Kale Brock is a multifaceted individual, an award-nominated writer, filmmaker, and speaker who holds a deep-rooted passion for health, wellbeing, and the thrilling world of surf.
Beginning his career in TV journalism, Kale soon found that storytelling was his true calling. He dedicated himself to creating engaging narratives about human health, often intertwined with his passion for surfing.
This journey led him to produce “The Gut Movie”, an innovative documentary where Kale lived among The San tribe in Namibia to explore and understand the human microbiome. He continued this exploration of global health practices with his second documentary, “The Longevity Film”, travelling to the world’s ‘blue zones’ to investigate the dietary and lifestyle factors that contribute to their notable health and longevity.
A successful author, Kale’s acclaimed books, including “The Gut Healing Protocol”, “The Art Of Probiotic Nutrition”, “Mandy Microbe’s Big Gut Adventure”, and “The Longevity Book”, have brought him international recognition and respect.
Despite these achievements, Kale’s love for the ocean remained undiminished, which led him to establish The Surfer’s Roadmap. Noticing a void in the area of surf progression guidance, Kale designed this comprehensive platform to aid surfers in enhancing their skills and achieving their full potential in the sport.
Beyond his work as a writer and filmmaker, Kale engages with his audience as a TV presenter, high-performance surf coach, and inspiring speaker. His charisma and authenticity have allowed him to amass a substantial following of over 100k subscribers on YouTube.
To sum it up, Kale Brock is a storyteller, a surfer, and a passionate advocate for health and well-being, who continues to inspire many with his work and his love for the sea.
We met with Kale to find out more about his work, surfing, and life.
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Hey Kale, where are you today, and what are you up to?
I’m in Adelaide, South Australia which is where I grew up. Today I’ve been desk-bound for 5 hours and filmed a new course for another 5. It’s a particularly busy time in my life right now.
You have a wide range of experience, skills, and passions. Let’s start with your interest in health, well-being, and longevity. What sparked your interest in this area?
I had a heart condition when I was younger. The doctors told me they wanted to perform surgery and I really wasn’t comfortable with that so I went in another direction. I met an amazing mentor who taught me about wellbeing and I worked with her for a long time. I became a journalist and focused in on this area in my work for about 8 years. Nowadays it’s more of a personal hobby and I don’t speak about it very much outside of friends and family situations.
Making your Longevity Film must have been an amazing experience. Okinawa and Nicoya are high on our bucket list of destinations. Can you share some tips for optimizing human health and longevity?
We found that there were some fundamental underpinnings that seemed to support a long, healthy and happy life. They were Nutrition, Movement, Community and Mindset. Honestly, it was this movie that led me to stop working in the well-being space because I realised that we are overcomplicating it so much in this day and age. When I finished this film, my goals changed. I’m working towards having my own property by the coast where I can grow my own food, raise a family and live a nice sustainable existence surrounded by great people.
What about the gut microbiome? We suspect that mental health starts with physical and, in particular, gut health. We’re big fans of polyvagal theory and exploring the gut-brain connection. What are your thoughts and what did you learn from the San tribe?
This isn’t really my field anymore. Once I finished wellness, I really finished it you know? I stopped reading articles. I stopped reading books. I stopped doing interviews. The best approach is a simple one and I think it all boils back to variety on your plate equals variety in your microbiome. Eat a seasonal, local, organic and wholefood diet filled with colour and variety and you’re probably guna’ win. Being with The San was incredible. Just seeing their connection and integration with their local ecology was beautiful and I really took that away from the experience.
You’re a great surfer, tell us about your surfing journey.
I grew up on a flat ocean. I barely surfed until I was 15 or so when my brother got his driver’s license so it was a long road for me to progress to an adept level and even now I’m still working on it. For me, moving to the east coast was huge because the frequency of my sessions dialled up so much. Surfing every day you just naturally improve and I really enjoyed that process. Then, the next big thing for me was teaching people. Once I started to write The Surfer’s Roadmap I had to really hone in on the micro techniques and details of surfing because I had to learn to articulate it to students on the fly (in cohesive and simple ways). Surprisingly, this really fast-tracked my own improvement and I think it did that through simple cue-ing.
Your YouTube channel is growing fast. What have been highlights as a “YouTuber” and what are some challenges?
I mean in surfing terms it might be growing fast. In the broader YouTube realm, I’m still small-fry and growing slowly. It’s a weird game for sure and I really enjoy it. The highlight is meeting people in real life and having conversations with them about their surfing journeys. I really like that. And of course, coaching them and seeing them improve in real time is pretty exciting and fulfilling. I don’t like the ‘social media’ aspect to it – I reckon I get like .5% negative comments, which is so tiny, but it still reminds you of how un-evolved some humans are and how judgey the surfing community can be.
I also feel a lot of pressure to live up to people’s interpretation of me through my videos. In real life I’m quite boring to be honest so there’s a little dissonance there that I observe but I truly enjoy the job I’ve created and the incredible community I have attracted.
Are surfers waking up to the benefits of health and wellbeing?
I think the world has slowly. We’re seeing guys on the world tour meditate and really look after themselves so I guess it’s becoming a little more common. It’s not something I really chat too much about with my surfers so I don’t know, but I think in the future I’ll slowly integrate the two areas, surfing and wellbeing, a little more, but never to the point where I’m preaching what I think to be ‘healthy’.
What are three things you’d recommend every surfer do to improve their surfing?
Surf more. Visualise more. And be open to the fact that you can improve at any age if you want to.
Let’s imagine… you can spend a month at an epic remote surf spot with no one else around, where would you go and which boards do you take?
Nicaragua (I haven’t been before but I’m going soon!). I’d take my mid length, sharpeye and a HPSB.
Your favorite meal for fuelling high-performance surfing?
Eggs on gluten-free sourdough pretty much every morning 🙂
What is your vision for the future? Any other projects you can share?
At the moment things are particularly intense. I’m working on many behind the scenes projects. Some left of centre and others in the weeds of the established business I already have. It’s not that I’m bored but I am really interested in continuing to evolve myself and the narrative that I share (and how I share it). We have some really cool new courses coming out; a fitness one and my advanced roadmap which has taken me two years to finish.
Any words of advice for people wondering whether to pursue their creative passions?
If it’s important to you, then you just gotta’ show up and find the space to do it. I understand if people are busy, or they’re struggling, but in this day and age most of us are so fortunate to have access to technology and the internet and this has enabled so much more freedom of expression. The goal should be getting to a point of pursuing your art for the art’s sake. And I think it can take a lifetime to get there. Maybe your art is raising your children? Or building houses? Don’t let anyone define what it is you should be doing; just open yourself up and let it shine through.