Andy Duran's Chub Rollz Is Determined To Defy Physical Stereotypes


Word Count

482 words

Reading Level

Listen to Article

Chub Rollz skateboarders passing on their skills to the next generation (Credit: Andy Duran)

When 36-year-old Andy Duran decided to return to his favorite high school hobby — skateboarding — in January 2021, the only obstacle he expected to encounter was his own ability to get back into the sport after the long hiatus. However, the 340-pound skateboarder from Oakland, California, soon realized that was the least of his problems.

Duran's challenges began before he even stepped on a skateboard. "I couldn't find any resources for fat skaters, what types of boards to try, or where to buy pads or even branded shirts in sizes 2XL or 3XL," he told DOGOnews.

What Duran did find instead was an unfounded belief that plus-sized people should not be skating. “I started to find people who were saying that if you're over 190 pounds you shouldn't be on a skateboard, or that the deck won't support you,” he says.

Andy Duran founded Chub Rollz to create a safe community for plus-sized skaters and skateboarders (Credit: Andy Duran)

Determined to do something to change the narrative of plus-size people in sports, Duran founded Chub Rollz — a skating and skateboarding community for overweight skaters. "I knew that not only did I need to get back into it [skating] to prove people wrong, but I needed to create a safe space where others can have representation as well," Duran told ABC11 News. "If you feel like your size makes you feel uncomfortable about skating with others, you are welcome to skate with us."

To encourage plus-size people to pursue the fun sport, Duran created a list of recommended products for fat skaters. He also hosted roller skating and skateboarding classes to teach beginners. So far, the response to Chub Rollz has been “overwhelmingly positive."

Following a January 25, 2021, article about his initiative in the San Francisco Chronicle, Duran received a flurry of messages from strangers expressing gratitude for giving them the courage to stand up to naysayers. “This means so much to me; I didn’t think I could skate," said one. “A person at the skate shop laughed at me, but this club makes me feel like I can still do it," wrote another. Duran has also been contacted by some skateboarding brands offering to create larger clothing sizes and been offered free equipment by skating organizations like Skate Like a Girl.

Jennifer Marshall, Chub Rollz co-organizer, with their skateboard (Credit: Andy Duran)

Though encouraged, Duran believes a lot more needs to be done to dispel body image stereotypes. “I want to see more changes in communities. Maybe skate shops have more sensitivity training for creating a more welcoming environment for all types of skaters. Or boards to be made in a variety of strengths and sizes — everyone is making thinner, lighter products, but sometimes we need those heavy-duty options to stay available," he explains.

For those hesitant to pursue their desired activity due to their body size, Duran has this to say: “Be kind to yourself, as you’re often your worst critic. Just because you don’t see it doesn’t mean you can’t be it."

Resources: DOGOnews,,


Get the Workbook for this article!

Workbook contains: Article, Reading Comprehension, Critical Thinking Questions, Vocabulary in Context (+ answers), Multiple Choice Quiz (+ answers), Parts of Speech Quiz (+ answers), Vocabulary Game (+ answers)
Cite Article
Learn Keywords in this Article
  • snowflake101
    snowflake1012 months
    Awesome!!!! You do you don't mader what other people think!
    • gobipycagiro
      kemme079 months
      Duran is very generous❤❤! I wish I was like Duran when I grow up, like I'm 11 right now 😏
      • melody329
        melody3299 months
        No matter what They look in the Outside maybe he or she is still good in the inside so when you’re finding a friend be careful to choose one that is a good heart🤗🤝
        • minimalistic
          minimalisticabout 1 year
          No matter how we look like, don't judge a book by it's cover. Instead judge a book in the inside. You never know if the person is kind and has talent! 😊🤗
        • carebear0518
          carebear0518about 1 year
          I have tried once but fell in better at ice skating since I can do spins and jumps with them
          • ilovanimals
            ilovanimalsabout 1 year
            I tried one before and I was so scared when I tried, I litteraly almost could not get on!
            • melody329
              melody3299 months
              I know how to skateboard it will be fine just try just get deep breath and then push yourself down and don’t you get about your brain forget it just slide down and you’ll think it’s fun so you will have courage·🤟🏻💪👍🥴
            • unknown_user13
              unknown_user13over 1 year
              I wish I could have a skateboard but I would fall after the first try or so! But practice makes perfect!!👌
              • sharkbaithuhaha
                sharkbaithuhahaover 1 year
                for skating i can do every basic trick in the book kickflips ollies grinds boardslide varial kickflips drop ins my folks and friends say im really good but im nothing like my stereotypes like nyjah huston or tony hawk but i think this chub rollz thing was a great idea
              • harrypotteryep
                harrypotteryepover 1 year
                chub rollz.... my little sister has a toy she named ''chub the hedgehog... ''
                • cute_raindrop
                  cute_raindropover 1 year
                  stereotypes... they define everything in the old world. they must be broken