I was born in New Caledonia, a French island in the South Pacific that is surrounded by a coral barrier. I was 15 years old when, with windsurfing gear, I rode my first wave. From that day and on, reaching the outer reefs became an obsession.
At 17, the baccalaureate degree in my pocket and a diploma crowning my 12 years studies in piano at the Noumea conservatory, I started studying physics and mathematics (maths-sup & maths-spé) to enter the engineering school. I was accepted at Ensimag university to study computer science and applied mathematics in France.
I also learnt guitar and composed songs about the islands, waves and ocean that I was missing…
In September 2012 after I graduated, I decided to travel to Hawaii to participate in the Maui Makani Classic. I did a pretty good job and two major brands of windsurfing (Simmer Style and Tabou) offered me a sponsorship contract. Since this day, I balance my life between work and play on the water…
I love riding waves. It’s an endless learning process which keeps me excited every day, and I just want to see how much I can improve in a lifetime by fully committing to my passion.
Competitions help me to reach goals and raise the bar higher. It gives me some structure and some confidence. It also has this magic way of creating a stress that can either make me fail or make me do better than anything I tried during training sessions.
On my first year of competition I finished 5th of the American Windsurfing Tour and 3rd at the France national Stand up Paddle racing championships (long distance and technical race). It was in 2013. I also windsurfed at Jaws this year, which is known as one of the biggest waves in the world.
Wavesailing is windsurfing in waves, surfing them, jumping and doing moves.
During a competition, I have 12 to 20 minutes to express myself on the water and try to make more points than the other people that are against me.
During those 12-20 minutes I have no control on how the waves and the wind are gonna be. Experience can help to get better at dealing with this unpredictable environment but there will always be elements on which I have no control. This is a difficulty but that’s also what makes our sport so beautiful. A runner runs on a flat road. There is no earthquake that’s gonna split the road in half, create bumps here and there. Whereas when I ride a wave, it’s always different, it can get stiff, it can accelerated, get mushy or barrel, there could be a gust of wind, or a squall that kills the wind… Anything! And my goal is to have the most fun with what I get!
I feel like I had a great time on the water when I took some risks and made it in one piece. “What doesn’t kill you make you stronger” It is so true!
I have the chance to have been able to move to Maui last year, with my husband. It’s an awesome place to train for watersports. There is always a reason to be on the water: surfing, SUPing, windsurfing, paddling for downwinders, diving, spearfishing… And a lot of water athletes and surfing legends live on the island which is pretty inspiring.
I guess I observe people a lot. At Ho’okipa, the spot where I train most of the time, we have the best windsurfers in the world that come to train and compete. That allows some good demonstration :)
I also make sure to have a lot of variety in my training. I surf and Stand up Paddle a lot too. The idea is the same: I ride waves, but differently, with a sail, a paddle or just a surfboard… There are a lot of complementary things between these sports. Plus I think it’s good for your body not to get used to the same movements on the same board. That way you’re more focused on your sensations.
I’m nervous about not being able to do my best during a competition. Loosing doesn’t disappoint me when I showed all I could do on the water.
It is so frustrating to lose because stress or bad luck stopped me from doing what I trained for. I don’t even think “I could have been ranked better”, it’s just that I don’t even know what I’m worth.
My biggest fan is my husband, Casey Hauser. I was competing before I met him, but with him on my side, I’ve been able to understand so many things about my success and my mistakes. He also brought me a lot of confidence since I tend to focus on goals to achieve which makes me forget about what I already achieved. There is always a maneuver I can train for, a ranking I can try to get. And once I reach my goal Casey taught me how important it is for me to appreciate what I’ve managed to do before moving on to the next goal.
One day, one of my windsurfing gurus, Pierre Yves Leroux, asked me “do you know why you’re doing bottom turns?” I know, it can sound mysterious but it actually helped me a lot in my surfing. You too, if you’re a surfer, you can try to answer that question! “ #sarahhauserbestsurfingadvice ” lol ;)
Just keep training, competing and traveling. I love this lifestyle. It is quite exhausting sometimes to play different roles. I’m an athlete but I’m also my own coach, my own agent, I do all my interviews, social media communication, I edit my videos, write a newsletter, take care of all my traveling and accommodations, I play music, I write songs, on top of that I also work part-time as a computer science and applied mathematics engineer for a company based in San Diego (so that’s a remote job). And I repair my boards!! hahaha :)