INTERVIEW BY CYNTHIA HORNER
Q: What is it like being a pro rider?
A: I started BMX bikes about eight years ago and I loved what I was doing so I started posting videos. I started worked my way into amateur and then professional competitions. I started getting sponsors from posting the videos. I just pushed myself and kept making videos. I took steps.
Q: Did you always have a plan to go to another level?
A: I always took it seriously. There was a track near my house and I that’s where I got into racing. I became super competitive and we started traveling out of state. We were doing tricks and doing difficult things that were freestyle. I also looked up to a lot of the pro BMX riders and knew it was something I wanted to do. At that point I started following the lead of others that were out there. I started hanging out meeting new people, so it was a hobby, but I wanted to do more with it.
Q: How would you describe the BMX community? Is there a lot of camaraderie?
A: Yes, there is.
Q: Is it difficult to learning tricks?
A: It takes steps. There were tricks that I wanted to learn, but after I learned some tricks other tricks came sort of easily. Some tricks are more advanced, but after I learned some of them, I was able to help me break through.
Q: Do you have a gym routine?
A: I had lower back issues from riding and not doing course training exercises, so now I train at a place where a lot of pro athletes go. We do a lot of strength and conditioning and deep tissue work. It’s not a public gym; it’s more of a private place for coaching. It has helped me as an athlete to get to that next level. If I’m going to be in a competition, we start prepping for that kind of stuff. When my back is going through stuff it helps to have a physical therapist. And the deep tissue work with my coach helps me get the pain out of my system a lot faster instead of just sitting around waiting for the pain to go away.
Q: Are you on a strict diet?
A: I will cut out certain things if I am going to be in a competition so that I’m lighter and can do more tricks. I like eating as healthy as I can. I try not to eat fast food and greasy stuff and I try to stay on top of my diet.
Q: Do you do much film and TV?
A: When I first got involved with freestyle thing, I was on a TV show that’s not on anymore, but it was a reality show, called “Camp Woodward” that I did when I was around 16. Then my agent got me a Nike commercial and I got a role in the XXX: Return Of Xander Cage. People still say they’ve seen me in that one.
Q: What else do you enjoy doing?
A: I love music and hip hop and a friend of mine has a studio. I like messing around with that stuff, too.
Q: What do fans like to ask you when they meet you?
A: They want to ask me about different tricks and sometimes they are super surprised that I might say that it took an hour to learn one. They see my videos and they don’t realize it may have taken a lot of tries to get the tricks.