If These Jabs Hurt, Imagine The Haymakers - Stab Mag

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If These Jabs Hurt, Imagine The Haymakers

Kai Hing’s B-clips are a taste for what’s to come.

elsewhere // Sep 18, 2023
Words by Ethan Davis
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Hingy will be the first to admit this edit isn’t going to change the world.

I just grinded Lennox for two days, there’s a couple waves from Ballina and a couple waves from Iluka and that’s it. Like I said, there’s no A-clips in it. Hopefully it just shows that the surfing is still there and people can get hyped for what’s coming down the line.” 

After having bounced around the past couple years, Kai Hing has rediscovered his love for surfing. When I was grom I was super focused on comps. I won the Oz Junior series and then went to the Worlds in Portugal and came ninth. After that I hopped on the QS for two years and was just spending a bunch of money and feeling like my surfing wasn’t really going anywhere” he explains. “I was getting jaded.”

“Creed [McTaggart] and Shaun [Manners] were both on Billabong with me at the time and I expressed my desire to join them doing the freesurf roster,” he says. When Bong gave him their blessings to join them on trips sans jersey, “it was like everything finally made sense. I could focus on getting better at surfing, finding good waves and banking footage.” 

Ultimately the chapter was short-lived. In 2020 when his contract with Bong was up for renewal, neither party resigned. “I just felt real fucking empty. I didn’t really have much purpose in life. It was really humbling because it made me realize that maybe I was taking a lot of it for granted,” he says candidly. “As soon as you start getting on the tools, you’re like, fuck, all I want to be doing is surfing.” 

Seeing his best mates getting paid good coin to pursue their freesurfing dreams was bittersweet. Sweet because “of course you always want your friends to be doing well, it’s only bitter in the sense that you wish you could be there with them…” 

After a period of arduous work on the job site, Kai left the Sunny Coast and moved down to Byron, jumping in the Misfit store and picking up a part-time gig doing support work. At 26, Kai feels his best surfing is still ahead of him, and having peeked at a few of his A-clips from his last Indo trip, I’d tend to agree. 

“Eventually Misfit got me on the team, which I’m really thankful for,” says Hingy. “It’s pretty rare for a company to have that honest family-feel to it, and they’ve given me a signature model (The Drib) and some budget to go and make something that I’m passionate about working towards… I want to put something sick out and I’m going to take any opportunity to get good waves. I’ll go as hard as I can just because anything beats fucking hammering nails.”

Like the cut of his Drib? Inspect here.

Hingy feels enarmored by the expensive lessons of the past few years. “That’s where the growth happens,” he professes. With a few more trips planned, Hingy will soon have enough quality footage to release something he is proud to hang his hat on. “I’m going to surf for fucking eight hours and get the best footage I can. The way I see it now, it’s just a grind as hard as you can situation.”

I’ll just add: Now would probably be a real good time to slap a sticker on his nose. There’s still some lead in the pencil.


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