Yuta Sezutsu is a talented Japanese surfer. His smooth style and graceful noserides have been getting attention at Joel Tudor’s Duct Tape Invitationals and in the new Mikey DeTemple film, Sight and Sound. We spoke with Yuta to learn more.
What was your life like growing up?
I grew up in Fukuoka, located in Western Japan. I later moved to Taito Chiba when I was finished junior high school at 15 years old. My dad and I would go surfing every weekend until we moved to Fukuoka. Now I surf everyday at Taito Beach.
When did you get your first surfboard?
I got my first surfboard when I was 10 years old. It was a Bic 6’7 shortboard.Then a half year ago, I met Seitaro Nakamura. His surfing changed the way I surf. It was super beautiful. I then bought a YU 9’0 noserider and it became my first longboard. It was super expensive, so I my dad help me pay for it.
What was the feeling you had when you first stood on a surfboard?
I can’t really explain the feeling. It was just really smooth and amazing. I will never forget it.
Who did you look up to and admire when you were a young man?
I grew up with all the local old guys at Fukuoka. These guys love to surf sooo
much! I just learned from them it is most important thing. I love these guys! They are my heroes!
Who/what inspires you?
Seitaro Nakamura, Joel Tudor, Kenji Miyauchi… these guys have all been
inspiration for my surfing and life. My dad especially taught me how I should be living a good life. My boss Takuya Testu has an awesome character and personality. I wouldn’t be here without all the people in my life. Also movies, books, and people also provide me good inspiration.
What is the greatest thing you have learned in your life?
Love to everything. Love is everything. Loving my family, friends, nature, and everybody and everything including myself.
Is there a “Golden Rule” or philosophy that you live by?
Don’t lie. And be humble.
Do you have any regrets or wish you had done something differently?
Nothing! That is such nonsense, because my life is always great!
What are you most proud of?
My family, especialy my parents. They were taught me about life and how to love.
What meaning does surfing hold for you and how has it changed your life?
Surfing is free. There are no rules, just having fun. I can say the same for my life. It
has changed my life to a better one. More smiles, more laughs, and being happy.
Who are some of the people you feel are shaping the path for surfing today?
Seitaro Nakamura, Harrison Roach, Christian Wach, Tyler Warren, Alex
Knost, Joel Tudor, Dane Peterson… and more! These are my favorite surfers.
What is your favorite board?
Smooth Log and Single fin. They are awesome.
What’s your favorite meal?
Mom’s Japanese udon noodles.
What are you currently listening to on your iPod?
I don’t have iPod! Haha. Pink Floyd, The Blue Hearts,The
Beatles, Picaresque Sound Track. I love everything!
What are you most grateful for?
My parents, my family, friends, and the people who support me.
What’s next for Yuta Sezutsu?
I don’t know. I’ll just keep going my own way. I have to be me – Yuta Sezutsu. Stay original and be proud of being Japanese. That’s it.
All photographs courtesy Yuta Sezutsu.