The first references to surfing come from the pre-Incan culture in Peru, which built a special boat known as the caballito de totora. However, the Hawaiians are generally considered the culture that has contributed the most to surfing’s history. In the ancient Hawaiian culture, surfing was considered an art, and referred to as he e’ nalu, or “wave sliding.” Surfing was prefaced with prayerfirst for strength to challenge the ocean, and then, if necessary, kahunas (priests) would pray for killer waves. The priests also played a part in constructing the surfboards. Surfers would choose from the koa, ulu, or wiliwili trees, digging out their choice and “[placing] fish in the hole as an offering to the gods.” (Wikipedia) Craftsman then shaped the boards into one of three shapesthe thick ‘olo which narrowed toward the edges, the lengthy, 12-18 foot kiko’o, Direct TV Current Offers, and the 9-foot-long alaia. These early surfers would test their skills in some of the same sites that modern athletes still ride, including Kahalu’u Bay and Holualoa Bay. Surfing in Hawaii and the Polynesian islands diminished in the 19th century when missionaries discouraged the practice. However, the art obviously survived. Public opinion started shifting in 1907 when George Freeth was brought from Hawaii to California to demonstrate surfing at a railroad opening. In 1912, James Matthias Jordan, Jr. surfed along the coast of Virginia Beach, which now hosts the East Coast Surfing Championships. Duke Kahanamoku of Hawaii was largely responsible for surfing’s international acclaim, including introducing it to Australia. The 1960s saw a boom in surfing popularity, thanks to the novel Gidget and adaptations, surf music by bands like the Beach Boys and the Surfaris, and the popularity of California culture in films like the classic Beach Party series. Surfers were cliché characters by the 1980s, as evidenced by Sean Penn’s portrayal of Jeff Spicoli in 1982′s Fast Times at Ridgemont High. During the 1990s, professional surfing became a popular and financially successful enterprise, and today surfers enjoy a popularity akin to that of athletes in many other sports.
When it comes to learning how to surf, it can be a very intimidating process. There are many popular surf areas were veteran surfers are very rude to new surfers. If you want to gain respect in a popular surf line-up, then you first need to cut your teeth at a spot for beginners.
The best surf spots for beginning surfers are beach breaks with white water or small waves. You don’t want to go out and try to surf eight-foot Read the rest of this entry »
How do photographers get those great surfer shots? The picture where the surfer is riding through the barrel of a wave, and you wonder if he got out standing or if the wave crushed him into the seafloor. To get those shots, the photographer has to brave the same elements as the surfer does. The photographer has to be ready for any situation.
The first thing a surfing photographer has to be concerned with is keeping the camera dry. There are waterproof cameras Read the rest of this entry »
Anyone living near warm waters knows that in the summer many go to the beach to watch surfing contests. These contests contain some of the greatest surfers performing some amazing surf tricks. Depending on the height, an amazing trick is when a surfer performs a 180 or 360 degree turn. This happens when a surfer’s board leaves the water and maneuvers in a turn of either 180 or 360 degrees. Top performers can also pull off a backside into the perfect barrel, Read the rest of this entry »
Surfing has become a contest between snarling hydrological monsters and the legendary men who tame them with style and grace.
Many consider Kelly Slater to be the greatest surfer who has ever lived and it would be hard to argue since Kelly has been crowned the Association of Surfing Professionals World Champion 10 times and has a history of tournament wins that is mind boggling. Kelly has a natural style that makes even the impossible look easy.
Although Laird Read the rest of this entry »
There are several popular surfing magazines that one might find when they’re not catching a wave at Mavericks or Bells Beach. The aptly named Surfing Magazine first ran in December 1964, and continues to see a strong monthly release. It is perhaps best known for the special issues that it runs on an annual basis. These include a special feature on International Surfing Day.
Surfer is another magazine that doesn’t try to get too fancy with the name. John Severson founded the magazine in 1959, and his photography was something of a trendsetter in the surf media industry.The whole story can be found at http://lunasurfshop.wordpress.com/2011/07/14/will-bailey-portfolio/ Read the rest of this entry »
When it comes to surfing movies, there are a few classic films that have truly been able to capture the essence of this sport. There cannot be an article on surfing movies at least without the mention of the original surfing classic, “The Endless Summer”. This was the first movie to truly depict the surfing lifestyle instead of just depicting surfing as a dangerous water sport as it detailed the strenuous process of not only Read the rest of this entry »
Surfing is the ultimate thrill for some who desire to take on one of the most awesome forces of nature on the planet Earth, the ocean. The ocean is a fickle and somewhat harsh mistress. One minute she can caress you with soft waves and the next carry you off to a watery grave.
If you are out there on the beach looking for the perfect wave, you owe it to yourself to have the best technology the world can provide you to help you in your search. Satellite internet such as is provided through http://get.wildblue.com helps surfers keep track of weather conditions and provides a means of communication outside of mobile phone coverage areas. However, surfers haven’t always had access to such impressive technology.
Well known for their love of both the beach life and the ocean, surfers have been with us since the early 20th century. The surf culture started to spread through the 1950′s and has continually adapted and evolved into what we see today. Surfers who were looking to bring their surfing experience on land created the skateboard. Skateboarding has become very popular with both surfers and non-surfers alike and the skateboarding industry generates an average of 5.7 billion dollars in revenue each year. Quite an impressive accomplishment considering it all started with one man, one board, and one desire to surf on land.
Today, surfers, skateboarders, and other athletes use the internet to communicate with each other across the world. Satellite internet can reach parts of the world where cable is unavailable. Coincidentally, those may be some of the best places for catching a wave.
Most people are aware of the fact that surfers have their own lingo. As with other specialized terminologies (valley girl, internet slang, etc.), some phrases have even been appropriated for general use. These terms are closely associated with surf culture, which gained popularity in the 1950s and 1960s, especially in Southern California. See which ones in this introductory dictionary (introductionary?) you recognize.Air/aerial: riding the board into the air and then landing back on the waveCaught inside: a surfer who cannot get through the surf to reach the wider oceanCarve: a turnCutback: a turn back toward the breaking waveDrop in: the act of entering the waveDuck dive: pushing the board underwater and diving under an oncoming wave Read the rest of this entry »
At the same time that surf culture started gaining popularity in Southern California, a new sound began emerging in the local music scene. Since most of the musicians were surfers, anyway, the name “surf music” was an obvious choice for the new genre. The first entries into the genre were dance instrumentals, with medium-to-fast tempos and an emphasis on electric guitar. The “wet” spring reverb feature, which started appearing on Fender amplifiers in 1961, was thought to mimic the sound of waves, and was also a consistent feature of surf music.Guitarist Dick Dale is credited with starting things off with his 1961 hit “Let’s Go Trippin’,” which was later covered by The Beach Boys on their 1963 album Surfin’ USA. However, Dale would become even more popular with his 1962 rendition of the Greek song “Misirlou.” Other instrumental groups who emerged in the early 1960s include The Bel-Airs, The Challengers, and Eddie & the Showmen. The Chantays released the top 10 hit “Pipeline” in 1963, and the genre-defining “Wipe Out” was released by the Surfaris in 1963. This song, known for its opening “Ha ha ha ha hawipe out!” and drummer Ron Wilson’s solos, swept the nation and has been covered numerous times since thenincluding by Animal of the Muppets. Read the rest of this entry »