Yarden Meir, who is one of the most progressive freestylers from Israel, was in Brazil to train and enjoy the windy conditions in Jericoacoara. The 25 year-old Yarden started his competition career with 18 years on the EFPT tour in Lanzarote and everything looked great for a promising career. Due to injuries, lack of sponsors and private reasons his career was put to a halt but now Yarden, who is 25 years-old, will give it a try again. We had a chat with the freestyler from Israel to speak about Brazil and the status quo.
Yarden Meir with radical freestyle action from Jericoacoara, Brazil
Yarden Meir in an interview
Continentseven: Yarden, how was your trip to Brazil?
Yarden: My latest trip to Brazil was great, the wind was there everyday and I really got what I came for. The conditions were more choppy and windy than I expected. Fortunately there were amazing fruits, vegetables and fish on my daily menu to keep me strong and fit. Food was great, weather was great, wind was there everyday… I couldn’t ask for more.
Continentseven: You were off the international freestyle scene for quite a long time, more than 1,5 years? Did you follow your friends, their trips, their videos and the events?
Yarden: I was watching every video and followed all the events from start to end. I’m kind of a windsurfing groupie… haha. It was fun to watch, but hard at the same time. I wanted to be there so badly! And by there I mean everywhere.
Continentseven: You were most of the time in your home country, with little trips in between?
Yarden: Yes thats pretty much what I was up to… I was trying to do as many trips as I could. I was going up and down Israel to catch every bit of wind out there and yes I managed to get to Maui for the first time in my life for the Goya photo shoot! Maui is amazing.
Continentseven: Did you get enough days on the water or is it hard to get many windy days in Israel?
Yarden: Even when I was traveling up and down the whole country, I didn’t get enough days of training, And many times the conditions didn’t really happen. The sea of Galilee was the favorite destination around Israel because the wind was the most certain. Eilat can also deliver, but its really hard to predict the wind. Over all I wanted more! Another reason that made the last trip to Brazil so much fun.
Continentseven: Has your view on windsurfing changed in the time you were off the competitions?
Yarden: There is a long conversation between pretty much all windsurfers around the globe about where the windsurfing market is going… Well I’m not gonna start it. I have a strong opinion about windsurfing which is getting more concrete as years pass by. If you are having a good day or a bad day, once you enter the water with windsurfing gear in your hands, your day will get better. It doesn’t necessarily means you will end up with a good day but it certainly means you will end up with a better one. Loving windsurfing on and off competition.
Continentseven: How is your level? Can you nail the latest moves like Shifties or Paskos? You were ranked 11th overall in the World Cup in 2011 and you made top results. Do you see a chance to return where you were?
Yarden: I would say my level is pretty good but for sure I would like to be much better. Its been hard to keep up with some of the newest moves out there, especially with the amount of sailing I had in the last 3-4 years. I can do a lot of the new school moves I didn’t let them slip to far, but Im also lacking a few, but I will nail them! I can land some Shifties water starting and Paskos I can do since 2011. I believe I can reach further than were I’ve reached when I was 20. I had a lot of other things in my mind during the last 4 years and couldn’t really focus on the competitive part of windsurfing. But now I can and that’s what I intend to do.
Continentseven: Is it harder to make a career for a not European windsurfer?
Yarden: I think it’s harder, because a lot of the brands see you as a local ambassador for their brand name in your home country. But once you are in a country, which has a smaller market, you get kind of a smaller interest (naturally?).
Continentseven: You are known for your incredible wild style and you are known for your double or nothing mentality. Are you still this wild at the age of 25?
Yarden: Kind of a hard thing to answer this question haha… I would rather let my 25 years old sailing do the talking.
Continentseven: What are your next goals in windsurfing?
Yarden: Push my level forward, push windsurfing forward, push freestyle gear forward. Enjoy and be happy. I’m so in love with this sport.
Continentseven: Thanks Yarden and good luck with your next steps!