Bali’s star surf girl, Diah Rahayu, has officially announced that she will re-sign with longtime sponsor Rip Curl Southeast Asia for another two years, ensuring women’s surfing will be represented at the highest level on her home island of Bali and beyond. The stylish surfer from Seminyak, Bali, who turns 24 this week, made the announcement on the anniversary of her professional surfing career, which began with Rip Curl 12 years ago.
When Diah started surfing on her home beaches of Seminyak at the age of 12, under the tutelage of her surfing father, the notion of a Balinese female surfer was practically unheard of. Women in Bali did not feel the lineup was a space open to them and many Indonesian women still remain deterred from enjoying surfing’s many physical and mental health benefits for fear of their skin tanning a darker shade. Over the past 12 years, Diah has made it her mission to change that.
Through her undeniable surfing talent and her unwavering determination, Diah has pioneered the most successful professional surfing career for a woman to date in Indonesia. In addition to competing at a high level and representing Rip Curl on The Search, it has been Diah’s passion to prove to women – and men – in Indonesia and Southeast Asia that surfing is a healthy and active lifestyle available to them, and to show girls that “a strong woman is a beautiful woman.”
Diah’s grace and skill riding waves, combined with her fun-loving and adventurous spirit, have made her one of the most recognizable faces in women’s surfing in Southeast Asia. She has won professional surfing events across the continent, graced the cover of national magazines and billboards, and grown into a beloved ambassador for the sport in Asia. From Bali to Thailand, Diah has taught countless women how to surf and served as a strong role model for girls, proving that they can achieve on par with boys. In between, she’s also made time to earn her university degree. As Diah likes to say, “Dreams are as real as you want them to be.”
With the support of Rip Curl, Diah will continue her mission to inspire women to ride the waves and overcome gender barriers in sports. She will continue to pave the way and create opportunities for the next talented crop of Indonesian women surfers such as fellow Rip Curl teammate Taina Izquierdo and Bali shredder Cinta Hansel.