Anyone can bodysurf, but while it is fun at first, hours of being pummelled into the sandy bottom can get a bit tiresome. Slyde Handboards, the self professed auxiliary weapons of anti-boredom at the beach, will keep you getting shacked all day long.
Based in Venice, CA, Slyde Handboards is the creation of South African surfer Steve Watts. Growing up, he and all his friends on the beach used to borrow fast food restaurant trays to catch waves. That was the inspiration behind designing a line of handboards or handplanes to add a bit of fun to those days spent completely in the water.
So why use a handplane? According to Slyde, bodysurfing becomes infinitely better with a handplane for the following reasons: increased speed, increased pull down the line into a wave, higher lift for less drag, and basically it's way more fun.
To use the handboard, wade out to waist deep water as you normally would for bodysurfing. Lower yourself into the water and put your hand strapped into the handboard straight out in front of you. Take the other hand and place it over the hand in the strap.
Once you are in position where the waves are breaking, turn around and face the shore, while keeping your attention on the approaching waves. With your body outstretched, kick and you will move forward quickly out past the breaking waves, in perfect position for the ride.
Slyde Handboards come in a variety of styles, retailing for $97-$187. Fins and wetsuit optional.