Lionel Lourenço, Charente-Maritime native, lives for surfing. Former pro junior competitor, he is now focused on free surfing and equipment development. After opening a surf school and a surf shop in Royan, he became a BPJEPS surf educator 5 years ago. Sharing Wyve's innovative and environmental values, Lionel recently joined the team as a team rider. He’s super keen to work on our boards to keep on improving their performance.
We asked him some questions for you to know him better!
“Hi Lionel, how are you doing? Could you introduce yourself?
Hi team, I'm fine. My name is Lionel Luis Lourenço, I am from Charente-Maritime Royan and I have Portuguese origins. I grew up in Royan where I discovered the joys of the ocean. When I grew up, I went down south to do a “sport study” focused on surfing. I then worked a lot in the surfing and environmental field. My first job was to educate children in schools about recycling waste and its life span in the natural environment.
In the meantime, I created my own surf shop and a surf school. I worked both in a club and in a private school. I have coached free surfers and competitive surfers while managing different teams in surf camps on the Atlantic coast.
For the last 5 years, I've been a surfing educator trainer : I train people who are passionate about surfing to become the surf instructors of tomorrow.
For how long have you been surfing?
I have been surfing for over 25 years. My mom has a phobia of water and my dad is handicapped, surfing wasn’t so planned. One day, my uncle came from Paris with a bodyboard, I tried it, popped up, slided on the foam. The guy from the surf shop in front of the beach told me to try a real board and I loved it! I haven’t stopped since that day.
What’s your competition track record?
I have been competing for more than 10 years. I won several Charente Maritime championships, I went through a few rounds in the French and junior pro events but no major results. I'm more interested in free surfing and surf trips, not to mention the development of equipment.
When was the first time you surfed a Wyve surfboard and what were your first feelings?
I discovered Wyve boards last winter, a coincidence. When I was younger, I was lucky enough to be sponsored by a surfboard brand based in Charente. For 15 years, I was testing all their prototypes to improve their equipment and it became a passion for me. I was interested in other brands to see what was being done out there. This winter, when I discovered Wyve surfboards, the aesthetics caught my attention. I was immediately hooked by the innovative side and environmental values of the company. Working with Wyve allows me to help develop boards that are not produced with non-recyclable foam blanks and produced at the other end of the planet...
What’s your favorite board model / dims?
The HEXA Leaf. It's still the beginning of our collaboration, so we'll work together on a model that suits me better. But for the moment, their high-perf model is the best.
What’s your next surf trip?
I'm still thinking about it, my daughter surfs a lot and I would like to share some waves with her. I would rather go somewhere warm and uncrowded, like Panama.
What does surfing bring to your daily life?
A sense of freedom. It’s like making a living with something you love. Surfing gives me the perfect life balance.
What are you doing besides surfing?
I travel in the winter to follow the sun with my wife. We play golf, paddle... I have two little surfer girls to take care of as well, which takes a lot of my time.
What would be your dream wave to surf, anywhere in the world?
I've surfed all over the world but at the moment the wave I have the most fun surfing is a secret spot near home in Charente-Maritime.”