If you have read stories about famous skateboarders, you may know that some of them have had a turbulent childhood. Luan Oliviera is all too familiar with this story. He grew up in the slums of Porto Alegre, Brazil where he was raised by his grandmother.
While Luan was growing up, he was accustomed to violence. The kids in his village used guns to keep outsiders from coming into their neighborhood. Skateboarding was also treated as an outsider in their village, so Luan had to travel 45 minutes daily to practice on his skateboard. He loved skateboarding so much, he would often forego eating for two reasons: He did not want to stop skating and he did not have the money to buy food.
However, Luan continued to practice skating daily to ensure that he would get better. He would win contests and then sell his prizes to join more contests. Luan Oliviera knew that skateboarding would take him out of the dark phase that he was in.
Luan Oliviera: Skateboard Silver Lining
Eventually, Luan’s skateboard skills caught the attention of Ben Powell of Sidewalk magazine. His skateboarding videos landed on the lap of Geoff Rowley. This is how Luan Oliviera finally found his ticket to professional skateboarding. Once he found himself in the United States, Luan began winning competitions and in 2010, he finally turned pro.
Luan Oliviera won the Tampa Am in 2008 and 2009. When he turned pro, he also won the Tampa Pro. He ranked first in Street League Skateboarding and he has four X Game medals credited to his name.
He is also a risk taker, which is why he tries to be creative in terms of his tricks. Luan Oliviera’s risk has certainly paid off. He is not only sponsored by Matriz Skate Shop, but he is now a proud owner of his own Matriz Skate Shop in Brazil. Additionally, he is also sponsored by Flip Skateboards, Nike SB, Beats by Dre, Independent Trucks, Diamond Supply Co., Spitfire Wheels, and Bronson Speed Co.
Skateboarding did not only take Luan Oliviera out of the gutter. It also helped him make his dreams come true.