Justin Denel is always busy and active. This year the 20 year-old French windsurfer participated in the indoor event in Paris, stayed in Barranquilla (Colombia) where he studied, was in La Torche for the Wave World Cup in October, travelled to Chile and will spend a few weeks in Cape Town together with his brother and full time pro windsurfer Jules. Justin not only windsurfs the whole year but also studies and runs his own little video/photo production company.

Justin Denel: „Still In the game” is a video project that matured during the last 2 years in which I try to tell, between windsurfing video and documentary, the (semi)pro-windsurfer / student life that I live. From university to the waves around the world, passing through Paris Bercy and my production company, this is without any pretension the story of a little guy that refused to choose between his dreams. The title sounds like a claim, the conclusion like a calling into question.”

Justin Denel with his movie “Still in the game”


We had a chat with Justin: 

Everything is important for me: the windsurfing, my studies, and my video production company. And what I try to tell in the video “Still in the game” is that it is not like if doing more of one thing means sacrificing the others. And no, for me competition isn’t the most important part, even if it’s an important part.
Actually it is exactly the contrary! I would have never gone to my university or would have created my company without the windsurfing. And it’s obvious that what I do in terms of video/photos helps my for my communication (e.n. Justin runs a video/photo company for weddings and sport events). But also all the experiences and the knowledge I get with my university are really helpful: in terms of managing my career but also for example the 3rd year I’m doing abroad in Colombia is a real gift for my windsurfing practice.
And it let me see the world from another point of view and not stay in a bubble because I think that when you live the “perfect life” it is precisely the moment you pass up real life.

I’m actually studying political sciences (the “s” is important because I study all the social sciences like history, economy, political science, sociology… but also marketing, communication, management…). And I will specialize with a master for the next 2 years in the same university. It’s in Lille in the north of France. It’s called “Sciences Po”. It was originally a school for the political “elite“, but now it’s a very well recognized multidisciplinary school  in several areas of the labour market.

And I spent this year (my 3rd one) in the Caribbean coast of Colombia in Barranquilla.  I don’t windsurf less than if I would do only windsurfing (and I have been riding much more in South America during the last 4 months than my friends in France). But as I told you I will continue to do many things in the same time and let the time choose if there is a choice to do, but I don’t think that I will focus on windsurfing only..