Good style is timeless, powder never gets old, and Matt Belzile's footage always entertains. This part is amazing to witness knowing half of this footage was filmed after breaking his arm and undergoing mid-season surgery. Don't let the easy style fool ya, Matt's tough as nails.
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Early season the snow was good, and you guys were stacking clips. Then, one sunny day in February, you got a hammer on Hollywood Cliffs before going to Perfect Jump... where you ended up breaking your arm. How difficult was it having to step back knowing you were having a stacking season?
Well, it’s funny you say a stacking season because I felt the opposite. I was riding with Beau [Bishop], and Chris [Rasman] and I felt like they were really stacking, and I was falling behind. So when I broke my arm, it was really hard in the sense that I felt like I hadn’t done much with my season yet. I was just about to get it going, and, like you said, I got a good clip on Hollywood. That was a turning point. I was really getting things rolling. And, yeah, it was a pretty big bummer when I broke my arm. It was rough on the mental side of things. But I feel like April kind of provided some really good conditions, and that’s when I feel like I got most of my clips.
And how difficult was it coming back after surgery?
So, I broke my arm mid-February. My first day back on snow was April 1st and I went straight to sledding. I told myself to take it easy and work up to it. But it’s pretty easy to get caught up in the hype when everyone’s hungry to get clips and building big jumps. And I had zero confidence my first few days back and it was really hard to build that back up on bigger features. If your head’s not in it and you’re just not confident, that’s when things can go bad.
It’s crazy that you were even able to come back after that and still get a handful of clips for your part. It’s amazing.
Yeah. And I didn’t think that that would have been the case. But, when I broke my arm, I had a choice whether to put a plate in it or not. I got the plate and I think that was a good decision because it healed so quickly. Literally, five days after surgery, I was doing a lot of my life tasks with my hand, like brushing teeth and I could lift objects. So I think that really played a big part in my recovery.
“Watching Belzile come back and kill it was really amazing. I was with him the day he broke his wrist. But then he came back and I was super impressed with how short of a season he had and then what he was able to produce.” —BEAU BISHOP
You’ve filmed a lot of parts with many different crews. What’s the best recipe for success when it comes to the people you’re with?
That’s a hard question. But I think, ultimately, your crew is huge and if there’s negativity, or pressure and the mindset’s not there, then that makes it really difficult. And that’s just unenjoyable. But having a positive crew and having people of the same mindset. People who are out here first and foremost, to have a good time, I think that’s huge. And that’s what keeps me coming back every year and wanting to keep doing it. And it’s kind of like a never-ending art form. I just want to keep doing it better and better because the sky’s the limit with what you can do in those mountains. So, yeah, did I answer the question?
Totally. Is that what keeps it fresh?
I like to improve my snowboarding, and I always try to do new tricks to keep it fresh and new. Find new zones. That’s hard to answer, too. I just love the process and I love going out and working towards this end product and doing it with the homies. It’s just such a fun process of filming and coming out with clips. Every time you get a clip, there’s a dopamine rush, and I guess it’s addictive because I just want to keep doing it.