To Top

8 Interesting Facts You Didn’t Know About Surfing

Surfing is a sport with a long and venerable history. Thousands of years before people were even considering surfing in the ocean, Polynesians were standing on pieces of wood and paddling out into the waves to catch a ride. Since then, there have been many different types of boards, from logs to fiberglass epoxy boards, but despite the differences in materials, they’re still all used to ride the ocean’s waves. There are plenty of interesting facts about surfing that even die-hard surfers may not know. Here are eight of them:

The First Surfboard Was Carved Out Of A Tree Trunk

Surfboards have come a long way from their humble roots as just pieces of wood that were carved out of tree trunks and used to navigate ocean waves on ancient Polynesian techniques. In modern times, there are a variety of materials used for surfboards, with some being made purely of fiberglass epoxy boards and others being made using softer materials, such as foam or styrofoam. There are even some boards that use a combination of different materials to achieve the perfect surfing experience.

Surfing Was Originally Used As A Way To Travel From One Island To Another

People have been surfing for thousands of years. It is thought that the ancient Polynesians used to surf on large pieces of wood to travel from their home islands to new ones. They would use wave patterns and currents as a form of navigation, similar to how ships are navigated today. The Polynesians were incredible sailors at the time, so they were able to find their homes even with no land in sight. The most famous of these voyages were undertaken by a man named Heihei, who had been left behind during an expedition from Tahiti to Hawaii. When the crew returned home after leaving him, they found he had made it back by surfing the waves their entire journey across.

Surfing Was Named After An Old Hawaiian Chief

Surf is a word that means “a large wave” in Hawaiian. This word was chosen because it fit the action of catching waves perfectly. The ancient Hawaiians originally referred to small waves as “making paa hoe,” which meant pushing or digging boards into the water with force to make them move faster through the surf zone. When riding bigger waves, they would call out “hanu ‘ama’u,” meaning curved surfboard, instead. Eventually, these words were combined and shortened to form what we now know as. The word “surf” is also used in English today to refer to the sport of surfing, but it has nothing to do with the meaning behind the Hawaiian word.

Surfers Were Called ‘Beach Hogs’

Surfing and its culture were popularized by movies like Gidget, which featured a main character who lived for her days at the beach. The older members of society didn’t see it that way, however; they saw surfing as a vast waste of time and money. In fact, in 1965, Life magazine published an article titled “The Beach-Hogging Barons of Sunset Beach,” referring to the young men who were surfing from dawn to dusk at one of America’s first surf spots. It wasn’t until later that people began seeing surfing as a hobby instead of an annoyance. Now, it’s one of the most popular sports in the world, with professional athletes and companies making surfing a big part of their lives.

Surfers Have To Pass A Point Bill Test To Get A License

We hear about many different licenses from television shows and movies these days: a fishing license, a hunting license, etc. In California and points south and east, surfers have to pass something called a point bill test to get their surfing license. This may seem ridiculous considering most states don’t require any sort of water-based test, but it makes sense when you think about it. Surfers need to know where they can go safely and for how long. It’s also very helpful when trying to predict if there will be many people at your favorite spot without having to travel hours just to find out the parking lot is jam-packed.

Surfing Was Banned In Hawaii Because Of A Religious War

Surfing was banned in Hawaii back when it was called the Sandwich Islands because of an ongoing religious war about who had more rights. King Kamehameha, I founded his religion, which consisted mostly of strict rules regarding idol worshiping and prayer. One of these rules was that surfers were only allowed to worship the Hawaii Gods. They could not mix their idol worship with Christianity or any other faith, and surfing was considered a pagan sport because it involved riding on the waves. This rule lasted for many years, but in 1866 it was repealed by King Kamehameha III because he realized surfing was too important of an activity to be regulated so strictly.

The World Surf League Is Based Out Of Huntington Beach, California

The World Surf League is the main governing body for professional surfing all over the world. Right now they are based out of Huntington Beach, California. The organization’s goal is to revolutionize competitive surfing through innovative changes in scoring and competition, and they want to keep the sport fun and exciting for fans and athletes alike. Some of these rules include how many waves a surfer has to catch before they can advance in an event, as well as how long they have to stay in the section before advancing. The World Surf League also hosts the Vans US Open every year in California during May.

Mavericks Is Considered The Most Dangerous Wave In The World

Mavericks is a wave located just north of Half Moon Bay, California that is considered to be one of the most dangerous in the world. It’s called that because the wave can get huge, sometimes larger than 30 feet high. A surfer has to put their life on the line just to attempt riding it, making Mavericks extremely popular with spectators and thrill-seekers who want to catch a glimpse of one of nature’s greatest spectacles. The best  (or worst) part is that Mavericks can show up at any time, with no warning, so you never know when it’s going to be there.

  • Save

This is just a taste of the fascinating world of surfing. Hopefully, this article will get you interested in learning more about this unique and exciting sport. Who knows, maybe you’ll even be inspired to give it a try yourself. Surfing is a great way to stay in shape and enjoy the outdoors, and it’s something that anyone can do with a little bit of practice. So next time you want to go for a swim, consider riding waves instead.

  • Save

More in The Fit Chic

Share via
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap