With two baby girls to train in the art of being a Surf Ninja, this week’s wave assassin doesn’t get as much time to perform as he’d like, but that doesn’t stop Justin Stevens from killing it every time he hits the water.
Dominating along with his homies in and around his Muizenburg playground, Justin is also the current Kalk Bay Shootout Runner-up, and an underground ripper of note.
Meet this week’s Surf Ninja:
NAME: Justin Stevens
LOCAL SPOT: Muizenberg / Reef / Hoek
BEST THING ABOUT SURFING?
What’s not to like? Sun, surf, scenery – I lap it all up! Also the constant element of surprise – a new swell, or a change in winds or conditions keeps you guessing. But right now, I’d have to say innovation in aerial and big wave surfing – it’s a whole new level!
WORST THING ABOUT SURFING?
Crowds! Also etiquette in the water – There’s too many new faces in the lineup who haven’t put in the time, but are calling priority. Okes need to chill, be respectful and you’ll get waves. Everything else is a walk in the park.
TO MAKE A LIVING I ..?
Cruise the hood selling sneakers – New Balance sneakers. I mean how else would I be able to afford surfboards? I’m a tad on the “grown up” side to be loafing off my folks, but I hustle what I can with the help of Ian Armstrong Surfboards, Lifestyle Surf Shop and Ding Fix surf accessories. I managed to create my own little surf industry that looks after me – shot okes! Props!
THREE TRACKS THAT HELP YOU SHRED?
Bro, I’m old-school so don’t laugh, but seriously you need rhythm when you surf – style and flow is everything, so you have to pull up with the tunez blasting to get your head around the craziness that’s about to go down!
Here’s my Top 3:
‘Anything’ by Linkin Park featuring Jay Z – for when it’s flight attack with my boys Clint, Reza, Josh, Sean and Mark.
The Top Gun anthem (yes, from the movie) – for when it’s maxing. If I’m taking big drops and getting stand up pits, it somehow calms me down. Gets me into the “danger zone”.
Snoop Lion’s new track – It’s a good beat when you just wanna style it up in the lineup!
BEST SURFER IN THE WORLD RIGHT NOW?
Depends on what type of surfing we talking about? Shane Dorian and John John come to mind. Style, style, style and innovation!
DAWNIE OR ARVO SESH?
Dawnies are reserved for nappy changes in the Stevens’ household. That and getting ready for school! Two daughters mean I surf when I’m allowed to. Ask anyone who surfs around here when last they’ve seen me? My wife is chilled, it’s my girls that dominate me!
WHICH SURF SPOT DO YOU HAVE TO SURF BEFORE YOU DIE?
Yussus! What kind of question is that? What spot do I NOT want to surf before I die? In a nutshell it starts with La Jolla in Mexico, and probably literally ends with Jaws/Peahi.
WHEN YOU ARE NOT SURFING, YOU CAN BE FOUND WHERE?
Kindergarten fairs, play dates and Baby City – Generally most places surfers my age would not be…
Having regrets – “Courage is not the absence of fear, but the ability to not be paralysed by it.” – those words have pushed me over the edge on more than a few occasions. Another old-school track that comes to mind is “Knock Knock Knocking on Heaven’s Door” – which seems rather fitting, but thankfully has never played out.
BEST SURFING MEMORY?
The smell of wax melting in my mom’s old Datsun while driving to the beach with my bro anticipating waves. That and his armpits smelt like seaweed – grommet abuse, long story!