Ask any skater about Ryan Sheckler and you'll get an earful. The 23-year-old skate prodigy from California was doing ollies by the time he was four to pave the way to turn pro in 2003 at the age of 13. It was then that Sheckler proved himself with an unforgettable performance at the Summer X Games, becoming the only skater to land every trick he attempted to take the gold medal in Street. Sneaker Report caught up with the three time X Games gold medalist about his history with his longtime sponsor, etnies, and the first shoe he skated it as a pro.

What was the first shoe you wore as a pro skater?
It was the etnies Arto Saari pro shoe.

What contributed to this decision?
Because I was a big fan of Arto, I wanted to wear and support what he was doing.

What did you wear prior to becoming a sponsored skater?
I always wore etnies.

How did becoming a pro skater change your outlook about gear and footwear?
I guess getting free product allows you to wear different tees and different color shoes all the time. You know, normally, if you just have one pair of shoes , that’s the pair you wear and everything has to go with that, so getting sponsored and being able to have a bunch of product is definitely cool.

Tell us about your involvement with etnies to produce your signature shoes.
It was basically a good amount of teamwork between the etnies design group and me and the way we wanted the shoe to look and how I wanted it to skate. We grinded real hard to get the Marana to where it’s at and it came out real nice. When I was a little kid, I was skating a contest and etnies told me to come by and get shoes. They wanted to support me and I already was wearing their shoes. It’s been 15 years now and it’s on a family level for sure. That’s how I first started with the brand.

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