Pun­ley Keeps Drop­ping In On A Spir­i­tual High

MidWeek (Hawaii) - - Front Page - CUR­RENTS Ron Mizu­tani

Body­surf­ing is of­ten called the purest form of wave rid­ing. There are no boards or leashes, just one’s body glid­ing on the ocean. There is no pro­to­type body or pre­mium age to ex­pe­ri­ence it: All you need is a board shorts.

takes it a step fur­ther.

- in the ocean, feel­ing free and hav­ing this one-on-one con­nec­tion with God and his cre­ation is my life. It’s just com­plete joy and pos­i­tive vibes.”

- scrib­ing a spir­i­tual ex­pe­ri­ence, it’s be­cause he is.

“The ocean is my life; with­out it, I would be noth­ing,” he says. “It’s the only thing that gives me true peace from the neg­a­tive emo­tions that we ex- pe­ri­ence in life. Ev­ery time I get in the wa­ter, I am cleansed.”

his years and he’s one of the fastest-ris­ing stars in a sport that doesn’t get the at­ten­tion it de­serves.

ka­hanalu, mean­ing a form of wave rid­ing with­out a use of see why my an­ces­tors en­joyed sport, but to me it’s a life­style, a cul­ture, an art that I am here to per­pet­u­ate.”

School. When the win­ter surf rolled in he’d catch the bus

“It’s hard grow­ing up with a pro­tec­tive mother who would the waves were big,” chuck­les pad­dled and ran track in high school. “I was forced to body­surf be­cause I could not af­ford a surf­board or a body­board. Get­ting my first pair of fins changed the game for me. I re­al­ized how much I was ad

first body­surf­ing con­test grad­u­a­tion. That’s where he met Sean Enoka, the owner

never knew were even possi “Sean, Mike Ste­wart, Bar San­tos, Mark Cun­ning­ham men­tors and I’m blessed to call them my friends. They’re liv­ing leg­ends.”

never call him­self a leg­end, but he’s cer­tainly mak­ing a name for him­self with sever place fin­ish in his age group Cham­pi­onships.

Long­time skate­board and surf cloth­ing com­pany RVCA re­cently added him to its ros­ter of ad­vo­cates.

“I thank RVCA for al­low­ing also spon­sored by Da Fins. “It’s rec­og­nized by big com­pa­nies. I hope one day I can body­surf around the world for a liv­ing while shar­ing the aloha spirit.”

It’s a char­ac­ter­is­tic that two of his child­hood idols pos­sessed — two men he tries to em­u­late.

“I wish I could have met - “Some­times peo­ple call me the pos­i­tive vi­bra­tions in me and say that’s how Duke was. That’s such an awe­some com­pli­ment.”

And while he looks for­ward to leav­ing his mark in about leav­ing a legacy for the next gen­er­a­tion.

“The big­gest ac­com­plish­ment I’ve made in the ocean so far is some­thing I’m still ac­com­plish­ing, and that’s in “I want to teach them to ac­cept the bad times, the strug­gles and hard­ships, and know that we go through times like that to learn, grow, ac­cept and move for­ward al­ways. Work hard for what you want in life and be­lieve in your­self al­ways.”

Body­surf­ing is a bar­rel roll of fun for the of­ten­times in­verted Keali‘i Pun­ley.

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