- 10 December 2013 | Surfing
Surfing is surfing. However, can we find resemblances between the riding waves and other sports and performing arts? Let's get inspired.
Ballet is a performance dance, and performance dance is dance performed for an audience. Surfing is the art of dancing with the waves. Compare the "grand jetes" with the aerials, the "fouetté en tournant" with the roundhouse cutback. Surfing is ocean ballet. With spectators, too.
Painting is the practice of applying paint to a surface. Surfing is the art of applying lines to the waves. While painters have canvas in which they express themselves, surfers have moving walls of water in which they lay their turns and lines.
BASE (Building, Antenna, Span, Earth) jumping stunts resemble big wave surf rides. In both cases, athletes risk their lives by defying gravity, and the elements. It's stiff down below. Wipeouts can be deadly.
Chess strategy consists of achieving long-term positioning advantages and concentrating on immediate maneuvers, with personal tactics. Surfers make real-time decisions (left or right, cutback or aerial) and long-term options (this wave or the next one, hold priority or let go). It's all in the mind. Decisions, decisions...
Skateboarding was born to ride the streets when the ocean's flat. Many tricks and moves are surf-influenced maneuvers. However, today, skateboarding is changing the way we ride waves, too. When will surfers pull the 1080?
Snowboarding and skiing invite us to descend the snowy slope. They are gravity-based sports, just like surfing is, and they also require board and feet knowledge. Making turns in fresh winter snow, and trimming virgin summer wave faces. Opposites attract.
Pilates is the perfect physical fitness system for surfers. Although it was founded by Joseph Pilates, in Germany - a country with rare surfing swells - its principles work as a mirror for surfing. Concentration, control, centering, flow, precision and breathing. Perfect match.
Acrobatics demand balance, agility, and motor coordination. Like surfers, acrobats are pushing human body performance to extreme levels. Have you seen a rodeo flip by Jordy Smith? Pure acrobatics.
Synchronized swimming requires strength, endurance, flexibility, grace, artistry and precise timing. The sport, which was once known as water ballet, is both an individual and team sport - that's surfing and tandem surfing, isn't it?
Figure skating offers a wide range of competitive elements. Spins, jumps, moves in the field, lifts, throw jumps, and death spirals demand balance, experience and creativity. Sacry wipeouts included. Check.
Logrolling is an unorthodox outdoor activity that originated in the lumberjack/log driver tradition of the northeastern United States and Canada. Who can balance on a log the longest, while it rolls in the river? Undoubtedly, a man-on-man heat.