Ryan Sheckler always has something up his sleeve. Whether he’s stomping new tricks at Street League, giving back to those in need with the Sheckler Foundation, or making young girls heartthrob with a glimpse into The Life of Ryan- the 21 year old is always working on fresh, positive projects.
The California native is driven, passionate and appreciative of his current position and plans to continue his elevated presence in the skate world through philanthropic adventures and by skating the best that he can.
With so many new projects always in the mix, we caught up with Sheckler to talk about his growth with Oakley, plans for a video part this season, his thoughts on the exclusivity of Street League and what in the world the megastar has going on next.
How’s it going Ryan?
I’m just cruising. Getting ready to go to the Oakley Store opening in Times Square. Things are good, I just got done doing a show on Sirius Radio and it’s been a pretty interesting day already.
Sounds like you’ve been busy-
That’s how New York is. I’m never here for more than 24 hours, but I have 36 hours of stuff to do. It’s cool though, I like being on the run.
You’re headed to the opening of the Oakley Store in Times Square, can you tell us about it?
I haven’t been in the store yet, but I’ve ridden for Oakley for years and It’s about time they open a store like that in NYC.
You’ve been with Oakley since you were 7 years old and now you’re 21. How have you grown with the company?
My growth with the company has been a gradual understanding between Oakley and myself. Right now I have two pro signature glasses that we’ve done and it’s more like a family to me these days. It doesn’t really feel like I’m sponsored by them- but more that I’m apart of them.
What is the best part about being a member of the Oakley family?
The best part about being with Oakley is definitely always having the freshest shades! They are really down to help their athletes with so many different things. If you come to them with a trip you want to do, a proposal you want to do, or even idea of a film project to do, they are always down to help you out. Now they have the RED camera and also the Phantom camera which are two cameras that haven’t really been tapped into in the skate world yet and we’ve gotten to start using them now, which is great because it’s basically bringing cinematic footage into the skate world.
Speaking of footage, we hear you are working on a new film project and are dedicating a portion of your skate season to work on it. Can you talk about the film and if you will be using Oakley’s cameras for it?
I’m working on my part for the Plan B movie and thats basically the only thing that I’m really focusing on now. We’re scheduled for an end of year release, and basically it’s been a couple of years since I’ve put a video part out, so this is where my heart is going. I’m just trying to make sure that this is the best that it can be.
We recently used the one of the Oakley cameras for a Plan B skate ad that I’m doing and that was actually the first time that I got to use the Phantom camera, it’s a 1000 frames per second so it looks really good. We get to use the RED camera quite a bit which also turns out really well.
Are there plans to donate the proceeds from the video to charities and will the Sheckler Foundation be involved?
We are still trying to figure that all out. It might be something where the money will go to foundations that kids vote on for where it should go to. Or maybe (it will go) to another foundation that we feel really needs the money.
As far as the Sheckler Foundation, we started about three years ago and it was just an idea to give back to fans and athletes that I kept seeing get injured.
There were a bunch of catastrophic injuries that happened in the action sports world in the last couple of years and injuries like that seem pretty consistent.
The Sheckler Foundation is a way to make people aware that these athletes can get severely injured and we only do it because it’s a lot of fun but also for the fans that want to see what we are doing- so when you do get hurt, it is a major set back. I think the Sheckler Foundation is just a way to help athletes get back on their feet and keep doing what they love.
There’s talk that you are unofficially trying to make the best skate video part to date, is this true?
I’m not trying to back any records, or do anything crazy, or claim that I’m putting out the best video part ever because there are so many people that are so insane in the sport that I’m involved with.
But you are taking time off some competitions to film it. Will you be popping up in any contests this season?
I’m skating in Street League and X Games this year.
There’s some controversy about having to sign the exclusivity contract in order to compete in Street League, what are your thoughts on that?
The exclusivity thing is more-so just the fact that Rob wanted to start a league. And you have to put your time in and you have to be truly apart of it to be in the league. You have to be a street skater and I don’t know exactly how he did it, but the way that it’s working so far is that some of the other contest series are a little bummed out on the whole exclusivity thing, but at the end of the day it’s what the riders need and its what going to elevate the sport to new and higher levels. It’s actually good because it gives me time to focus on my video part and other stuff that’s going on. The contest season takes up a lot of time and you have to mentally prepare to compete and it can be stressful, so actually it’s nice.
You were recently in Costa Rica to help plant the first trees in the etnies Rain Forest- What was that experience like?
It was actually my first time in Costa Rica and it was an amazing experience. I was only supposed to be there for four days. During those first four days, we did all the planting of the trees. We went with the Maleku Tribe and it was really just an awesome experience. We got to stay with the tribe in their huts and it was just an eye opening experience.
There was no cell phone, no TV, no electricity, it was pretty crazy, intense. Then I was supposed to leave, but the etnies surf team was out there and they were going on a whole another trip, so I was like, whatever, I’m going to jump on this trip with these guys.
So I ended up staying in Costa Rica for 10 days just surfing and living out there. It was really rad.
Any other trips like that coming up or other plans we should know about?
No surf trips like that. Just skate life coming up! Looking forward to it.
On May 14 we’re throwing the 2nd annual Sheckler Skate for a Cause event at the etnies Skatepark in Lake Forest, CA.
The event is really cool because it will be benefiting Autism Speaks.
We’re going to have four best trick contests and a skateboard village with lots of different things for everyone to get in on.
Should be a good time.
Sounds like you’ve been taking care of business are usual- Anything else you want to say?
Thanks be to God!
Photos Courtesy of Oakley and Etnies