Walk on the world’s largest waves, without a surfboard

Callan Latans hit the swing fins a little more as part of one of the scariest surfing breaks in the world.

A 28-year-old bodybuilder from Brazil, Latanza, was watering in Peahi, a popular surfing resort on the North Coast of Maui, known to most as a jaw, and waiting for a massive wall of water. When a 20-foot wave approached, he struck the fins and swam fiercely to catch him.

Without the support of the surfboard, Latanzi stretched his body and arms to the plane of his hand, about the size of a surfboard. Gliding in a tunnel created by a wavy wave, he became one of the few bodybuilders to ever carry a large wave barrel on his jaw.

“The best barrel of my life,” Latanzi said in an interview. In the history of Instagram, Kelly Slater, the 11-time champion of the World Surfing League, described the Latanzi play as “one of the best attractions in the world of surfing.”

This was the latest shocking result Latanzi added to his resume. Since he took to the stage in 2015 with bodyyserpine on the 30- to 40-foot-long waves on the Nazarene, off the coast of Portugal, on Mount Everest, the wave rider has crossed the largest surfing planet on the planet.

In the process, he crossed the boundaries of big-wave body surfing, the niche discipline in which surfers catch and carry monster waves with their bodies, a pair of swimming fins and sometimes a hand plane, a device that can make waves easier. (And what some purists consider a crutch).

“This is one of the most extreme things I’ve ever seen,” said Nick von Rup, a professional big-wave surfer. “It’s so extreme, it’s like hanging on the wing of a plane when everyone is sitting inside.”

Body surfing is one of the oldest forms of wave riding, which has seen an increase in competitions and participants in recent years. Although there is no organized competition, in January, a national governing body was established in the United States with the goal of qualifying for the 2032 Summer Olympics in Brisbane, Australia.

Followers of the sport call it one of the purest forms of wave carrying. “It’s as if every cell in your body is buzzing with ocean energy,” said Ryan Masters, a big-wave bodybuilder from Santa Cruz, California. “I believe it is closest to the real physical experience of the material energy of the universe. Call it God or something else.

To catch a big wave, body surfers need to position themselves in the surfboard, as surfers do, to walk in the water until the right wave arrives. This may take some time: once Latanzi ran in the water for 4 hours, Nazareth caught three waves.

After approaching a straight wave, bodybuilders should generate as much speed as possible by swimming and hitting the fins, then they use their hands, torso and legs to control the direction and speed while in the wave. Some bodybuilders, such as Mike Stewart, one of the few people to ever surf the beach on Teahupo Beach, considered one of the deadliest people in the world by tidal surfing – are looking for seals, dolphins and go to maneuver. water.

Because body surfers go for massive waves, this may seem like a more dangerous style than on-board surfing, especially for novice riders who are prone to catch waves in shallow water and may not know how to avoid planting when the waves break. While onboard surfers are more likely to receive wounds from hitting their board, body surfers are more likely to come in contact with the seabed, which can lead to devastating injuries to the cervical spine, said Pascal Huang, an ambulance doctor at Hoag Hospital, Newport. Of California

But some say that experienced bodyguards with a large wave can actually be safer without a board. “It looks a lot worse than not having a board, but if you’re a strong swimmer, you’re wearing fins, you know the lineup, and you have a great wave of knowledge, better than a board without fins,” said Matt Warshow, author of The Encyclopedia of Surfing.

Latanci, who dives and dives into a huge surf like a seal, is remarkably calm, giving him a life spent in the water. He started body surfing at the age of 12 in Itacoatira, Brazil and dreamed of charging monster waves.

“When I started body surfing, I wondered if anyone could surf the big wave,” he said. “Then I started growing and I realized, ‘Well, I’m the one who’m going to do that.’

By 2011, at the age of 17, he was bodybuilding in Arica, Chile and Puerto Escondido, Mexico, the capital of the world big wave. In 2015, he traveled to Nazareth, where he spent the next six years catching the biggest waves of body surfing, some 40 feet high, a deadly achievement similar to a dive from a four-story building. “He’s in his own league,” said Mark Drevelov, a rival bodybuilder from Encinitas, California.

Latanzi trains like a professional athlete to meet the demands of his niche. He eats clean and cross-trains, lifts weights, and does yoga to withstand hours of swimming, negotiate huge waves, and withstand their impact. He is now aiming for the Mavericks, a notoriously dangerous wave in Northern California that can reach heights of more than 60 feet, which he hopes to handle this year.

It takes a really calm mind. It takes incredible strength. Incredible lungs. The Aqua Gorilla is what we all call it because it is so strong in the water, ”Masters said. “He is the best watershed.”

When the Masters attempted to conquer the Mavericks in 2016, he suffered a lung injury, a broken neck, a broken neck bone and seven ribs, and was airlifted to Stanford Hospital. “The Mavericks are just a different animal, unlike any other wave on the planet,” Masters said. “It’s incredibly wild.”

Given the risks, some are wondering why Latanzi is ready for Airbino on the world’s most dangerous surfing breaks. Even Mark Cunningham, who is widely regarded as the best bodybuilder of all time, wonders: “He swims in water that I could not even imagine. What drives him? ”

For Latanzi it’s simple.

“Because I love it,” he said. “I love the adrenaline, I love being in the water and finding the biggest barrels and crossing my boundaries. I’re really looking for adrenaline. “

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