Korahn Gayle – How Not To Be Darwin – Issue 1


Skateboard Cafe’s Korahn Gayle tells us ‘How Not To Be Darwin’ for Issue 1 of our mag. Read below to see the full article and find out how Korahn is never injured and is always in fine form! Also you can find his ‘How Not To Be Darwin’ article for Issue 2 here.

Words: Korahn Gayle

Illustrations: Mike O’ Shea

Photography: Joel Peck

“Sup Y’all, Kaygeezeee in the house! I hope you are all enjoying the first dose of Vague so far! Its an absolute honour to be invited to take part in the mayhem so, thank you Guy and Reece! Right, enough of that soppy crap…”

So, what the hell am I doing here? Good question. I’m not entirely sure! Bad answer I know, but let’s just go with the flow! (oh that rhymed) *Dab*

One thing that I do know for sure is that us wheelieplankers love what we do and we ain’t gonna stop until our legs fall off! So I guess my goal is to give some basic rehab tips that have worked for me in the past, so that you too can upload 39 tricks on your 39th birthday to the Gram, just like the boss, Andrew Reynolds just did! See you next year Rey-Rey!

So where shall we start? Well I don’t want to bore you straight away so lets start with something that we can all relate to… No, not Ganjwax!!! Yes, it’s the best lube on the planet, but I was talking about the dreaded ROLLED ANKLE! (and lack of dorsiflexion that comes with it*)

Illustration by: Mike O’ Shea

Quick scenario – Young Darwin is down the skatepark with his yung homies. Darwin, like myself, is a self-confessed media whore. The sesh is going well and Darwin learns a new trick. “Yo Nylon, can you film my new trick for Insta?” (its a…say, Nollie 720 Heel? Just so I don’t put anyone off trying a normal trick…What? Oh, Sorry Decunha…). Anyway, Nylon agrees “Yeah but make sure you give me filming creds this time”. A few tries later with only 2% battery left on Nylon’s Sumsang, Darwin knows it’s now or well… tomorrow. He doesn’t flip his board right but commits anyway as it’s his last claim to fame for the day. It all goes wrong and his foot rolls over the side of the board! Ouch, you know the rest of the story. He spends the next two weeks swiping right on Tinder, posting TBTs on a Wednesday and playing ‘hide the sausage in your hand’.

Eventually, a month or so later, Darwin can skate again, but at a price. He has lost his Dorsiflexion Range of Motion (ROM) because he barely moved his ankle for two weeks after he twisted it! Now he can’t bend down as far on the injured leg, so his body compensates by turning the knee inwards to gain more “ROM” (causing him knee pain because of the bad mechanics at the knee joint). He also compensates by putting all his weight on his “good” leg, causing him more imbalances in the body which will create more problems further down the line! Not to mention his new Kebab Flips! Poor Darwin.

*Dorsiflexion – backward flexion of the hand or foot.

The first couple of days after a rolled ankle will probably involve a lot of rest, Ice and ‘hide the sausage’. But the goal is to get your ankle moving as much as possible (without too much pain) ASAP ROCKY, to avoid adaptive muscle shortening of your achilles tendon. I find that stretching and myofascial release (using a foam roller or tennis ball – In this case) are two very effective ways to gain mobility in the ankle. Here are a couple of stretches that I used to regain my Dorsiflexion ROM after an ankle roll. Get involved! KORAHN GAYLE

“Fuck this restriction.

Stretching’s my new addiction”

Knee To Wall Stretch:

This stretch will release your soleus muscle, in the calf.

Push your knee towards the wall with your heel on the ground.

Hold for 30 seconds – 2 minutes or until you feel a release or gain some new ROM.

To perform this stretch correctly, be sure to keep your heel on the floor, your foot is pointing to the wall and your knee in line with your second and third toes.

This stretch can be done kneeling or bending down (as the picture shows) and is a great way to compare Dorsiflexion ROM between ankles.

“Shit son, this is genius.

Its stretching my gastrocnemius”

Standing Calf Stretch:

This stretch will release your soleus and gastrocnemius muscles in the calf.

With your foot raised against the wall (as the picture shows), lean forwards into the stretch.

Hold for 30 seconds – 2 minutes or until you feel a release or gain some new ROM.

This stretch can be done against a wall or with your foot on the tail of your skateboard and lifting the nose towards you.

To perform this stretch correctly, ensure that your foot is pointing straight to the wall and your knee is in line with your second and third toes.

How to be like Korahn

Korahn Gayle – Kicklip. ~ Photo: Joel Peck

Filmed and Edited by: Rich Smith for Skateboard Cafe

Korahn Gayle in ‘Bristol’s Finest’

Filmed by: George Nevin for Grey Skate Mag