World Tour competitor and all round bodyboarding legend Ryan Hardy has been guest coaching at the school this week after completing his Level 1 Surf Coaching Award. So we took the opportunity to ask him a few questions about his experiences in Bali over the years.
- How many times have you been to Bali?
Hard to count exactly, first trip was ’97 then every year since that, sometimes twice a year so probably 20times.
- When did you first come to Bali and who was it with?
1997 I spent a bit of time there before and after a riptide trip to lakey peak with Toby Player, JoeyJ, Michael Crawley and Marty Tullemans
- In years gone by did you take the opportunity to get buck wild in Kuta? Where was your favourite place to go?
My favourite place to party in the world! Anything goes…fashion isn’t a concern, party in your thongs and boardies, as much as people heckle it, I’ve definitely had my funnest nights at The Bounty, headband and all!! Haha
- Where have you got your best waves in Bali?
- Do you have a favourite session here that sticks out in your mind?
Yeah a Keramas session with Kingy and benny p in 2005, pre-crowd days, fun 3-5ft uncrowded filming for hardlyfe2, sick fun!
- Have you had any memorable wipe outs here?
Not in Bali itself, but I saw Rawlins break his collarbone at ulu’s, that was pretty gnarly, had to carry him up the steps on a board with the help of some other surfers.
- Is it still possible to get uncrowded waves in Bali?
For sure! You just gotta know where to go and when…generally not clean and perfect Padang Padang or Canggu when it’s small and clean or legian mid morning at high tide!
- How are the waves different here to other popular bodyboarding destinations?
Clean, gentler swells than your usual heaving, raw swells out of deep water like Oz, Canaries or Hawaii.
- Would you consider Bali one of the better places for people to develop their bodyboarding?
It’s an epic place for people to develop from beginner through to an advanced rider. Gentle beachbreaks to punchy beachies to long points to slabbing reefs combined with year round swell and piss warm water it’s definitely a sick place to develop your riding as a bb’er.
- Whats your favourite thing about Bali?
Warm weather, cruisy pace of life and general friendliness of the place, boiling pot of multiculturalism, consistent waves, no sharks, cheap!
- Whats on the agenda in Bali when you aren’t surfing?
Arvo family beach play time, massages, eating out, riding the Moto around, partying, sunsets on the beach on bean bags with cold beer.
- What’s your favourite Indonesian food?
- You often come to Bali with your family what do they enjoy most about Bali?
My wife loves surfing at legian, eating at the restaurants, getting massages and shopping. My son Oli loves playing in the pools all around the place, playing on the beach, playing with the local kids and going to the kids play centres.
- Anything else you want to share with us?
Just to recommend for Bali first timers that they travel with or meet up with someone who knows Bali, because its quite easy to get ripped off or get in trouble with the local police who are after tourist’s money! Bad things aside the experienced Bali traveller will know all the best spots to take you to enjoy Bali and avoid the worst traffic times, because congested traffic in Bali can move very slowly and anyone who’s been there knows how lawless the roads can be!
Cheers Ryan, Aidan!