Friday, April 10, 2009

Surf Fridays!

Early history of Tandem Surfing

Huntington Beach Tandem Competition 1962
Photo by John Loengard

Photo by Hiroshi Mori

Tandem surfing - what a beautiful sport! It just makes me happy to look at the photos of these graceful couples. I didn't know much about tandem surfing, so I found out more from the International Tandem Surfing Association (ITSA)...

Tandem surfing started at Waikiki as the early Hawaiian surfers frolicked for endless hours on their surfboards. Both men and women surfed then and it seems natural that they also rode tandem.

The first photographic record of tandem surfing was in the 1930’s. The Waikiki beach boys would take the tourist women out for rides on their boards. To give them a more exciting ride and to show off for those watching on the beach, they would pick the gals up into a shoulder sit and probably even do shoulder stands.

Another reason to do “lifts” on a tandem board is that while tandem surfing with an untrained girl, it is actually harder to turn and control the big tandem board with her standing on the deck. As soon as she is hoisted up on to his shoulders, the guy can ride and turn the board as though he were surfing alone.

Pretty cool huh? And did you know that legends Tom Blake, Rabbit Kekai and Rell Sun used to tandem surf?

You're going to dig the tandem skateboarding in this clip!

Here's what Bear Woznick, master tandem surfer, has to say about the dynamic of men and women in tandem surfing:

There’s a whole other element to tandem, and that’s the dynamic between a man and a woman. It’s so powerful. It’s a connection to really ancient DNA. It’s a real visceral feeling when a man lifts a woman. When she trusts a man... and he protects her with his skill, strength and savvy. The woman displays her beauty and her power. It’s a very powerful thing when a man and woman trust each other.

In modern life, a man seldom, if ever, lifts a woman... just in general. Most women will say it’s the most incredible experience they’ve ever had. For the first time many say they were able to trust a man, and in the process, all this grace and beauty was released through them.


Candi said...

Great photos! Hope you have a Happy Easter, Jamie! :)

Eddie Money said...

totally inspirational post. that last quote from Bear is the clincher. I really dig tandem surfing. I highly enjoyed reading this, thank you.

Kate said...

Amazing photos, cant wait to see the ones of you tandem surfing like chuck and Tiffany!

Nancy said...

A beautiful sport, and a beautiful thought!!

rebeccajane said...

Nice post!

seamouse said...

so beautiful....until you see those wipeouts! Those girls got guts, I wouldn't fancy being dropped upside down from 6 foot onto the back of a heavily fibreglassed tankerplank.