My name is Alex Maniatis and I was born on the 20th of March 1991 in Canberra, the capital city of Australia. I started surfing at the age 10 when my family moved from inland in the state of New South Wales to the eastern coastline of Australia. I began competing when I was 13 with several final results under the age of 16. Soon I progressed to the Australasian Pro Junior series, traveling to locations such as New Zealand, Indonesia, Tahiti and all around Australia.
Highlights include in 2009 winning two national Australian titles, an under 19’s individual All Star champion and MR Shield team’s champion. Since finishing the Pro Junior series in 2010, I felt burnt out and unsatisfied with contest surfing. I decided to put the jersey down and fulfill the free surfing role within the industry, working on video projects and traveling around the globe, maturing and developing my surfing ability.
One of my free surfing achievements is the submission of an Innersection competition entry, which received over 10,000 views and was blogged and posted on many respected websites within the surfing community.
Over the next few years I’m looking to develop my surfing and athletic ability to the highest level that I can possibly achieve. In 2016 I’ll be competing on the World Qualifying Series in which I will be representing Greece, the first male surfer to do so. The eventual goal in the next few years is to qualify for the World Surf League, but most of all, enjoy the journey regardless of whether I win or lose.
My greatest achievement would be winning two Australian Titles in 2009; All Star Boys Individual champion and MR Shield Teams champion.
In surfing you are relying on “mother nature”, waves. This can be very unpredictable at times, making consistent performances difficult. Being a great competition surfer requires you to be great at reading and predicting the ocean. It is well known within surfing that some of the best surfers in the world can’t win and be consistently competitive.
The most satisfying thing in surfing is getting “tubed”. This is where you disappear behind the curtain of the wave traveling through what some people describe as a “pipe”. It can feel hypnotic at times, like some kind of drug, a feeling that is indescribable.
The best way to improve your surfing technique is through video analysis. When I was a little kid, I used to spend hours in my room watching videos of myself surfing, comparing my technique with my idols.
Flexibility, core and leg strength are the key elements I concentrate on when training. I’m really into Yoga as it has more benefits than just flexibility. It boosts your immunity, helps you focus, improves your balance, maintains your nervous system and helps loosen back pain, just to name a few.
My biggest fear is looking back on my life and regretting not working hard enough to achieve my dreams.
I can’t really say I have any fans that I’m aware of. My Mum’s a champion and has always been supportive of me. I would say she is my biggest fan. Love you mum!
Your dreams are always possible with commitment, self-belief and time. It’s easy to give up when you lose! Success is going from failure to failure with a positive attitude.
Travel the world surfing professionally with the ultimate goal of qualifying for the World Surf League.