Joel Tudor: Unfiltered

The longboard icon speaks without inhibition about the state of surfing

| posted on January 28, 2013

Single-fin slab, San Diego. Photo: Ghiglia

Today, the “ride everything” mentality is more pervasive than it ever has been and that’s been something you’ve been championing all your life.
Surfing is everything, it’s not just one thing. And you can accomplish all of it; you don’t have to ride one piece of equipment, which now everyone’s kind of doing. I didn’t have an ASP/NSSA upbringing. I didn’t grow up with Ian [Cairns] and PT [Peter Townend] telling me what was cool. I grew up with Nat [Young] telling me what was cool.

And really, Nat’s one of the founders of our counterculture. Nat was such a powerful figure for me. He rode everything. He would just critique the shit out of me if I did something wrong. And really, I couldn’t say anything back to him because he was so legitimate. There was no backlashing the man. He pressed so many things on us that were so different, and that made us step outside of the box. I mean, yeah, we went to contests and all that, but he also lectured us about having manners, which is funny coming from him. But he’d also tell us crazy things, like telling us to take psychedelics. And we did. And those were experiences and times that were priceless. Because I wanted to experience the things that they experienced. I wanted to surf on acid, I wanted to do all these things. And I did, under his guidance. And I know parents are gonna freak out on this, and I hate to say it, but that’s surf culture. It really is surf culture. I was under an elder, a chief. It was only natural to do that kind of stuff. And it molded me into who I am today. I wouldn’t take any of it back.

And surf culture now?
It’s a different time. I mean the kids these days think it’s normal to take a filmer to the beach and make a video about yourself and put it up on the Internet. For some reason it is just completely cool to blow your own horn in 2012. Like there’s nothing wrong with being an egomaniac and basing your entire existence from sunup to sundown on producing yourself as a cool person. In my day, if you did that, you were done. My car would still be getting destroyed every time I parked it in the lot. Today, it’s all about yourself and how to make yourself seem cool. How much talent you have doesn’t seem to matter. It’s cool to film and make videos and all that shit, but not if that’s your sole purpose for surfing. If you can’t go to the beach and have fun without a filmer, well something’s wrong.

You’re not really getting everything that surfing has to offer.
There’s something really natural about getting into your car and not contacting anybody and just disappearing and finding a wave and just surfing. That lonely aspect is an escape and a cancellation of all the shit that you deal with on a day-to-day basis. And sometimes it’s just cool to leave the documenter or photographer behind and not spend the rest of the day editing your clips to get it up by that night. I think we’re just spending too much time making ourselves look cool. I mean I’m not gonna knock it, it’s how we make a living, and I get it, but there’s just something kinda tacky about it. I like the old Greg Weaver theory or even Denjiro Sato, who I got to work with when I was a kid, they would show up and film you and you wouldn’t know. And they would do it on purpose, because I think that element of not knowing a filmer is around makes you surf that much better. And that’s why the best surf sessions are not on film. Because you don’t have the pressure of performing. Natural is better than posed.

As someone who comes from a skate background what are your thoughts on aerial surfing?
I’m so sick of watching the same rotation air, it’s about as lame as noseriding on every wave—it gets monotonous and old. You’ve got to break up the routine. Everyone can do the same air and they do it on every wave. You’re watering down a trick that’s cool. You’re taking the technical aspect out of it ’cause you’re doing them every wave. And then it really comes down to who has the best style when they do it. Overall, I think that a lot of aerial surfers would really benefit from studying skateboarding a little more. If you look at how much skateboarding was influenced by surfing—with the current state of airs, it would only make sense if these guys took some time and learned a little bit from skateboarding. I mean, there are some crazy airs. I watch everything—that Matt Meola Innersection thing was incredible. That stuff’s cool. I don’t necessarily like the style of certain things, and I think that’s where skateboarding would probably fix the kinks. Some of these guys could actually benefit from taking a little bit of time and rolling around on four-wheels.

What’s it going to take to change course? What’s going to slow the onslaught of air reverses?
Cancel your Facebook.

Cancel your facebook? That’s it? Stop watching two-minute clips on the internet?
Well the Internet has changed everything. It kind of waters down certain things, because everybody can see something and copy it immediately. Before, you had a long window of originality before someone could get to it. In this day and age, you have about 20 seconds before somebody sees it and they’re like, “I want to do that too.” And then it’s a fight for who did it first.

Who’s getting it right?
I think Ryan Burch embodies the future of surfing. Burch’s approach applies to every surfer. He embodies what we’re all about, he makes his own equipment, he’s fascinated by different things, he moves from one board to another. We need more free-thinkers in our next and current generations. Ryan is an example of what it will take for us to get to the next level of the sport. Simon Anderson had the sense to make three fins the same size and the only way he did that was because he was designing his own equipment. Ryan embodies a change in surfing in that direction. We need more free-thinkers who aren’t 50 years old.

In your opinion, what is the cutting edge of performance surfing right now?
I look forward to going to Hawaii every year because for me, the proof is in the pudding. I get to go and see all the hype. And I’m a pretty astute critic. I believe you have to surf big waves as well as you surf small waves. I came from that generation. I think that’s super important. What’s blowing me away is the level of tube-riding. Airs I could give two shits about. But the level of tube-riding when you go and you sit at Pipeline and you watch, every year the bar is getting higher. John John is leading that charge. I used to say that Tom Carroll bought the blueprints of the reef at Pipeline from Dane Kealoha, Kelly took the blueprints from Tom Carroll, and now it seems like Jamie [O’Brien] and John John got the blueprints of the reef too. John John is probably the best surfer in the world today—he’s on that level of being able to ride a 10-foot wave like a 2-foot wave. He schools Dane Reynolds in that aspect, hands down.

  • Luis

    Should cockiness be subject to tax, this guy was fucked.

  • Whamo

    BK’s longboard style was the best.

  • Grocery Sack

    Has Joel ever done an intentional air?

  • Batman

    Grocery Sack – good point, maybe we should get some of these aerial specialists to critique Joel’s longboarding, wonder how receptive to their advice he would be…

  • sonny p

    finally a refreshing perspective on surf culture. a truly talented individual and a critical thinker. the kids can learn alot from such a person.
    thanks for this interview.

  • BHawk

    Even though some of what he says is right, he is a cocky douche bag. I remember reading some of his comments on how he loves to choke people out. I could give a shit about anything he says is spiritual.

  • beenznham

    Negativity peoples… jealously, envy is bad even if your good at it! There is no shame in being proud of what you do and how you do it, if your good and its good! Its all good 🙂

  • Stan

    The guy says he longboards if its under three feet but his boards over three feet are over volumed and basically longboards with a pointed nose. You ever see him on a modern short board? Nope you won’t. And that’s why he talks shit

  • local union 13

    Joel always pissing everyone off… GOOD!

  • ksdhf

    “What should the criteria be? What is good longboarding?”
    “basically want to combine the surfing of Nat Young and David Nuuhiwa and put them both together. Maybe throw me in the mix.” . ..
    “For some reason it is just completely cool to blow your own horn in 2012”

    Joel, you are a [expletive.]

  • MikeM

    I don’t understand Joel’s logic. Society doesn’t seem to have a problem with professional surfers making money marketing products, so why should he? I guess his opinion supersedes the average surfers. Jaded Joel strikes again.

  • Norcal

    I do not like longboarders…But, big props to Joel, here. I’ve watched this guy grow up and change the face of surfing. Saw his first pro contest, where Richie Collins was proving the point that the “longboard tour” was lame, showed up and blew the doors off the other tools who couldn’t make it through a PSAA heat, so they added 3ft to their board. But, there was Joel, showing that beauty and grace could still be a part of this moment where every middle aged dude decided they should start surfing again. For people who have never ridden a Tak 9’6 that required proper use of the wave or the equipment busted you big time, it was a joy to watch Joel do his thing. Taking the show to Pipe was even more impressive! What the ASP did to Joel was wrong, and has made “modern” longboarding a hoax. Joel, you rock. An excellent SURFER for any era… BTW, Stan, I’d like to see you make the drop, then bottom turn at Pipe on one of those retro egg single fins with no rocker! Would serve dinner with that show? Batman and Sack, talk to Rat about it…

  • PBguy

    Ive known Joel for over a couple decades and hes a longtime friend. Ive seen him do functional airs, get beat up and yelled at. Ive seen him sit with Skip Frye and talk story filled with respect and humility. Ive also witnessed him dropping amazing shit talk and heavy wave hassels. You know what, hes just like all of us except he speaks his mind and people love to jump on him for it. Like him or hate him, he doesnt five a fuck. He surfs. He surfs better than you on ANY board and now he can wrap you into a pretzel. If you dont like confidence or cockiness then you shouldnt like any professional surfer ever, because they all share that trait even down to Skip, Donald and Nat.

  • peterg

    What a hypocrite- The guy has won both his longboard titles on High Performance longboards. Maybe he should invite the top 5 ASP longboard guys to his wankfest ducktape deal and see what happens. Guaranteed they would kick arse. Also a lot of the full traditional log guys do it cause they aren’t good enough to make it on the ASP Longboard series. Maybe surfer should interview some other longboarders….

  • A.T.

    What a bunch of haters. Dude is one of the best surfers alive regardless of what he’s riding. He draws more beauty and style in his lines and approach then most CTers’.

  • rw

    Good surfing is good surfing. Tudor’s smooth, casual style is a pleasure to watch.

  • bruce b

    I hear my friends call joel one of the greatest surfers ever, I didnt grow up surfing but started catching waves at age 43,and it has changed my life.I did grow up fighting in LA[jail/prison] and I recognize that fighting/chocking people over a wave might seem to give credibilty to this mans prowess but not me.Mr Tudor better check himself before he wrecks himself !Im good friends with his friends and colleagues who taut his fighting abilities, Thats what my Bra boy friends said about Tony Hines right up unto the point me and Jai pushed his limp bloody body off the cliff. Positive energy is why I love surfing , mr Tudor would benefit himself by channeling the POSITIVE,

  • Dante Rondo

    Fire on Joel if you like…Always a controversial individual in his opinions and expression ! But his last paragraph of the interview sums his current view on surfing and his personal stoke up really well. When most everybody conformed and refused to even be seen on a long board in small waves…Joel was still carrying the torch for this classical aspect of surfing. Good on him for that ! Some guy the other day was espousing that “Long Boarding is not even surfing”…! I thought , well this guy is not even old enough to know better ! I have heard other local guys where i live say “That anyone can ride a long board”… Fine go out and try it , if you think it is just an “Old man’s or girls type of surfing” ! I am glad i grew up surfing in the early-mid 60’s with the inspiration of David and Donald right in front of me in the water at Hermosa/Redondo/Manhatton Beaches . Then it was , of course, only long boards ! It is all good and really it should not be such a big issue now- Long board or short one…It is all riding waves and having fun ! Here’s to all surfers and wave riding on whatever equipment suits the day , the wave, and your personal preferences and style !!

  • Mik

    Since when is being a professional athlete “scamming”????

    What is the difference between being an expert at surfing, and being an expert at software programming, or cooking, or whatever????

    Alex Knost is cool. Joel Parkinson is cool. There’s many ways to be cool, including making a living doing something you love, and are exceptionally good at.

    Joel is a great surfer, yes. But I don’t think the drug use, or lack of an education did his mind any favors…

    Nice rant.

    I guess.

  • Dante Rondo

    P.S. However i do not agree with Joel’s attitude on using his martial arts background to Kick someone’s ass or choke him out over wave riding and surfing.Maybe he did get picked on a lot when he was younger…So he wanted to become tougher and stronger to defend himself, etc. But leave the violence to the martial arts sparing, unless it is an absolute self defense thing Joel !

  • Batman

    I tried to find something on google about him being a world champion at BJJ. I found nothing saying that. He has won some impressive titles by the looks of it, but he should have set the record straight when posed the question “You’re a world longboard champion and more recently, a world jiu-jitsu champion. Why jiu-jitsu?”. Maybe he did win a world title in BJJ but its strange that it is not mentioned in this article
    The guy is a great surfer, and I perfer watching him to some of the WCT guys, but there is so much that is wrong about his attitude in this article that its hard to know where to start

  • Amy Trujillo

    Fuck yah Joel! I’m down for mind expansion and pocket riding. Fuck what everyone says! Pro Longboarding has gone to shit and it has for a while. Like my old man always says “just because you can turn good, doesn’t make you cool”.

  • Jeff

    Joel is ignorant to say that surfers have more athletic ability than other types of athletes. “Because we can swim”. A lot of athletes can swim.
    “I feel like as surfers we have such an advantage on so many people.”
    Just seems like an arrogant, hypocritical guy.

  • onlyonething

    Only one thing I agree with on…”Basically I believe that longboarding should never be held in waves over head-high”. This should be true of longboarding, period. You fat lazy donkeys riding nine-footers when it’s overhead are just plain weak, poor surfers. Or GREEDY. There is no other option here.

  • 420


  • ffp

    joel sometimes is a idiot . but , i believe the true longboarding , will be always the classic style . Noseriding

  • Edit

    Surfer Magazine,

    Are you serious?!? Bruce B is admitting to murdering someone, and no submisson edit? Then threaten’s Joel?!? Did you call the police? Bruce B-he trained because there are guys like you…peace lover? This game is getting retarded…

  • John Lynch

    Joel, it’s not “filmers” – we have a name dedicated to those of us who spent our lives practicing the art and discipline of filmmaking: “Cinematographer” – ‘filmer’ just bugged me when I read that… felt klunky on a piece so dedicated to style.

    Other than that I got to agree with most of what you got to say Joel. Pretty right on. Always stoked to hear your opinion on the evolution of our lives.


  • luc

    I like longboarding in general, i do both styles, and although in my opinion the progressive side seems to “kill” the gracefulness of it, i think that if someone enjoys riding a progressive longboard, what’s the problem? If these “real” surfers ride and test one million diferent boards with as many diferent fin setups, and are so open minded and proud to say they ride “everything” and that surfing is about having fun…why is a progressive longboard the only board wrong? is it wrong to like to do a faster turn and a bit of noseriding on the same wave?…is aesthetics more important then my, or someone else enjoyment?…i hope not.

  • RJ

    Well spoken Joel you certianly have a good overall and honest perspective of longboarding and surfing.
    It saddens me however that Nat encouraged you to drop acid. That stuff is dangerous and it decimated the surfing community back in the 60’s causing much mental damage to thre surfing population.
    Shame on you for endorsing it.

  • Edit

    Hey edit , I B Bruce b, was’nt implying that I would hurt Joel or that I was even in maroubra on that night . I was’nt. Hell i like his style. But if some experienced/ trained martial artist [world champ]all freeked out on dope[ like tony hines] comes at my fat unskilled longboarding barney ass in the water , . Im just sayin , some people dont play by the same rules

  • George

    who fucking cares….this guy is one of the greediest surfers ive ever seen in a line up…the irony is hes pretty much soul-less

  • yo mama

    attack of the keyboard warriors. 2009 no-gi world champ, 2009 adcc invite and quarter finalist,2009 us national champ. @batman go check your google before you talk crap about a guy you don’t no, or have ever met. the LSD/psycheleic, bit is refreshing considering how much it has shaped and contributed to our modern society and artistic culture, from apple computers to walt disney! in a era consumed by media,oil spills, internet,prescription meds,war,greed and racism. maybe joel is not that far off by saying that we could all use a little TURN ON TUNE IN DROP OUT!

  • Bushy

    Remember sitting all day on the beach at Pipe and watching as the swell came up from about 3 feet to maybe 12 to 15 breaking way outside. Was some time ago, but Joel Tudor stands out in my memory as the best surfer I remember from that day and this was in the middle of the season and all the best guys were out. Seen some pretty impressive footage of him ripping a short board on his backhand as well. Never met the guy, but he can definitely surf.

  • Batman

    yo mamma – I did check google, couldn’t find anything stating he is or was a world champion in BJJ. I did say he had impressive results at competitions, you can read my previous comment again if you like. I have searched for the 2009 nogi world championship, here is a wikipedia article about it, doest mention Joel Tudor. You are right, I have never met Joel, and no, I can’t surf anything near as good as him, but can you put up a link stating he is a world BJJ champion, if you can, I stand corrected!

  • Joels Akook

    Joel says cancel Facebook because his idiotic comments on FB without the filter of an editor got him in trouble with sponsors. He got slapped like a b!tch and is still probably bitter they will not let him spew his pot-headed stupidity freely on the web.

  • mike

    pretty much a kook…even if he surfs well and can choke you out….it s no wonder….he grew up idiolizing that douche bag Nat young,,,,who also ripped…but thought it was cool to talk shit and beat people up…untill he got his face smashed in…tudor…..stick to BJJ….fits your asshole personality better than surfing…..maybe the industry always knew as you always had chinsy sponsors and never really received a dime from the players…..

  • Batman

    “So I looked for a martial art that was most efficient at kicking everyone’s ass.” There are good and bad reasons to do everything, from surfing to the martial arts. I have do both, and at times have had to re-evaluate my values and approach to both disciplines. Ego can cloud your judgement, and competitiveness can kill your enjoyment! In the Martial Arts, it doesn’t matter which one, most traditional instructors, Sifus, Sensei etc. stress having respect and avoiding trouble. My own Sensei (he wouldn’t refer to himself as that) was most proud of me when he heard that I had resisted escalating a situation where punches was thrown at me ( I walked away, sometimes the most difficult thing to do). The traditional reasons for doing martial arts are numerous, but often disciples cite the following – to learn discipline, self awarness, respect others, improve fitness and improve self defence. If a guy came into most self respecting dojos and said he wanted to learn how to “kick peoples asses” he would be told to fuck off to the firing range where all the angry assholes hang out. It is dissapointing to see how many douchebags in the surfing world actually train in martial arts (and rejoice in how effective it is in beating people up). The martial arts are supposed to lead to less violence, not more. Tudor comes across as an arsehole in this interview, and I can tell you nobody with his attitude would be welcome in our dojo. MMA has a lot to answer for, and BJJ too by the sounds of it, if this “World Champion” is seen as an ambassador for their blend of thuggish behaviour.

  • Chuck Steak

    joel…i love your candidness…i disagree with everyword you said but i love your honesty. i know you are reading this thread. what i disagree most is…the rest of us have to deal with 10 ft single fin hipsters…with chain wallets and boots…and shitty attitudes…because you have told them that they are the new longboard incarnation…if you were true to your mission…you would have cancelled some santa cruz duct tape thing…because the waves were overhead…and you paddled out…anyway. money is money…scamming is what micky would do. i would have punched him out. when i surf with you at cardiff…you are polite and respectful…so what the fffffffffff. are you just like richey cravey sr. hating everyone? go after the jap crew that gets in the way…everyday….what?

  • Batman

    Maybe I am being a bit harsh in retrospect, maybe its just the way Joel talks that I may be talking up the wrong way. He might be talking in a casual and irrelevant way, and I am taking it too literally. In light of that I withdraw a lot of my last comment. But I still stand behind what I wrote about there being a lot of assholes in the surfing spotlight who seem to bask in the fact that they are thugs and act acordingly. Shame on these wankers for using martial arts to inflict pain and intimidate others. Shame on their instructors for accepting scumbag behaviour from their students!

  • mike

    This is an unfiltered Interview…What do people expect? It is exactly what the interview said it would be. He obviously has the ability to draw even his critics to read what he has to say even if it’s to find fault with it. Questions were asked and he answered them according to his personal beliefs. It’s not a crime to be opinionated,cocky,or self assured.He says what he thinks and has the ability to get people riled up. Like him or not he has some power and most of these negative comments come from that understanding and they don’t like it or him and the fact that he has the oportunity to share what they disagree with. It was a good read and even though I don’t agree with all that was said he certaintly isn’t boring and controvery is a good thing every now and then.

  • Richards Inya

    Longboarding SUCKS! If your younger then 50 and you ride a log your a goon. Operah can ride a longboard, using the word professional and longboard in the same sentence is pathetic. The only reason he got into jujitsu is because dan fuller choked him out on the beach at pipe one day for cutting too many people off.

  • yo mama

    did it mention him beating anyone up in the article? from what I’ve read, if somebody is looking to protect themselves and searches to find the most effective way…does this make them a thug!? it means the person did his homework! if any of you can find in print about tudor(not his dad) fighting in the water…i would like to see it! also,choking out G-MAC for almost killing a handicapped person with his sup doesn’t count! I’m sure mr tudor would love to give all of you shit talkers who have never met a lesson!! stop by his school for a visit

  • joel tudor

    I’m offering a free class to all the expert shit talkers on here,come by and sign a waiver of liability and i will be glad to discuss any of these matters personally!! in no way is this a threat! hopefully one of these classes will change your life the way it did mine! I’m there every nite at 6:30pm mon thru friday! even if you don’t like what i have to say, your first class will be free! aloha n leg locks, joel tudor:)

    • Profi1375

      Where are the classes?

  • Batman

    Yo Mama – You still haven’t put up a link stating he was a world champ in Jujitsu! Not only that the link you put up has a link to him as an instructor, and still it doesn’t state he was a world champ. As I said in my last post I regret some of what I said in the prior post, I have no problem with him stepping in with Gmac in that situation, credit to him for sticking up for Jesse. Nobody is going to argue with that, if that is what happened. I have been a big fan of Joel’s surfing for a long time, and maybe, as I said I took him a bit too literally, or maybe I didn’t. The link you did post up is for a school where is an instructor called “Surfight Brazilian JJ”! Anyways, what are you saying, that Joel is a peace loving kind of guy, but also one who will beat the shit out of someone for not admiring the way he came across in this interview? Both can not be true! Yo mama – if you reply to this can you please prove me wrong about the world championship, all you have to do is post a link!

  • yo mama @batmann pretty sure this is the final fight with joao cunia from the worlds….in 2009 try for the link on him winning! if you want to learn about surf, you read surfer…if you want learn about jiu jitsu,you read gracie mag..the mag the gracie family started! hope you are done trying to discredit uncle joel!

  • Soul surfer

    Joel is old and bitter. ASP longboarders are the best. His little groupies tell him what he wants to hear so they can pick up a check on his pathetic “tour”. He is a pawn for the shortboard industry and a traitor to his sport.

  • Batman

    yo mama – I am not trying to discredit anybody, just trying to establish facts. That link you posted proves that he won one fight at the nogi world championships, not that he won the final, and became world champ. As you will see i have posted the wikipedia article from the 2009 nogi world championship and he is not mentioned in any of the weight divisions as being a champion. Now if you can post a link up that specifically states that he won a world championship in BJJ, fair enough, I’ll stand corrected. Failing that, I’ll just have to go with what it states on Joel’s profile in his own Dojo “Joel Tudor is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Black Belt under Carlson Gracie Black Belt and World Champion, Rodrigo Medeiros / BJJ Revolution Team. He has won numerous Brazilian Jiu Jitsu titles such as the Pan Ams and US Nationals. He is also an ADCC veteran” – no mention of him being a world champ in BJJ!

  • straight

    straight from the hip! thanks for calling it like you see it Joel!

  • yo mama
  • Mike

    Wanna be players shit talkng the player. Nothing new and all the while sitting behind some computer screen anonomously. Just like the Sunday afternoon quarterbacks who sit around watch the game and do nothing but find fault. I’d say he’s paid his dues and has proven that what he has to say has value. In 2002 according to Surfer Mgazines Power Issue Tudor was voted 16th from a list of 25 of the most powerful people in surfing. Power was based on terms of personality, influence, impact and authority. Then again in 2009 Surfer magazine came out with their 50 greatest surfers of all time and Tudor was 35th in a line of greats and legends. He has managed to remain gainfully employed and seems to be making a good living from what one commentor has claimed as chinsy sponsors. I never realized that vans was a chinsy sponsor? But regarless of what the naysayers have to say he is still in the mags he is still doing interviews and he has managed to remain relevant according to sources that have way more credibility than the few negitive commentors here.Joel if you’re reading this people like these guys are a dime a dozen you derserve the respect this industry has given you, you’ve earned it. Whether these few whiners agree with it or not they don’t pay your salary and the sponsors that do don’t agree with them…

  • Batman

    Yo Mama – I stand corrected!

  • Jimmy the Saint

    I see a lot of interviews telling the ‘classic longboard’ side of the arguement, but almost nothing from the ‘performance longboard’ side. This seems to me to be a little biased, and I am not just accusing Surfer of this, all the magazines seem to do it. Tudor, Knost etc, these are the guys you always read about, but I haven’t heard the other side to it. I would like to hear Taylor Jensen’s take on all the negative statements that are made about ‘performance longboarding’

  • alphonzo

    Do they still call him Joel Jitsu around Cardiff?

  • Maureen

    Douche. Anyone who would advocate and defend dropping acid for “the experience” and hold reverential status to the supposed wizened, “elder,” in the name of Nat (also douche) Young who would push this “experience” on his protege shows an ignorance and arrogance of obscene naivete. How many lives that were destroyed by this “experience” is of apparently no matter when weighed against one’s ability to stand on the tip of a longboard. The fact that only a few have even mentioned this aspect of this article is depressing; the fact that this kid is parent to his own offspring is scary…

    • Haditallwrong allalong

      Yep, Joel, his brother, his Father, have been a pain in the a@s to surf around since the early 90’s when he was wearing a full ‘pink’ wetsuit and doing shortboard moves on his 9′ longboard on everywave, stealing waves from other competent locals everywhere they surfed. Same with Nat, Herbie Fletcher, etc. all prick alpha males involved in a greedy sport of me-me-me, look at me.
      Then when everyone could do all the same moves, helicopter 360’s, etc. they start on noserider logs, doing the same shit nuuhiwa and others did since the mid 60’s, and down talking the high performance longboards. Still to this day newbees on $1200. logs everywhere like a virus. I also was involved in this but i realized how ugly and greedy logging is, and am now regretting ever being involved in longboard contests and hogging all the waves. GOOD RIDDENCE to that lifestyle, i dont miss it.

      • Alec Humphries

        ^Preach it.

  • Rick

    Interesting article; it’s good to hear someone speak their mind. As much as I enjoy the WCT surfers’ appreciation of their lifestyle, sometimes it leads to a lack of willingness to speak their minds (Bobby Martinez excluded, and fyi, he can still rip).

    One thing I’d like to hear Joel say (although he never will, which makes me dislike him some) is that localism in his home area of la jolla needs to let up. It’s 2013, everyone knows where the well known and consistent breaks are while the fickle breaks get left to the guys who know about them. There’s no reason for people to shoot boards at each others’ heads or get ears bit off. Joel says he learned martial arts to protect himself, I’d like to hear him tell people to settle surf issues less aggressively.

  • Orca

    As an ex-NFL player, surfer and 9 year student of jiu jitsu …Joel Tudor has it right.
    Joels style in the water and on the mats should be an inspiration. We should celebrate when athletes cross the grain, if you agree with him it validates you, if you disagree it should help you to either confirm your convictions or maybe look at yourself and others in a different light. The same attitude of hate in these forums is unfortunately present in most line-ups these days. i’d like to take joel up on the offer for a class! world class jiu jitsu instruction for free? i’m in…and maybe he could give me some pointers on my surfing as well!

  • Rangi

    I would like to do air reverses while on acid…. And I’d like to dangle my toes over my nose but I’m not flexible enough. I can’t even get my toes past my stomach… I surf all styles not very well.. Hope that doesn’t make me cool… And I always take my camera to the beach but too keen to surf and by the time I get out its turned to shit and can’t be arsed getting it out. I wish someone would film me surfing, i could show my grand kids. hope he wasn’t referring to me. Oh no I’m getting paro. I think I’m going to take down my surf shots from FB!

  • Tommy

    So, Maureen – how many lives were actually destroyed by the experience that you seem to have no understanding of? Do you know? Or are you more comfortable simply rehashing a load of rhetoric? Judgemental statements such as your own show far more ignorance and arrogance of obscene ‘naivete’ (sic) and do nothing to actually help the younger generation become confident in their own decisions and questioning as individuals. I’m grateful that Joel can be honest, as we all should be as parents, so we can discuss the world intelligently with children instead of lazily relying on vague, inconsistent, third-hand sensationalist warnings that actually are more dangerous than tackling issues with an open mind. Joel is an excellent example of what we can achieve as individuals in this world.

  • Reginald B. Fessenden

    You’d think the herb would have mellowed Joel out by now. Weird.

  • Surflock

    Tudor, the best one! I like how he ride every thing, 9.2, 8.4, 6.0

  • nick

    Screw all the haters who think joel is a d-bag. I love to shortboard, but there are days where longboarding catches me twice the amount of waves and brings a crazy big smile to my face. Keep doing ya thing Joel.

  • Nick B.

    Joel is a Dick on land and in the lineup. I had a ton of respect for joel in till I met him a few times! Out of every pro surfer I know Joel has been the biggest douche of them all.

  • Dave

    Great spat and I am a bit late for the game but I have question anyone who knows. Ju Jitsu is a Japanese martial art and this sport of Jiu Jitsu (that I had never heard of until I Googled Joel Tudor) seem to be roman wrestling. Can anyone tell me if there is a link between the two.
    Note: Learning Ju Jitsu was, and I think still is, illegal in Australia and I think the US. Its not a nice martial art.

  • mike

    Jesus!! u yanks… joel didnt say a thing controversiel. everybody is going crazy and the dude just said random Things about egocentric behavour in todays World, which is an obvious truth and the fact that he surfed on acid when he was younger. shit. good thing u yanks Arent on top of the worlds Peking order anymore. u people really need to get a life and grow some thicker skin.

  • Rocco Church

    Joel Tudor is a a total arrogant tool.

  • The truth will set you free

    joel tudor great surfer-Horrible Person. Joel tudor surfboards are back!! O wait they still exist under surftech. Bipolar dickhead!!! I heard his chick likes pro rollerbladers.

  • matty

    Love to watch you surf, hate to hear you talk.

  • JustBrian

    Seems Joel might be tripping in this article… at the end he says how “cool” everything is… but in the middle he mentions there are “wrong” ways to surf? isnt that why we surf? because nobody can tell us we’re wrong? right? I think he should just stick with the idea of getting your stoke on and NOT worry about judging or being judged when were in the line up

  • Ride4life

    Joel tudor is a yuppy longboarded that has no respect for the working class. He will never be accepted on the East coast and nor do eastcoasters want him here. If he comes back to the east coast he will surely regret it!! Go noseride off into some rocks!!

  • SeverelyLtd

    I don’t know Joel other than to speak with out in the line-up at Pavilions about 20 years ago–he was polite, engaging–but I was paying attention to his surfing well before that time and his place in surfing is assured. Grouping himself with Nat and Nuuiwa would be arrogant if it weren’t true, but he’s seen himself and he’d be a fool if he didn’t know he belonged in that strata. You’d have to question his judgment, wouldn’t you? I’m 61. I’ve watched surfing with a critical eye since the late sixties and he is obviously one of the greats.

    I enjoy the fact that he speaks his mind. More of that in surfing please. He ought to be commended for leading the charge, or is it holding the line, against the “performance” longboarding movement. Truth finally won the day but it looked dicey for a while there. The man’s an asset to surfing and a joy to watch on a log.

  • alferd lavitov

    I can try to skate with short board surfboards.I always lost my body balance while skating.
    I can use this short board for surfing :-
    Glass job 6+4 oz. on the deck
    1 x 4 oz. on the bottom.
    Wet rubbed finish.
    Dual concaves
    Boxed rails low rails
    Medium tail lift
    Wave size. 2’ft to 8’ft
    Tri-fin configuration
    Fins included

  • longboardinglover

    Joel is hero of the suffering world, have lots of respect for and Its a very inspiring and informative interview,thanks for sharing,

  • An Pham

    Good surfing is good surfing. Tudor’s smooth, casual style is a pleasure to watch.

  • An Pham

    Joel Tudor is a a total arrogant tool.

  • An Pham

    Good surfing is good surfing. Thank you. best longboard brands

  • emilyjhyde

    I have read your article about longboarding, it is very informative and helpful for me.I admire the valuable information you offer in your articles. Thanks for posting it..

  • longboardsale

    Joel Tudor is a great man.Thanks for posting this article.