Stab Magazine | Morgan Williamson vs John John Florence

Morgan Williamson vs John John Florence

Like placing Elijah Wood and Conor McGregor in the ring. 

Words by stab

Two months back, I took the plunge into trying to be a better surfer. Our filmmaker Mike Pagan mic’d me up and then followed me down to the beach with a RED; the whole thing was awkward. We made an edit and sent it into the Hurley Surf Club (you can view it below). The deal was submit a few clips, get feedback, head back out and make my best use of the advice (which can be viewed above). Shortly thereafter the response was in my inbox (with an open door to submit more footage and email questions, a working relationship of sorts)…but, seriously come on guys! John John? Uh, consider me “humbled”. But I digress. If the point is to improve my surfing, it might as well be laid up next to the world champ. Then posted on here for you to either gain something from or likely torch.

So, my HSC surf coach is Shaun Ward–who after his hanging up the jersey nearly a decade ago has worked with the likes of John, Jordy Smith and Brett Simpson–and his advice was simple: Bend my back leg more, and open up my shoulders; easy right? We’ll have to film again to see how well this has been taken into account, but it’s not complicated, with a deeper bend and lower approach, your body follows, your chest opens up, you pivot quicker and project with more speed. To the point that the first few times I tried it, I was caught off guard. Instead of using my usual 45 degrees, down the line, just try not to fuck up program, I found myself whipping quicker off the bottom and into the lip. I lost control during the redirection; it was a zap to my surfing I’ve never felt before. I’ve also applied it to my forehand and attained the same result, unsurprisingly. So in a sense, initially it made snaps more difficult. But when I get one that connects and rides out clean-ish, it feels electric and starts a down the line momentum. Basically, if I don’t botch the first one, the next few will follow in the same fashion, and when it all comes together, I might be in line for a six-point ride in a women’s QS.

Coming into this H.S.C trial, I wanted to be critical and analyse if it’s worth sending your clips in. But, if anything just seeing yourself surf will make you a better surfer. You realise you’re carving in the wrong space, and have the ability to nitpick everything. Not sure if I’ve been able to tone down my T-Rex hands, and despite a few recent photos, I haven’t seen any further footage. But our dear Mike Pagan and I will soon be filming the sequel to see if after roughly two months of attempting to consciously work on my bottom turn, back and forehand approach (I’d say “attack” but we all know it’s not that) I’ve improved.  

If you wanna submit your clips to the Hurley Surf Club (it’s free), and have them analysed in a similar fashion above, you can do so right here


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