For the 98th daily installment of Big Wheel Blading’s Inline Skating and Life During COVID-19 series we talk to Jason Howard. Jason is a 39-year-old inline skater and operations manager for a wine and spirits distributor.
Photo by Jan Eric Welch
What steps did Texas take to battle COVID-19 and how are things there now?
Texas did not do a good job at stopping, or slowing, the spread of COVID-19. Many people in Texas were laid off and just a month later the state tried to force everyone to go back to work. All while not enforcing or even encouraging people to wear masks until a couple of days ago. So yeah, now everyone is getting infected out here.
Were you skating during the lockdown?
Yes, I skated my practice rails a lot and once the parks reopened, I would go skate with my kids at the skatepark. I suffered a pretty bad leg injury that required me to get nine stitches and put me out for a few weeks. But, I am slowly getting back to my weekend warrior status.
Fishbrain photo by Joseph Gammill
Where are you skating at now?
Mostly the skatepark by my house, but I also go skate where the old man homies want to meet at.
Is there anything that would make you stop skating?
I will only stop skating when my body no longer allows me to. When that happens I will just pick up the camera more to film my friends.
Backside photo by Joseph Gammill
Are you doing any cross training?
Nope, I tried a few times, but it’s just not my thing. I’m a street skater and I just don’t see the appeal in cross training. I do own a pair of big wheel skates though! More power to you if you can cross train and enjoy it.
What other activities are you doing to occupy your time?
Chasing my kids around, work, riding my bike and some light weight lifting. I try to never fall too far out of shape.
Back unity photo by Joseph Gammill
How has COVID-19 affected your normal everyday life?
I still go to work everyday and have to pay bills, so not too much has changed. However, I’m constantly worried about my mother’s health and it hurts that my kids are not able to play with the other kids in the neighborhood. Also, It sucks not seeing the homies on the weekends.
What are your major concerns right now and looking into the future?
I worry about this world and my country. Things right now have everyone walking on egg shells. The more I see us move forward as a society, it looks like we take two steps back socially. We need to all come together as a society to stop the hate, preach laughter, pick each other up and not hold each other down based on race, gender, or sexual preference.
Topsoul photo by Eric Milliren (left) / Sweatstance photo by Jaysin Williams (right)
How is your local skate community responding?
From my understanding my skate community is doing ok. I think for the first time in a very long time we are all finding other things that interest us, which is a good thing. It keeps the fire burning on wanting to get out and skate, while allowing time to let everyone’s bodies heal. It also lets you remember who you are besides a skater. We are getting together in small groups and trying to keep our distance, but not a full 6ft.
Do you have anything you’d like to add?
#blacklivesmatter and Wu-tang forever!
- Follow Jason Howard on Instagram.
- To see more awesome Texas skate photography from Joseph Gammill follow him on Instagram.
- Go to Inline Skating and Life During COVID-19 to read more interviews from skaters from around the world.
- Go to Essential Workers – Inline Skaters on the Front Lines of COVID-19 to read about inline skaters from around the world who are considered Essential Workers.
- For our full COVID-19 coverage go here.
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