My article “Distance is Different – How to downwind like an expert” will be on pages 112-115 of Kiteworld Magazine #94. The article covers several key aspects of downwind kitesurfing, including starting with the “why” of your trip, knowing the route, specific downwind kite techniques, gear selection, safety, insurance, and some of my favorite destinations for downwinders and long distance kiting.
My untrained reaction to fear was always to simply avoid it. More recently I’ve developed a more nuanced relationship to fear as a message that carries more detailed meaning. Now when I feel fear I try to remember to take a moment to notice what I’m afraid of, how much fear am I feeling, and why.
Fear is an indicator of exactly where we are on the spectrum between challenge and achievability. We can use fear to dial ourselves into that place of challenging but just-doable-enough, where we have a very good chance of achieving something that stretches our abilities, which is both very satisfying and also serves to build our confidence.
Thanks also to Hitch McDermid for his message about moving towards fear, which continues to inspire me.
As part of my role as a Creative in Residence at the Battery, I proposed and co-founded the Battery Adventure Club, a club-within-the-club for Battery members who want more adventure in their lives. For our second event I planned a guided walk from the Battery to the Pelican Inn in Muir Beach.
I’ve done several long walks in this area lately, inspired by the readily accessible landscape and a story I heard of San Francisco family’s tradition of walking from the City to Inverness for Thanksgiving. We humans evolved to walk, and while most of us don’t regularly walk anything like this distance of nearly 17 miles (27km), we are literally built for it and it’s well within the abilities of any healthy person.
The event was organized as an active coaching session, with both group and individual coaching by myself and my co-facilitator Michael Lipson. We had a great turnout and with a very enthusiastic group of participants we set off from the Battery about 1:30pm and arrived just in time for dinner at the Pelican at about 8:30pm.
I spoke with Sam Guest at Tantrum Kitesurf / Peak Performance the other day about my on-the-water Kitesurfing Adventure Skills program (Dec 1-8). It was such a pleasure to meet and speak with Sam, he really gets it and we had a great time talking about kitesurfing as an adventure sport, the long distance experience, sport as exercise/diversion/play/tool and as a way of being in the world, flow, taking responsibility for your own experience, taking kiting more seriously as a sport, preparation as the foundation for adventure and creativity, the balance between achievability and challenge, goal setting, and how to build a life outside full of serious fun.
Sam digs the project so much, he said that he thinks Kitesurfing Adventure Skills is the coolest thing to happen in kitesurfing in the last 10 years! I just listened to the interview again, and I’m pretty psyched!
Have a listen and be sure to subscribe to @tantrumkitesurf to catch the latest from Sam as he explores his own journey from kitesurfing to the broader world of adventure and peak performance.
I became a Creative/Athlete in Residence at the Battery in 2018, and one of my first projects has been to launch the Battery Adventure Club with fellow Battery CiR and adventurer Noah Rainey. After a meetup at the Battery in May, we held our first group event on June 26, 2018 right here in Sausalito with a group of 20+ Battery members and guests kayaking under the full moon in Richardson Bay.
In March of 2017 I was invited to the Philippines to be one of the principal athletes in a kitesurfing travel documentary series for Canal OFF called Downwind nas Filipinas (Downwind in the Philippines). The series was aired in Brazil starting in May/June of 2018.
Fellow Battery member, podcaster and top-notch interior designer Jeff Schlarb called me out of the blue and invited me in for an interview on his show. I’m very grateful for unexpected invitations like this, and I admire what Jeff is doing a lot.
Jeff sees his podcast as ‘an opportunity to have interesting conversations,’ and it certainly was. Thanks for the invitation, Jeff. It takes courage to open your door so widely — well done. I hope you all enjoy our conversation, and do check out the other episodes of his show, including SF supervisor Scott Wiener, chef Tyler Florence, choreographer Alonzo King, and restauranteur Anna Weinberg, among many others!