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If a CT star can swoop in to any event and steal points they don't need away from someone who might, is the system broken? Photo: WSL/Tim Hain

Yep, with his millions of followers, Medina is doing all he can for the Brazilian people. Photo: Tim Hain/WSL

The Inertia

Our world feels like a confusing place right now. We’re all in lockdown, confined to our homes, trying to find ways to stay fit, stay employed, or maybe even stay sane while others are wondering how they might be able to help. If there’s one thing that can cure a global downturn in our psyche, it’s helping others. No doubt.  That’s why I did some snooping around to see how snow and surf athletes are giving back right now. What I found reminded me that it’s still a beautiful world out there. Here’s what seven athletes are doing to keep it that way.

Gabriel Medina

The two-time world champ has joined a number of other Brazilian celebrities (including pal Neymar) to encourage his countrymen and women to donate to causes of their choices. “Together, we can encourage a culture of giving,” he said on his Instagram account. Medina has thrown his considerable social weight behind two “transparent initiatives,” as he puts it: UniãoSP, which is raising funds for COVID-19 victims in San Paulo, and UniãoRio, another Coronavirus defense fund specifically set up for citizens of Rio de Janeiro. Nice work champ!

The man with the plan, Mark McMorris. Photo: Peter Morning

Mark McMorris


Snowboarder Mark McMorris isn’t pulling any punches. He recently donated $5,000 to ConquerCovid19, which is working to make sure frontline healthcare professionals in Canada are provided with proper safety equipment and resources. “Let’s do our part to flatten the curve and support what we can when it matters most,” he said.

John John Florence – happy to support his favorite local haunts. Photo: WSL

John John Florence

John John and other tour surfers are taking advantage of the WSL’s #StayLocal program where the League is obviously encouraging people to stay home while supporting local businesses. Meanwhile, they’re matching any of their athletes’ donations up to $2,000 – a pretty sweet little give-back initiative. The North Shore’s favorite son is donating to Chef Hui Give and Go Community Meal Program that is working with Open Kitchen Oahu to provide meals for those in need across the island. John John is also purchasing gift cards to Surf N Sea Haleiwa and the North Shore Surf Shop, brick and mortar icons on the North Shore that have to be hurting right now.  “Excited to find a couple of kids in Hawaii to give these to after isolation passes and the shops are back open,” he said. “These shops employ a lot of local people and have been staples in our community.”


Gabriel Medina, Lakey Peterson Win 2019 Freshwater Pro

Lakey Peterson isn’t doing much of this right now. But she is helping out. Photo: Miers/WSL

Lakey Peterson

Lakey Peterson and husband Tom are using the #Staylocal program to promote local shops in the Santa Barbara region for Lakey, and in Oz, where Tom is from. Lakey’s pushing buttons to help A-Frame Surf Shop in Carpinteria as well as Handlebar Coffee in SB. The couple is also throwing down in support of Swell Cafe in Jan Juc, a suburb of Torquay in Victoria. “It’s hard to know exactly how to help during this time but I know supporting local businesses is a huge part of it,” Peterson said.

Carissa Moore, on rail, and on-point with her donations. Photo: Cestari/WSL

Carissa Moore

Carissa Moore, always one at the forefront of giving back, made a sizable purchase from Banan, a local health food restaurant on Oahu, to share with kids at the Palolo Elementary School in Honolulu, which she hand delivered. “It was so nice to get out of the house and share some smiles with my community,” she said.

Elena Hight exploring the Sierra with Jeremy Jones in 'Ode to Muir.'

Nope, Elena isn’t getting out as much as she’d like this spring but she’s still helping where she can.

Elena Hight

Boarding for Breast Cancer has had to cancel events due to the COVID-19 outbreak so Elena Hight is stepping up to help the organization during its live online auctions. There’s a calendar of live auction events all week as B4BC works to raise money for an awesome cause. Elena will be live with the B4BC crew on Thursday.


Chloe Kim will have surgery after breaking her ankle

Chloe Kim is throwing down for charity as hard as she throws down in the pipe. Photo: Burton

Chloe Kim

Chloe Kim, one of the most prolific female riders in recent snowboarding history went in big time to help Coronavirus relief efforts. The freshman at Princeton donated $15,000 to the COVID-19 Response Fund, which was created by the Center for Disaster Philanthropy to “support preparedness, containment, response and recovery activities for those most affected and for the responders.” Chloe also donated a contest-used snowboard as a giveaway to support the fund. “I’m encouraging everyone to donate, even if it’s a dollar, anything will help,” she said.


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