Kanoa Igarashi Documentary: "When You Feel Good And You Lose It's A Little More Shocking" - Stab Mag
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You can learn a lot from Kanoa, but he can't teach you how to turn like this. That's on you.

Kanoa Igarashi Documentary: “When You Feel Good And You Lose It’s A Little More Shocking”

Highs and lows from a GQ Man of the Year’s, year.

cinema // Feb 15, 2022
Words by August Howell
Reading Time: < 1 minutes

2021 was not a normal year for Championship Tour surfers. Travel restrictions. Quarantine. Covid-19 tests. On top of that, the tour itself was different. Pipeline to start the year. (But still in December.) No Snapper, Bells, J-Bay or Chopes. And there was this little thing called the WSL Finals. 

It takes a level head to negotiate the world stage. Fortunately, Kanoa Igarashi is as calm navigating the spotlight as he is flying over the flats. 

Kanoa is the subject of Red Bull’s Beyond the Lines series, featuring all things GQ Japan Man of the Year. The newly released Chapters, a 41-minute feature directed by travel partner and friend Tanner Carney, follows Kanoa throughout each stop on the CT — Pipeline, Newcastle, Narrabeen, Margaret River, Rottnest Island and Barra de la Cruz. (Sorry Surf Ranch.) 

After the truncated season finished in Mexico, Kanoa was sitting at eighth overall on tour. He also ended the year with a new silver medal around his neck, but that’s a story (and Red Bull video) for another day. 

The clip’s angle is something not all CT vets are willing to share. It’s direct insight into Kanoa’s mindset and methodology, from little nuggets of heat strategy to the legacy he hopes to leave for the next generation. You’ll witness Kanoa’s first human interaction in two weeks and eavesdrop on his conversations with coach Tom Whitaker. But above all, Kanoa shows that he’s not afraid to admit his mistakes. You see how he cares, how much both losing and winning affect him deeply. And he shows that despite the flaws, you can still learn from the worst of them.

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