Hawaii has been at the forefront of water sport ingenuity over the last couple of decades. On the North Shore of Maui, kitesurfing and stand-up paddle boarding have both gotten their starts near the tiny island in the deep Pacific. It make sense, then, that the first footage of the Jet Surfing technology, which might change the very way people surf, would come from Hawaii as well.
Jet surf is a combination of jet skiing, race car driving, and of course, surfing. Jet surfers ride a mechanically-operated jet board with a two-stroke engine, which can reach speeds up to 35 mph. There’s no paddling, so your workout won’t be as aerobically stimulating, but a hand-held accelerator allows you to match the speed of a wave and to ride on the board no matter what kind of water conditions you’re facing. Want to go faster? At the push of a button your jet board will accelerate, slicing through the waves with ease.
The jet boards themselves are expensive, with the average price listed as $12,000. If the jet surf sport continue to grow in popularity, however, that price point will drop as the market expands. Most of the present day iterations of the jet board are designed by a company aptly named, “JetSurf,” but there are other variations, like the PowerSki Jetboard.
It remains to be seen whether this technological update on surfing will take root among traditional surf community. To some, there’s something a lot more pure about paddling to a wave and catching a ride without a motor. To others, however, jet surfing can prove to be a new opportunity for beginners looking to train or pro surfers looking to pull off once-impossible stunts. Since jet-ski towing has taken off with the help of accomplished big wave surfers, like Laird Hamilton, there’s nothing to stop jet surfing from becoming the next big surfing mutation. Grab a jet board today and check it out.