SPORT

Kitesurf

Kitesurfing is one of the most recent boardsports. It involves riding on a board towed by the sail of a kite. In the 70s, the forefathers of the sport started using kites to propel themselves while standing up on windsurf floats. Kitesurfing as we know it today finally appeared in the 80s, thanks to the French brothers Legaignoux who invented the first proper kitesurf sail in 1984. Legendary surfer Laird Hamilton and French rider Manu Bertin popuralized the sport in the 90s while testing it in the island of Maui, Hawaii. Like in windsurfing, kitesurfing includes several disciplines such as freeriding, freestyling, speed sailing, wave-riding or downwinders. Each discipline has a specific type of board and sail. Kitesurfing is nowadays the most popular watersport in the world, thanks to the astonishing freedom and possibilities offered to the riders.
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SPORT

Windsurf

Windsurfing was created by surfers who wanted to be able to ride when the ocean is flat by using the power of the wind. Several pioneers launched early versions of the windsurf in the 60s. However, the real birth of the sport dates back to 1968, when US inventors Jim Drake and Hoyle Schweitzer patented the Windsurfer brand. Quickly popularized throughout the world, windsurfing includes nowadays many disciplines such as speed, slalom racing, freestyle, bump and jump or wave riding.More accessible than surfing, windsurfing has conquered the hearts of young and older riders in the whole world very quickly in the seventies and eighties. The legendary Robby Naish, first windsurfing world champ at the tender age of 13 in 1976, is one of the main driving forces of the sport. Windsurfing is also an Olympic sport since 1984.
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Recently popularized, the Stand Up Paddle (SUP) has existed since the dawn of time. The practice was common during the time of the ancient Hawaiians, but also in other cultures and civilizations. In ancient Hawaii, the nobles used enormous wooden boards called "Olo", which were about 5 meters long.These boards, difficult to maneuver, were sometimes propelled with a paddle by the surfer already standing up. The practice reappeared in the 1940s in Waikiki thanks to the Hawaiian Beach Boys, but it remained marginal until Laird Hamilton revived it in the mid-2000s.The SUP can be used for riding waves, speed and endurance races or just to stroll around. This sport allows practitioners to exercise their whole body, and is thus is very healthy. Many old surfers got into it because it allows them to avoid the critical take-off phase when catching a wave. Despite some clashes with the traditional surfers, SUP is here to stay.
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SPORT

Surf

Existing since immemorial times, surfing is the father of most board riding sports. Its origins date back several millennias, when the inhabitants of some Polynesian islands began ride waves using long planks carved in tree trunks. The "sport of kings" was notably practiced by the princes of Hawaii, who did not hesitate to put to death those who dared to ride their waves.The arrival of evangelical missionaries in the islands of the archipelago in the second half of the 19th century caused an almost complete disappearance of the practice, but surfing was resurrected thanks to pioneers like Duke Kahanamoku or Tom Blake a few decades later.Today, surfing is increasingly popular around the world, with practitioners constantly pushing the boundaries of the discipline like Kelly Slater, Shane Dorian or John John Florence. But more than a sport, surfing is an art of living that brings together an increasingly large tribe all over the planet.
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