Skate Anatomy: Tosh Townend

Tosh Townend

Left Side

Busted face:
“Lipsliding a 20-stair handrail successfully into a wall! I pretty much pulled it and then I was like, ‘I don’t know if I want to roll out to the side and slip out into the street.’ So I jumped off. On the second attempt I stuck it, then my front foot went out from under me. Then, bam! face-first on concrete. Right after that, Joe Brook took some photos of my face that were in the magazine, and it looked like that for a couple weeks.”

Broken wrist:
“Broke my left wrist twice in the same spot. Once, when I was nine years old on a five-foot miniramp, the other was when I was 14. I was skating this rail in Las Vegas, I was trying a backside lipslide and I just ollied and hit the rail on the way up. The board just came up with me and I went up real high—like, it made me ollie even higher. It was really weird. So I landed at the bottom of the rail, causing me to slip out. I just hit the bottom and smacked down to the ground. I hit my wrist flat on the pavement. It pretty much just snapped because of all the pressure. So I just headed back to the van and, luckily, we got in through a hole cut in the fence because there was no way that I could have climbed it on the way out. That one was in the first On Video.”

Slashed finger:
“I was skating this miniramp in Arizona and the platform was only about six feet below a roof. I was doing a backside 50-50 stall and my hand flung up in this light fixture. I didn’t feel anything at first, I just looked down and my whole hand was covered in blood. It was crazy. It was such a fine slice. It split open my knuckle, and I could look in and see my tendon moving around. It was weird, dude. I was tripping out. I probably should have gotten stitches, but I was over it, so Jason Phares wrapped it up.”

Ankle surgery:
“I just underwent surgery on both ankles due to years of wear and tear. I’ve been skating for 11 years, and I’ve been rolling them ever since I’ve been skating. Like, a long time ago, I fractured it real bad trying to ollie this triple-set. I fractured my ankle on the last stair. I didn’t go to the doctor until the next day, and they told me it was a hairline fracture and put a cast on it. And that one was messing up my ligaments. I have tweaked both ankles more than 10 or 15 times apiece. The last surgery I got put me out for eight months.”


Board to the throat:
“Back in the day, I was skating the Huntington park and I tried a backside flip and the board popped up and hit me in the throat. Like, my back foot just landed on the ground and my front foot landed perfectly on the tail to snap right into my throat. I was so little back then. I was so scared. I couldn’t breathe for like 15 seconds.”

Right Side

“I was on tour during the Make-A-Wish Benefit in Texas. We stopped at this park out in the middle of nowhere. I was skating my first run and flew into the bowl and went straight to the bottom of the transition and just looped out. I smacked the right side of my head and I don’t even remember running up the ramp, but I remember just being at the top and being all dizzy. I was pretty sketched.”

Smashed entire side:
“In Europe this past year, skating in the contest, I was sitting on the side of this railing on the platform of a ramp, when it just gave way and I fell back and smacked my knee, my finger, my toe, my head…just everything. I had to go to the hospital.” SB