Double-enders have always been a weird little niche in the world of surfboard shapes—almost snowboardish in design, with noses and tails that are difficult to differentiate between. Tomo loves unique, innovative designs, so it’s no surprise that he’d come up with his own version of a double-ender. What is surprising, however, in our world of cookie-cutter shortboards, is how popular the Omni has become. Ever since Slater tore the Surf Ranch apart on the disc-shaped board during the WSL’s test event, the Omni has been a solid staple of the Firewire/Slater Designs quiver.
The Omni features a rounded tail and a similarly rounded nose, doing away with volume up front to reduce swing weight and tighten the board’s turn radius. Featuring Tomo’s patented quad inside single concave bottom contour, the Omni is built with Linear Flex Technology and features five fin boxes so you have the option to ride it is as quad or a thruster. The foam under the chest helps the board paddle well, while the draw-in round tail provides control in anything from head high beach breaks to maxing reefs. Whether you ride it a few inches shorter than your height and put the board through its paces or get a big one and ride it as a mid-length, the Omni is easy to ride and puts the fun back in surfing.
Photo Credit to MensJournal.com
How To Find The Perfect Wetsuit and Make It Last
Finding the Right Size Wetsuit
The purpose of this article is to help you find the proper fitting wetsuit.
Most wetsuits are designed to trap the water inside your suit. So if it’s too big and baggy the warm water trapped in the suit will flush out and fresh cold water will enter. The goal is to have a suit that fits snug, but if the suit is too small, then comfort is compromised.
Finding the right size is actually easy if you know what to watch for.
If you spend a large amount of cash you can have a specialist measure every dimension of your body and build you a custom wetsuit. Although there is nothing wrong with having a custom suit made, I believe it’s totally unnecessary for most body shapes and sizes. Having a wetsuit with too long of a sleeve isn't an issue. Most wetsuit manufactures err on the side of being too long, so its normal for the legs and sleeves to be a bit scrunched up when you wear a wetsuit dry. The small wrinkles in the limbs don’t alter warmth or comfort. When you get in the water the suit tends to positions itself on your body.
When wearing a Full, or Spring suit the torso length is important. If the wetsuit is a bit long on you you’ll never notice it. But if it’s too short the suit will be uncomfortable and stiff, plus as soon as you zip your suit up you will feel uncomfortable. If the shoulders feel way tighter then the rest of the wetsuit, most likely you’ll need a different size.
The most important thing is that the wetsuit is comfortable and snug. Getting into and out of a wetsuit takes some practice.
Wearing Your Suit the Easy Way
One of the easiest ways to get into your wetsuit is to use a plastic grocery bag. Just place the bag over your foot or hands, slip the suit on then pull the bag off. This is one of the best ways to wear your suit, especially if you want the seams to last. Important Note - Avoid over stretching fabric and seams, when pulling the suit use your fingers like you’re pinching the suit. Avoid using your fingernails.
After Your Surf Session
You need to care for you suit or it won’t last. Rinse with fresh cool water after
every use, Do Not use Hot water it will cause the neoprene to lose its flexibility. Hang Dry in the shade and not in direct sunlight, UV breaks down the neoprene and causes it to dry and age quicker. The best way to hang dry is not by the shoulders like you would hang a jacket, but to place it through the hanger and let it hang folded in half. Not only does it dry faster, but it also places less stress on the shoulders.
If at all possible store in a cool dry place and not in your car, where the heat will cook and bake the stretching properties of the suit.
Fast Drying Techniques
I’m sure you’ll have friends that will give you all kinds of advice on how to speed dry your wetsuit. I found one of the best ways, and the safest way, to dry your suit up to 80% before hang drying it is to use your beach towel.
Spread your beach towel flat on the ground and lay the wetsuit on top. Then take the excess towel and fold it over the suit. Starting from the top, roll the towel and wetsuit up like a burrito. As you’re rolling, squash the moisture out with your knees by bouncing on the roll. Smash the towel as much as possible, it will absorb the water. Unroll the wetsuit burrito and hang dry, remembering to hang it through the hanger folded in half, for a faster dry time.
How You Can Save the Environment by Eating Uni
If you are a fan of sushi, then you have probably eaten sea urchin or “Uni” —and probably noticed how expensive the delicacy can be. You might think that Uni is a rarity, and in some places (and some species), that is actually true. But on the west coast of North America, the opposite is true—and that is becoming a major problem. Uni normally lives solitary lives, but lately, there has been an increase in the population of the purple urchins that populate the coast that stretches between Vancouver Island and California, and it is having a hugely detrimental effect on the ocean’s ecosystem. The urchins are thriving due to red tide algae and a virus that has decimated the starfish population, which means that there are now no natural predators to keep the urchins at bay. Urchins can eat just about anything and are opportunistic feeders, so as their population has grown, they have started munching on kelp—a sea plant that is essential to the aquatic environment. Kelp helps to sustain the bottom layer of the food chain along the West Coast, but with entire forests of kelp being obliterated by the sea urchin, the entire ecosystem is being thrown into disarray. What the ecosystem needs are a natural predator to bring the sea urchin population back down to sustainable levels. And if the ocean can’t currently provide that — well there might be someone else who can.
We, humans, love to eat delicious treats, and the uni that can be harvested from Uni is one of the tastiest. While humanity’s tendency to over-consume often has negative effects, for once, the opposite might prove to be true. By increasing the demand for uni, we will motivate fishermen to harvest more Uni, thereby decreasing the population and providing a respite for kelp forests that desperately need to regenerate. Yep, you read that right—we can save the environment by eating more uni! And the best day to do that, of course, is sushi.
So next time you feel like doing something good for Mother Earth, head down to your local sushi bar. Order something delicious (while making sure that any fish you consume was responsibly caught, of course), and make sure that it comes with a healthy serving of uni from purple Uni.
Let’s save the planet with our chopsticks!
Hawaiian South Shore Member of the Month - Victoria Feige
When and why did you initially get into surfing?
I grew up in Vancouver, Canada playing soccer, skateboarding and snowboarding. I loved snowboarding in powdery snow because it felt like surfing. I had my first surf lesson in Tofino, BC and was hooked from my first wave. Fast forward, I’m now a 3x ISA World Para Surf Champion. I’m excited that adaptive Surfing is moving toward the Paralympics.
Did you have a time you laid off from surfing? Why did you start back up?
When I was 18, I landed a snowboard jump badly and sustained an incomplete spinal cord injury. I had to take 1-2 years off surfing or any fun, risky sports. I knew I could still swim post injury, and returned to warm water surfing in Hawaii. I learned I couldn’t stand, but I could pop up to my knees and the rush of the ocean felt the same. I learned I couldn’t surf at home in Canada because it was too difficult to get into wetsuits with my leg paralysis, but years later, I discovered I could get in the Rip Curl Flashbomb suits and returned to my home break. In 2016, I starting competing for Canada in surf comps and found the adaptive surf community. I thought people would be just going straight in the washwash, but guys were doing snaps and getting barreled. It totally changed my perspective of that was possible for adaptive surfing. And it changed my perspective of what was possible for me and I started to train. Now I’ve progressed to duck-dives, cutbacks, and shortboards. I feel like this is just the beginning.
What is your favorite thing about surfing?
I love the rush of a steep drop. And the feeling of an open face carve.
Where is your favorite place to eat after surfing? Favorite item?
BeetBox café… the breakfast burrito. 100% tasty!
What other hobbies do you have besides surfing?
Sit-skiing, playing guitar, singing karaoke with my friends and researching surfboard design. I’d love to start shaping one day.
What type of work do you do?
I’m a specialized physiotherapist and I work at PT Hawaii. When surfing gets in the Paralympics and I get funding, I’ll take more time to just focus on surfing and training to win.
Tell us about the board you recently purchased from use?
What model size and how do you like the performance? I love my 5’6 MR Mayhem Cali Twin with the MR fins. So light and agile - Small wave fun! Plus the dims work for me like kneeboard!
Do you have any additional comments?
I love the boards in Hawaiian South Shore and the people I’ve met there are just lovely.