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Taking the conversation beyond the lineup, My Surf Rituals is an article series of casual, sit-down chats with our everyday surf friends from various surf spots–wherever, whenever. Stay tuned as we talk about our surf philosophies, anything under the sun, shared moments in the ocean, and life on land.

Hi Ronron! How long have you been surfing? 

Hi! So, I started surfing when I was on my 2nd year in University, so I’ve been surfing for almost 5 years in total now. Among my peers, some people could call me a late bloomer haha!

Can you tell us about your earliest surfing memory? What made it so unforgettable? 

I joined an unforgettable surf competition in Calicoan, Samar. It was my first time to travel by myself. There, I rode the biggest waves I have ever tried surfing, and I also met a lot of great surfers from around the country. The entire experience is really what got me into surfing more.

Is there a surf spot that can be called your favorite?

There are lots of surf spots that I like here in the Philippines, one of them being Siargao (where I’m currently based.) Internationally, the surfing spots in Bali really make me want to go back.

On a normal day, how do you prepare to surf?

To be honest, I normally wake up late! But when it comes to surfing, I make sure to wake up very early or I wake up before my alarm haha. The first thing I do is to check the trees–if the branches are moving it means it’s windy. After, I’ll open my Spotify for music I can listen to as I warm up or do some basic yoga poses. And of course, I put on sunblock to protect my skin.

Can you tell us more about your surf gear?

Surfing really helps me gain some exposure with brands. I’m currently using a custom No. 5 Craft longboard shaped by Go, a Japanese shaper based in Bali. When the sun’s hot, I wear my surf hat from Beach Boy Commu, Currently, my favorite swim shorts are the comfy pieces by Guppy PH.

Tell us about your surf inspirations. Who are they and why do you look up to them?

There’s a longboard surfer Augusto Olinto from Mexico. His style is incredible, that’s all I’m gonna say.

My cousins Ikit and Aping Agudo, and Maricel Parajes are professional surfers now, and they really helped me hone my skills. I wasn’t really into surfing before and without my cousins’ guidance, I really wouldn’t have gotten into the sport. They remind me that life must go on like how one rides a wave: sometimes you fall but you need to get up and keep on going.

Maricel Parajes, Ikit Agudo, and Aping Agudo shots by Aaron Forcadilla

When you’re not in the water, where can we find you?

Aside from surfing, I also do lifestyle/portrait photography, skating and playing volleyball with the “isla” family in Siargao.

How can you personally relate surfing to your life? What’s your surf philosophy? 

Surfing is my kind of high. It gives me pure happiness and contentment. It has grown to become such a big part of my life. It helps me connect to the environment and the community, and it made me realize that in life it doesn’t matter how many times you fall but it’s how you stand up and continue living, smiling and inspiring people around you.

Lastly, what’s a surfing advice you can share to us?

Be patient. Surfing is life-long learning journey. There are so much challenges and tests behind it.

You have to understand that falling and wiping out are part of the process. So you have to be patient. Once you have that kind of mindset, trust me you’ll learn in no time.

Ronron Forcadilla is a Siargao-based longboarder and portrait photographer. Find him on Instagram at @aaronforcs.

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