Role Model: Bo Stanley

Role Model // Joanie Hudson // 04/10/12
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By Kelly Kirlin

Bo Stanley

It's unclear when it happened, but somewhere along the way, the image of the ideal female surfer transformed from the girl with the strongest core to the girl who looked the best in a bikini. At least that's the message 22-year-old surfer Bo Stanley is trying to reverse by signing on as the new ambassador of "Healthy is the New Skinny," a multi-platform movement holding the beauty, fashion—and now surf—industries responsible for creating lasting change to our definition of "beauty." Here, guest writer Joanie Hudson sits down with Bo to talk surfing, the pressures of being thin and creating quantifiable change:

Joanie: Where did you learn to surf?
Bo: I learned to surf when I was five in Scorpian Bay, Mexico. My parents have had a house down there for 30 years, so it's my second home.

Where would you love to surf?
My dream surf destination would be Indonesia, it’s the one place I have yet to go and the surf looks perfect! I would definitely pack my 6'2'' Channel Islands Rookie, that thing works like a beauty in all conditions.

What motivated you to join the "Healthy is the New Skinny" campaign?
I grew up in an industry where I've witnessed first hand the pressure that's put on girls at a very young age to be thin. I've watched so many girls not get the same opportunities as others, not based on their surfing ability, but their measurements alone. Through 'Healthy is the New Skinny' I 'm able to help spread the word about positive body image, and show women that the media represents a false figure.

Is there a particular interaction that stood out on their most recent "Perfectly Unperfected" tour?
To be given the opportunity to go on the PUP tour was the most awesome experience I've ever had. We reached the ears of 10,000 students and got to share a message of positive body image. I cannot even begin to tell you how many girls came up to us to say how we changed their lives and opened their eyes. Young girls believe what they are shown, so it's a shame the surf industry continues to promote underweight, unhealthy girls.

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