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Maty Józsa: Snowboarding is something to be enjoyed

8/2/2024 | Horsefeathers / Renča

Maty Józsa is an eighteen-year-old Slovak rider who has participated in two Prime Park Sessions in Stubai, Austria, secured 10th place in the Big Air Europa Cup in France, and earned 11th place at the Junior World Championships in New Zealand. Recently, Maty has been increasingly enjoying the discipline of Big Air, where he is making quite a mark. Don't miss the opportunity to catch up with this young Slovak snowboarding talent.


Maty Jósza

Can you please introduce yourself and tell us how and when you got into snowboarding?

My name is Martin Jósza, I am 18 years old, I am from Bratislava, and I also live there. When I was little, my parents and I often went skiing, and I skied until I was 4-5 years old. My mom and sister snowboarded, so I wanted to try it too. Later, I joined Frontline, which was a snowboarding club in Bratislava that no longer exists. Then I joined Richard Skandera, where I learned the basics of all rotations that I know now. I also rode with Marek Hliničan for a while, and with him, I learned, for example, the backside double cork. And then I just rode a lot. Two years ago, I was at the Junior World Championships in Leysin, where I went with Maty Matys. I managed to reach the finals and finished 13th in the Big Air discipline. Thanks to that, I started to be supported by the sports club of the Slovak police and the Slovak Ski Association. I started training with Maty Matys, and in Banger Park, we went over all the basics, and I slowly relearned everything I had learned before.

Did you start regularly competing?

Yes, I started preparing for the Junior World Championships, which were last year in New Zealand. My first Prime Park Session two years ago was also included in the preparation, where I landed my first back triple 14. In December 2022, I broke my thumb, so I missed a big part of the competitions. In Slovakia, it was necessary to have 60+ points to remain in the national team, and the last competitions of the season where I could gather some points were in New Zealand, so I went there.

Can you tell us more about New Zealand?

I went to New Zealand with Richard Skandera. We arrived a bit earlier so that I could train there, but the park where the Junior World Championships were held was set up about a week before the official training sessions, so I didn't have as much time as I wanted. I fell twice in slopestyle, so I tried Big Air, where I finished 7th after the first round and 8th after the second round. I made it to the finals and there I did a backside 14 and frontside 10, finishing in 11th place.

How did you like snowboarding in New Zealand?

Snowboarding in New Zealand was awesome, I was only in Cardrona, but regarding the park, it was greatly equipped. There was a mini park, medium park, big air, U-ramp, mini ramp, big jumps, small jumps and jib features.

foto: @haiiiiia

„Lately, I've been enjoying Big Air a bit more. Firstly, it's simpler than slopestyle, and it's easier for me to focus on a single jump where I have to give my all, compared to slopestyle, which requires a bit more handling.“

Let's also talk about Prime Park Sessions. Could you first briefly introduce what Prime Park Sessions actually are?

Prime Park Sessions are private sessions in the Austrian Stubai, each session lasts one week. It has been organized for many years, riders pay for it, they receive a special lift pass and access to the biggest and best jumps available in Europe at that time. And they just ride there. Accommodation is not included, but there is a wellness center, fitness center, and airpark in Stubai, as well as photographers and videomakers who create content, which you then have available.

How do you evaluate the whole concept of Prime Park Sessions?

Prime Park Sessions are awesome, but the weather has to be good. Almost all the world's best riders go there, and I would say that if someone wants to see the "Red Bull helmet" in action, Prime Park Sessions offer the greatest chance that it will be there. And not just one.

Let's now move onto tricks, you mentioned several times the backside 14, is it currently your top trick or do you have something else up your sleeve?

Currently, it's already backside 16 melon and on the frontside, I went for frontside 14 in New Zealand, so those are probably the best tricks on both sides, and then I also have the cap 12.

How does your training process usually go?

In the fall, I train on the airbag at Banger Park, in the winter I try to ride as much as possible. After winter, there's a bit of a break, and then summer preparation begins, which mainly includes strength training. I jump all the tricks into the airbag first, and then transfer them to the snow.

What are your plans for this season?

Three weeks ago, I managed to break my collarbone in Penken Park. I underwent surgery, and rehabilitation awaits me slowly. After that, I still plan to attend as many European cups as possible. In January, I participated in the European Cup in Font Romeu, where I finished 10th in the Big Air discipline.

foto: @haiiiiia

How do you see your snowboarding future overall? Would you like to pursue a competitive career or have you also considered filming videos etc?

Certainly, I would like to compete in the World Cup and similar events, but at the same time, the entire snowboarding scene is increasingly moving towards video production. So, I will probably have to start focusing more in that direction as well.

Is there anything you'd like to pass onto young people who want to dedicate themselves to snowboarding at a similar level?

Honestly, I don't even know what advice to give them because I've always done snowboarding because I enjoyed it and still do, and more or less, I just rode. Everything else came with it. But you need to ride as much as possible and, above all, know how to enjoy it. If someone rides because they want to reach a certain level and pushes themselves too hard, it will eventually stop being enjoyable to them, so it's important for it to be enjoyable for you, and that way, you'll keep progressing further and further.

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