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Top Surfing Tips from Garrett McNamara

Breaking into big-wave surfing? Take some tips from the man who rode what is believed to be the largest wave ever.

While the wave chaser credits yoga and a mostly vegan diet for keeping him on the board, McNamara also has some unexpected advice for those looking to get into the sport.

“A lot of reading,” he says. “Spiritual books. Being right with your mind, focusing on staying in the moment rather than thinking about what could happen or what has happened. When you’re present, you’re connected.”

Still, staying in the moment doesn’t stop this 45-year-old from thinking ahead. McNamara says he plans on surfing as long as his body allows him. “I didn’t get what I was looking for [in Portugal], so it’s definitely not the last one,” he says. “The ocean is my church and my playground, and it’s where I love to be. It’s where I belong.”

Take It to Another Level: McNamara’s advice for aspiring big-wave surfers

“Work your way up. You need to know how to surf first, and it’s best to start out with smaller waves. But, for giant waves, you’ve got to be ready— mind, body, spirit, heart. You’ve got to be right with yourself. If you’re right with yourself, you’re physically ready, and you’re mentally ready, then just go and do it.

To be physically ready, I do a lot of yoga. I definitely stretch beforehand; It’s always good to stretch afterward, too. Mainly I do yoga to prepare. Preparation is everything, and having the right safety crew in place is essential.”

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