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Da Kine of Surfboards

By Jonathan Howery

The Hawaii Turtle Tours is all about the surf competitions when they go off. With various and diverse shapes and types of surfboards, the surfer’s own ability and their surfing style decides what board to ride. Length affects a surfer’s performance in the water and most modern surfboards are made out of foam that is then coated with fiberglass. This makes the boards strong yet light-weight. The longer the board, the more stability for the rider and the width of the surfboard also reflects just how stable the board is. Also, the thickness of the board controls how well it will float. So, the better the floatation is, the smoother the ride on the wave.

The short board is also called the Thruster. It is the most common board used for contest surfing because it is all about control, speed, and power. These boards are from 5’6″ to 6’4″ long and about 16″ to 19″ wide. The fish surfboard is wider, with a rounder nosed and a swallow tail. Usually between 5’2″ and 6’4″ long they are about 18″ to 22″ wide. This board was designed to improve wave catching ability.

The gun is long, narrow and pointy at the nose with a pin tail for big wave surfing. Because of their shape they are easier to paddle out further to the big waves. At 6 to 10 feet in length, these boards are easier to control on the more powerful waves. The name comes from the term elephant gun, meaning the board is the surfers gun for hunting down giant surf.

Longboard is known as a cruiser or the log. They are over 8 or 9 feet long, with a rounded nose. More stable in the water, theses boards are easier to paddle and that makes them ideal to learn surfing on. The Malibu board is like the longboard by its shape but is shorter and slimmer. The Malibu is also called a mini-mal, and can have either one large fin or three smaller fins.

Fun-boards are 6’6″ to 8’0″ and 20″ to 22″ wide. The fun-board adds the paddling power of a longboard with the turning ability of a short-board and is perfect for less skillful surfers. Foam-boards are also known as foamies or softboards because they were planned for beginners. Because they are foam they are less likely to hurt the new surfer or others around them. The body-board is also called a boogie board. These boards are rectangular boards and small so you lay on them rather than stand and they can be very cheap, and a lot of fun.

Enjoy your vacation here in the lovely Hawaiian Islands and if you have any questions about Hawaii Turtle Tours or about this blog, feel free to email at [email protected].


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