WSM: Let’s start with our typical interview questions. What’s your name, where are you from, how long have you been wakesurfing, and where do you usually ride at?
Ryan: Ryan Deese, from south Florida, I started wakesurfing about 5 years ago, and I ride where ever and whenever I can.
WSM: Prior to wakesurfing, were you doing any other towed watersports?
Ryan: Prior to wakesurfing I grew up competing in skimboard contests. Spending my weekends at the beach, I actually did some towing with my skimboard behind outboard engines.
WSM: Take us through your warm up. When you get up for the first time on any given day what tricks do you do?
Ryan: I usually like to hit the wake a couple times really hard while holding the rope to kinda just get in the zone you know? From there I kinda just go with the flow and go through my checklist of tricks. Once I’m happy with that I start playing around and go bigger and bigger.
WSM: Competitions, are they your thing? Or do you like to focus more on freeriding?
Ryan: I’ve been working hard to have a healthy balance of both. I love the competitiveness of competition but you can’t beat a good ‘ol day of wake surfing with your homies pushing the boundaries.
WSM: Do you remember the first time you experienced wakesurfing? Were you immediately hooked?
Ryan: I do! I had just competed in my first pro skim contest and while waiting on my flight home I somehow caught the Mens Pro Skim Final of the WakeSurf World Championships live on Facebook. I was instantly hooked and from the moment on I just did whatever I possibly could to get into it. Growing up I never knew wakesurfing existed, to me I thought it was what I had always done like holding the rope and trying to mix wakeboarding and wakeskating on a skimboard lol.
WSM: Take us back to when you were just starting out. What was the first trick you learned and how long did it take you to get it?
Ryan: When I first got behind a good wave the basic tricks from skimboarding were easy for me to learn, my hardest transition was learning to ride switch and learning how to let the wave push me instead of pumping my self till my legs were cramped. Both of those things took a little more time to learn but would recommend all beginners take time and learn both your normal stance and switch stance, because as you start to learn new tricks you’re going to find you need to be comfortable both ways.
WSM: Tell us about your sponsors, what’s your gear setup?
Ryan: My sponsors are the best! They keep me living this dream and I couldn’t ask for a better line up coming into this 2019 season. Exile is my board sponsor and I ride my DeeseMode pro model. Saltwater Syndicate keeps me fresh from head to toe and you already probably know that! My most recent sponsor coming into 2019 is Sympl Traction and if you haven’t heard of them yet check them out wherever you can, stoked to represent them this upcoming year.
WSM: How’d you get hooked up with the folks over at Exile?
Ryan: I have always had a friendly relationship with the boys over there and got to chatting with them at Surf Expo when they were releasing their wake line up, I was sponsorless and was looking for the right fit. It was pretty insane, haha. As a grom I always dreamed of being apart of Exile and at the time everything just fell into place.
WSM: Getting a pro model, how stoked were you?!
Ryan: Boy oh boy am I excited for this one! I worked on this board all year long and couldn’t be more thrilled with it.
WSM: If you could take one celebrity wakesurfing with you who would it be and why?
Ryan: It’d have to be any of the boys on the WSL, would love to take out some ocean surfers and just have an amazing time while pushing the limits of the sport!
WSM: If you had your choice of music when riding, what would it be?
Ryan: Classic Rock!
WSM: What’s your favorite wakesurfing trick, regardless if you can pull it off yourself or not?
Ryan: Right now its frontside bigspins and frontside 3 shuvs.
WSM: What’s your take on flip tricks? Think we’ll ever start seeing more Hi-5 or kickflips? Do we need to?
Ryan: Not any time soon in my opinion. We may see some landed here and there but, I don’t think anyone will be landing them in contests anytime soon.
WSM: Where would you like to see wakesurfing go in the future?
Ryan: More events, better broadcasting, and more sponsorships in the sports from bigger brands.
WSM: What advice would you give a newcomer to the sport that’s looking to progress and learn new tricks?
Ryan: Ride with people that are better than you, always have fun and if you’re not falling you’re not trying hard enough!
WSM: What tricks are you working on? Anything you feel like lettings us know about?
Ryan: Frontside 360 shuv and I’m also working on my riding switch.
WSM: Do you have any sponsors, friends, or family you’d like to thank?
Ryan: Huge huge shoutout to my sponsors: Exile skimboards for keeping the best boards under my feet; Saltwater Syndicate for keeping my fresh head to toe; Sympl Traction for keeping my boards clean and Sympl.
WSM: Would you like to plug any social media?
Ryan: Shoot me a follow on the gram @deesemode
We want to thank Ryan for giving WSM his time and we look forward to seeing more of him as he continues to progress in his career and push wakesurfing into the future!