V. Diaz, a journalist and passionate skateboarder, is a full-time writer for SHIT®️ Magazine.
Max Barrera was born in Guadalajara, Mexico. When he was at the age of 8, in the last part of the 70s he got his first skateboard from his mom, a long story as a skateboarder was about to get started. Barrera lived through an important period for skateboarding and as he says, he witnessed how skateboarding evolved throughout the years and at the same time how his own life change too.
“I’ve always been trying to be a complete skateboarder, I think that it’s what characterized me, the first 8 years of my career when I was a kid, I skated with a ramp and half-pipe because that was what we had. At that moment, skateboarding had been through a bad time, it almost disappeared so I had to start skating in the streets; to be honest, I really enjoy to skate on everything, it depends on the obstacle, place, time, I think that it is amazing how skateboarding is so organic and if I feel good I’m gonna do it”, he tells SHIT® Magazine in an interview.
Barrera was an excellent skater right from the time he started. He's always used his entire creativity to achieve his favorite tricks, something that makes him enjoy skateboarding, once he started he never stopped learning to skate and still skates as much as he can.
Max is considered one of the best Mexican skateboarders, he believes that skateboarding gives him the opportunity to express in his own language what he feels, going out of his comfort zone, traveling and learning to know every single skatepark or spot that he could. He has spent 32 years loving and enjoying his life as a skateboarder, actually he thinks that it was the best thing that ever could happen in his life.
“I think skateboarding taught me how to live and how to believe in myself, to confront my fears and pain, going out of a bubble of comfort and travel a lot. I've learned a lot as an individual. It's more than a sport or lifestyle, skateboarding showed me how to express myself and how to live my life and I think the most important is that it makes me feel alive and that I can leave this message to others” he elaborates.
10 Years Competing and Traveling Around the Continent
Max has had 10 years of experience competing, from 2000 when he was 20 years old until 2010. He was in a lot of contests like X Games, Dam Am, Globe World Cup, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Argentine, Costa Rica and California, after 2010 he decides to continue his career filming video-parts and enjoying skateboarding.
Brands like Vans, Yoyo Bearings and Hysteria Trucks are supporting him as a skateboarder. Barrera also plays the bass in an alternative band that it's called COLT 1328, as well he loves fashion, food and photography.
Max emphasizes that if a skater wants to live skateboarding as a professional, he or she will have to become a committed person and be kind and passionate; someone who knows that they can’t do everything on their own, but work together as a team together with people who will be their 'second family' Barrera says. In addition, he shares some tips to skaters that would like to live from skateboarding:
“What I can recommend to someone who wants to live as a skateboarder is to make their passion their everything; skate every day, be kind, always with your feet on earth and to keep your head up, work hard with your family, always have a good attitude, skate a lot and skate because it comes from the deep of the heart, that’s what I always try to say.”
A Witness of Changes in Skateboarding
Barrera has been skating for 32 years since he started, he was able to live all the experiences and iconic moments in his country and continent to continue growing as a person and rider. Max is known for his trips and his life has been completely revolving around skateboarding. Leading him to seeing the great iconic skateboarders from America, competing with them as a chance to grow up and be a better person always.
“Nowadays skateboarding has changed the game, right? It's gone from being more underground and counterculture in society to now being a popular sport and it's in the Olympics as well. Here in Mexico, there's a lot of talent, there are many good skateboarders and plenty of skateparks have been built around Mexico.”
He feels that it’s essential to the new generations of skateboarders to pay attention to opportunities, and to skate more to achieve better results. “By now, skateboarding has changed and you will have to be talented, have a good attitude, you need to know how to sell your image and when you achieve it, you will start to be an influence to someone out there so you have to be brave, inspire and be kind every single day."
A lot of people who skate are grateful for it and as Max Barrera says, if you're a good person, good things will happen to you. He also recommends that if you want to compete, just do it, but always remember that you are your own competitor.
“I think that every single skateboarder could help the community. If we support each other, we can be a big family. Support your brother or sister who wants to complete their street missions, recording, competing with ourselves and break borders. Skateboarding is a universal language and nothing really matters besides enjoying it, because skateboarding is freedom. If we support each other with that freedom everything will flow the right way.” Barrera concludes in an exclusive interview with SHIT® Magazine.
Read also: Alex Olson: The Multi-faceted Skateboarder