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Essence Surf: Progressive surfboard shapes for the Kids.

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Translating from foamy to fiberglass: Sam Z & Andrew Z Rocking the "Clipper"


At some point in any surfers life there was a time when he/she had to learn to surf. As experienced surfers we never like to admit that at some point we were all buoys who got in some ones way while we were floundering around in the water learning how to do this awkward thing called surfing. As a surfer in my 40's now, I look back and wonder how I ever learned to stand.... There were very few surf schools or instructors back then. I remember as a child watching "how to surf" videos while practicing my pop ups with my board propped up on my bed. Now, the summer line ups are full young kids and instructors, teaching the next generation proper etiquette, respect and safety in the line up while maximizing stoke.

With the advent of new technologies instructors are able to start beginners on big ol' foamy boards. Or what I like to call "Squeakers". After the individual has progressed beyond this they generally go to fiberglass boards. For the kids though, there seemed to be a lack of good fiberglass boards that balance the ease of paddling and handling with the respective size of the surfer. Most everything at these shorter sizes are performance oriented boards for advanced surfers.

Our good friend, past student and present shaper Mike Z has two young sons Andrew & Sam who were just learning to surf, spent a season on a "squeaker" and were ready for something to help them progress. So, Mike and I sat down and developed two models of boards were thought would be good for the kids.... The Clipper and The Attack Force-G. Presently only the Clipper is available online. We will be releasing the AFG soon.

For the past Year+ Sam & Andrew have been riding their Clippers, and watching them progress as surfers with these boards has been fantastic. I've watched these kids go from standing on a what can only be considered a small boat to learning how to judge waves, drop in at correct angles, take lines, generate speed and learning to turn. With these board they can now start learning to duck dive and maneuver better in the water. I have also watched Sam & Andrew take their fair share of beatings in the water. But they always get right back up wanting that next great wave.

Pretty soon we know these two will making fun of us old geezers in the water as they tear down the line laughing at our beer guts and lack of hair. But the memories of their progression will remain strong with the older crew knowing we developed that particular board they rode as we cheered them on.

Hopefully in the future, these two will be building boards on their own... or at least sweeping the shop while their dad and I have a beer.

For additional information on the "Clipper" Please click here.

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