If you have not been lucky enough to meet Daynia (pronounced like Tanya with a “D”), she is like a human ray of sunshine. You literally cannot be sad in her presence, she brightens up anything she touches and is a laugh a minute to surf with! 💕
What’s your ticky box:
<17 years old
Where are you from originally?
From limitless stardust, shaped into human form in the ocean of my mother’s womb. I often feel like my dolphin tail was swapped for legs in utero so whenever I’m in the ocean I do not want to return to shore. Brisbane is my birthplace. I’ve spent a few years living in Tokyo teaching English and 15 years in America where I received citizenship and had 2 beautiful boys, now love living in Elanora, Sth Gold Coast with kangaroos and koalas roaming my backyard.
How long have you been surfing and how did you get started?
My dad took me out on his longboard when I was just a baby. He says I used to stand up on his outstretched hand as he surfed across the waves and my first words were, “Hangin’ on,” (as a clung to his hair when he duck dived), “Da Boys,” (referring to the other surfers) and “Ooo Biggie!” (referring to a big wave). Can you imagine the fearlessness this inspired in such a wee Lil’ soul?!
I must have bonded to the ocean as a baby because it always feels like coming home when I’m embraced by the waves. After living in the USA for 15 years I returned to Australia and decided to really learn how to surf in 2010, so it’s been a decade of pure joy playing and surfing in the ocean again.
Surfing has taught me so many things…
To be in the moment.
To make the most of the way things are.
To choose wisely when life rolls toward me and then have fun with it… A healthy balance of freedom and acceptance.
Also, to recognise so many elements of the ocean’s personality that exist in the same moment are also in me… playful, rough, tumultuous, gentle, strong, deep, intense, immense, peaceful, dreamy, calm, warm, cool, beautiful, wild and free. The ocean symbolizes “Love” for me. It is the embodiment of acceptance. I truly believe when we come to accept all these elements within ourselves with compassion we will be more able to accept and have compassion for the diversity within each other.
What level surfer are you – whitewash warrior or chasing green waves?
I love to run my fingers along the lip of a glassy green wave. I speak to the wave and say “Give me some sugar!”… “I love you honey” or if it’s huge I’ll scream “Muuuuuuummmmy!!!” as I take the drop. Guys out the back have said they want to scream for their Mummas too! Haha!
What board are you rocking?
My absolute favourite board is my 8′ 2″ Rasta with just the right amount of rocker in the nose to avert nose dives and it’s my fav colour, aqua blue. Lately, I’ve been riding slightly shorter boards like my mate Chanel’s 8′ DevOcean and a 7′ 6″ which is great when the swell is bigger.
What beaches do you normally surf?
My home break is Currumbin Alley, only 7 mins away, so it’s good for a quick surf fix. Otherwise, I’ll head to Rainbow and Greenmount, or a bit south of flat rock on Tugun beach. There’s even a sweet bank slap bang in the middle of Currumbin beach.
I have a Merc Sprinter camper van – which can fit 2 longboards on the roof inside and shortboard on the wall – for longer trips. Have been on a few solo Surfaris down south to Iluka, Lennox Head, Byron and Cabba. I love adventures!
What do you do for work? Any cool hobbies or interests outside of surfing you want to share with us?
I’m a Neuroplasticity Specialist, Laughter Yoga Leader, and JOY Instigator! My website is www.neurobeing.com – I LOOOOOOOOVE encouraging people to thrive in life and play more!! Having graduated with a degree in Psychological Science last year I’ve created a fun interactive
event for all ages titled, “You are a Masterpiece in Progress” to ignite participant’s curiosity and awareness of their brain’s neuroplastic capabilities.
I’m currently finishing illustrations for a children’s book I wrote called, “Ocean’s of Love” about a parent’s unconditional love for their child. Working on writing another book titled, “Up From Downunder, Wiring Neural Pathways for Joy.”
I also make fun videos and inspirational content for my Instagram and Facebook group “Neurobeing”. I’d really appreciate your help by joining and sharing to help me reach my goal for Australia to be the most Neuro-savvy country in the world by 2025. We can all learn to improve our ‘humaning’ skills together
Other fun stuff:
Every Friday morning around 9 am you’re invited to a music jam at Currumbin Alley. I play the ukulele, there are also guitarists, keyboard, drums or just come clap and sing along.
What has been your best surf or ocean experience so far?
The exhilaration of a full moon surf. It was Christmas eve about seven years ago. I waited till everyone had left the beach, my heart was pounding it was now or never, I stripped off my bikini, tied it to my leg rope and paddled out for my first ever “Nudie Christmas Eve surf”. The moon shone a silver pathway on the waves and I could see the bottom, it was so clear, just like surfing in a dream. Surfers Paradise city lights shimmered across the waves, far in the distance. Every wave I caught I raised my arms to the sky and yelled “Merry Christmas Everyone!!” I was on a natural high for days after that.
I also absolutely love sunrise (when I haul my ass out of my warm bed) for a surf with my bae Chanel Austin, she initiated me to that glorious start to the day and I enticed her to sunset surfs. Our favourite moment was captured by a GC Council photographer – both silhouetted on a party wave together.
Any surfing goals you want to smash this year?
Would love to experience a barrel, maybe find a sweet deserted break down south where I could surf with my dolphin family to our heart’s content.
What do you love about the Surf Witches?
Ever since meeting the gorgeous Monica Wach and Hannah Jessup last year, I tell everyone about Surf Witches. I love its inclusivity, support, and feeling of camaraderie. We’ve had some really fun meetups and photoshoots for Santa surf and a glorious sunrise with Hanna’s new surf camera. The ideas we share, and opportunities to travel, learn and improve our skills are fantastic. I hope to meet many more of you lovely ladies on the waves soon!
What advice would you share with other women starting out?
Enjoy the ocean and let your spirit free out there on the waves! There is no one to tell you how you have to feel or be, or which way to go. It’s liberating!
Do yourself a favour and learn proper technique from the beginning, i.e. Do not get used to getting up on your knees. Your brain has neuroplastic powers when learning a new skill so it’s best to embed good form and muscle memory will help. Practice popping up on your bed or rug at home. Build your core and upper body strength with a daily routine of push-ups, bear crawls, supermans and tricep dips. I started with a 15min daily bodyweight workout I found online, now a year later, I’ve increased it to 45mins a day and the results are fantastic! I have so much more strength in my core and for paddling, I feel more in control on the waves. Consistency pays off!