This week’s conversation is with Mark Healey, a professional big-wave surfer, award-winning spear-fisherman, free-diver, photographer, filmmaker, and part-time Hollywood stuntman.

Mark’s made no shortage of major achievements in his career as a waterman.

Earning his first surf sponsorship at age 13 and going pro at 17, the 31-year-old has racked up victories at big-wave events like Todos Santos and—in 2008—nabbed the Spearfishing World Cup.

While he’s encountered his share of close calls—from shark attacks to blackouts—Mark thrives on the elements of danger inherent to his work.

And that is a central part of this conversation.

We discuss embracing challenges and why it’s important to face adversity head on rather than run from it.

When you get to that edge, that point where you’re uncomfortable, that’s where you really learn what’s possible for yourself.

Mark is wise beyond his years and I can’t wait for you to learn from him.

“When the waves are really big I have this undeniable sense that I’m doing what I was built for. I can relax. It’s me.”

In This Episode:

  • How he describes his profession
  • His path to becoming a professional big wave surfer at age 17
  • His experience shooting the “Shark Riders” video for a GoPro product launch
  • Understanding sharks better: their body language, age, and temperament
  • How he got exposed to the water and larger surf
  • What it was like growing up broke in Hawaii but right next to a legendary surf break
  • The best advice he got from his parents
  • What it’s like having other people call him selfish for doing what he loves
  • His relationship with embracing the unknown and chaotic environments
  • Facing adversity head on vs. running away from it
  • What he’s most hungry for
  • Why other cultures and remote areas of world fascinate him – specifically Fiji
  • How he gets in his own way
  • The closest he’s come to death while surfing


Listen via: Apple Podcasts | Android | SpotifyStitcher | Pocket Casts |  RSS




“I do things in the ocean that people are either incapable of or unwilling to do.”

“One of the biggest benefits and legs up I’ve had in my entire life is being able to experience having to have little money and not seeing any chance in my happiness the whole time.”

“There’s no use in whining about your situation. You’re the one to change it.”

“Being able to slow things down in a chaotic, stressful situation is my strong point.”

“You can’t master the external world, but you can master the internal world. What’s going on with yourself.”

“The real mastery is mastering what’s inside your head.”


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Find more information on Healey Water Ops here


Waterman |

Mark Healey is a legendary and intrepid big wave surfer, free diver, spear fisherman, conservationist, skydiver, bow hunter, yoga practitioner, photographer, filmmaker and Hollywood stuntman. He has devoted his life to the sea. In doing so becoming one of the world’s foremost professional Watermen.