Where did Surfing Originate

Have you wondered, where did surfing originate? The history of surfing dates back thousands of years, though the first official record of surfing goes back just to the 1700s. The Polynesians had been surfing in Tahiti long before they ever went to Hawaii. To this day, one of the most famous and challenging waves is in Tahiti, called Teahupoo.

Captain James Cook, a European explorer, was the first to make a record of surfing. He wrote about watching the Tahitians in Hawaii riding waves in canoes.

Hawaiians saw surfing as just a sport or recreation, especially in the beginning. Surfing was a representation of a person's class. There were beaches for Hawaiian royalty and others for the commoners. The surfboards used by royalty were twice as long as those for the average person.

Surfing was brought from Hawaii to the mainland USA by George Freeth, a man of Hawaiian and Irish descent. In addition to being credited with bringing surfing to the mainland, Freeth is one of the first Caucasians to surf.

The popularity of surfing was made permanent in the US by Alexander Hume Ford. He created the Outrigger Canoe Club in the early 1900s. The Outrigger Canoe Club was designed to preserve surfing and spread its appeal. In addition to playing a large role in what surfing is today, the Outrigger Canoe Club also began the sport of beach volleyball. It also produced one of the most famous surfers of all time, Duke Paola Kahanamoku, who was both a world class surfer as well as an Olympic Gold Medal winner. The Outrigger Canoe Club exists today, though it's in a different part of Honolulu than it was when it started.

Professional surfing started with surf contests in 1928. The very first surf contest, called the Pacific Coast Surfriding Championships, was in Corona Del Mar, California and was organized by Tom Blake.

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