Yndiara Asp competing in World Skateboarding Tour in San Juan, Argentina.
© Leandro Terrile / Red Bull Content Pool
Skateboarding

Yndiara Asp risked big and is being rewarded with a rad life on four wheels

The Brazilian lives and skates by the motto “Work hard, have fun and make history!” We find out lots more about her life, including big plans for Paris.
Written by Tom Ward
10 min readPublished on
Part of the fabled Florianópolis bowl-skating tradition that gave the world Pedro Barros, Yndiara Asp was originally headed for a life in education when she was spotted by Santa Cruz Skateboards while riding a bowl by the beach in 2013.
She learned to shred from day dot. A lifelong surfer who began skating at the age of seven, she’s gone on to compete in women's park events at several World Skateboarding Championships and placed fourth at the X Games in 2018.
Inspired by her dog Hawk (as well as possibly, the real-life vert hero Tony Hawk) Asp took part in the historic skateboarding competition at the Tokyo Games, bagging eighth in the women's park event.
Here’s how she got there...
01

Growing up

6 min

Yndiara Asp

Brazilian sensation Yndiara Asp reflects on the life she left behind in order to pursue her skate career.

English +1

Born in 1997, Asp was always destined for an extreme life. “Growing up in Florianópolis is what made me choose this lifestyle I have today,” Asp says of her Brazilian hometown. “My father had always dreamed of living close to the beach because he likes to surf, so they had me there.”
Asp grew up surfing with her father and brother – it’s where she learned to handle a board. She got her first skateboard for Christmas in 2004, when she was seven, though only started riding it for real when she was 15.
“There was always a strong influence towards practising sports, both for me and my brother,” she says. She was hooked, especially on the quest to be the best.
“I have always enjoyed everything that challenges me to be the best,” she says. “In school, I was the one who wanted to get the highest grade I could. My mother jokes that she had to ask me to skip school, because I didn’t like missing class and getting behind on the content.”
School would play a big part of her life for years to come, even as her entrance into the local skate scene was just taking off.
02

Enter Tony Hawk

Asp’s dog is called Hawk, the “first name I related to skateboarding,” she says, giving thanks to the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater video game series.
“We named my dog Hawk, because when he first arrived at our house, still a puppy, we were playing video games,” she explains. “There was a skateboard there and he got up on it and paddled. We looked at him and said ‘Wow, it’s Hawk!’”
Hawk never got on a board again, but the name stuck.
03

Diverse beginnings

Yndiara Asp poses for a portrait during Red Bull Athlete Summit 2022 in Guaruja, Brazil on January 11, 2022.

Yndiara Asp in her native Brazil

© Fabio Piva / Red Bull Content Pool

Unlike some neighbourhoods, Asp’s hometown was incredibly diverse, with people from all walks of life taking part in the sport. Heavily influenced by Californian skate culture, the area was home to a number of inspirational skaters Asp had long looked up to.
“In Florianópolis, especially in the Rio Tavares neighbourhood, we live a lifestyle connected to Californian skateboarding,” Asp says. “[It’s all about] pools and skateboarding tracks at home. We have the Hi Adventure, one of the main skateboarding hubs in Florianópolis, which is a meeting point for all the different generations.”
She describes the area as “a big gathering of friends”.
“Once you’re in the track, it’s always from one skateboarder to the other - regardless of level, race, gender or anything else,” she says. “Skateboarder to skateboarder, for the sake of the evolution of the sport and individual overcoming.”
It's here she met Barros, a hometown skater and five-time World Champion. “My first thought was ‘So dope’. Then, when I started riding, I would see him up close on the tracks, doing the most amazing sessions I have ever seen. He would always say 'Hi' to me, even though we did not know each other. Seeing your idol and hearing him say 'Hi' to you is something so special.”
Motivated by the encouragement of Barros and the welcoming and diverse community around her, Asp doubled down, determined to become a noteworthy part of the scene. Eventually, she had a choice to make.
04

Life choices

“I liked going to school. My favourite subject, after physical education of course, was mathematics,” Asp says. In fact, she was so into school that she studied physical education for two years at the Federal University of Florianópolis. “My family was super proud, my parents did not even go to university, so they were very happy for me,” she says.
Her family may have been proud, but Asp was having second thoughts. “My classes took place in the afternoon and there was no time left for skateboarding!” she says.
Realising university wasn’t her first choice of how to spend her time, she took a leave of absence to devote herself to skating. She never went back. During her time off she quickly became a pro skater, bagging sponsor deals with Santa Cruz and Vans. The following year, she joined the Red Bull team, won several world tour events and got even more sponsorships.
“Everyone would say ‘Come on, you have only two more years to go, you’re halfway through the course,’” Asp recalls. “But at the same time, I could see that the following two years I would have to work on the final graduation paper, find an internship, among other things and deep down, my heart would beat stronger for skateboarding.”
The workload was too much, and with skateboarding due to make its debut on the biggest stage of all in Tokyo, Asp thought she might have a chance to get called up. She left her studies behind for good, with no regrets. “Once I had decided, I went without looking back.”
05

The quest to be the best

Yndiara Asp is seen during Red Bull Doodle Art National Final in São Paulo, Brazil on April 15, 2023

Yndiara Asp gets involved with Red Bull Doodle Art

© Marcelo Maragni / Red Bull Content Pool

It’s near-impossible to become a world-class athlete without a healthy dose of competition. Just like she wanted to be the best at school and stand out in her neighbourhood, Asp was determined to excel on the world skate scene, too.
“My friends can tell you I’m very competitive,” she says. “We were on vacation and we rented a house with a tennis court and a soccer field. Everyday I would tell them, 'Let’s play something’ and my friends would always joke ‘Watch out, this girl is competitive’. I’m more competitive with myself, but it’s always good when there are other people to support and push each other forward. But I always strive for my best.”
In 2021, she got chance to put her competitive nature to the test on the world stage.
06

Slowing down

“The pandemic for me, personally, ended up being good in some ways,” Asp says of those weird few years. She got time to be at home, to reflect like we all did. She realised that we never know what tomorrow brings and that we need to appreciate everything. And she also built a skate track in her backyard.
“The pandemic also helped me accomplish another dream which was ‘Dude, I wanna build a track at home, I have the conditions and now I’m actually gonna do it,’” she says. “I would dream about it but I would never get started, and during the pandemic we did. It was because of the pandemic that we started it in the first place.”
07

Troubled times

Yndiara Asp practicing at Rio Skate Camp Brazil on August 17, 2022

Yndiara Asp in Rio De Janeiro

© Tauana Sofia / Red Bull Content Pool

Like anyone’s life, it hasn’t all been plain sailing for Asp. In difficult times she turns to her father, and also her mother and friends. She’s a big fan of meditation and self-help books too. During qualifying for Tokyo she messed up on a run. Her next run was postponed to the following day, making her even more nervous. She read a line in a book that said ‘We are only moved by two energies: the energy of fear and the energy of love’. She chose love over fear, focusing on images of her family, Hawk and happy moments skating. The trick boosted her confidence and the next day, she qualified.
On the physical side, diving into things head first has seen her get hurt often. “I’ve mostly had only foot and elbow sprains,” she says. “I have dislocated my elbow twice, but in October 2020, I broke my ankle and had to get surgery. It was one of my most serious injuries.”
That’s only part of it. Between 2019 and 2020 she hurt her hip, dislocated her elbow, then broke her ankle. “It was a sequence of injuries during a time where I wanted to ride more and practice,” she says.
Realising she had to slow down, she took three months off and began walking again in March 2021, just a few months before she was due in Japan. Her coach asked, “Hey, let’s do it in a way you can come back without getting hurt and you’re at your peak on the day?”
Asp went for it, arrived with no pain and eventually finished eighth.
08

Girls together

“My friends Dora and Isa went to [Tokyo],” Asp says. “We are always taking turns in the podiums representing Brazil and it’s a very healthy competition because they’re my best friends and at the same time they push me forward, as I do to them.” In other words, it’s the healthiest kind of rivalry. “One of us aces one trick, the other one wants to do it better, go higher,” she says.
She and Isa even got a matching tattoo down their side to commemorate the event. “I had never imagined taking part in skateboarding,” says Asp, calling the competition amazing. A highlight was meeting Letícia Bufoni, another Brazilian skateboarder.
“She’s my team-mate and a good friend,” Asp says. “We always meet, it’s great to see her and ride with her. Being able to get to know her up close and becoming her friend is something that skateboarding has given me and I think it’s incredible.”
The women’s skate scene in Japan also made an impression. “Sakura [Yosozumi] has been bringing women's skateboarding to a higher level, doing things we didn’t know were possible,” Asp enthuses. “We tend to limit ourselves, thinking ‘No, that’s something only the boys can do’, but nowadays they’re showing that it isn’t true, if we want it we can do it.”
Yndiara Asp poses for a portrait during LATAM Atheletes Summit 2022 in Guaruja, Brazil on January 11, 2022.

Yndiara Asp and her board

© Bruno Terena / Red Bull Content Pool

Do your best and push aside things that aren’t part of your dream. Make it happen, everything is possible for the ones who believe in it
09

Essentials

Like any young person frequently on the road, Asp has a few essentials to remind her of home and boost her up. She lists her skateboard (obviously) and headphones, but also necklaces with crystals. “I like the energy of the crystals, the story behind each one,” she says. “I love astrology signs. I’m a Libra with a rising sign in Leo. It’s good because Libra is a more quiet star sign and Leo is a fire star sign, so it brings in this fire energy.”
Speaking of energy, she also finds music essential when she’s had enough of listening to the wheels. “I have a very eclectic musical taste, I don’t even separate songs in playlists,” she says, somewhat chaotically. “On my headphones, you’ll find any song that makes me wanna dance.”
Pre-comp, however, it’s all about those quiet moments. “I like hanging alone for a while in my corner, breathing deeply, thinking about what I’m going to do and then I head to the park,” she says.
10

The future

Everything is on the table right now for Asp. She talks about more sponsorships, Paris, a pro model. Ultimately: more good times. When she’s fifty, she wants to be a happy old lady “filled with good stories, grateful for every second lived and surrounded by people I love".
Skateboarding will get her there. “Being a good professional skateboarder isn't just about skating well,” she explains. “It’s about being your best version in all parts of your life. As a skateboarder in the park, as a person on a daily basis. It’s being able to communicate, telling your story.” Her advice for the next Yndiara Asp? “Do your best and push aside things that aren’t part of your dream. Make it happen, everything is possible for the ones who believe in it.”

Part of this story

Yndiara Asp

Brazilian skateboarder Yndiara Asp developed her skills in the bowls of Florianópolis and is a rising star on the skate park scene.

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