When you grow up on the North Shore of Oahu, like 2x World Champion John John Florence, getting acquainted with dangerous ocean conditions isn't a choice, it's a matter of survival. Florence started surfing Pipeline when he was just eight. He was charging good-sized Waimea Bay at 16, and lest we forget, in 2016 he nabbed an impressive win at The Eddie, which became an instant classic.
But don't think for a second that Florence doesn't know fear. He'll be the first to admit he does, because every surfer has their own version of the unridden realm. This is one of many great topics Florence hits in his new booklet: A Field Guide to Waterman Things, which he just released in collaboration with Hurley.
Here's what Florence recommends you do to push the boundaries of your comfort zone.
Watch for a While
"Watch from the beach longer than you normally would. Look for patterns and be a skeptic with your mindng. It's usually twice as hard to do in real life what you're doing in your head."
Know Where You Go
"Paddle out to the zone and let a few sets go. Watch carefully what the wave does each time."
"Surround yourself with friends who will push you. Self motivation is overrated."
Review the Results
"Video that first session. Look where you missed opportunities and try again next time."
Never Be Afraid to Walk Away
"If you're just not feeling it."
Do yourself a favor and grab a copy of John John's instructional booklet: A Field Guide to Waterman Things at your favorite hardcore surf shop. All proceeds are going to the Kokua Foundation and Sunset Beach Elementary.