Interview with Bethany Hamilton the Hawaiian princess
Bethany was just granted a wild card into 2012 Rip Curl Padang Padang Invitational proving that she is one of the best woman charger. But as we are French, we caught her to know what she thought about the best European beach break, Hossegor and the French coast. And we took time to discover a little bit more of the one who still an example for everyone.
Hossegor is the best European beach break, what do you think about this wave ?
I know Hossegor can get really good, I surfed it really fun a few times! I love to get epic conditions there!
Do you have particular habits here ?
Well I first figure out where the best sandbar is and what tide it likes best and then surf based on that. If I'm competing, I'll make a point to surf when it's the bad tide, just in case my heat falls during that. The tide varies so much more than Hawaii; when I first visited Hossegor it took some time to get used to the tide changes!
Did you ride other spots along the coast ?
I’ve surfed a couple other spots Cabreton, Biarritz, Anglet, and a fun right point just north of the Spain border.
What's your favorite place in France ?
There is still much of France that I'd like to see, but I love Hossegor and Paris!
A word on your own country ? Is that the best place to live ?
For me, Hawaii is the perfect place to have grown up and to live. The waves are great, it’s beautiful, there’s so many adventures to be had, my family is all there, and I have wonderful friends too.
I know that you're not competing on every wqs this year, why did you choose the SWATCH PRO GIRLS ?
I really enjoy the Swatch contest. Swatch puts on a great event and treats us like professionals.
Not only that but I love France! And I’m trying to learn French!
Who are you travelling with for this contest ?
I usually travel with a friend or family member. One year I went with my sister-in-law, Becky. Another year I went with a friend, Tawne, and this past year I went with another friend, Cherith.
Who are your best friend ?
I have a group of close girl friends here on island. Alana Blanchard and Carissa Moore are some of my best surf friends.
Do you have a boy friend ?
Maybe, maybe not!
My mate's daughter Meah Collins, told me you spend time chilling with her, last year on the swatch pro. Are kids important to you ?
Yes, kids are so impressionable and there are not too many positive, clean role models in the mainstream public eye. So I try to be a good role model for them and like to hang out too when I get a chance.
I discovered that you write poems and songs, is there anything serious ?
Not really. It’s just a very rare, random, fun hobby!
Could be cool to make a band with you and your songs as a singer, Lee Ann playing guitar, Coco and Alanna for dancers !
Hahaha that would be funny! Lee Ann is a great musician as well as Steph and Carissa has a great voice!
Healh and fitness is important for you, do you have a special program to keep in shape ?
Yes, I work hard at staying in peak fitness and health. I like to eat pure and I love my veggies!
Check out these videos:
Cross-Training Session, Part 1 -
Cross-Training Session, Part 2 -
Food is important for you ?
It’s important for everyone! I have learned so much over the past few years about how what we eat (or don’t eat) effects our daily health – from headaches to chronic pain to obesity to skin health. It’s all related.
Over the years, with help from nutritionists, I’ve fine-tuned a healthy way of eating and living that I feel confident to model and share. I try to always eat organic foods.
I eat mostly veggies, and try to have lots of variety! I’ll eat grains like rice, quinoa, and sprouted grains. And I avoid gluten, dairy, processed foods, GMO foods, MSG, and corn products.
I implement eating for your blood type and also try to eat lots of alkaline foods. It’s helping me feel great inside and out!
I encourage everyone to eat healthier and take care of their bodies! (I do love my dark chocolate though!)
A word on your new sponsor ZICO ?
I really like coconut water, so I was stoked to get sponsored by ZICO! They make it easy to get the health benefits of coconut water. And I like the company because it’s very health & fitness focused. I like to combine Zico coconut water with acai, the super food, from my other sponsor Samabazon and make yummy smoothies!
Let's go back to surfing, tell me about your last indo trip, the best trip of your life ?
On the last Rip Curl girls Search trip, we scored some amazing surf! We had fun in the waves and also on the boat dancing, eating, fishing, and just being girls! It was definitely a trip to remember!
You got an injury during this trip, are you completely ok now ?
Yes, I wiped out really hard on a wave and landed with my arm on my fin. I got a huge, deep gash on my arm, which ended up cutting the trip a little bit short. I had to have stitches and surgery to repair some nerve damage.
But my arm healed up nicely, and despite some numbness in my fore arm that is now only faintly noticeable, I feel back to normal.
Keala Kennelly got a huge incident at teahuppo, do you have fear in such nasty wave ?
I think it’s a risk we all take, and something that crosses my mind occasionally. But getting and wanting amazing waves helps me overcome fears!
Is big wave riding or slab riding the next big thing for you ?
I’m really interested in getting more into big-wave surfing. But it’s hard to juggle right now with all I have going on. Cause to really be into it you have to be watching swells and ready to jump on a plane at a moment’s notice. And I need to find a tow partner. I’m just starting to get my feet wet at big wave surfing. But yes, I'd like to surf bigger and heavier waves for sure!
How would you define your surf style ?
Strong, aggressive and happy.
Do you have a particular shaper ?
Al Merrick & Channel Islands Surfboards
Do you practice any other extrem sports ?
I like snowboarding! But I'm not to extreme on the snow!
You resigns with rip curl, what does represent this brand to you ?
Rip Curl is a core surf brand that has supported me since I was 10 years old. Rip Curls motto is “The Search” for the best waves around the world. I like that because I’m passionate about surfing and love adventuring to find good and untouched surf.
A few words on your hobbies when you're not surfing ?
I like to keep busy with all kinds of adventures with my friends and family – hiking, tennis, camping, swimming, running my dogs, playing with my niece, training, making & eating healthy food, picking/diving for shells, relaxing, reading, doing art, and all kinds of other stuff!
You're launching a tv show, tell me more...
Well nothing is set in stone yet, but we’re working on a couple show ideas. I can’t really share details yet!
What's your surfing goal, dream tour, world champion...?
Be the best surfer I can be!
You are an inspiration for every surfer, but whose surfer inspire you ?
I love to watch Steph surf and Carissa's drive is really motivating!
God; what does it mean for you?
God is the creator of everything, including you and I, and the one who loves each of us so deeply – more than anyone on earth could. God has complete power yet gives us free will. Anyone can have a personal relationship with God, through Jesus Christ, like I do. It's so beautiful knowing Him; my life has direction, hope, joy, forgiveness and love.
And I know that He saved me and had a plan for my life (which we’ve all seen play out) – a plan that has impacted so many people’s lives.
Interview : Johann Mouchel
Photo: Johann Mouchel / Noah Hamilton / Mick Curley / Rip Curl
Special Thanks to Julie Pollet / Rip Curl