What does surfing have to do with trading? As it turns out, quite a lot. Just ask Shane Dorian.
Shane is today’s guest on the SteadyTrade podcast. He’s a pro surfer … and an accomplished trader.
Kim Ann Curtin has been a fan of Shane Dorian for a long time. As both an amateur surfer and trader herself, she figured he’d probably have some great lessons to share.
Tim Bohen hadn’t been acquainted with Shane before the episode … But you’ll notice a serious bromance brewing between them within minutes. They connect on strategies, mindset, and learning styles … and a shared love of hunting!
You won’t want to miss this amazing conversation about riding the waves of the market … and the ocean!
About Shane Dorian
Shane is a Hawaii-born surfer who began surfing at the tender age of five. He spent 11 years touring on the World Championship Tour as a pro surfer before quitting the pro circuit to focus on big waves.
If you’re not familiar with big wave surfing, that’s a specific type of surfing involving surfing waves that are at least 20 feet high. Not impressed? Do a Google image search. It’s mind-blowing!
In addition to being one of the best-known big wave surfers in the world, Shane is also an accomplished trader, with 16 years’ experience!
Shane’s Trading Journey
Shane started trading in 2004. In the episode, he shares the unbelievable story of how he got started in the market by going “all in” on a coffee stock.
Most traders know this strategy isn’t usually the best idea. If the trade doesn’t go your way, it could decimate your account. But oddly, it worked out favorably for Shane. So did his next trade…
But he knew that he couldn’t tempt fate forever. Shane decided to get real about trading and started to seek out an education. He wanted to try to replicate his successes — but with the odds in his favor.
So … How Is Surfing Like Trading?
As Kim observes, there’s quite a bit of overlap in the stamina and emotional discipline necessary to become consistent as a surfer and as a trader.
The crew discusses several universal lessons and concepts that carry over seamlessly from suffering to trading, such as…
Find Your Tribe
Shane Dorian was featured in a great documentary called “Momentum Generation,” which focuses on a group of surfers who changed the world of pro surfing forever.
The surf scene today wouldn’t have evolved the way it did if it weren’t for the camaraderie of a group of ragtag surfers.
Likewise, the trading scene today has largely evolved due to the incredible online community of traders working together. That’s evident in groups like Tim Sykes’ Trading Challenge and the SteadyTrade Team community.
“Trading’s super easy,” says Shane … He’s kidding, of course!
Both surfing and trading can be extremely risky.
According to Shane, it’s vital to have a set of rules in place that you can adhere to and use as a guide to dictate your actions. That’s all to help you keep emotions out of the decision-making process.
When Shane is surfing, he needs to take into account what he values — he has a wife and kids. He needs to justify his choice to put himself in danger.
Likewise, he has to be prudent in trading. He values having an account that isn’t in the red, so potential trades must meet certain criteria to make it worth his while.
Consider the Consequences
Big wave surfing is extremely dangerous. Shane knows people who have died doing it … He’s even had close calls of his own.
He knows that to stay alive, he needs to take precautions. The potential of the wave has to match the risk. If it’s a scale of 1–10, it’s got to be a 9 or a 10. The idea? “Surf with as little risk as possible with as much reward as possible.”
Kind of sounds like the Sykes Sliding Scale, right?
While the consequence of a bad trade might not be personal injury, it could be the death of your account. Why waste your time and money on trades that aren’t worth it?
Don’t Be a Follower
Shane talks about how he has fellow surfers who are constantly chasing waves … “Full FOMO,” as he puts it.
As for him? If there are no waves, “I just don’t show up.”
Kim admires this ability to know when to say when and avoid chasing. And the crew talks about how this concept carries over to trading.
Don’t Try to Discover Companies
According to Shane, there are enough trading opportunities out there with existing companies … Why waste your time trying to anticipate the next thing?
The crew talks about “obvious” trades, and how it’s often a better tactic to react than to try to anticipate.
Plus, Shane shares his personal method of methodically finding potential trades and how long he holds positions!
Shane Dorian’s Top Tips For Surfers and Traders
To close out the episode, Shane offers some incredible life wisdom that’s appropriate for surfers and traders … Anyone, really!
Don’t miss why he thinks that passion, education, rules, and having a plan are VITAL for long-term success!
Connect With Shane
- Documentary: Check out “Momentum Generation”
- Instagram: @shanedorian
- Suggested reading: “Trade Like an O’Neil Disciple” by Gil Morales and Chris Kacher; “How to Make Money in Stocks” by William J. O’Neil
- Suggested podcast: Investing With IBD
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