Josh Coombes

Since the age of 7 Josh has been a kite enthusiast.

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You may recognise Josh if you’ve ever been for a lesson with Extreme Academy it’s very possible he was your instructor. But what you may not know if Josh is a professional kitesurfer, sponsored by both Extreme Academy and Flexifoil. Since the age of 7 he’s been a kite enthusiast, we caught up with Josh to see what he’s been up to.

How did you get into kitesurfing?

At the age of 7, whilst at primary school I found a huge passion for flying kites. Every Tuesday evening Dad and myself would head down to Watergate Bay to take part in the weekly Extreme Club event. Before I knew it, every bit of spare time I had was at the beach flying kites. I learnt on a small 2m Flexifoil Blade and progressed onto the LEI (leading edge inflatable) kites, which allowed me to kite in the water. Over the years I taught myself how to kite surf but there were definitely times I wished I had an instructor with me.

What does a normal year look like for a kitesurfer?

Some of the main kite locations in the world; Brazil, Spain, Australia and Africa have seasonal conditions, they get trade winds at certain points throughout the year which blow from AM to PM.   Luckily here in the UK that doesn’t happen, we can get wind all year round. It tends to be more favorable in the Winter due to the low pressure systems, but Summer can be great too. I do find myself jetting off to other locations throughout the year to find those trade winds, but it’s nice to know that when I come home there’s a high chance I’ll be kiting here too!

Best place you’ve kited and why?

I’ve been fortunate enough to travel the world and kitesurf many locations, I think the one that stood out for me was North Brazil. It wasn’t just the kitesurfing that made it special, it was the lifestyle. Waking up at 6am every morning, indulging in a healthy breakfast, allowing me to kitesurf throughout the day. The wind blew from the minute you woke up all the way through to last light. Perfect conditions with the choice of flat water lagoons and a 6km long beach break with lovely pealing waves. I definitely think I’ll be going back there either this year or the next, and to anyone who’s ever thought about it, I’d definitely recommend it.

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Josh Coombes – Picture Perfect (Watch in HD) from Josh Coombes on Vimeo.

Best achievement to date?

I think my best achievement to date was becoming an International Team Rider on the Flexifoil Team.

I like Being on the team alongside the likes of Aaron Hadlow, Forest Bakker, Craig Sparkes and many more, it’s a huge accomplishment for me. I was also part in the Virgin Kitesurf Crossing with Sir Richard Branson, having a lead role in the training for some of the team.

2013 saw the first ‘Legend of the Bay’ competition at Watergate Bay, a combined Kitesurf and SUP event, the first of its kind. I took part in the event and managed a very respectable 3rd, coming in behind Dom Moore and Neal Gent.

What are you aspiring to do?

As a sponsored kitesurfer, my goal is to push my riding and ability to the next level. As kitesurfing is still a growing sport, there’s always something new to learn. I’m a strong ambassador to my sponsors and try and help them out as much as possible.

I also teach kitesurfing, so teaching more and more people to learn the sport I love is what I want to do most. There’s nothing better than seeing someone get up for the first time, the smile on their faces is priceless.

And finally, if you weren’t surfing/ kiting, what would to be doing?

When I’m not at the beach kitesurfing or teaching, I like to go Mountain Biking. We’ve just had two new trails installed in Cornwall at Cardinham Woods and Lanhydrock. I’m also a keen rugby player, I play for Newquay Hornets 1st Team. Since a young age I’ve also had an interest in aviation, I love flying and one day I’d like to be a pilot.

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