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Learn More About Surfing

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What is the history of surfing?

The exact origin of surfing is unknown but it is believed that surfing dates back to ancient Polynesia. According to research and legendary myths, in Polynesian culture, the chief of the tribe was the man who was the best surfer. Hawaii also has a rich surfing history, with the activity viewed as an everyday part of life that all children learn. In ancient Hawaii, surfing served as a form of enjoyment, fun, and status.

Surfing was brought to the United States in 1912 by James Matthias Jordan, who surfed at Virginia Beach. Since his debut, surfing has caught on in the West Coast and spread to Australia. Now, surfing is a popular activity for over 25 million surfers throughout the world.

Surfing at the Olympic Games

Surfing will make its Olympic debut in the 2020 Tokyo Games in the Chiba Province. Surfing as an Olympic event will consist of a four-man heat structure. Four surfers will compete against each other in 20-25 minute heats and the top two will move on to the next round. Judges will score surfers on speed, power, and flow of various maneuvers and movements. As of now, there are no predictions for who will take home the first medals in the new Olympic Games.

What are the current Olympic surfing events?

Currently, the only Olympic surfing event is the shortboard for both men and women.

Visit USA Surfing to learn more

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