Saturday, March 20, 2010

Surfing is fun?

I was reading an interview with DH in the latest Surfer's Path and I was tickled to note the conversation that evolved around the word "Fun?" apparently the commonest word to be found somewhere in the first bemused response of many surfers on hearing DH rides a finless board. His comment?
"It says a lot about where surfing isn't and where surfing should be"
Well it is in fact fun and DH clearly believes that is the missing ingredient for many "Surfers" today but not for us "Waveriders" of course as we understand that riding waves is fun!
Getting back to finless wave riding. Last year I bought myself a bodyboard, which I used to use prior to learning to ride waves standing up, to further enhance to the opportunity to get in the water and have fun.
Well, what a revelation that has been as I have had some hugely fun sessions on it even when the waves were pretty average.
As DH has discovered along with alaia riders and body boarders, who have understood it for many years, there is something fundamental about sliding across the face of a wave on a craft without fins.
I also like that one is closer to the surface of the wave, seemingly surrounded by all the energy and really being required to go with the flow. The face of the wave looks all the more impressive when you are lying/crouching down and looking along it.
I note that DH spends a lot of time crouched and I understand this is a trimming requirement as much as anything but he would be experiencing something similar especially at a break like J-Bay!
I also tend to take it out if the swell is big and the break crowded as it affords me the opportunity to get more waves as I can get into them way earlier than the stand up surfers. I am constantly amazed at how resistant small board surfers are to the notion of riding any other type of craft other than what they ride. Longboard? No way. A bodyboard? %*#@$ are you serious? But you know there is an upside, while they are struggling away on their ridiculous choice of wave craft, the rest of us, who know, are getting wave after wave after wave! Thank God for short boarders!


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  2. True - a lot of people should really lighten up out there. In some ways pro surfing has done a lot to alter the culture of surfing. The 'attacking' style of surfing that is so admired now usually just looks ungracfeul to me and well, kinda dumb! And trying to get EVERY wave and leave none for anyone else, well, I can't wait till these guys get old and slow (and I will be watching from the beach because I will probably be too old to surf myself by then:)