Something unusual happened when I peeked over the rail at my local break yesterday. It was little…and I was actually disappointed. I chugged anti-anxiety drops on the way to my break and had pumped myself up for a confidence-building-progressive surf. … Continue reading
I arrived at my local break and chatted to a local. ‘You had a look at the beach yet?’ he asked. ‘Nope.’ I pulled on my wetsuit anyway. ‘It’ll be ‘right.’ He gave me the ‘you-are-such-a-kook’ facial expression and left … Continue reading
I first stood up on a wave on January 1st, 2013, on an 8’0 soft-top foam board at Smiths Beach, Phillip Island.
I went surfing again February 5th, 2013, on the same board at the same place. Then my life went downhill and it was a while before I could step out and go surfing again. October 2013, I went surfing again and decided that surfing would be my saviour from the darkness.
I got my surfboard November 28th 2013 but it took me until after Christmas to find the courage to go out and give it a surf. I’d wanted a surfboard and wanted to be a surfer girl for as long as I could remember. I finally had the board and a strange delirium took me over. I had such trepidation about actually getting out there on my very own 7’6 Mini-mal that it took me almost exactly a month before I actually used it.
That trepidation is playing out even now, with my second board, a 6’4 fun board.
On my 7’6, I catch waves. I can steer and do basic turns. But I get out the back on any day over 1.5ft and I get nervous. In fact, I get scared. I don’t even know why. On my 7’6 board, I am not confident to try for waves.
However, on my 6’4, I know I can get out the back without being too pounded by the impact zone. It’s lighter and easier to paddle and turn. So I paddle enthusiastically out the back, even on days when the surf is bigger than I know I should be attempting. It’s 8ft? No worries. I’ll give it a go. Worst that will happen is I’ll get dumped. And I do. Oh boy do I get dumped. And thumped. I mean, absolutely-annihilated-thumped but I am absolutely-fine with it.
I don’t know what it is. I take on a different persona when I ride the different boards. I know I can surf the 7’6 efficiently yet I am too frightened to try. I know I will wipe out efficiently on the 6’4 in big(ger) surf yet I don’t care. I tend to stay in the white-water on the longer board and only try little waves. The fun board has me paddling for waves I know I’ll never make, yet I try anyway.
What is this odd stage in my journey? Do I perhaps need an in-between-size board? Why is it that I have little to no confidence on a more stable board, but have all the charge (and little of the success) I need for the short board?
I do believe I am confused, but I’ll continue to take both boards out. Why not. What harm does it do to try and fail on the shortboard and be confident, while being a nervous wreck but pulling it off on a longer board?
Am I just a conundrum? Perhaps not. They do, after all, say that the board makes the surfer…but does it?
2. Be patient
3. Think things through
4. Hard work and determination pay off
5. You can do anything you put your mind to
6. Pick the right surf school
7. The instructor makes all the difference
8. Don’t give up
9. Ask questions
10. Accept constructive criticism and learn from it
I love being able to wake up in the morning and check the ASP website for updates on the WCT. The Rio Pro is under way and Nikki Van Dijk has won her first round.
You may have figured out in previous posts that I’m really going gung-ho for this young surfer. It’s awesome to see a local on the world stage.
Nikki Van Dijk lost her round 4 heat to Carissa Moore at the Rip Curl Pro. Not that she didn’t surf amazingly. She just had one of those days.
She got the surfboard slap of a lifetime and will probably be sporting that black eye for the rest of the WCT and she also fell on rocks and was pummelled by the whitewash. In the interview she gave to the ASP afterwards, I really felt the urge to give her a hug. She’s worked so hard all her life to get where she is now. She still scored a 14.10 – a mightily respectable score (Dimity Stoyle won heat 4 with a score of 11.50).
I don’t envy the pressure that is on the pro surfers’ shoulders. Win. Win. Win. Surf well. Win. Surf well…but win (and also flaunt a Brazilian bikini so we can market you). You can see it all over Alana Blanchard’s face when she surfs in competitions. It pulls her under and she can’t often land a good score.
Sure, Nikki’s a rookie. But this girl is a champion. Mark my words.
She doesn’t even need to win for me to know that.
Go Nikki. You’re making Phillip Island proud.
Phillip Island’s Islantis surf store has recently opened an exhibit that anyone interested in surfing needs to see. See the Shrine of Surfing and learn about the history and evolution of competitive surfing. Touch the signed surfboards of champions. Experience … Continue reading
I had a great weekend away with close friends. One of my friends decided to enter Tough Mudder and we all went along to support him. Tough Mudder is a 20 kilometre obstacle course that takes about four hours (on average) to complete. Watching the fit people tackle the course really illustrated to me how unfit I really am. I run 3 kilometres and I am done. There were people that were still able to jog by the end. How does one even get that fit? I feel like the more exercise I do, the more exhausted I get. Isn’t exercise supposed to work the other way around?
I am always so fatigued that just going for a walk or a run is difficult. I admire every single person that signs up for obstacle courses, marathons, fun runs and charity walks. I really need to work on my fitness. Surfing is great at keeping me fit but not for getting me super fit.
Chaos reigns this week. I have four university assignments due (all on one day) and I also have a niece arriving in the world on Friday which is astoundingly exciting. But I’ll still try to squeeze in some running or at least walking (surfing is a give-in haha) so I can work on being super fit like all those Tough Mudders. I’d like to say I was inspired to enter for 2015, but if I really wanted to be electrocuted I’d touch my horse’s electric fence for free! And all that mud? That’s winter here in Melbourne if you have an animal kept at grass. I’ll work on being fit enough to walk for 20 kilometres though!
These are some of my favourite surf spots. I do live in a pretty amazing place in the “arse-end of the world”! I would include Cape Woolamai and Bells but I’m not good enough to surf there yet. All in … Continue reading