Robert Parker in Bali

Robert Parker in Bali
blog contributor Robert Parker Surfing Bali

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

surfing is worth fighting for

the following is a post from my swaylocks thread "surfers over 50", by GoofyFooter

Thanks Huck for this thread, really enjoyed it, @ 59, have felt more pain than others hanging in the line up.

I began surfing in 1969 on an old Con Butterfly, wished I still had it, rode the following years on Skip Fyre special orders/customs when he shaped for G &S.My favorite was the "Frye Fish", then other shapes and sizes through the years just wished I didn't sell or trade them knowing the value today.

Anyway, long story short, later part of my 40's/early 50's professional career so close to retirement got in the way of surfing. The end of the rainbow was looking forward to retiring to have the time for surf travels.Then 6 months before retirement faced with a major opperation, Doc told me I might come out of it @ 75% to maintain my lifestyle much less surf again.

It was a tough decison, go out in a bang without it or live the remaining years missing or not able to surf ever again. I spent 8 plus hours on the table, lost the right side of my 6 pack not to mention nerve damage to other areas.

I was one sick puppy for the first year, the second year thought be able to hang on a boogie board, it was hard but helped me physically & mentally.I told my wife, can't live like this, have to get back on the board again.

The team of Doctors told me don't do this, remember you don't have any muscle on your right side to protect you. I told them I followed your recommendations to live so let me live my life on my terms.

Well, started rehab program, joined a gym 3x a week, biked 10 miles x2 a week, changed my diet to lean,mean & green. I felt I was ready except all my "sticks" were gone. Shortboards were out of the equation, so split it with a 8'4", needed for float, up it to 9'6".

That helped but being a Goofy Footer and lost of right half of my 6 pack, could not get my right foot forward. In the mean time, used Ausie pop up left foot then right foot, wasn't great but it had to do for now.

So another year, reseached all I could to re-engineer my core to pop up goofy. I used a cut out of my 9 6 on the floor to practice pop ups, crazy idea but it works.I finally got there after a total of 3 years from boogie to LB.

I hope some day to ride a "old guys" Fish like your picture. Its not easy @ our age, we really have to work @ it to stay in shape to enjoy each session just wished I didn't have triple duty but it was worth it.

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