Last week we had the chance to skate the new Better Extreme park in Barking. Better Extreme opened on the 11th of May so we headed down with the crew a few days after for a little session. We thought it would be cool to give you glimpse into the new space, along with a little run down of what’s there, how it skates, and if it’s any good.
The park is located at the rear of the Barking Sporthouse and Gym, but that’s not to say that it’s just a space that’s been hastily tacked on to the back of an already existing establishment. Better Extreme Skatepark is actually the largest, indoor Skatepark in London, and it’s easy to see that a lot of care and attention to detail has gone into its construction.
It’s laid out exceptionally well, and it possess all the qualities you’d expect to be featured in a large Skatepark. Essentially, Better has three main zones, a ‘Beginners Zone’, a Street Zone, and a Ramp/Bowl Section. Not only does this mean that the park caters for skaters of all abilities and all styles, but it also has the added bonus of freeing the rest of the space up – If beginners are intimidated they can chill comfortably in their zone until they’re confident enough to explore the rest of the park, and also the street/transition rippers will not be put off by overcrowded sections.
The beginner’s section consists of a few low slopes, a micro ramp, and a few smaller boxes and rails. The hefty street section boasts some decent ledges, flatbars, eurogaps, down rails, banks, and a stair set. The Keyhole-shaped beachwood bowl is also pretty big. 6 foot deep with a two foot extension, it’s a pretty smooth ride, and we’re definitely looking forward to any future bowl and ramp Jams that Better might host.
Of course we can’t forget to mention that the fact that this park is indoors is definitely a perk, considering the unpredictability of the English weather. Better is definitely a spot worthy of serious consideration not just in the winter, but all year round. To add to this, the current plan is to have the park open and operating seven days a week, catering for both weekday and weekend warriors.
Though there is often a stigma attached to wooden parks – they are seomtimes associated with being too slippery – Better definitely doesn’t fall into this category. Overall, the park skates well, it’s pretty flowy, and we had a very decent session there. You should definitely check this spot out, and try and get down to their official launch event on Saturday the 6th June.
For more info, including prices, memberships and opening hours, check out the better extreme site here, or follow then on instagram – @betterextreme