David Small 
About this Skier
[ Contact David via Email ]
  Name: David Small Nickname: [NA]  
  Hails From: Clermont, FL USA    
Interview
  What got you into barefooting?
I was a member of a local ski club and I had seen a couple of guys out giving footing a go. It looked unreal so I asked my parents if they would let me try it...... we went out on a knee board behind the boat and I stuck my feet in the water. The rest is history
  How did you learn to barefoot?
35-40 mph in board shorts on a knee board behind the boat in choppy water and not knowing anything about what I should be doing

  Who was your first barefoot instructor?
A guy called Tim Hodgkins out of Birmingham, England



  Tell us about your first tournament
That was so long ago I cannot remember my first barefoot tourney
  How did you feel the first time you barefooted?
It was the best feeling!!! Myself and my parents had no idea what we were doing so when I stuck me feet in the water to stop the kneeboard bouncing and was able to stand there for a couple of seconds it felt like nothing else!!!! I took as many passes after that as i could just to try to stand there for an extra second before eating it.

  Why do you continue to barefoot?
I love everything about this sport!!!!!
  Who has inspired you in this sport?
My parents have always been people I look up to and always will do. There are many people that I looked up to in the sport during my waterskiing career but now I really admire people who have a strong passion for the sport and who are willing to do whatever it takes to better themselves.


  Have you held any World Records?
Ive held and still hold the Jump and Tricks World Records




  Have you won any medals at a world championship?
Yes, I've won a few. Ill go with just the Overall titles as that is the easiest but there are a lot of individual medals in here that I won't write down. My first overall title was winning the 1999 Junior Worlds in Texas. Then in 2002 I won the Open Mens Worlds in Austria. Then 2004 Open Worlds in Australia, 2010 Open Worlds in Germany, 2012 Open Worlds in Texas and the current 2014 Open Worlds which was back in Australia.

  What skiers have you enjoyed watching and why?
I love watching the old school footers on old videos from back in the X-games times as their techniques were very different to what we do now. I also love being in the boat and watching students who just love the sport and love being out there on the water and seeing the enjoyment they get from learning and getting their feet wet makes me enjoy the sport even more. The likes of Ben Groen and Ashleigh Stebbeings who are starting to push the limits is an inspiration to me and i feel very proud to see how far they have come in such a short amount of time!
  How often do you train ski?
If I don't have an upcoming event and its good weather down here (sunny florida) then ill head out on the water a few times a week. If I'm training for a World Championships then I will be out on the water almost everyday, a few times a day.... whatever it takes and then a little more.

  What other activities do you participate in?
When I lived back in the UK I loved riding motorbikes and taking them on track days so if i wasn't skiing I would be out on my crotch rocket. Floridas roads suck for bikes so I took up skydiving here in FL. Anything that has adrenaline involved is good by me.

  What do you do for a living?
I co-own and operate the World Barefoot Center down in Winter Haven Florida. We are the biggest and best Barefoot Waterski School in the World and have multiple World Champions skiing and working there.

  What is your motto?
Go big or go home

 


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