Joey Garcia Interview: a pro who has extraordinary bike & creative skills

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I met Joey at Facebook again. We've known each other when I used to go to USA.
Also Joey came to Japan around 9years ago and I get to do shows with him.
My impression of Joey is , he has super extraordinary bike skill and always down to earth.
This time I asked him for an interview and he accept it nicely.
I deeply appreciate it.

Joey Garcia Introduction

Joey has been a super dirt jumper.
He got X-games bronze medal at 95 ,gold medal at 96, and bronze medal at 98.
Joey is well known for a smooth style and a very stylish style.
I don't know much about Joey , So I'm very excited for his interview.

Paul Jones, Zac Shaw, and Joey Garcia at a roadtrip from London to Germany

Joey Garcia's Interview

Please introduce yourself and tell us what you have accoumplished with BMX.

Joey Garcia, I've been on a bike since I was 4 because I have so much fun progressing and hanging out with friends. BMX takes over your life so if you know people that ride in your town, they are almost guaranteed to be in your group of friends. Besides the accomplishments of contest finishes, I can say that I have established friendships that will last a lifetime and that's probably the most valuable thing you can gain from riding.
I started racing when I was 4, turned pro when I was 15. Started dirt jumping when I was about 9, and at 16, it took over the majority of my time. I was lucky enough to ride for great companies like TNT, Schwinn, Airwalk, Ron Bonner (UGP and Shadow Conspiracy), and Solid Bikes. I try to ride everything possible, vert, street, park and dirt. I just got home from a road trip through Europe and you just ride whatever is in front of you. That is BMX to me...

I surpose you make your living by developing websites, designing printing materials and shoot photographs. Your websites are really pro quality. What is your skillset? When and How did you learn those skills? Did you learn when you ride for Schwinn?

I was playing on computers on my downtime from my bike. I got my degree in business but was not happy with the education so I went for a minor in graphic design to educate myself on design and programming. On a daily basis I code HTML | CSS | PHP mostly by hand. Other languages can be learned on a need to know basis like Ruby on Rails but I don't necessarily use them for every project. Design programs used are pretty basic, Photoshop, Illustrator, inDesign. I shoot photography quite a bit, Blake Peterson helped me get into it and I just kept on shooting. I have a studio here in my house I can shoot models or products in.

Invert at Mark Webb's ramp in Portsmouth, England

You are a owner of Luminat Ink. Could you please tell me why and how you get to start you own company.

After I got out of school I began freelancing graphic work. I mostly communicated with design firms in town and they would outsource work to me. Unfortunately with the downturn of the economy, some businesses have gone under and it has slowed the amount of work coming my way. I'm currently looking to get into a full time marketing position so I can keep traveling, riding and still afford my house here in Northern California.

When did you shift you lifestyle from a BMX pro rider to a web developer? and what made you do so?

At Roots 2001 in Orlando, FL I tore my ACL for the fourth time and all the meniscus had been taken out of my knee, which meant if I were to tear the ACL it again I would have to have a knee reconstruction most likely. I would rather walk when I'm 40 and enjoy riding for what it is rather than competing so I went back to school and rode in my free time. I decided to find something that would keep me off my feet during the day and preserve what is left of the health of my knee joints. Luckily the time away has let them heal and now I'm trying to get accepted for Hyalgen injections to create a syrup cushion in my joints. Hopefully I will be able to ride more without having swollen knees after...

Turn Down from Monterey, California.

What's the good point doing your business? Point out 3 please.

1) It's a skilled environment which means in every job, you usually learn something new, or better yourself in one way or another, much like riding bmx

2) I can work from anywhere. I judged the Dew Tour 2 years ago and worked on other projects in my downtime from Florida.

3) I make my own hours so if a riding session is going on, I wont miss it!

Please tell me about some hard times during running your business.

You are responsible for everything, most importantly the amount of jobs coming in and making sure all bills are paid including mortgage, property tax, income tax etc. In a slow economy, this can make it tough to stay afloat and luckily I've been able to keep things running here. This also means I may take on work I wouldn't normally want to be involved in. In an environment where you want to move forward, sometimes these jobs make you feel like your life is on "pause" instead of "play"..

Huge wall ride at Ramp Rats near San Francisco

What motivates you to keep running your business even going through hard times?

Probably the same motivation that kept me getting back on my bike after all the surgeries. I think many riders make a commitment to themselves to stick things out and enjoy what they are doing through the injuries. I'm motivated to see my past years education and doing what I enjoy somehow make a difference in my future.

Any synergy with BMX pro rider and a business owner.

You are on your own. It's a skilled profession so it's always you being compared to the skill of another person. You continually learn and progress so the mentality carries over of being in that situation so its nothing new to me. I feel comfortable with the way the dynamics work in this business.

What is your vision after 5 years in your business side and bike rider side?

I see that freelance is a good way to get educated but much like BMX, if you want to try to secure any financial future, you need to be a part of something bigger and better. For me, a marketing job would help keep work steady while being able to live without the feeling of having to hustle for jobs.

Any messages to the readers who rides BMX and dreaming to be a pro?

Ride because you enjoy it. Pile into the car and roadtrip somewhere new. Ride stuff you don't normally ride.

My Impression

What I felt from Joey's interview these 3 key word. "diligent","deep thinker", "growth mindset".


Joey gained his skill from his downtime during his pro contest rider days.
When you are a pro rider you can be a totally slack and do video games all day.
But Joey spent his downtime to learn something, and that is his profession now.
From that I consider him a very diligent man and he is very good at using time.
Also I imagine he has a high concentration power.

Deep Thinker

When he messed up his ACL at 2001 when was 22 or 23 years old.
If I were him I can't make the same decision, I won't see my future and I will ride my ass off.
But he made a wise decision. He backed off from being a pro rider and start walking the path as a pro creator.
Which won't hurt his ACL but provides more way to survive and create values through his life.

Growth Mindset

Joey puts himself in a competitive world and keep progressing.
He sees this situation the same as BMX and since he used to be on top of the game as a pro BMX rider.
He handles himself pretty good and progress himself.
I surpose he can stay focused and being carm even he is in the battle field.
When you can do that you can behave with minimum mistakes.

Related websites

Luminant Ink
Other Riders Interviews