Everyone gets hurt. At some point we all get a bump on the head, a cut on the arm, and an “ouchy” on the knee. Those stupid enough to start skateboarding and snowboarding get a few more bumps on the head. TheyÂ receiveÂ broken bones, twisted knees, and ligament damage. An unlucky few have died, or becomeÂ permanentlyÂ disfigured. We soldier on though, too young to die, to stupid to care. Every now and then a buddy of yours gets broken off real well. Those are the times you realize how stupid what we do is. But we do it anyway, because it is way more fun than just sitting around. Plus, we all think, “Oh, it’ll never happen to me.”
Hinman cutting loose
My friend Nick Hinman recently snapped his leg off. He is now a shitty version of Robocop. Robocop got broke off by bullets, and was then given guns, laser sight, and a sweet suit. Â Nick wasn’t so lucky, he snapped his leg skating, and all he received was a few screws and a plate in his leg. Six months later Nick is hanging out, going to physical therapy, and just waiting to be 100% again. By six months Robocop was already unloading rockets into criminals assholes. I asked Nick if he would show me the photos of his unlucky day, he said he was bored, and had nothing else to do so he would love to. The following is a really unlucky story, but Nick, like Robocop, will be kicking ass again shortly.Â
Yobeat: How did you snap your leg?Â
Hinman: I was carving the bowl at the Potrero Del Sol park in San Fran, going through this rounded big pocket really fast. I just threw my weight into it backside and ended up throwing my weight into it rather than through it. At that point I was cruising, I couldn’t ditch my board so I tried to ride it out. That didn’t work. The force pushed me into the wall and my back leg buckled. I basically sat on my ankle with all my weight and theÂ momentumÂ of the turn. Then my shit just snapped backwards.Â
Yobeat: What was the injury? Leg snap doesn’t sound very medical.
Hinman: Dislocated ankle, fractured fibula.Â
Yobeat: That is a lot to go wrong. What did you do? Call the wambulance?Â
Hinman: No, but I knew something was really fucking wrong right away. I got a couple of guys to help me out of the bowl and I sat on my skateboard while my friend Derrick pushed me to the hospital. We lucked out, it was only two blocks away.Â
Yobeat: What did they say when you rolled in?Â
Hinman: They weren’t surprised. The park had only been open for a few weeks and they had been getting multiple victims a day.Â
Yobeat: Looking back, why did you eat shit? Why then? Â
Hinman: Freak accident. I was going there everyday because I worked and lived close by in lower Haight. I guess I was just getting too comfortable with the bowl, so it decided to remind me who is boss. I’ve seen that thing take lives.Â
Yobeat: How soon after did you getÂ surgery?Â
Hinman: Four days later. I figured I had just broken my leg, no big deal, six weeks and your back. I was really wrong. I should have known though, my ankle looked too weird to just have a broken leg. Then the bad news came in, the orthopedic surgeon came in and told me straight up four months no skating.
Yobeat: Why so long?
Hinman: Basically my ankle was forced outwards with so much force it just snapped out. It’s pretty much the worst thing you can do down there. But yeah, I got surgery four days afterwards. One plate and nine screws. I somehow snapped the biggest screw in my fibula a few weeks ago. My surgeon was pretty bummed on me.
Yobeat: What does the future hold?
Hinman: Six months until I can get the metal taken out. I don’t have to, but I might as well.
Yobeat: When can you skate again?
Hinman: Hopefully in a week or two, that’s probably pushing it though. My physical therapist avoids the question when I ask.
Yobeat: Are you scared to start skating again?
Hinman: I’ve been anxious about it, because I can’t wait to get back on my board, but I’m hesitant to push it too fast. Â
Yobeat: You’ll be fine. Hang in there champ.
It’s weird how you always get hurt when you are just goofing around. Even weirder legendary Thrasher Editor Jake Phelps met Nick Hinman the day before his brutal fall. Jake even gave him a pair of trucks. It was probably all of that awesomeness that made Hinman die that day. You can’t have your cake and eat it too right? Right.
Yobeat hopes Hinman has a speedy recovery, and if anyone else is hurt out there, get better. Unless you deserved it, then stick some ice on it and deal with it.
A little video Hinman put together. Pretty damn good for one afternoon.