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The Great Outdoors is home to many questions related to various sport activities performed, well, outdoors: mountain biking, kayaking, sailing, climbing, etc. come up frequently, and are - in my opinion - a good fit for this site.

This question, however, is asking about skateboard-related issues. I know nothing about skateboarding, so I can't really judge the question itself - but I can't help but feel that it is a bit off-topic:

From what I gather (correct me if I'm wrong) skateboarding generally relies on a fair amount of human-built infrastructure: skate parks with ramps, kickers, half-pipes etc; or at the very least some decent paved roads/stairs/rails etc. do perform all those fancy tricks on.

Edit: as was pointed out to me, skateboarding was decided to be on-topic. So the linked question should just be seen as an example which raises this issue for me:

Where do we draw the line with questions relating to sports relying almost entirely on human-built infrastructure?

Is tennis on-topic? Or soccer? Golf?

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    Here we've said that skateboarding is clearly ontopic: meta.outdoors.stackexchange.com/questions/693/… – OddDeer Apr 12 '16 at 11:52
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    Point taken on skateboarding, I'll fix up my question to focus more on how we can identify what to include and what not. – fgysin Apr 12 '16 at 12:16
  • so I'm thinking why would we want to exclude skateboarding? What problem is this causing the site? I can't think of one. What do you think? – user2766 Apr 12 '16 at 13:13
  • BTW I think this is a good question and well worth discussion – user2766 Apr 12 '16 at 13:14
  • Here we go: meta.outdoors.stackexchange.com/questions/760/… – OddDeer Apr 13 '16 at 11:13
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The majority of skiing and snowboarding relies on artificial infrastructure - how many people actually walk to the top of a mountain and ski down? A tiny minority. So I think the artificial infrastructure aspect of your proposal is a non-starter.

The core on-topic point is around outdoors. If the core part of the sport happens outdoors, then it should count (so bouldering, although often carried out indoors, counts - because climbing in general is an outdoors themed sport)

As pointed out, however, both golf (outdoors, but not really 'infrastructure') and tennis (definitely 'infrastructure') are off topic here. So that's two simple exceptions already...

Water sports such as sailing, boating, fishing - definitely in. Swimming - probably not, with the exception of open water swimming, perhaps (I'll add it to Odd Deer's list) - it may come under Sports.SE

Actually - that's another point. If it's on topic on Sports.SE that may make some of our choices simpler.

  • Good point, but even though most tennis happens outdoors, I don't think it belongs on TGO. Ditto golf. – ab2 Apr 13 '16 at 1:09
  • For further discussion: meta.outdoors.stackexchange.com/questions/760/… – OddDeer Apr 13 '16 at 11:13
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    For what it's worth, I wouldn't class golf or tennis as outdoors either - so I'll update my answer a little. – Rory Alsop Apr 13 '16 at 11:18
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As someone pointed out some questionable points about my suggestion involving reliance on human-made infrastructure, I present a new suggestion here for sport topics which could be off-topic on TGO:

Sports which don't interact with the Outdoors per se

There are many sports which don't really interact with nature or the Outdoors. They are played outside, yes - but not because they interact or take advantage of nature/the landscape/the surroundings (as say climbing, mountain biking, hiking, skiing/snowboarding).

Most often these sports could just as well be played in a big enough sports hall/stadium (and in many of the above cases this is the case).

Example for off-topic:

  • skateboarding; interacts mostly with paved roads/ramps/kickers/pipes --> would be off-topic
  • FITA archery; interacts with the bow and the target, can (and is) easily be done indoors --> would be off-topic

Examples for on-topic:

  • skiing/snowboarding; while reliant on infrastructure like ski lifts, the actual spoert is done on the actual mountain side in ice and snow
  • mountain biking; trail and terrain are central to this sport
  • What would you say about parkour? Seehttp://outdoors.stackexchange.com/questions/10470/legal-situation-for-parkour-in-the-eu – ab2 Apr 14 '16 at 0:17
  • Imho parkour would be off-topic, as you interact with walls/stairs/roofs/buildings/... and not any kind of nature. – fgysin Apr 18 '16 at 11:12
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As I've commented, skateboarding was already discussed here.

Yes Skateboarding is on topic. Besides being a relative of many clearly in scope activities as you indicate in your question, it primarily happens outdoors.

To validate the scope question, write a good question and post it. You can include a link to this Meta post.

Contrary to some perceptions, if a topic is in scope on another site, has no bearing on it's scope at this site.

Example cross site questions, both exist and sister site links are in the comments at each other.

  • Why is only one side of the Moon visible from Earth? on astronomy.se
  • Why does the Moon face Earth with the same side? on physics.se

The Great Outdoors Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for people who love outdoor activities Source

However, I think that you've a valid question there: what sport is on-topic and which isn't. I personally would say each sport which feels like an outdoor-sport. That is - of course - a very bad definition cause it's by far too subjective. Let's examine a few possibilities:

Sport mostly relying on artificial infrastructure

First of all, your suggestion, which is not bad at all. Skateboarding would clearly be off-topic. The problem is, that it implies a few other activities which are outdoor as hell. Let's take "bouldering". It's done at least to 75% on artificial infrastructure in bouldering gyms. No one would ever say that bouldering isn't on-topic here, would you?

Exclude team-sports

My suggestion would be to exclude "team sports".

What would be on-topic:

  • Jogging
  • Walking
  • Golf
  • Skateboarding
  • Mountain-biking
  • ...

What would be off-topic:

  • Real football
  • The other football
  • Baseball
  • Archery-Tag
  • ...
  • I think bouldering is clearly on-topic because it belongs to the general "climbing" family of sports which are generally also heavily done out in nature. Skateboarding however, is 99% of the time done on paved roads. – fgysin Apr 12 '16 at 12:25
  • I created a sepratate answer focusing on the infrastructure-aspect. – fgysin Apr 12 '16 at 12:31
  • Concerning the exclusion of team-sports: I'm not yet convinced. Sailing is arguably heavily reliant on teams. So is climbing with the exclusion of free soloing. There are also orienteering disciplines done as a team. --> All of these are classic The-Great-Outdoors-sports imho. – fgysin Apr 12 '16 at 12:36
  • OTOH: why do you count archery as a team sport? I've never seen more than one person shoot a bow at once (Well, ok, I have. But it was a rather silly display...). I think the fact that sometimes during competitions lots of people are doing the same thing simultaneously has no bearing on how much of a team-sport it is (think mountain-bike races...). – fgysin Apr 12 '16 at 12:43
  • @fgysin Archery-Tag is a separate (trend-)sport :) archerytag.com Has nothing to do with the hunt or FITA – OddDeer Apr 12 '16 at 12:59
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    I'd argue golf is not an "outdoor" pursuit – user2766 Apr 12 '16 at 13:18
  • @OddDeer: Ah, I thought you meant the archery tag. :D – fgysin Apr 13 '16 at 11:43
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I'll post an answer here to vote for a exclusion criteria for

Sports relying (mostly) on artificial infrastructure

These would be off-topic:

  • golf
  • skateboarding
  • bmx and the like
  • soccer
  • baseball
  • FITA archery
  • speed-climbing

On topic:

  • bouldering/rock climbing (While also done indoors, there is a large an avid outdoors movement. Also outdoors is clearly the place where this sport originated.)
  • 3D archery/field archery

Note: Using this criterion there are some rather closely related sports which get sorted differently, for example: FITA vs 3D archery, or speed-climbing vs. regular climbing. However, I still think that this gives us a better basis for deciding on-topic'ness. For me personally a sport which is totally dependant on human infrastructure just doesn't feel right for The Great Outdoors.

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    FYI All cycling is off topic, that is covered by bicycles.stackexchange.com – user2766 Apr 12 '16 at 13:08
  • I don't feel the "artificial infrastructure" is a good definition. Too many activities which would be good outdoors activities need "artificial infrastructure". I don't really disagree with the thrust of your point but this definition doesn't quite fit for me.. – user2766 Apr 12 '16 at 13:12
  • I dont see the point on excluding just the WA from ontopic archery questions. Same for the crossbow, lately I use it a lot more than a bow and even if its target shooting I could easily be hunting with it. Most of the bulk of the questions wont make a difference if they relate to target or hunting etc. I wouldnt like if TGO would become like some other parts of SE where one wrong word is used to close perfectly good questions – Erik vanDoren Apr 14 '16 at 16:24
  • @ErikvanDoren: That is not my intent at all! I agree that archery is hard to classify – fgysin Apr 18 '16 at 11:14
  • @fgysin, what I mean is that once one adopts a criteria that would put offtopic a tiny slice of an activity otherwise considered ontopic, the issue becomes the wording rather than the question itself, like one just mentioning WA or target shooting in a question that could have value for everybody practicing the sport. Noone will know every single activity so I can see someone that knows nothing of it complaining of X question being offtopic only because of a single word (happens in other SE sections unfortunately) Archery is just an example I used because im involved in it – Erik vanDoren Apr 18 '16 at 12:03

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