The art and meditation of riding a surf mat

It was one of those times when friends get together to surf.

Friends that you just don't see unless the stars align just so.

So despite a waining swell and an impending storm the days surf had been a blast.

Photo of KenDog driving along the bottom and linking one section to the next.

The post surf feast of hot coffee, more hot coffee and eggs was  slowly reviving the frozen fingers and toes and the conversation had turned to mats in the movies.

We all lamented the lack of a full length feature film starring mat surfing!

Many of you are making some fantastic short clips
(YouTube has about two dozen )
but a feature length mat movie is still as elusive as definitive shots of the Loch Ness monster.

(But aren't those Greenough clips on Surfmatters are fantastic!)

Part of the problem is that in addition to all the normal challenges movie makers face
(surf conditions, wind, lighting, equipment, travel, funding, pre and post production, editing, music rights, advertising, distribution etc)
mat films would have to face one final challenge

Mat riding doesn't really lend itself to filming.

Photo of MT, one fin helping hold his line in the tube while the other gently strokes the roof. Most of the mat work being done by a weight shifts done  around the second and third chakras.

Mat surfing usually consists of a series of subtle weight shifts around your body's core.  Subtle actions that change as the wave changes in front of you.  Slight movements that are gone in an instant.

The motions of a mat rider takes on the steady rhythm of ritual, something commonplace transformed into an act of art and meditation.

Exhilarating for the rider but, often times, unnoticed and unappreciated by the uninitiated.

I'm sure there will be many fine mat centric surf movies in the future.
Perhaps using extreme slow motion to highlight the sublime dance between rider and wave.
But the waves will be the star of the show, as it should be.

Photo by Harold Ward.


warren p said…
a great explanation for the uninitiated it is all about the moment
non thought
brings the best results
Jamie said…
There's nothing more powerful than
an idea
whose time
has come.
Celluloid preservation.

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