Sky Brown

Sky Brown. Photo courtesy Instagram.

If you need further proof that kids can do anything they put their minds to, 8-year-old Sky Brown of Miyazaki, Japan, is it. She is officially the youngest girl to skate in the Vans U.S. Open Pro Series. Brown’s 5 year old younger brother, Ocean, is also a skating prodigy. The two also BMX and surf, among other sports.

Her first skating video showed the fearless athlete taking on a mini-ramp with no elbow- or kneepads and no helmet. It displays jaw-dropping talent, but drew the ire of those who were concerned for her safety. Since then, her skating videos have shown a well-padded youngster performing tricks.

Sky as she just arrives at Venice beach Skatepark, unable to contain her excitement.. People that know Sky understand how excited she gets but noone ever captures it as well as @hellochristinrose.. As small and young as she is. Her passion and love for skateboarding is huge. And size, gender or ability just don't matter .. You love what you love… It's not about contests, winning or how many tricks you can do, it's about having FUN.. The rest just follows.. Skating is their for everyone.. Just wanted to Shoutout to @baetriarchy that front rock was soo sick and we loved the steez and @thrashermag were SO RIGHT to post it.. Who's cares about the peanut gallery anyway. We Skate.. Be kind, Stay humble and Smile OFTEN!!!! #sheplayswewin #soulskater #soulsurfer #onlyaskaterknowsthefeeling #passion #itsnotaboutpretty #8yearold #girlisnota4letterword #dwindledistribution #skatelife #skate #skategirl #transworldskate #metrogrammed #skatecrunch #girlisnota4letterword #almostskateboards #globebrand #skateboarding #skatergirl #girlpower #skateboarding #shralpin #FUN #stoked #theworldissuper

A photo posted by Sky and Ocean (@awsmkids) on

Skating has long been a popular pastime for kids. And, as millennials who grew up with skateboards have families of their own, skateparks for children are popping up more frequently.

Related: Meet Erin Bried, the Creator of Kazoo — the First Feminist Magazine for Little Girls

According to the New York Times op-doc Gnarly in Pink, girls are twice as likely to drop out of sports by the age of 14. Rigid gender roles and the pressure to be more feminine are definitely contributing factors, especially as girls hit puberty and are told to feminize themselves or face rejection by potential partners.

The #ShePlaysWeWin campaign interviewed Brown regarding her love for the sport. When asked what skateboarding has taught her and how she’ll use it in life, she responded:

“It has taught me that if I try my best I can do anything. It doesn’t matter that I’m a girl or that I’m small. My heart is big and strong and I can be as good as or even better than the boys or even big people. Skating also teaches me to be brave and take risks. I don’t think or worry about stuff too much and just give it a try, and you never know you might actually make it. … When I’m older I think it’s gonna help me be a strong, tough, kickass woman.”

Brown gives some further sage advice to #ShePlaysWeWin:

“There are no rules and there are no limits, there is no proper way. Just go out there and do it your way, and just OWN your style! Not everyone may like it but the people that do, like you for you. … It might be a sport, but it’s definitely not a contest… not for me anyways.”

With the dedication and perseverance that this young dynamo has shown, it’s unlikely that she’ll be going anywhere but up within the skating world.

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