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How to get sponsored by Naish at the age of 42

Matjaž Hrovat

Matjaž Hrovat

My journey started about 30 years ago, when I first heard that the windsurf equipment in our family was going to be given away…

Right after my grandad took it off his roof storage, to my surprise it was still in good shape, so I asked if I could have it.

It was “that” 300 liter board and alumminium, one piece mast, 3 meter wide boom and 5.5 sail with no battens. It was a huge sailboat for my tiny body.

Soon it became my favorite sport and entertainment. And it was also the only thing left in our family that no-one really cared about. My younger uncle was the last one who was into it, but in his years of sailing it was merely summer holidays.

To me however it was great fun. No one could tell me how to do it, as not many knew anyway, not to mention no police on water ….

The gear was so huge and heavy, I was just leaving it on the beach and no one would steal it, at least not from our camp.

When the winds got strong my windsurfing developed, riding away and swimming back… Yea sure, do you think I was born with the skills I have today?

It was till I was about 16 that I learned the “water start” and a year later got my first fun board that was still big but only 112l and actually had straps and a single fin.

But this is what you all know… the experiences that were gained in the first years of windsurfing were worth much more and they have set the course of my life.

Far from bragging about my “great skills” and getting myself into trouble for sailing far out of my parents’ site,… and sleeping on other islands and beaches through the night and finding my way back home the next day.

I remember one time the winds were so strong and I had no harness, no straps, no neoprene, no idea of conditions and so in my bicycle gloves and t-shirt, I was blown off far “behind” Brioni islands (Adriatic sea). The only way to come back as the storm was getting worse at night was swimming. Unfortunately I was not able to come home. It was already very late at night. I ended up a few kilometers away from our camp. My parents were worried sick and had already notified the police for rescue and search. And while all that was going on I was sleeping rolled up in a sail on hot stones that I could find in the darkness of the night to keep me warm. I also wanted to guard my gear. I had no intention to leave it behind.

So much about summer days.
Winter on the other hand was a different adventure. I was on Ice with skates and just the sail – something very similar to today’s WING surfing.

In time my windsurfing skills got better.
So for several years I was even teaching windsurfing in Croatia. 

Then “new horizons” showed up on water, land and ice – kitesurfing was born.

And here comes the skateboard with bigger wheels. Today we call this mountain board or dirt board. It was wider, longer, with off road tires and straps.

Mountain board riding was fun for many years to come even here in Canaries. It quickly became a daily routine on any given day, either with sail or kite. For the last year or so even with the wing.

Riding the mountain board was so much fun that we even got towed by cars at night. We had “too much energy” and a huge desire to be riding all the time. 

One Sunday morning I will never forget, was one of these show off days. Sail rigged from yesterday,… I saw some girls coming my way, so I quickly took the sail and the mountainboard, no shoes, just shorts and off to the dirt track. While making 360 one wheel broke off and you can imagine. Going fast with no protection, I went totally  horizontal and made some nice new “tattoos” on my body. For one week even sleeping was no fun, just aaaaaa I can say….

I had so many accidents and crashes that I stopped counting. It’s just part of the game, like in most sports.

What I can say is this:
Windsurfing has certainly changed my way of life since an early age. I struggled in many sports and outdoor activities. But it was windsurfing that totally changed my way of thinking and living. It has taken me to places that I would never go unless mother nature wanted so.
I left my home and lived away from my parents and my relatives in different countries just to live the life of my dreams. And I can tell you it’s not always what you’d imagine a dream life looks like. Leaving all “the good” behind, facing the unknown and trying to show some “great” results of my decisions later. And of course that also brings on some hard criticism and judgment for my mistakes or undesired results. It’s quite a challenge.

So I ended up on the Canaries. 

It took me 15 years to find ways to live the life of my dreams and establish it all as reality.

I was never interested in competitions. I have been invited many times. However the only one I wanted to compete with was “me”.

Two times I managed to put myself “on hold” for a year of physiotherapy.

The first time I was 27. I broke my tibia and pirena. And I broke my hill at age 30 – just 6 months after my son was born. And I was a  single dad. Everything you can imagine was against me.

Getting back to walking normally was a big challenge.

I refused to have anything to do with hospitals, conventional treatments or conventional medicine. Rather I started my own research on how to get my health back.

I was 30 and my “amateur” sports career seemed to be over. I wanted to shoot myself – not really but it was pretty depressing.

Took me 5 years to get out of pain and started to walk normally and to run.
Today 15 years after my first accident, I am in perfect health and people have no idea I was ever down this road.

You see, my day today is what people call a “dream life”.

I’ve been out of the “health system” for over a decade and never wish to go that way ever again. This means absolutely no health issues or doctors needed in my life.

I have studied and worked with shamanic rituals for years for my health issues and still do for other people’s health issues. I have learned to make home remedies. But lately that’s not even needed as I have learned how it’s all just a mental state.

I share all this knowledge with people coming into my life or visit my “park project” on the Canary islands. You can check some of that on my website: http://www.gregor.love/

Everything’s coming together for me and just to give you an idea:
Last year, 2020 was the best year ever. I have doubled my earnings here in the Canaries and finally got myself a new van for all of my activities that I wanted so badly.

And on top of that at the age of 42 I got sponsored by NAISH for SUP FOIL WING. So, I can’t complain.

I think it’s important to say I did have what you might refer to as “a spiritual awakening”. Now I have “no debts” and more and more things in my life are running smoother and smoother.

Nevertheless, still today I feel safest riding with windsurfers here on the canaries, although sometimes some get scared of my quiet presence on foils.

Yes, for about 3 years I am mostly riding on foils and I love to make space for other windsurfers on top of the waves. I do know how much physical effort is needed to catch a wave on the “old” windsurf technology. And I often get asked to leave some waves for them,… and I always do. If I see a windsurfer that can make it, catching the wave I always make room as that was always my style. And since foiling came into my life, waves are under my feet all the time. 

I also teach but not beginners, only advanced students.

Something you don’t hear very often is the “self rescue” since rescues are my thing – I also teach self rescue.

As my rides are often solo and long or out of normal rules and mainly on peaks of waves, I have a mix of people I ride with, from surf, windsurf, kite, sup, etc.

As to what my typical day looks like…

I wake up at 4am and study/channel/read till 7am.

At about 8am I take my son to school.
After that I do some work in the gardens till about 12am.
At 1pm I have a meeting at a sponsor shop and have “beach time” till about 5pm.
After that maybe a bike ride, flying or creating in the park till it gets dark.
Evenings and night time I spend time with my boy or with my loving partner and practice love till 4am.

On nice days I have 3 sessions and on cloudy, non windy days it’s my other toys that come “out to play”.

My “real” work is showing people the way of better living. It’s what I love to do. If I get bored in life, I take on some little projects in gardens and sort that out for clients.

Mainly my work is helping people get out of debt, get off pharmaceutical drugs and have less or no stress with money. I help people live more “with nature” and from the inside out – more from the heart.

I have an apartment but prefer to live in my little park in a house made from mud.
I don’t have a wife rather a girlfriend, no job, just plenty of work that I choose to do and most important time to have fun any time as “there is no time”.

Time is for those who like to worry about it and exchange time for money. I see that as conditioning of the system and of the ruling elite.

So people either have time or money. If they have money to do windsurfing, they have no time to do it. If they have enough time to do it, they don’t have the money to be able to do it. 

And it was exactly like that for me too 20 years ago.

But I wanted to live on the beach and windsurf every day. And for the past 20 years I’ve been able to do just that. I work till 1pm and then stay on the beach and windsurf, kite, sup, wingsurf,… and  from this kind of lifestyle there are a lot more benefits I haven’t even mentioned.

I used to employ people, well mainly friends who wanted to live like I do, now I show them how they can do it if they really wish so. This is the very reason I started my little “park” project 7 years ago. To show people the way into a better day.

It’s easy to find me, but usually I am the last one anyone comes to see on this island.
However when things don’t work out the way people think they will, I am happy to show them how it can work out. Sometimes I can show them an even better way. How things can work out much better than what they wished for.

Now, looking at my old mountain boards right now, it has been 20 years and I need a new one. So I need to mention this to my sponsors.

And again as a reminder to all the people willing to venture out in the wild storms:

Do not be afraid, just go for it, as the fear is only inside of you. Outside is how you make it. 

So Matjaz, I hope this gives you a good idea of the life I have chosen, chasing my dreams of the sea, the beaches, windsurfing, the freedom and love.

And I certainly hope to inspire others to go after their dreams.

Thank you and big hugs to sLOVEnia.

GreGor 

Feel free to connect with GreGor via his website: http://www.gregor.love/

or on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gregorfuerteventura

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About the Author

Matjaž Hrovat

Matjaž Hrovat

Hi, I’m Matjaž. I love windsurfing. I also love to design and make fun things. I wanted to do more windsurfing but I ran out of time for whole day trips to the sea. Every time it’s windy I get butterflies in my belly. I just had to figure out something. If I only have an hour an a half… how can I do some windsurfing? So the Urban Breez was born...

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