Get to know Martin Schopf, originally from Austria, EADA student by day and pro football freestyler by night.
Originally from Austria, what made you come to Barcelona?
As my girlfriend found a cool opportunity to work here, she inspired me to move here as well. I’ve had the chance to travel quite a lot in the past years but it has been the first time for me to really live in another country and it has been one of the best experiences for me.
How would you describe the football freestyle?
For me, football freestyle is a mixture of sport and art. It is not only about performing difficult tricks while juggling a football, but also about creating your own style and expression.
How and when did you start?
With 14 I had problems with my knee and couldn’t play football on the field for a few months. During these months almost every day, I went to a park to improve my technique and practice freestyle and saw a lot of progress in the beginning. Eventually, after getting to know and being inspired by other people in the freestyle scene, I decided to fully focus on it.
Who influenced you the most?
I believe that my father’s passion for photography and music have always inspired me a lot to also stay dedicated to what I enjoy most.
What is the achievement that you are the most proud of?
I’m proud and feel grateful for having had the chance to reach the world finals a few times and also perform in other countries. The coolest for me, however, has always been when I was able to inspire others, as I still remember how I excited I felt when I got started.
How many hours per week do you train?
Right now, 1-2 hours for 5-6 days a week.
What is your personal motto?
I don’t really have a motto per se, but I try to live my life being grateful and being the best, I can be.
An item you couldn’t live without?
A football hahaha.
The best advice someone ever gave you? And an advice you would give to someone that wants to start football freestyle?
“If you blame it on someone else, don’t expect it to get better.”
An advice I would give to any beginner would be to focus on enjoying the sport as much as possible without comparing yourself too much to others, especially online. Sometimes it can be really frustrating to learn new moves, but if you have patience and enjoy the process everything will come sooner or later.
Now we will ask you some quick questions to get to know you better.
Early bird or night owl?
Midnight swim or morning run?
Viena or Barcelona?
Inside or outside?
In Barcelona always outside.
Sport or hobby?
Natural skills or hard work?
20% natural skills, 80% hard work
Balance or strength?
Black, white or green? Talking about Kailani of course 😉