We spoke to Josh Ku, one of Sydney's most humble and stellar ocean man, on how he prepares his mind in body to take on the elements and improve his performance.
1. What is your morning ritual that keeps you strong and healthy?
The ultimate morning ritual I would love to do every day if I had the time, is to start by doing my c02 tables which takes roughy 18 minutes this can be done using the free diving app on the phone (very easy to follow) I then love to read a chapter of my book. Then I hop in the shower and at the end have 2 minutes of cold water whilst doing box breathing.
Next I have my breakfast which I have been having for nearly 5 years… oats with chia seeds, banana, blueberries, almonds, walnuts, psyllium husk and a dash of honey. Accompanied with my killer green smoothy whipped up in my NutriBullet ; whole lemon that has the skin chopped off, thinly sliced ginger, spinach leaves, avocado, coconut water and last but not least a splash of the amazing SISUU Tonic.
I don’t always have time to do the C02 tables or read my book but I always make sure I have the cold shower and get that breakfast in me.
2. What is one tip you have found helps with breath holds or hold-downs?
My number one tip at the moment with breath holds or hold downs is to consciously throughout your surf or whatever your water activity is, is to maintain a steady inhale and longer exhale through your nose.
Don’t think that this is kooky because this is essentially you preparing your body for when it needs to hold its breath. If your blood is well oxygenated and your heart rate is low from you maintaining a steady breath rate you will be miles ahead of your friends out there that have been autonomously breathing normal and probably panicking when they get held down.
3. One tip to help get a handle on fear whilst out in the elements?
My best tip for when your out in the elements is to have had every possible scenario already planned out. Whether it be the worse case or best case scenario. Being prepared is the best tip to have. Research the spot your at, ask the local there what their experiences have been and what they would do.
Make sure you know your equipment so you are using it to its best potential. Ask questions if you don’t know. It's ok if you don’t know everything show a bit of humility.
4. Who's inspiring you at the moment?
I have recently just finished a Big Wave Safety course in San Diego and it was put on by the group B.W.R.A.G I was honestly inspired by all these instructors as they are the best in their field for risk management. They have tried and tested safety procedures that have saved numerous lives and in particular one of the instructors was Greg Long, a big wave surfer who has put a huge focus on safety.
The old mentality of these nut cases surfing big waves is a thing of the past. I believe we can excel in big wave surfing with a safe approach and that at the end of the day smart and calculated decisions can be made and we can all come home safe. It's just being prepared and dropping our bravado.
Follow Josh's adventures over here - @joshku