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April 23, 2019 5 min read

ALOHA, as we share these magical places in Hawaii with you, remember to have the utmost respect the land, the locals, and the dangers of bodysurfing at each of these 4 breaks. 

Slyde was excited to chat with Kaha Nalu Hawaii's newest grom to the team Kamalu. Here he shares with us a fresh perspective on his favorite four different breaks on the island of Oahu.

Waimea Bay, North Shore Hawaii

The North Shore is an expert bodysurfing place. Let's start off with Waimea Bay, the Bay in my opinion is best I'd say a low or like a dropping tide, lower mediumish tide, you kind of want to catch it early in the morning. That's because the wind's feeding through the valley and the cool thing about the North Shore and about Waimea is, if the winds are coming in heavy, like side winds anywhere else, like at Pipeline, Sunset, where the winds are whipping heavy across. You can actually come to Waimea and the valley will channel the wind out towards the break.  It that makes for some weird, but amazing barrels.

Waimea is just close out central, it's big, it's heavy, it’s thick dangerous spot, but then again, I wouldn't have it anymore other way. It teaches you so much about control, how to make drops, how to make double up drops. Waimea is not a place for beginners, but as somebody who's learned here, I can tell you that if you learn here with the proper guidance, you'll kill it.  2019 Pipeline bodysurfing champion, Kealii' grew up here, this is his original home break, he loves this spot. 

Keiki Beach North Shore Hawaii

Keiki beach is another spot that I love that is probably more deadly than Waimea. It's a straight-on short break, there's no reef in between you and just deep ocean channel.  At least at Waimea you have a little bit of buffer, being that the outside they'll catch the waves a little bit and buffer up that heaviness of the wave just a little bit, slow it down, give it less power.  But Keiki is just a straight shelf.

Right on the outside of Shark's Cove is a steep drop-off shelf, and then what will happen is the waves will just come in straight, hit that short break and you just have a straight open ocean swell hitting shore. And since there's nothing to stop it,  the waves don't have to travel as far as they do like in places like California.

That's why our waves are a lot more heavier, it's because we have nothing stopping our waves, they don't have to travel as far as there's more momentum in them. That's why places like Keiki, as soon as it hits just a little bit of sand, and you're talking about all that moving momentum just standing straight up and then throwing over and that's where you get those beautiful pictures that are waves.

That wave is vertical, hollow, big, deadly and fun though, but it is sketchy. I won't lie, it’s one of the spots that I would look at and be like, is it a good day to go, is it not, it's a spot you really have to judge and take your time and kind of know what you're doing before you go out.

Sandy's Beach Park East Oahu

Another spot that's really iconic to bodysurfing in Hawaii, has got to be Sandy's. Sandy's is one of those places that everybody goes to, everybody's learned there, it's totally different from the North Shore, being as it's at the east side of the island, like south east side.

Sandy's is a much faster break, it's not as thick as Waimea, but it drops fast, almost like Waimea and it stands up really quickly because there's always sand. That's the thing you'll notice too with the difference in the South Shore and the North Shore, is the sand is going to be really different. The sand on the south shore at Sandy's is very rough, very hard, but it doesn't move very much and that's why it becomes like such a good bodysurfing spot, because there's almost always a sandbar hence the name Sandy's.

Sandy’s, I know, it has like three different breaks, there's the far-left side, there's gas chambers, and the middle. Gas chambers is the spot to shoot photographs, it has the most hollow waves. The middle break is going to be a lot more comfortable for people who are just beginning and learning for body surfing.  Another break that I won't talk about, but it is also like right on that side is Makapuu. Makapuu and Sandy's are  kind of  the "beginner" areas of where you would want to start body surfing.

Point Panic Beach Park- Bodysurfers ONLY

The best places for tricks and pretty much everything for body surfing, in and outs, double in and outs, spins etc and the birth place of Kaha Nalu Hawaii team.

Point Panic is really just a one-wave break, which kind of sucks because you get like 30 other people out there, and the lineup can be crowded. But it's a nice slow wave, it's a little bit steep there you got to kind of know how to work your way out of a wave, how to kick into a wave heavily, because it's not as powerful as like these other breaks.  It's not like you're taking off on like sand that's three foot deep. It's six-foot-deep++ reef break that actually breaks perfectly all the time under proper swell conditions.

It has the Kaka'ako water basin right next to it, and all the wind coming down whips in there and just opens that barrel up and just keeps on traveling. I've gotten a couple ins and outs there, a couple double in and out, that’s where I learned to actually become a better body surfer. If you want to learn how to do tricks like belly spins, spinners, rollos and stuff like that. Once you learn how to travel on a wave at short break and you can handle yourself, go out to Point Panic.

Point Panic is only for body surfers. All the uncle's there, uncle Sean, uncle Barry,  they'll be, they're more than willing to help anybody to learn, because that's our culture.  We want people to learn body surfing, bodysurfing is the basis of surfing. If you know body surfing and you can read the wave and ride a wave by body surfing, it becomes a lot easier to stand up surf as well. You notice things as a body surfer that surfers won't even realize.

Watch the video HERE→

Michelle Michalak
Michelle Michalak

Michelle's diploma reads BA Psychology with a minor in English, and her license plate reads #CaliforniaDreaming4Life. She begin her career in the NYC fashion industry working with fashion and internet pioneer, Bluefly.com However, due the constant "nagging" of her entrepreneurial spirit, her crush on surfing, and hardcore love for the ocean, she chosen to call San Diego home for the past 10 years. On the west coast she 's chased waves & enlightenment working alongside "Gurus" in the online marketing & personal development industries. It in May 2012 she found her true Zen & Stoke, and joined the Slyde Handboards Team.

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I had really high hopes. I have been able to use the Bula on a couple good days. I'm liking my old board better so far. But will try it a couple more times before I return it just to be sure. I have none of the below issues with my Enjoy planer, and thinking of going back.
1. The dam thing is not secure on my hand. No mater how tight I make it. It litterally pops off my hand while on a wave. Its getting really anoying having to constantly pay attention to it.
2. I switch my hand depending on the wave direction. It's tough for me to get a grip on the nose, pull it off then pull tightly on other hand in time. I've missed a couple good ones because of this.
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I am giving these to my grandsons at the end of the month. I am sure they will love them.

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Bula hand board

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Growing up in Long Island NY, body surfing was my first wave gliding experience. Typically we would drive straight to shore so surfing the diagonal has been a learning curve.

I look forward to many great sets this summer.

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