advanced elemental awareness students help teach the survival clinics to new campers. E.A interns go on a camping trip with Mike and Todd previous to camp where they live for the most part, primitively. This intern, Matt Luciani is helping to demonstrate the set up of a figure four trap used to catch small game.

Element YMCA Skate camp is a cool way to introduce nature to city minded kids.

For more info on skate camp: click here.