At the end of this interview Chad Knight asked me if I was going to write an introduction to his feature. I always write an introduction to everyone’s interview. “Why was Chad so concerned about his intro?” I wondered.
Perhaps he was worried that I would take the low road and only call attention to the seedier parts of the interview. Like, the fact, a gay porn star shares his name or that he acquired the dubious nickname “Baby Arm” regarding a certain part of his anatomy. I’ll tell you right now, that was not the plan. The plan is to write about the new smarter, stronger, sober Chad Knight. And the fact that Chad Knight is back bitches!
Lets talk a little bit about the come back Chad Knight is making right now.
Chad Knight: Okay, a lot people know that I got hurt but they don’t know the severity of it. I broke my leg in like 10 places. It ended up taking me out for two years.
Let’s hear how that happened.
Chad Knight: We were warming up and I was trying to do a backside 360 flip down some gap and I tried to kick my board away and my body went forward my board went left. My left foot landed on the board so it went with the board and it was a dislocation spiral fracture of the fibula and it broke part of my tibia off to. So they had to go in and put two plates in and ten pins and let that all heal. I couldn’t skate with pins because I could feel them in there and it hurt. I could feel the pressure in my bone. I had to wait a year and get them removed and wait like 6 months for the holes to fill in. Then I had go through physical therapy. So it was like two years total. Trying to go skateboarding after that was tough. I had to relearn everything and get over the mental barriers of being hurt.
Do you ever think you will be able to be what you once were?
Chad Knight: I feel like right now I am skating better than I was before I got hurt. Definitely skate more frequently now. I am starting to skate vert again too. I am definitely much more into it than I was then too.
So the time off really helped you.
Chad Knight: Yeah but it was also a really good reality check. It made me realize that shit can really just disappear. Your world can drop out from under you and you will have no idea what is going to happen. Appreciate it while you have it. Make the best of it while you have it. That’s what I am trying to do right now.
Sounds like good advice.
Chad Knight:I would say don’t take it for granted. That is what happens to most skateboarders. You don’t want to look back on your career with any regrets. That is what I am trying to make up for.
Are you looking to get anything out of skateboarding right now? Are you trying to make a come back?
Chad Knight:I would love to but I am just having a lot fun with skateboarding right now and I have more motivation now. I have just so much more energy for skateboarding than I have had in a long time. I don’t want to make a come back my goal and make some stupid decisions. I wouldn’t want to try and get some sponsors that I would wind up not being happy with. I just want to go with it and see what happens. If that is what happens then awesome, if not, I have a lot of other things going on in my life right now. There will be other routes that I can pursue. Whatever happens, happens. I am just having fun with it right now.
What other things are going on in your life right now?
Chad Knight:I am going to school full time for kinesiology and then I am going to go to physical therapy school after that. I figure that everybody that I know in skateboarding right now is going to need physical therapy in about seven years and that is when I will just be getting out of school.
You’ll have a thriving practice right off the bat.
Chad Knight:My business will already be all built.
You’ve had a lot of stuff happen to you in the last two years.
Chad Knight:Yeah, after I broke my leg, I lost all my sponsors because they didn’t want to support me because I was injured. So they pretty much just all dropped me instantly.
Chad Knight:My income was gone and I had no job. I started going to school. I quit smoking, quit partying, quit drinking, just quit doing everything.
Why did you quit partying, was it a problem?
Chad Knight:It started out really fun and then at the end it was a complete nightmare. It was getting in the way of everything that I loved to do. You know, it starts out slow, you get caught up in the lifestyle of skateboarding and next thing you know, the partying is not accompanying skateboarding, it’s the main thing you do and you skateboard on the side.
Did you realize you should face your issues while you injured or was it before?
Chad Knight:No this was after I got injured I figured all this out. I was super depressed. There was nothing else to do, everything was going bad, I was feeling sorry for myself. I would sleep all day and have really bad anxiety attacks. Alcohol helped me with that. It just got to be where it was crutch. Nothing was getting better, it was getting worse. I figured I would quit. I just told all my friends I was going to quit. Everyone was super supportive.
Did you loose some friends because of it?
Chad Knight: No not really, but I had to just stop hanging out with certain people because that is all I did with them. Then again I’ve gotten new friends and relationships because I don’t drink. My girlfriend, now doesn’t really drink. Every relationship I’ve had in the past has been solely based on partying. So many aspects of my life have changed just from dropping that whole scene.
Let’s change the subject now. You are looking super buff these days. You are probably the most buff dude in skateboarding that I know of. What’s the deal are you working out?
Chad Knight: Yeah, I did so much damage to my body that I wanted to reverse it. I don’t know, it just feels good to exercise. I’ve only been working out for about a month and a half now. I get really big really quick.
Holly shit. You should drop skateboarding and become a professional body builder.
Chad Knight:Nah I am not going that far.
Let’s talk about the gay porn star that shares your name.
Chad Knight:Oh God. You know what’s funny is I found out about that like 6 years ago and I was like praying that I could make it through my career with no one ever finding that out. Ah man, it was a horrible discovery. Like my girlfriend now, when we first started hanging out, she went to go show one of her friends a picture of me and did a search of my name on the internet and just like freaked out. Now anytime my mom tells any of her friends to look me up she makes sure she tells them to put the word “Skateboarding” in the search some where.
I wonder if the gay porn star named Chad Knight knows you exist?
He does dude, because I tried to buy the website name off him. I was like “I don’t want this coming up with my name.” I sent him an email to buy the website off him. I do not need any association of me and gay porn.
Did he get back to you?
No he ignored me.
Shoot, Chad Knight maybe you should ride the wave, maybe get a bunch of gay porn aficionados searching for you. You never know, they might like you better.
No. Jerred Barry’s got that handled.
What was your best money making year skateboarding? How much did you make in your best year?
I only had two years where I made a lot and both years I made under a hundred thousand dollars.
Like how much under. Like what are we talking about eighty grand?
Yeah right around there. But keep in mind that was the same year my son was born and the same year I broke my leg with no insurance. It cost me thirty five thousand in cash. So that money evaporated pretty quickly.
I’m sure. That kind of money doesn’t go very far these days. Do you think that you could make that kind of living off of skateboarding now?
I just don’t want to make any stupid decisions. The first time around I think that I made a lot of immature, stupid, “want it now”, career decisions, instead of decisions that planned for the future. This time around I am very happy with the people that I am working with. They’re awesome. Rob at Bones, and Joey at Indy, and everyone at Adio, Jeff and Travis are awesome. Yeah it would have been nice if it were this way the first time around. But I guess I had to learn the hard way.
What do you mean the hard way?
I mean just dealing with people at Osiris basically. I didn’t get along with any of them and I was really young. I was all, “Cool, I’ll make some money”. I didn’t know anything about the business end of it. I made stupid decisions.
Like what? What was a stupid decision?
Just contract stuff. I didn’t know anything about contracts.
Are you saying they took advantage of you?
I don’t know if they necessarily took, ah yeah, I am sure they did. Looking back now. But I am just saying, that I think that I felt so fortunate to get the opportunity that I didn’t realize what I could have gotten out of it. I was so eager to sign. That is just how it goes. You learn the hard way. You learn lessons.
So I have to bring this one question up. What’s up with Baby Arm?
Oh shit! Oh my god. Wow. Who in the hell have you been talking to?
Let’s just say I have my sources and keep them confidential. Evidently. Baby Arm is a nickname you got because you have an enormous penis.
Yeah I won’t comment on that.
How did you get that name?
I don’t even know dude. It was like a stripper and four at one time, I don’t know.
What? A stripper in Florida?
Something like that, somebody commented on using that term Baby Arm and I guess it kind a stuck. I don’t even remember the whole situation.
Ah come on, of course you do.
No I really don’t. I don’t even know. I know that Daxter Lussier coined the term for me. I don’t know. What can I say?
Alright, well, you should be proud.
I am very proud. Ah, my girlfriend is going to love this.
Shoot dude you’ve got all the makings of a gay porn star. You’re hung, buff, and you’ve got a gay porn star’s name.
Yeah exactly, I think that is funny that someone chose that name for their stage name and that’s my real name.
Yeah but he might have found you first and decided that he liked the name Chad Knight.
Hopefully that guy’s character wasn’t modeled after me.
Five year’s ago it seemed like skateboarding was more broken up into neat little niches. Pros specialized more on what type of terrain they skated but now it seems like it is more expected that you should be able to skate all types of terrain. Back then you were one of those pros that could kill everything.
Yeah and tranny is all trendy right now. All the kids are all hyped on tranny again which great. I didn’t even start skating street until I was like 18. The park that I grew up skating closed down and I almost quit because I couldn’t even grind a curb. Just recently I started going to the Y again to skate vert. I don’t want to lose that stuff. I think that it helps with every aspect of skateboarding.
Why don’t you go through the list of all the people you would like to thank.
Thanks a million to Jeff Taylor, Travis, and Mario over at Adio. Those guys have been really, really good to me. Joey at Indy, Rob at Bones Wheels, and Brian at Low Clothing, Trish at Dragon, Josh at Utility, and Matt Mecaro, he’s my photographer sponsor, I think that is it. I am sure that I left out some people but they know who they are. Hey, my girlfriend’s brother is really into skateboarding. Can you put his name in here?
Sure what’s his name?
- Chad Knight Switch Hard Flip. Sequence: Mecaro
- Chad Knight Full Cab. Sequence: Travis Howell
- Chad Knight Ollie. Photo: Mecaro
- Chad Knight Mellon To Fakie. Photo: Mecaro
- Chad Knight Fakie Tre Flip. Sequence: Mecaro
- Chad Knight Frontside Invert. Photo: Matt Mecaro
- Chad Knight