As a regular-footer, I’ve always been fascinated with my goofy-footed counterparts. Even at my local skatepark, I saw lines that better suited a right-foot-forward skater. I was curious. Am I a goofy-footer trapped in a regular-footers body? Or do goofies simply have better style? More importantly, do others have a certain preference? If so, which one and why?
It may not come as a surprise, but I’ve taken a strong liking to the style of goofy-footers like Craig Anderson and Rob Machado. Their approach is calm, calculated, and robustly confident—effortless in every use of the word. They skim through the face of a wave like a hot knife through a stick of butter. Not a drop of water is out of place. I thought that if I couldn’t surf like them, perhaps I could watch how they surfed switch to then, in some stretch of the imagination, mimic their style.
Several years ago, in a futile attempt to surf like my goofy heroes, I pulled videos from YouTube and mirrored them in iMovie in order to see them surf as regular-footers. It also gave me the ability to see what some of the world’s best lefts would look like as rights. To my surprise, the surfing wasn’t the same. Their style and spunk didn’t match. It didn’t have the same appeal as it did before the video was flipped. I was confused as hell. In fact, I still am. Back to goofy you go, Rob and Craig.
A few days ago, Parker Coffin released this absolute banger of an edit. The first half is dedicated to his normal stance (goofy). The second half is the same exact video, but flipped. Unsurprisingly, the end result was the same: goofy wins. My co-workers and friends concurred. Back to goofy you go, Parker.
To close the circle, so to speak, I downloaded and flipped some videos from a few of my favorite regulars: Dane, A.I, and Nick Rozsa (who, in a side note, is the most underrated surfer in the biz). Anyway, it goes without saying that these guys are absolute masters of their craft and I could watch them for hours either way, but I felt an extra layer of spunk was added as goofy-footers. That’s it, I’m a hetero-footer. I just hope my parents will accept it.
All this hoopla and goofy-regular mumbo jumbo got me thinking: Are goofy-footers just naturally more stylish? Or is their stance just different than mine and therefore more interesting to me? I like to side with the former, but maybe I’m just a little crazy. Maybe. Perhaps I’ll never understand this. Who knows? But in the end, I guess I’m just a little curious to see if others share a similar predilection to a particular stance and what it means to surfing, especially in the competitive realm.
As if the subjectivity of judging wasn’t problematic enough, what if there were judges on the Tour who, like me, subtly fancy a particular stance and therefore more inclined to throw a few extra points based on stance rather than actual performance? Wrap your head around that and let the games begin.