As everyone knows we are in the midst of pandemic on the scale none of us have ever seen anything close to in our lifetimes. It's a scary time for everyone involved with job security, lifestyle factors and health risks all very real and happening things. It is also especially scary if you're a surfer whose used to being in the ocean essentially every day. For many of us, this time surfing in the ocean is seeing our therapist, going our gym , our mindfulness training, dose of nature and our happy place all rolled up into one big ball. The thought of having it ripped from us is terrifying but we know the positives for the greater community will outweigh our selfish negatives. Many places in Europe and America have closed the beaches. You may have seen the video of a Peruvian surfer getting his board taken away or maybe even Australia's most iconic Bondi Beach getting shut down and guarded by water police.
1. Rewatch your old favorite surf film or better yet try one of these bad boys.
- September sessions: A classic Indonesia boat trip through dreamy and pumping waves in the Mentawai islands. Featuring an all-star cast of the momentum generation such as Kelly "Da Goat" Slater, Rob Machado, Shane Dorian and Luke Egan amongst others. The old school styles and longer boards are really great to rewatch and reflect on how surfing may have changed, bUtah style is still timeless. The film is all filmed on the one boat trip and directed by legendary musician and surfer Jack Johnson, he will also kindly provide you with the fittingly perfect soundtrack to this gem of a surf movie.
- Blue Horizon: A documentary about two surf icons Andy Irons and Dave Rastovich in the prime of their lives and their contrasting surfing career paths. The film follows Andy Irons's rise to the top of the ASP league of surfing championship tour and the attitude it takes to get there and contrastingly the more relaxed attitude Dave Rastovich has towards surfing and life, looking at surfing more like an art form than a competitive pursuit. Some amazing insights into both these Icon lives and some crazy stylish surfing. The opening scene to Foo fighters and closing scene to U2 are particularly special and not be missed.
- View from a Blue Moon: The first surf film ever shot on 4k and a 3-year film project made on surfings original prodigy son John John Florence. It follows him and his friends around different parts of the world as get to watch the pinnacle of high-performance surfing in the best cameras available at that time. Soundtracks great and surfing is to match.
- Physic Migrations: A film mads by Volcom and doing what you would expect from Volcom.....only even better. A very diverse collection of surf locations and surfing styles. All going hard, all going high and all going absolutely bezerk if you are to be completely honest. Highlights include Ryan Burch shaping his own Twin Fin and then riding it in a long Peruvian point.
- Strange rumblings Shangri-LA: Personally almost my favorite surf film of all time. From the opening scene with Dion Agius pretty much-doing air reverses over icebergs after he's just stepped off Ice splitting ship to Creed Mctaggart steezing out in a tropical African looking shirt getting shacked for hundreds of meters in what looks like waves you used to draw in your school books. It's all-time, trust me just watch it.
- Spoons: Stumbled across this surf flick by accident this year at the Byron Bay Surf Festival. A film made by two young Californians from Santa Barbra and the surfing/shaping history that originated from within this town. In particular about knee boarder Greenoughs innovative influence on the surfing world and surfboard progression. It pieces together with other parts of Santa Barbra's surfing history and eloquently mixes in archived footage in with modern interviews. It's a historical masterpiece and an educational journey.
- Fair bits: A movie by Taj Borrow the best surfer to never win a world title, doing what he does best and that's having fun. Great variety of scenes including surfing a wave pool before wave pools were a thing and shooting from a helicopter. Come to think of it, was taj a time traveller....way ahead of his time.
2. Stretch your tight muscles out or pick up Yoga.
Do you have that mate who is constantly complaining about his niggling aches and pains? Well, I am not a doctor or a physiotherapist for that matter but I do know when I stretch I get a lot fewer aches, pains, and inflammation. Dosent take a rocket scientist to work out being tight is problematic. Take your downtime to buy a $10 foam roller from K-mart and a $10 yoga mat and spend some time stretching that old body out that does so much for you. It might also make you surf better as well.
Heres a free Vinyasa Flow link to get the muscles loosened up. But there’s a bunch more on YouTube! Yep that’s right free yoga classes online .
3. Plan your next surf trip with your mates for when this is over.
Need a glimmer of your hope or something to look forward to when this is all over. Why not sit down with a glass of red and facetime your frother mates. Talk about putting together a surf trips for the history books. We've all got time on our hands and we all have different ideas of what makes up a good surf trip. Whether you just want to surf epic waves on a tight budget, or maybe you want good surf but you also want to explore countries with a deep cultural heritage. What better way to spend your time than to flesh out all the things you want out of a surf trip and educational flesh out where is best, at what time and in what season.
Try these for some inspiration:
4. Get psyched on Surf Podcasts
The podcast world is the biggest new platform on the content front right now and there are some absolutely cracking surf podcasts out there.
- Ain't That Swell: Hosted by the two core lords of surf comedy and entertainment Jed Smith and Vaugh Deadly! These guys put on an absolute show of comedic relief, technical breakdowns of competition and the greatest pub tales with all kinds of surfing royalty known to man kind. Don’t worry everyone’s filter is left well and truly at home.From pre-recorded to live podcasts they have it all. UP THE SWELLIANS.
- WSL the line-up- a podcast hosted by Dave Prodan and because its the WSL you can bet it gets the cream of the crop guests on. From Ryan Callihan's battle through the loss of his parents to making the CT and the darker side of WSL commentators life Peter Mel's life.
- The Occast- Former world champion Mark Occulipo talks to some of the surfings' most high profile characters from all works of life. Although Occy isn't a natural journalist or podcast host he does get better with each episode and some great stories
5. Were you really a surf stoked grommet if you didn't have Kelly Slater Pro Surfer. Bust out the Playstation and pop this bad boy on. Hours of getting tunnel vision and throwing airs you would never even be able to dream off is at your fingertips....
6. If you're lucky like most of us in Australia you can still access most beaches and before we know this right could get taken away from us very soon. I know in a lot of countries like the UK, people are only allowed to exercise for an hour outside per day so I don't think this should be too different than surfing. Hopefully, as surfers can still get access to our one hour of exercise in the ocean but I think in reality a lot of beaches will get completely closed like Bondi currently is. Just make sure if you are surfing still, then do so with some common sense, wash your hands, respect the 1.5-meter social distancing and stay away from any major crowds anywhere near the beaches.
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