Skaters sometimes dream of
getting paid for skating, or at least free
way is to talk with people who know you and your
family. Contact managers of stores where
you spend your money, especially stores which
are locally owned. Contact factories and
other businesses where your friends work,
especially ones which contribute money to
Start your quest, not by
asking for money, but by spending months telling
the store and business managers how great
skating is, how it makes you healthy, helps you
do well in school, and trains you to do well and
help others in many ways. Get articles, in
community newspapers, telling of competitions in
which you and your team were successful.
After business managers
understand how skating is important to making
you totally the kind of person they are proud to
be part of their community, then ask them for a
little support, perhaps for a new set of frames,
or for the cost of travel to a specific meet.
Tell them you'd like them to be a partner in
your growth. After people see their money
has been important to your growth, you can ask
Ask these managers and
your parents how you can help their businesses,
so they gain something from helping you.
Your newspaper articles should say the
business is helping you; that's good publicity
for the business. Perhaps you can get
friends and parents to buy from the business.
Perhaps you can hand out fliers or do other
things to help businesses. Perhaps you can
help with cleaning or something else the
All these things are much
better done by teams, rather than by
individuals. If you aren't a member of a team,
start one. Even if there are no other
speed skaters near you, form an "Excel in
Sports" club with people who do other sports and
Skate manufacturers, such
as Rollerblade, Bont, and Hyper, do sponsor
skaters, but only a few of the best. If
you want such a sponsorship, you should often be
winning your age group in large skate races,
where skaters from around your country compete.
When you are at these races, talk with the
people in the vendor booths (if the vendor
doesn't have a booth, they probably don't think
the race is significant for them), or at least
other skaters whom the vendor sponsors.
Ask them how to become sponsored.
Manufacturers and other
skate vendors sponsor skaters because the
sponsorship helps sell skate equipment, not to
reward fast skaters. So, if you want a vendor
sponsorship, start by learning what's especially
good about their products, then tell other
skaters. Learn how to help skaters buy
these products, and how to let the vendor know
that you have helped them.
Overall, if you want help
from someone, first think about how their
helping you will help themselves even more.
Sometimes all this seems more work than it's
worth; if so, just skate. But the whole process
of earning a sponsorship will gain you great
experience in earning other, even bigger,
things, during your whole life.