Meet Fillipe - our resident kite instructor
Hometown: Sao Paulo, Brazil
Tell us a little about where you are from? And about life elsewhere ?
I am from Sao Paulo. It's a huge multicultural city with everything you can imagine. There are really great restaurants, nightlife and art scene over there. Definitely a place to check out while visiting Brazil.
The last 2 years I have been living with my wife in the Canary Islands. We went there because of the ocean and the weather. They are famous for having the best temperatures in the world (at least is what they say!).
My favorite thing about the canary islands is that they are kind of remote so the nature there is incredible. What amazes me as well is the fact that every island is really different from the other in terms of nature. Definitely a place to visit. Even though remote, there are big cities which makes life easy sometimes! The best thing for me is the great wind and wave conditions. I am always busy kitesurfing, windsurfing, surfing or teaching (that is why I chose to be an instructor!).
Where else have you lived and traveled?
Traveling is one of my favorite things to do. I am an explorer. I love seen new things, new cultures and for me this is one of the best ways to learn. I am happy to say that I've lived in all the continents (but Antarctica). Brazil is where i lived the most but i also lived in Argentina, USA, Canada, South Africa, Indonesia, Spain, Australia and now Sri Lanka! I've been to quite a few countries as well but like any traveler I always want to see more! There are Many countries on my list to visit!
When did you arrive in Sri Lanka? When did you start working at Elements?
I arrived in Sri Lanka in January 2019 after visiting India for 3 months. I was tired and just wanted to go to a nice beach and kite. I knew Sri Lanka had a great kitesurfing scene so I contacted few schools and I got a nice response from Elements. I came as a volunteer with my wife and the owner quickly saw our passion for their place and for our work and they offered us to run their water sports center. Now we are taking care of all the activities of the resort and the kite center. We are really happy here!
How did you get into kitesurfing?
I think it all came from sailing. I've been sailing since I was 7. I even had my professional time. Once we we won a youth world championship. I also taught sailing for about 4 years in a famous yacht club in Brazil. Kitesurfing is kind of a new sport and I remember seeing some kites on the water while sailing. I was always impress with it and told myself I had to learn it. I bought an old kite in a partnership with one of my best friends and we learned by ourselves getting in a lot of trouble! One time we even had to call the fireman to help us! The kites where not as safe as they are today!
What are the other sports and activities you love doing apart from kitesurfing?
I love the outdoors. I think that's why I love watersports so much. Apart from kiting I love surfing, windsurfing, sailing, skateboarding and snowboarding. I am really interested now in going to the air. I really want to learn paragliding and parachuting. This is the goal for the year! Yoga is also my new thing. I think it's a good combination with any kind of sport and it helps me connect to myself a lot.
How does an average workday look like at Elements?
When you love what you do, it doesn't look like work at all. I think we are in the happiness business. My job is to make people happy and I love it! It makes me even happier! Doesn't matter the forecast, there is always something to do here! I love finding activities for all kind of people that come here. No matter your age, you are going to have fun!
The best thing about living at Elements and in Sri Lanka?
I love the fact that we are isolated here. It's really nature here! It's incredible the amount of wildlife you see everyday. Even the dogs and cats here are kind of wild. You can see dolphins every day! That's amazing for me. Of course I love the kitesurfing conditions here. There are many downwind possibilities and besides that, elements have their almost private lagoon just few meters away from the ocean. This is what is so special about this place! I haven't traveled a lot in Sri Lanka yet but from what I've seen, it's an amazing country. Very diverse. The people are very friendly and nice. I love the culture. There is a really nice surfing scene here which makes this country my new paradise!
Describe how a perfect day in your life looks like?
I always say that my best days were when I used to live in Bali. Basically I was waking up at sunrise for a surf session, and having a really nice breakfast afterwards. By the time I ate and rest, the wind start building up and then it was time for kitesurfing. You could easily have 2 to 3 hours session in the afternoon and after a good session of kite, another of surf for the sunset. It didn't finish there. There was a lot of places to skate and have a beer as well so that's what I was doing at night, as well as having a nice dinner! After all that, maybe watch a nice movie to fall asleep and start again on the next day.
If I could do all that with family and friends it would be even better. I was lucky to have my wife with me there and I also made really good friends. but of course I was really far from my family and friends. The best day for me would be doing all that with all of them.
What kite gear do you use? Any favourite brands?
I love surfing and strong winds so my favorite set up is a small kite with a surfboard. Now it's not the best season here for kiting so i am practicing a lot of foiling and I love it. I think I am getting addicted to it. I love the silence when you are riding and the freedom you feel specially here that we have almost all the ocean for us. I have no favorite kite brand but for clothing I really like Patagonia. They are really focused on outdoor sports and sustainability which I love.
What excites you the most about kitesurfing?
I love the freedom it gives me. Surfing, cruising, jumping, there are endless possibilities with it. I also like the fact that it connects me to really nice people and it brings me to really beautiful places. An amazing sport!
Any unique experience you have had in Sri Lanka so far?
Like i said before, i didn't travel a lot here yet but so far i had a lot of great experiences. I did some really cool downwinds and upwinds (with the foil) here. Whale and dolphin watching was really nice as well! The food here is amazing! I also loved the south. I caught really nice waves there. Definitely need to go back.
Sri Lanka/Perth (really hard to say because both are so different and I had such a great time in Australia. But I love the nature of Sri Lanka)
A good party/Netflix (Depend, if it's a really nice party, I go for it otherwise, Netflix for sure)
Early bird/night owl