Category: Surfing


Where’s the Nobel for surfing science? California would win.


If you love to spend your beach time on top of the water rather than in it, you can thank Hobie for helping you do it.

Hobie Alter, the “Henry Ford of surfing,” who revolutionized surfing and put his name on whole lines of surfboards and catamarans, died at age 80, leaving as his legacy a flotilla of floating devices, beginning with the first lighter-than-wood polyurethane foam surfboard crafted more than 50 years ago.

But Alter was not the only man to send Californians skimming over the water.

Peter Westwick is a science historian who directs the Huntington/USC aerospace history project and is coauthor of a book about the history of surfing.

As early as the 1920s, surfing aerospace engineers and scientists who recognized the overlaps of riding water and riding air were noodling around with back-of-the-envelope designs.

Rip-riding aerospace engineers at aviation firms as well as at Caltech perfected hydrodynamics for lighter-weight surfboards, “very likely based on hollow airplane wings being built at the time,” Westwick says.

During World War II, L.A. native Bob Simmons managed to study at Caltech, work at Douglas Aircraft and squeeze in surf time; boards of his design became the Formula One speed demons of the waves. Aeronautical engineer Jim Drake made windsurfing workable, and a Douglas Aircraft engineer/surfer named Tom Morey invented the boogie board.

It makes perfect sense, says Westwick: “Experiments with wave tanks, new materials — foam and polyester resins used in aircraft — were being applied to surfboards,” like Hobie Alter’s. Breakthrough aviation materials like fiberglass and resin, “waterproof and very light, were probably the key revolution in surfboard development in 100 years.”

Nowadays, at Silicon Beach, south of LAX, within sight of the ocean waters, other creators of different technologies are crafting new ways for human information to move through the air and the airwaves, as Alter, Simmons and their kind did for the waterborne.


Surf-Fitness Pop-up Training Surfers Perfect Pushup


Surf-Fitness is all about building a stronger body so you can do what makes you happy in life, and do it better… surfing.

There are a few critical movements for surfers to master when building strength and core control. One of those moves that every single surfer, no matter their age or skill will benefit from is the pushup. But we’re not talking about lazy, non-coordinated pushups, we’re talking about developing the perfect pushup. With developing the strength and muscle coordination to perform a perfect pushup, you’ll not only be exceptionally stronger and faster with your pop-ups, you’ll develop a stronger core and a more stable upper body which is essential for deeper duck dives and long-term shoulder health.

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How to Turtle Roll


Are you learning to surf, and wondering how on Earth to get your longboard past the breaking waves? Read on to learn how to turtle roll, a very necessary surfing maneuver that will make your paddle out much easier.


You may have seen shortboarders push their boards under oncoming waves. This maneuver is called a duck dive. Unfortunately for us, a duck dive can’t be performed on longboards. Why is this? Well, a duck dive involves submerging the surfboard under the oncoming wave. Since longboards have such a huge volume, and therefore very buoyant, they can’t be pushed under the wave. Shortboards are easier to get under the oncoming waves, but never fear, longboards have the advantage of faster paddling. As longboarders, we’re going to learn the turtle roll.


The turtle roll is a necessary longboard surfing skill that will help you make it out to the line up. Yes, surfing is all about riding waves, but before we can think about riding waves, we need to cover some basics of surfing and paddling out. To preface our talk about how to turtle roll, make sure you are practicing all the other parts of a smart paddle out with a longboard. That means you’re looking for channels, you’re timing the sets, and you’re paddling efficiently. Click if you need some help on paddling out.


Now you’ve got a good understanding of paddling out, let’s talk about how to turtle roll.


1.  Paddle towards the wave straight on. If you’re at an angle, it’s likely you will get hurled from your board.


2.  As the wave approaches, grab the rails (side of the surfboard)  slightly above your shoulders. You will want the nose pointing down slightly.


3.  Hold on tight, as you do not want to lose your grip on the board. It’s okay to wax the rails to help maintain your grip.


4.  As soon as the wave begins to get close to you, breathe deep, and roll the board upside down, fin side up.  As the wave is approaching, push up from the board, and give yourself a powerful lean to one side. Raising your torso up slightly will give you momentum and leverage to turn the board over.


5.  For powerful surf, hold the board close. The less water you allow between you and the board equates to an easier hold.


6.  When underwater, stay loose and relaxed. Don’t get stiff or try to out-muscle the wave.Also, don’t wrap your legs around the board, just hang on to the rails with your hands.


7.  Turtling rolling can result in a loss of ground, so as the wave is passing over your upside down board, give yourself a frog kick underwater and push yourself forward. Worry about this after successfully turtle rolling without the frog kick.


8.  Once the wave has passed, flip the board over. To get back on the board, kick with your legs, push with one arm and pull with the other.


9.  Now that you are laying back on your board, paddle hard to make it to the line up. This is where you really want to make a push to get out of the wave’s impact zone.