Heroines for the Planet

Meet Ishita Malaviya, India’s First Professional Female Surfer!

Screen Shot 2015-09-09 at 11.28.02 AM

As some of you may recall, I recently became obsessed with surfing.  I was shocked by  how powerful I felt while out in the water–strong and untouchable, like I could do anything.  Of course, I’m lucky enough to have grown up in a home and a family that wanted me to feel like that all the time.

Ishita Malaviya, on the other hand, always felt like she was expected to simply go to school, get married, and have kids. When she discovered surfing, her friends and family thought she was crazy.  But she turned it into a passion and is using her passion to get other girls from India to think outside the box.

Since discovering surfing in 2007, Ishita has become India’s first female professional surfer, a brand ambassador for Roxy surfwear, and the co-founder of Shaka Surf Club, a surfing school that also provides lessons to underprivileged kids and gets more girls out on the water.

Ishita, we’re giving you a big thumbs up here at Eco-Chick.  Any chance I could get a lesson from you soon?

Sophie Hessekiel is a writer, comedian, and occasional musician who has fled Westchester to pursue feminism, fashion, ecology and comedy in the far-flung fields of Poughkeepsie and Manhattan. When not interning at Eco-Chick, she is writing and performing with her sketch group at Vassar or deconstructing Taylor Swift and Tinder with her gal pals. She also interns for Wifey.tv and is always on the lookout for great new video content. Sophie is studying English, Film, and Español at Vassar, and she wants to make television when she grows up—or, you know, now. Whichever comes first.