Makaukai (Makua) Rothman was born and raised on the North Shore of
Oahu, Hawai’i. The son of “Fast” Eddie Rothman, a local legend of the
area’s surfing culture, Makua was on a surfboard as early as age two.
By age 13, he had become a fixture in the North Shore surf community,
making a name for himself based on his skill rather than lineage.
Despite his love of the waves, asthma made the sport challenging and
dangerous for the young man. To improve his stamina, Rothman engaged
in rigorous training and participated in various sports such as water
polo, martial arts, and soccer.
Though he participated in standard surfing competitions, Rothman is
best known for surfing big waves, like those found on the North
Shore’s home turf. At only 18 years of age, he dazzled the world with
his ride of a 66-foot wave at Jaws, an area known as some of the most
dangerous waters on Earth. The ride earned him the 2003 Billabong XXL
Big Wave Challenge Award and propelled him onto the highest stages of
big wave surfing.
Rothman dominated the World Surf League’s (WSL) Big Wave World Tour in
2015 to bring home the inaugural championship. Since then, he’s
continued to be a force in big wave competitions and exhibitions.
Alongside surfing, Rothman is also a successful recording artist. His
first full-length album, entitled Sound Waves, debuted at #1
on Billboard’s World Music Album chart and reached #1 on Billboard’s
Reggae Album chart.