Matt started surfing when he was 6 years old, in Cape Town, South Africa. He grew to become one of the best big wave surfers in the world. He watches the globe for large storms, and when all the elements come together, book's a ticket and chases the energy across the world. He documents the big waves these storms create and produces high quality content which is distributed through various global media platforms.Matt's other passion is sharing his experiences to inspire and empower people to ride their "big waves".
It depends on what you're looking to get out of your surfing. For learning, a thicker surfboard is better because it is more stable and easier to paddle. As you become more advanced, you should go thinner for more maneuverability and depending on your weight and the size of the waves. Transcript: "Is a thicker surfboard better, so this totally depends on what you're looking to get out of your surfing. For instance, if you're learning, you're going to be on a much thicker surfboard. So, the thicker, the board, the more volume the board has the more floated has and the more stable it will be and the easier it is to paddle so big boards. Thicker boards are used when you're learning to surf, because they are much more stable their paddle fast, The so it's easier to catch the waves when you want to get more advanced and you're surfing, you want to make the board lot thinner, because the thinner, the board, the less volume it has, the more maneuverability you have on the wave. So, like myself being a professional Surfer. When I'm surfing in smaller ways, I'm using a board that is just over 2 inches thick, so it's pretty thin, but then going into bigger waves, we use a board. That's actually very thick because the extra volume helps with paddles. Power. And when the waves are huge are moving really fast through the water and you need the extra Pedal Power and the volume to be able to catch the waves. So, in short, when you learn to serve using a thicker board, it's adds a lot more stability makes things easier. And as you progress, you should go thinner and thinner depending on your weight and the volume that is appropriate for the waves, you surfing, and for how heavy you are."
To train for big waves, I swim three times a week, jump two to three times a week, and surf three to four times a week. In addition, I do high intensity training using a bosu ball and pilate ball to add instability. Lastly, I make sure to eat a lot of food to keep up with my caloric needs. Transcript: "So when I'm training hard for big storms and for big season ahead, I will try swim three times a week and I will gym two to three times a week and I'll try also include on top of that three to four surf sessions. So the swimming for me because I'm in the big wave surfing it's the most relevant, it's the closest I can get to mimicking the big wave environment. So I do a lot of underwater training which involves getting my heart rate up, getting my heart racing, doing a few deep breaths and then swimming under the water for pretty much as long as I can. That mimics being held under by a big wave with the adrenaline. And then with regards to the gym work, I do a lot of high-intensity training, a lot of stuff using a bozu ball or pilates ball. So for instance if I'm going to do push-ups I'll either do my push-ups with my hands on the bozu ball or I'll put my ankles on the pilates ball. So I try at with every exercise I do I try to add instability and then obviously surfing at least three to four times a week just to keep me sharp and eating a lot of food in between to keep up with all the calories."
I use visualization to stay motivated, focused and excited. This includes visualizing every detail of a hero moment such as the water temperature, wind, feeling of butterflies in my stomach, paddling into the wave and executing it successfully. It's a great way to stay focused on the goal and take away all the distractions. Transcript: "I use a lot of visualization. It's one of the ways that I faced my fear and manage to stay motivated. Stay excited. Stay focused in while I'm going into a big storm and yeah, so for me, visualizing the hero moment that's me. I would visualize myself sitting at the back line and seeing a huge wave come in. And I visualize every detail from I'm the water temperature to the wind to what I see all around me and at the feelings, I have even the feel of the Butterflies, I get in my stomach and I visualized this whole experience from sitting at the back to paddling into the wave of my life, writing it with confidence and executing it successfully. And told that feeling that I get when I pull off the wave. And I'm just so full of Satisfaction any motion, I visualize every detail over and over and over again. And this is like all visualizing my hero moment and I would encourage I often encourage people that I work with, it's a really great way to stay focused on the goal to Take away all the mist and all the distractions, focus on the goal, get motivated and get excited to catch that big wave that we looking for."
To help with pop-ups, do explosive exercises like burpees and push-ups to generate power. When popping up, keep your hands in front of you, stay crouched, and look forward. Transcript: "Yeah, so the pop-up is something that for me is second nature because I do it so much. But for many people it's a place where they struggle. And I would suggest you really want to do something that helps you to have explosive power in your arms. So things like burpees or push-ups, they help you to create explosive power in your arms and that in turn gives you enough space between your chest and the deck of your surfboard for your front leg to come underneath you. Because if you don't create enough space between your chest and your surfboard when popping up your front leg will get stuck, it will drag and you'll probably end up standing too close together. So yeah, simple things like burpees, push-ups, explosive things that help to generate enough power to create space between your chest and the deck of your board. And something to remember, when you do your pop-up and when you land, stay super crouched because the more crouched you are the more stable you're going to be on the board. Keep your hands in front of you, low center of gravity, your hands direct your movement and look forward. Hope that helps."
The person closest to the breaking part of the wave has priority, and don't drop in on someone already taking off on a wave. People who have waited the longest for waves should also have priority for the next wave. Transcript: "The rules of Surfing as a beginner. Yeah. So basically, if everybody's going straight on waves, if the waves are just a straight clothes on, everyone is going straight in. Then it's fine for everyone to share waves for multiple people to be on one wave. But as soon as the wave is breaking sideways like from left to right or from left to right. The number one rule to remember, is that the person who is closest to the Breaking part of the wave, they have the priority 30 of the wave. So the person is waited the longest for the wave and the person who is closest to the Breaking part of the wave, they have priority. And if someone is taking off next to the curl, so they're on the next to the curl of the wave and say, you sitting wider on the wall, the person closest to the call has priority and if they're taking off on the way of then, don't drop in on them because you're probably going to end up colliding with them and causing a bit of a scene. And also people who Who have waited the longest for the waves. They should have priority for the next wave. So those two things are important to remember, when starting off surfing,"
I use 20 minutes of my week for quiet time with my wife to read the Bible, pray, meditate, and be still. This helps us connect with each other and puts our lives into perspective, which lays a great foundation for the day and week. Transcript: "I think for me the most important, 20 minutes of my week is my quiet time, like my meditation time, and I tried do this everyday. I tried to like 20 minutes every day. Do this with my wife. We basically read the Bible, we pray, we meditate, we be still for a moment, and I feel like when we do this, we connect with each other, but we also it just puts the whole day and the whole week and perspective, it helps Oops us to see our lives through a bigger picture. When we still, I feel like it just grounds us and it lays a great foundation for the day. And for the week and I feel like sometimes it feels counterproductive, but always in hindsight, I know that that 20 minutes in my day, that quiet, time plays a huge role in me, having a successful day and a successful week."