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WORDS: Stu Gomez

With Battle At The Berrics 11 now nearing its second round, we’d like to take a moment to appreciate flatground in all its (many, many) forms. During every BATB season most of the skateboarding world gets a heavy case of flatground fever: casual games of SKATE get a little more serious as the strict “Berrics Rules” rears its ugly head; even the routine ro-sham-bo gets an additional dose of scrutiny.

BATB may have turned games of SKATE into a worldwide phenomenon, but I think it’s worth appreciating where modern flatground was born: freestyle. I won’t bore you with the family tree of skate tricks (the branches all lead to Mullen roots, duh). And I won’t suggest that freestyle tricks—which rely on grabs and stationary pogos—will be making a splashy entrance in future BATB seasons. I simply want to highlight that BATB wouldn’t be what it is today if freestylers hadn’t paved the way. Today’s plaza lines are like beautiful music… and they all have freestyle samples. 

Mike Osterman demonstrates how far freestyle has come, even as street skating itself is progressing, in his new part, “25”—a collection of clips that are sure to impress even the most stoic street purist.

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