Tokyo Olympics: Who is Nyjah Huston? Highest-paid skateboarder gears up for 'biggest contest ever'
Skateboarding as an official sport will be making its Olympic debut this year in the history of the games. The eight-time X Games street gold medallist and a four-time champion of World Skate / Street League Skateboarding, United States' very own Nyjah Huston is arguably the best skateboarder in the world right now, competing in the upcoming Tokyo Olympics.
Huston has slowly cemented his place in the world of skateboarding after he started competing in competitions in 2004. It did not take him long to establish himself as the most talked about player in the current landscape of sports. Considering that he is in his early twenties, there is still plenty of time for him to add to his ever-growing legacy. Even though his short career has been plagued by injuries, he is all set to make a comeback in the Olympic Games.
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He is both the top-most ranked as well as the highest-paid skateboarder in the world. In an interview with CNBC, he spoke about how he was all geared up for the Tokyo Olympics this year. “It’s going to be the biggest contest ever,” Huston said. However, he said that he was trying to keep his nerves in check so as to not put too much pressure on himself. "When it comes down to it, you want to go out there and picture it the same as any other contest out there that you won before,” he said.
Who is Nyjah Huston?
Huston lives in Laguna Beach, Califonia. He was born in Davis, California. He has three brothers and one sister. They were vegans and schooled at home by their mother Kelle Huston. Huston’s father Adeyemi Huston was a skateboarder and made his sons start skating when Nyjah was only 5 years old. In 2004 his parents purchased an indoor skate park in Woodland where Huston spent his entire time practicing.
“It was rough at the time, I’m not going to lie,” Huston said of the pressure to skate every day. “He was pretty hard on me, especially during those younger years. He was pushing me to skate these big rails and I was just a little kid that was 8 or 9 years old,” he said. “I was really scared.” However, Huston says now he’s grateful for it all. “It’s a big reason why I’m here, where I’m at now and why I have an opportunity to skate in something like the Olympics,” he said.
Huston first garnered attention when he signed a sponsorship deal with Element Skateboards and joined their team. After Huston's gold medal victory at the 2013 X Games Street League contest in Barcelona, Spain in mid-May, Transworld SKATEboarding magazine announced that no other skateboarder has won a greater amount of prize money. So far, he has won 41 skateboarding events and competitions.
He opened up about how he’s been focused on getting his mind and body ready after the Tokyo Olympics was postponed last year. “I kind of transferred my energy into making the most out of the last year the best way I could,” he says, which for him meant street skating, working out, and filming new stunts for Instagram videos.