Surfing science is blowing up.
Whether we realize it or not, all surfers are scientists. The definition of science is the intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment. Surfers are always watching the waves and the weather to predict when good waves will occur. Once at the shore, surfers study waves before, during and after they paddle out for a session. Then we paddle out and catch a wave, the core experimenting begins. Maybe the first section calls for a cutback, and the next section demands a floater. The next wave may look the same as the last from the drop-in, but the ride could be an entirely different experience. No matter what, every wave requires a new systematic participation with the behavior of the physical world. This is surfing science in practice.
The advancement of surfing science is evident as it continues to manifest itself in the form of surfing pools. Surf pools are finally happening. Whether people are using air chambers, plows, hydrofoils or human-powered pulleys, man-made surfing waves are real. With state-of-the-art wave pools representing a practical application of surfing science, the knowledge base will only continue to improve from here on out. Like airplanes, cars, and cell phones, as surfing science and technology grows, surf pools of the future will continue to progress.
At the First Peak Project, we’re riding this wave of scientific progression.
Since being founded in 2009, the First Peak Project has been an active participant in the new school of surfing science. Alongside the development of surf pools, a host of tools now exists to engineer the perfect wave. We’ve been keeping tabs on this evolution for a long time. For instance, cloud-based supercomputers, running numerical models specially programmed to replicate barreling waves, are no longer science fiction. They’re real, and they’re sick. We can’t wait to show you.
Blog posts in this category are all about bringing cutting-edge technology to the forefront of restoring First Peak. Throughout our quest to restore First Peak, we’ll be taking a deep, intimate dive into the depths of surfing science. We’ll start by sharing our observations of accidental man-made surfing waves. We’ll also dedicate some posts to describing the science behind some of the world’s most incredible surfing waves including the Banzai Pipeline and Teahupo’o. Finally, we’ll examine the Newport Wedge and share with the surfing community why science says wedge waves are real freaks of nature. η
First Peak thirsts for surfing knowledge.
If you know of a wave that defies the contemporary school of thought, share your experience with us in a comment below. There’s much to learn from nature’s anomalies, but please make sure your comment isn’t an oddity.