I’ve been in the action sports industry going on ten years now. Just last week I attempted to convince a brand that the action sports consumer is worth the brand’s time, energy and marketing efforts.  There’s a great new interview with Tony Hawk over at Sport Business that confirms what most of us in this industry have been saying all along:

It may come as a surprise to some but action sports, with generation after generation of athletes constantly testing the boundaries of what is impossible on skateboards, BMX bikes, skis and snowboards, is a significant sector of the sports industry that heavily influences billions of dollars of consumer spending.

. . .

In 1986 Sports Illustrated reported that the skate industry alone had combined annual sales of $300 million. Last year that same figure was more than $4 billion.

And Tony added:

It wasn’t until the last five years that the sports industry realized Madison Avenue is more interested in the top snowboarder, skateboarder or BMX rider than the top basketball player.

With ongoing troubles in the NFL, will we finally see a shift in major marketing efforts from football to action sports? It looks like Adidas is already on top of it.