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Kelly Slater, 11-time World Surfing Champion on longevity, setbacks and mental toughness

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Hello wonderful Giants, this is episode #54. Our guest today is truly one of a kind. He’s an 11-time world surfing champion. Holds the record as the youngest (at age 20) to win the title and the oldest (at age 39) to win the title as well. A living legend, an inspiration to millions of people, by far the best-known surfer on the planet and chatting with him blew me away.


Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • His thoughts on longevity and making a career out of something you love – in his case, surfing in professional competitions for over 33 years
  • The importance of humility, respect, resilience, family and personal relationships
  • We spoke about doubt and setbacks and building mental-toughness, including his 2-3 year hiatus which was part of the 7-year gap between winning his 6th and 7th world title
  • His 10-year journey in creating the perfect man-made wave pool – what once was a dream is now a reality
  • I of course asked for his key tips for beginner-level surfers – for those that want to start, and there’s just an avalanche of quality insights in this interview – the list goes on.


So If you’re someone that’s interested in hearing the ups, the downs and everything in between – from a world champion, then this episode is for you.

I present to you … the hard-working, super humble, 11-time world champ … Kelly Slater!



More on Kelly Slater can be found via the links below:

Kelly’s personal website

Kelly Slater Wave Company website

Kelly’s menswear brand: Outerknown

Kelly’s Twitter: @kellyslater

Kelly’s Instagram: @kellyslater

Kelly on Facebook


Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.



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About Ram Castillo


Ram is an award winning Design Director, Blogger, top ranking Podcaster, Speaker, Instructor and Author of two internationally acclaimed books 'How to get a job as a designer, guaranteed' and 'How to get a mentor as a designer, guaranteed'. He's based in Sydney, Australia and in 2012, started the blog which helps thousands of design students and graduates be employed. Ram has since been featured in Communication Arts, HOW magazine, Herman Miller, deFrost*, and Apple.

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