When was it last time you had a proper fall? One that left you in excruciating pain. More than a decade has passed for me. But I can finally get the Days of the Last Crash sign back to zero, all thanks to a skateboard. I knew I had to listen to my mother.
On my first real ride with Evolve’s new Hadean Carbon All Terrain electric skateboard, I didn’t get more than 30 feet before I lost my balance and landed on my chest first on the road. The board rolled toward the sidewalk. Moaning, I slowly got up and limped toward him. I rubbed my palm and knee, but my torso was stiff and painful. The next morning I felt like I had been hit by a truck. It took about two weeks for me to feel completely normal again.
I was naive. I had never ridden a skateboard before, let alone an electric one! That day it became clear that this was so Nothing like the electric scooters and electric bikes I tested. Balance actually matters! I decided I could study while I walked. Okay. Chest, meet asphalt.
Evolve’s Hadean is an electric longboard with twin 3000-watt motors baked into the chassis, along with a powerful battery. The carbon fiber construction feels high quality and durable. You control it with an equally superb remote that you hold in your hand, called a Phaze, attached with a wrist strap. Phaze has an LCD display, throttle valve, brake and buttons for switching modes, speed configuration and customization of lights for visibility on the board.
Squeeze the throttle on the back of the Phaze and you will continue forward on the board. (There’s a dead man switch that you can turn on so it never accelerates without pressing both.) Gently apply the brakes and you’ll stop. You steer by tilting your body left or right and turning the trucks on board (devices at the bottom of the board that contain the wheel axles on a pivot point). Hadean includes a tool for tightening or loosening trucks; I prefer harder trucks because it was easier for me to control my balance.
During those two weeks of pain, Hadean leaned against the wall next to my front door, staring at me as I left the house without her. Shortly after the pain subsides, I would consider taking the board somewhere to order – mail, a nearby delicacy – but then I suddenly remember how great it feels to walk.
I finally mustered up the courage. Aim the learning montage. I watched YouTube videos with riding tips. I took Hadean to the parking lot and trained to drive her off, walking with my foot to feel the right sense of the board and balance. Then I slowly relaxed into his electric assistant, starting at 5 miles per hour and increasing it to 10. Last week I hit 21 miles per hour.