Tricktionary Retraction

We extend our apologies for mislabeling a maneuver in our April issue

| posted on March 07, 2011

Gabriel Medina, midway through the manuever in question. Photo: Kenworthy

In the Tricktionary feature from our April issue, we incorrectly named the maneuver on page 135 a Judo. A Judo is a maneuver that is performed riding backside. Gabriel Medina is clearly on his frontside in the sequence in question.

Although we have received a lot of feedback from our readers regarding the error, aerial pioneer Christian Fletcher and his posse have been the most vocal and passionate about our mistake. Christian dismissed the maneuver as a “Double Grab,” adding “(lame)” as an afterthought. Regrettably the correction came with a slew of profanity forcing us to delete the comments from our Facebook page for the sake of our younger readers.

Fletchers’ fans immediately consulted their Fox-News-Sensationalist-Playbook and labeled us propagandists (“The Comment Gestapo,” “Goebbels Playbook”). The simple truth is that we had to ban Christian from the page because of his repeated posts using foul language. By banning him, Facebook removed ALL his comments from our fan page. We regret having to do that, but felt our actions justified.

We invite Christian to provide us with the technical definition of a Judo Air and any other maneuver he wants to define. We’ll be sure to remove any superfluous language and post it on the site.

We also received a lot of constructive input from readers around the world. Tim Brinson, a reader from North Carolina, called the maneuver in question an “Anti-Air,” while others from South Africa, Australia and Europe have named it everything from a “Madonna” to a “Lien Slob.”

After much consideration and debate we’ve come to the conclusion that the maneuver in the photograph is nothing more than a run-of-the-mill “Superman”—the angle of the photo disguising the fact that both his feet are in fact off the board.

Although it was our intention to clarify the naming of maneuvers, it’s clear that we did the opposite in this particular case. For that we apologize and sincerely regret the error.

  • Thad

    You guys were right to take the actions you did. Good work on trying to keep you magazine/site family friendly.

  • whocares

    Who cares about Christian Fletcher? He hasn’t been relevant for a decade. Sure, he was an innovator (the emphasis on WAS). Christian: please return to your drug induced coma then clean up your act. Great article Todd, keep up the good work.

    • john

      CF is the pioneer of aerial surfing… i think that counts as relevant.
      the guy is a legend, love him or hate him. i am sure you don’t know what your talking about, or are you just some kid having some fun slandering on the net??

  • Kevin Richardson


  • Josh G. u know me.

    It doesn’t matter if you are riding on your backhand or not. It IS an air grabbing your outside rail and kicking your front foot out IN FRONT of you. To do it riding on your forehand, it’d be as if you were to do a lien air while kicking your front foot out in front of yourself. Kicking your front foot out in front of you will still make it a judo no matter what variation… I want to see some stale grab judo airs.

  • Josh G. u know me.

    Also, a judo type air with your front foot being kicked out BEHIND you would be more of a “madonna”.

    Don’t feel bad, for years I thought I was grabbing roast beef (grabbing heel edge between legs with back hand) on my sk8board, but it was actually grosman (grabbing heel edge between legs with front hand).

  • SurferGamLame

    Who cares as if you’re ever relevant? Whether you hate him or like him, he’s obviously on your mind to comment.

  • NewportFlipFlops

    What does Christian Fletcher know about this, I’d say just a lil too much. I mean afterall, he is the aireal king! Maybe he should do your editing….

  • dustan baker

    A surfer Blog post to explain what happened on facebook? LAME. Protecting your younger readers is an absurd course of action. Your younger readers are all down at Lowers cusssing up a storm and trying to pick fights with old bald dudes. Most of your younger readers are saying FUCK before they can wipe their own ass. They are just a bunch of grom pricks anyways. Give Christian Fletcher some credit for identifying your mistake. The guy has given you so much to write about over the years. Don’t be such dicks.

  • frank brennan

    A “lien air” is a frontside air with the forward hand grabbing in front of the front foot.(named for the inventor Neil Blender’s first name spelled backwards).A “madonna’ is a one-footed lien air to tail(on coping) with front foot under the board. A’judo air” is a one-footed lien air over the board. I don’t know what the air in question is called because it’s not clearly visible. Get your facts straight, SURFER. Christian is still very relevant no matter what some of you think.

  • BrianS.

    Surfer Mag, you’re an embarrassment. Brendon whats-your-name, go back to rollerblading cause you sure as hell can’t write.

    It’s just sad how this whole “retraction” was written…trying to throw little jabs at CF and his fans, and not owning up to your errors like a real man. What was the purpose of writing this when it’s in such a hostile and negative context towards Fletcher? Whether you like him or not isn’t the point. But you can’t disagree that he is and always WILL be relevant when it comes to aerials and surfing. For anyone to dismiss that or for Surfer Mag to not go to the direct source (Fletcher) is ridiculous.

    And, wow, funny thing is…The 50 Most Inspirational Surfers Big Issue? Yeah, Fletcher was featured… how about that?

  • jones

    i hate when surfing is brought down to this level

  • Rob Z

    I’m sure Christians frustration comes from the fact that he’s known for the last at least 10 years that Surfer Mag shares an office with Skateboarder and Snowboarder Magazines. Both of which are probably more than capable of calling grabs and tricks for airs the Surfer staff has obviously had a hard time doing for about 20 years now.

  • who cares?

    It’s sad when a magazine of your caliber can’t even recognize what kind of air he is doing and is so out of touch. For the rest of the people hating on Christian, don’t be so sensitive. Easy.

  • Pat Judd

    Christian Fletcher is alive!!!! Wow…I thought he was court martialed and excuted after Captain Bligh made it back to shore. Shiver me timbers!!!

  • Dingbat McAdams

    Censorship is suppression of speech or other communication which may be considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or inconvenient to the general body of people as determined by a government, media outlet, or other controlling bod

  • john

    surfer mag got it wrong, they have admitted to this. christian fletcher fans are making a big deal out of this because for last few decades he has been outlawed in the surfing world. he is a underground hero to many, he went without all the advertising and marketing other surfers have received and is still is followed by many. he will never vanish off the face of the earth! even a long time after he passes on, people will remember CF and most other surfers who have probably ranked higher in the competitive surf world will be sadly forgotten.
    aerial surfing grew from the skate, punk, thrasher way of life. it needs to accepted that way or you should not try and clean up this style of radical surfing with a b grade trickionary. if i had to get to the right source of info i would be asking the pioneer himself, there is no alternative really is there??? or is there? na didnt think so….