Wednesday, November 24, 2010

5th Anniversary of My First Decade

Photo by Windy Osborn

      When I started riding Flatland BMX back in 1986. The very first trick that I wanted to learn was a Decade. Rick Moliterno was on the cover of the very first Freestyln issue I had ever purchased. He was doing what seemed so impossible at the time. He was captured mid Decade. It looked so very cool and I really wanted to learn how to do it. I didn't have a clue on how the trick was preformed but I knew I could figure it out. I wanted to be the first on out of the crew to pull a Decade. 

     I started the process trying to figure it out. This photo was taken when I was about 19 years old riding on my Mongoose FS1. I had a small idea of what was supposed to happen but it never really translated to much. The first trick I ever pulled on my Mongoose was a Endo then I learned how to do back wheel hops. Decades at that time were just to far out of my reach. No matter how hard I tried I never could seem to get over the head tube. After joining the Army in 87 bike riding went to the bottom of priority and eventually became just a memory somewhere around 92. I had never complete a Decade and didn't ever seem like it was going to happen.

Rad Dad Photo from 1986
When I started riding again in 2003. I thought back to what was going to be my very first trick. I thought to my self at the age of 36, I wasn't able to do it when I was 19 how can I do it now? I had a ton of encouragement on a site I visited regularly I had a ton of tips and things to do and what to try while doing them. So I started this process all over again.
2004 Jumping from the ground

I kept trying this over and over again and again. I was getting better and getting closer but still 2004 and almost done with 2005 before that magical day happen. It was Thanksgiving day I had invited Jim McKay over for thanks day dinner. After dinner we went to my local riding spot and we had a session and did some filming. I had tried to pull a decade on film that day for what seemed like 50 tries and I was close but I was ready to stop for the day. Jim said come on Mark just a few more tries. Then it finally happen.

November 24, 2005 My First Decade.

     It has been 5 years now since my very first Decade. Out of all the tricks I have learned how to do. This one still gives me great joy when I can complete it. It is still not a dialed trick for me. Now at the age of 42. jumping over the head tube is exhausting. But I can still do it. It felt so good to be able to take this off my list of tricks to complete before I stop riding because of not physically being able to anymore. I encourage you if you have a goal of a trick you want to complete and other people have done it already, don't give up. It may take some time for you to get there but you will get there when you are ready.

Total View as of November 24, 2010 61,541

Decade from November 23, 2010 1 day before Anniversary


  1. That first decade with you is one of my all time best moments in flatland. You prove that with time and practice, ANYTHING is possible. Never give up!

  2. i still have that issue of Freestylin with Moliterno on the cover ,great decade action Mark , ride on.

  3. Dude - to come back after a wreck like that first one is total dedication and drive. Props, man. It's so motivating. Your videos are totally great!

  4. Nice story! Makes me want to do some decade's for a modern photo to go with the old cover. Too cool man. I am glad to have inspired someone as I have been inspired by many as well.

  5. I just stumbled across this and it makes me so happy! Awesome, man, for real. As a 45 year old dude who still rides BMX as much as possible, I can definitely relate, but I can't do a decade!

  6. Great blog you've got here. I love reading things like this post...sure brings back memories :)

    I remember seeing the how-to for the decade in Freestylin', it was a how-to by Fred Blood and it looked impossible to me. Then I remember seeing a double(!) decade for the first time, also in Freestylin', courtesy of Martin Aparijo. I was so stoked when I saw that - I wanted to learn it!! But first I had to master single decades.

    I ended up learning decades in my basement that winter, if I pushed all the furniture against the wall I had just enough room to roll forward about two feet and then go for it. When winter was over I had them dialed and within 2 months of that I pulled my first double, in May 1987. Double decades are still my favorite trick to this day, although I haven't done one in almost 20 years :)

    Seeing this post has made me want to go riding again.....perhaps there are a few more double decades still to be pulled.

  7. I remember back in 88,I pulled off my 1st and ONLY DECADE in my life.My bike got stolen shortly after. Now... 25 years later, I am going for it again too...

  8. That decade video really made me smile! Great job, man!! I'm 41 and just dipping my foot back into flatland BMX after 20 years.