Women’s surfing is at a crossroads. For the past three years, the Association of Surfing Professionals’ Women’s World Tour has struggled with sponsorship dollars, and the organization was forced to cut women out of the sport’s world series, the Triple Crown, which takes place in Hawaii in November and December. It was bad news for a pool of talented young Americans, including 20-year-old Alessa Quizon. But this year, for the first time, Quizon will be a regular on the World Tour, and she’s walking into the limelight at the right moment. The ASP has a new CEO, former NFL marketing director Paul Speaker, and last year it signed a deal to air all 2014 events live via Facebook, with highlights on ESPN. It will be the first time in the sport’s history that the men’s and women’s contests will be easily accessible to a wide audience.
Quizon isn't camera shy, and she has the Instagram following to prove it. We caught up with the surfing star to learn a little more about life on the waves.
Favorite Surf Spot?
I actually have two favorite surf spots. A left-breaking wave called Kewalos which is located on the South Shore of Oahu and a right-breaking wave called Makaha that is located on the west side of Oahu. I grew up on both of those waves, so they'll always be special to me.
Growing up on the island of Oahu has shaped me to be a strong and positive person. Our culture in Hawaii is unique and I am so thankful for having the opportunity to grow up in paradise.
Here I am with my teammates on one of the many awesome adventures that Billabong takes us on. It's so much fun traveling with your friends and having the best time doing what you love.
My most-liked photo on Instagram is an underwater shot of me swimming. My good friend and photographer Ha'a Keaulana and I decided to go out for a swim on the west side of Oahu. It was a beautiful sunny afternoon and the ocean was a crystal blue. We brought out one of her underwater camera housings and swam around one of the many secret beaches on the west side. It was a perfect beach day to relax and pretend to be mermaids
I love to go spearfishing. It's great exercise and it helps train your lungs. In general, try to train and practice as much as your body and mind can take! But always have fun doing it so you don't get overworked. Most importantly, never give up, no matter how hard it gets.
Future of Women's Surfing?
I think women's surfing is going to progress massively. All the women on tour are beautiful and amazing surfers. Plus, they're awesome role models for all of the aspiring young girls.
Next Up: The 2014 Iditarod: Loren Holmes Photography