As far back as I can remember, growing up bodyboarding and watching the best bodyboarders, jack stance a.k.a drop knee, always captured my attention. I couldn't really get the hang of it but I kept trying until I could finally get up in the stance and ride straight in the white wash. My first proper ride was at Ho'okipa on a solid day for a kid my size. I rode the wave straight for quite a while and remember looking left and right and seeing the water beneath me. Compared to riding prone, the view from higher up felt like I was soaring like a bird, and that feeling was so cool, just gliding on the surface. From that moment on I was determined to learn how to drop knee and actually ride the face of the wave. I would watch as many videos as I could that featured drop knee riding and I would just rewind over and over, pressing pause, then watching it in slow motion until it made sense. Guys like Jack Lindholm, Kainoa McGee,Jimmy Hutaff, Chado, Leroy Kaiwi, Robbie Crawford, Joey Vieira, Dave Ballard, and Paul Roach were my favorites to watch because they were all goofy footers. I was totally biased about who I wanted to learn from. I would put my bodyboard on the floor in front of the tv and act like I was riding the waves that these guys were tearing apart, making the motions and even falling on the ground trying to do snaps, haha.
As I got older, I started studying the top regular foot riders like Fred Booth, Kyle Maligro, Jacky Buder, Raffi Meyer, Crispin Hughes, Keone Gunderson and many more. When Dave Hubbard started blowing up, we were pretty close in age, and I remember being so determined to one day become a professional dropknee rider and to be able to ride like him. We were both teenagers at the time so it was just a dream but I made it a goal to pursue what I believed was possible, no matter what it took. Then I saw Bud Miyamoto for the first time and that really turned up the fire another notch. We were from different islands and backgrounds but we all shared the same passion for going out on any day, in any conditions, and putting in the work to be the best we could be. Growing up in Hawai'i, for any kid that loved bodyboarding as much as I did, it was always the dream to have your own signature model. But that was never the main goal. The main goal was to be able to ride all waves in all conditions at any size both frontside and backside. Versatility and performance : I never gave up on that focus and it remains the same today.
I started out riding boards that were 50/50 prone/ drop knee, then I went to 60/40 drop knee/ prone templates. I rode the Quest model for a long time, then fell in love with the DKB model. I remember telling myself if I could ever have my own board it would be similar to these shapes, taking the stuff I knew worked and leaving out what I didn't need. Then I started riding custom boards. That really helped me learn about what goes into tuning up all the various elements; the rails, the core, channels or no channels, crescent tail vs bat tail, the over length, the wide point down, the distance from the nose, and so much more. It was a big learning process with lots of errors in the beginning, haha. I would ask all of my peers on Maui what worked for them and why? I was eager to learn and piece together this puzzle. I will never forget when Triad asked me to design a signature model, I pretty much cried tears of joy as all the learning, hard work, inspiration and dedication had come to fruition in this opportunity. What I have created is truly what I envisioned : a board that would perform for Hawaiian riders on all islands and in all types of conditions. It is a drop knee styled board but is absolutely capable of riding prone when needed. Versatility plus functionality. I am proof that working hard to fulfill a passion that you believe in will ultimately lead you to achieving your goals. For me it is always going to be about having fun in the ocean and working hard to fulfill a certain passion. You will create what you believe. Hope to see you out in the water.
Mahalo Nui Loa
The Marcus "DMarx" Rodrigues Signature Model features a Kinetic core, Surlyn slick and double stringers on versatile template that favors the DK enthusiast.