Read the full article and watch the interview on ESPN X Games site here Recently, the Surf Industry Manufacturers Association (SIMA) and the International Surfing Association (ISA) have been vocal in their push for artificial waves, seeing it as a [...]
Recently, the Surf Industry Manufacturers Association (SIMA) and the International Surfing Association (ISA) have been vocal in their push for artificial waves, seeing it as a tool to either grow the surf market or get the sport into the Olympics. Thanks to a recent surge in wave pool construction around the world, including one in Nashua, N.H., some believe the pool is the future of surfing.
Now, Nashua isn’t necessarily Surf City, U.S.A., but that’s part of the point. According to SIMA, wave pools have the potential to grow the industry in areas not anywhere close to a beach break.
Soon after the first-ever Surf Park Summit last fall in Laguna Beach, Calif., where wave pools were discussed at length, I headed to New Hampshire to check out American Wave Machines’ newest pool. On the brink of winter, it was cold, dark and not exactly bubbling over with aloha.
I ended up at Surf’s Up, located next to a CVS Pharmacy, and the wave pool shares a building with an indoor skydiving facility. All I could think was heaven help the sport I’ve pursed my whole life. This wasn’t surfing.
Then a group of local kids from the Eastern Surfing Association (ESA) showed up. The pool’s engineer pulled out an iPad, opened an app, and proceeded to create a perfect three-foot standing wave. The kids’ faces lit up. They sprung to life, pulling on wetsuits and waxing boards. As far as they were concerned it was eight-foot and offshore. With the swipe of a finger their surf lives had changed.
“There’s five months of the year that it’s pretty much too cold for these kids to surf,” said one of the parents. “This is huge, it opens up their entire world.”
When you look at a facility like Surf’s Up through the eyes of a 13-year-old, the perspective changes completely.
“If you see it as something to augment the surfing experience there’s a lot you can do with it,” described Todd Holland, a former top tier ASP competitor who now runs a surf school in Florida.
The Surf’s Up pool is capable of producing a number of different kinds of waves. There’s a foamy whitewater wave that is fun for playing around on a boogie board. There’s a one-foot beginner wave that’s ideal for teaching people to surf. There’s also a standing river wave, like you’d see on the Eisbach River in Munich, Germany. And finally, there’s the premier wave that can serve up a three-foot tube. Depending on how the pool operators have it configured, that wave can either be a left or a right.
“It’s not a huge pool, but there’s so much you can do with it,” continued Holland. “It’s a huge training tool for these ESA kids that don’t get to surf for long periods of time. Now they can get wet, work on technique and still feel like they’re surfing. But you can also change it up and teach a whole group of beginners. It’s very dynamic.”
No matter what SIMA or the ISA say, the fact is that wave pools are only going to be viable if they are profitable. That means appealing to a broad audience. The “core” surfer makes up such a small part of the actual surf industry that money has to flow in through other channels to keep a pool open, which is wear a beginner wave and foamie for boogie boarding come in.
“We’re trying to design our systems so that they can be used in a variety of ways, creating a whole lot of different wave-riding experiences,” says John Luff of American Wave Machines. “When we crank it up you can ride a normal surfboard with fins and get barreled and do airs, but it also caters to surfers of every level and ability. You don’t need to be a pro to enjoy it, that was never the idea.”
Up next, American Wave Machines will be tackling a more ambitious project in Sochi, Russia. Construction is currently on hold until after the Winter Olympics, but they’re looking a building a pool that mimics ocean swells and waves. They also have a project in the works in New Jersey, which is being funded by the same people that built the “Mall of America.”
After a weekend in Nashua I can’t tell you I’m totally sold on wave pools as a substitute for surfing, but it’s obvious that the future is here. Kids don’t care if there’s sand or sea gulls as long as they’re having fun, and the Surf’s Up waves are fun.
PRESS RELEASE | 12-20-2013 By: Todd Woody at Quartz Bruce McFarland’s San Diego office is just a skateboard ride from some of California’s prime surf spots. And right now, McFarland is gazing at the perfect wave—a glassy, barreling wall of water. [...]
PRESS RELEASE | 12-20-2013
By: Todd Woody at Quartz
Bruce McFarland’s San Diego office is just a skateboard ride from some of California’s prime surf spots. And right now, McFarland is gazing at the perfect wave—a glassy, barreling wall of water. But it’s breaking inside his building, and McFarland, an engineer and surfer, is controlling the wave with an iPad.
Bringing surfing to the landlocked masses could be the biggest change to hit the sport since Hawaii’s Duke Kahanamoku taught Californians how to ride the waves a century ago. American Wave Machines is just one of half a dozen companies developing artificial wave technology, including a Los Angeles startup founded by 11-time surfing world champion Kelly Slater.
With a mix of hope and hype, the $7 billion surf industry is embracing wave parks as way to grow a flat-lining business. Kids in Kansas and Qatar could become real surfers, not just boardshorts-wearing wannabes. Pro surfing executives, meanwhile, are pushing surf parks as predictable, television-friendly venues to stage competitions as they lobby to make surfing an Olympic sport. “Surf parks will create an entire new generation of aspirational surfers,” says Jess Ponting, director of the Center for Surf Research at San Diego State University. “These new surfers will not just buy for fashion but for equipment as well, and not just in the US but in Russia, China and Europe.
Surfing has always been as much a way of life as a sport, the exclusive domain of a coastal wave tribe with its own rites and rituals. (Disclosure: I’m one of them.) Now with dozens of surf parks under development worldwide, surfing is about to get Disneyfied—buy a ticket, stand in line, and go for a ride.
In the ocean, no two waves are alike. Each one is formed by constantly changing conditions—winds, tides, swell, sandbars. Even if you’re lucky enough to live on the coast near surf breaks, there’s no guarantee there will be rideable waves on any given hour or day. That unpredictability can make honing one’s surfing skills a time-consuming process, demanding a commitment bordering on obsession.
PRESS RELEASE | 11-22-2013 By: Richard Valdmanis on Reuters.com (Reuters) – A surfer drops down the face of a crashing swell, crouches low and stalls his board into the tube, achieving the sport’s ultimate goal of a ride inside [...]
PRESS RELEASE | 11-22-2013
By: Richard Valdmanis on Reuters.com
(Reuters) – A surfer drops down the face of a crashing swell, crouches low and stalls his board into the tube, achieving the sport’s ultimate goal of a ride inside the barrel.
But instead of being on a sunlit beach in Hawaii or southern California, this surfer is inside a glass-and-concrete building in New Hampshire – at America’s newest surf park, an hour’s drive from the Atlantic.
“Part of our mission is to bring surfing everywhere, including where there isn’t an ocean,” said Bruce McFarland, president of American Wave Machines.
The company’s SurfStream wave system is being used at the Surfs Up New Hampshire park in Nashua, which is set to open in December.
Surf parks have been around for decades, but a surge in the sport’s appeal and rapid advances in wave-making technology have triggered new construction in unlikely places such as South Dakota, Quebec, Sweden and Russia.
Using proprietary designs meant to emulate waves formed in nature, companies like American Wave Machines, Weber Wave Pools, Waveloch and others are racing to bring the ocean sport to the landlocked masses.
Fernando Aguerre, head of the International Surfing Association (ISA), said their efforts could be a big boost for surfing and businesses built around it.
“Surf parks will give the opportunity to learn to ride waves in a safe way to millions of people around the world,” he explained, adding it could also help ISA to make surfing part of the Olympic Games.
“Without man-made surfing waves, our Olympic surfing dream would be just that – a dream,” he said, adding that reliable, identical waves, virtually impossible to find in nature, are needed to insure fair judging in Olympic competition.
Once seen as a fringe sport, surfing now has around 35 million enthusiasts worldwide. It is a roughly $6 billion retail industry in the United States, according to the Surf Industry Manufacturers Association.
“The industry is doing a good job selling surfing as a lifestyle. It is fun. It influences culture, music, fashion, all that. It is imbedded. But it is hard for anybody who doesn’t live near the ocean to do,” said McFarland.
Surfers, desperate for a good wave, have sought out wind swells on the Great Lakes and tried surfing on river rapids and in the wake of passing barges on the Houston Ship Channel in Texas.
“There is definitely a huge demand,” said Matt Reilly of Surf Park Central, a website that tracks global surf park construction. “The speed of growth that you’re seeing is the result of improvements in technology and increases in efficiencies.”
The most commonly used surf park wave designs are modeled on standing river waves, where thousands of gallons of water are propelled against an immobile object to create a stationary curl.
At a recent Surfs Up New Hampshire test run, a handful of professional surfers – including Todd Holland, who was once ranked No. 8 in the world – carved up different types and sizes of standing waves in front of a panel of engineers and photographers.
“This is great,” said Holland. “Once you get going down the line, it feels just like racing a big section.”
Research has also been done on designs more closely related to waves at the world’s finest ocean spots, where a moving swell is produced that breaks when it hits shallow water along an artificial reef or sandbar.
Although less so than in the past, the cost of building an artificial wave system is still substantial. A standing wave system like the one in New Hampshire costs about $3 million to$6 million, while a traveling, or ocean wave, system is much more expensive.
Despite the surf park industry’s efforts to mimic real surf, McFarland, whose company is now also building a traveling wave park in Russia using his PerfectSwell technology, said artificial waves will always have their limits.
“We’re not trying to compete with the ocean, or replace it in any way,” he said. “But this is fun, and I think it is good for the sport and for people.”
(Writing by Richard Valdmanis; editing by Patricia Reaney and Gunna Dickson)
Lucas Cochran, host of Daily Planet on the Discovery Channel Canada, got an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at our SurfStream® SS6032 system being installed at the Surfs Up surf park in Nashua, New Hampshire. The TV crew spent the day with [...]
Lucas Cochran, host of Daily Planet on the Discovery Channel Canada, got an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at our SurfStream® SS6032 system being installed at the Surfs Up surf park in Nashua, New Hampshire.
The TV crew spent the day with us to capture an under-the-hood view of our technology at the largest stationary wave surfing system in the world. — Check out Discovery Channel’s online segment of American Wave Machines.
Lucas interviewed our founder, Bruce McFarland, and received his first surfing lesson from AWM team member John Luff. We had a blast showing him how our technology creates real waves and the TV host learned to surf by the end of the day!
PerfectSwell® – Authentic Surfing Experiences Beyond the Ocean SOLANA BEACH, CALIF. (July 22, 2013) - The Surf Park market is here. John Luff, business development staff at AWM was interviewed about the surf park market and sustainable tourism in a compelling article [...]
|PerfectSwell® – Authentic Surfing Experiences Beyond the Ocean|
SOLANA BEACH, CALIF. (July 22, 2013) - The Surf Park market is here. John Luff, business development staff at AWM was interviewed about the surf park market and sustainable tourism in a compelling article in Transworld Business seen here. AWM continues to lead the way in the development of surfing beyond the ocean with existing installations around the globe and planned openings in New Hampshire, Montreal, South Dakota, and Sochi, Russia — site of the 2014 Winter Olympics.
“Surf Parks are the key to making surfing a mainstream, commercially sustainable sport and to promoting surfing as an iconic lifestyle that transcends all nationalities and cultures.” – John Luff
AWM’s PerfectSwell® and SurfStream® technologies allow for authentic recreational and advanced surfing experiences. This is made possible by AWM’s patented wave systems designed and engineered for the best user experience and the best long term owner experience.
|SurfStream® – The ideal small footprint solution for versatile & endless wave riding on real surfboards.|
Very large scale surf pools using computer optimized PerfectSwell® technologies that simulate an authentic ocean environment are currently in production. AWM’s PerfectSwell® wave generation systems offer practical solutions for resorts and waterparks such as in Sochi as well as surf parks specifying waves up to 12′ or more. Stay tuned for these openings and watch for several new locations to be announced soon.
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM) designs, engineers, manufactures and sells world class wave pools, wave systems and surf centers. Founded in 2000 by California surfer Bruce McFarland, the company is committed to delivering authentic surfing experiences in a safe and controlled environment. SurfStream® is the world’s first standing wave machine that delivers a stationary surfing experience (on real surfboards) scalable to various spaces. PerfectSwell® is the first air-powered system to create an authentic surfing experience through natural-like ocean waves. From the Caribbean to Sweden, American Wave Machines has developed more than 15 small and large-scale installations exclusively for surf parks, waterparks, resorts, malls and research institutions. www.AmericanWaveMachines.com
Bob Meistrell dies at 84; co-founder of surfwear firm Body Glove Meistrell and his twin, Bill, made wetsuits that enabled surfers to stay in the water longer and more comfortably than ever before. The firm does more than $200 million [...]
Bob Meistrell dies at 84; co-founder of surfwear firm Body Glove
Meistrell and his twin, Bill, made wetsuits that enabled surfers to stay in the water longer and more comfortably than ever before. The firm does more than $200 million in business each year.
By Steve Chawkins, Los Angeles Times
June 17, 2013, 8:33 p.m.
For Bob Meistrell, there was always something about the water.
After he and his brother, Bill, taught themselves to swim in a Missouri pond, one would man a bicycle pump on shore and the other would throw on a diving helmet fashioned from a 5-gallon vegetable can, a pane of glass, a scoop of tar and — connecting to the pump — a garden hose.
A few decades later, the identical twins, who moved to Southern California as teens, started a company whose wetsuits enabled surfers to stay in the water longer and more comfortably than ever before. Their accomplishments at Redondo Beach-based Body Glove International helped draw millions to a relaxed lifestyle that was once the province of macho young men who warded off the chill with oil-drenched sweaters.
At 84, Bob Meistrell died Sunday aboard his 72-foot yacht Disappearance off Catalina Island, where he was planning to help run a paddleboard race. The cause was a heart attack, family members said.
Bill Meistrell died of Parkinson’s disease in 2006.
The two were “always down-to-earth water guys,” said Steve Pezman, publisher of The Surfer’s Journal, “but they became iconic personalities in the midst of a beach culture that emerged from California and rippled around the world.”
Bob Meistrell was also an accomplished diver and diving teacher. He taught diving to celebrities, including Lloyd Bridges of TV’s “Sea Hunt.” In 1975, Meistrell was poking around the sea floor off Palos Verdes and discovered a 280-pound doughnut-shaped stone that, according to some scientists, resembled the kind of anchor used by Chinese sea vessels 2,000 years ago.
He also was avid about one-man submarines. Over the years, he and a partner built several subs named “Snooper,” using them to search for crashed airplanes, shipwrecks and, when hired by local agencies, sewer pipe leaks. He was on a team that discovered a cache of gold coins from the Brother Jonathan, a paddle wheel steamer that sunk off Crescent City, Calif., in 1865.
In a 2007 interview with the Los Angeles Daily News, he expressed surprise that plunging thousands of murky feet in a cramped submersible didn’t have wider appeal.
“I can’t believe anybody doesn’t want to do it,” he said.
Born in Boonville, Mo., on July 31, 1928, Robert Fischer Meistrell was hours younger than his brother.
When they were 4, their investment banker father was murdered by a former business partner, Meistrell told The Times in 2006. The family moved west in the 1940s, landing in Manhattan Beach when the twins were 16.
The boys took to the ocean immediately. This time, they had a real diving helmet — purchased from a neighbor for $25 after a previous owner had drowned in it.
After graduating from El Segundo High School, Meistrell served in the Army at Ft. Ord on the Monterey Peninsula during the Korean War.
Meanwhile, the brothers’ tiny surfing world was set to explode.
In 1951, Hugh Bradner, a UC Berkeley physicist, was testing wetsuit materials for Navy divers. He came up with a two-piece suit made from neoprene, a synthetic rubber patented by DuPont, and tested it himself in icy Lake Tahoe. When the Navy rejected the idea, it became declassified and Bev Morgan, a surfing buddy of Bill’s, found Bradner’s full report in a library at San Diego’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography.
In 1953, the brothers rounded up $1,800 and bought into Morgan’s Dive N’ Surf shop in Redondo Beach, where wetsuits — however cumbersome and irritating — were slowly starting to sell.
“‘Fifties surfers in general rejected the rubber suits as both uncomfortable and unmanly,” wrote Matt Warshaw in the 2003 “Encyclopedia of Surfing,” but the Meistrells persisted. They bought out Morgan and, like others along the beachfront, saw their sales rocket after the surfing movie “Gidget” was released in 1959.
“Surf movies, surf magazines, surf music — it all turned into a cultural expression that never calmed down,” Pezman told The Times. With development of wetsuits and lighter-weight surfboards, the sport’s popularity catapulted. In 1965, the Meistrells founded Body Glove.
It succeeded beyond “the wilder of our wilder dreams” Bob Meistrell once said.
The company, owned almost entirely by family members, does more than $200 million in business annually, marketing not just wetsuits but swimsuits, snorkels, sportswear and niche items like cellphone cases and icepack wraps. Its chief competitor over the years has been O’Neill, the Santa Cruz-based surfwear empire started in the 1950s by Jack O’Neill.
Meistrell was active in water sports even at the end of his life.
In 2009, he dived 81 feet for his 81st birthday. Because it was also his late brother’s birthday, he doubled it — and added 10 feet for good measure.
When he died, Meistrell was trying to fix the engine on the Disappearance, which was to be the lead boat in the Rock 2 Rock paddleboard race from Two Harbors on Catalina to Cabrillo Beach in San Pedro. Other family members were also moored off Catalina for the event — one of many such races that Meistrell volunteered to lead over the years.
“It was an absolute blessing being able to spend his last weekend with him at Catalina,” his son Robbie Meistrell, Body Glove’s chief executive, told The Times.
Body Glove sponsors numerous surf events as well as surf camps for children. On Monday, Robbie Meistrell said he took a break and drove to Redondo Beach, where instructors wearing Body Glove T-shirts were showing beach basics to 50 or 60 children.
“It was a real moment,” he said. “There were a whole bunch of little Bobs and Bills down there learning the lifestyle.”
Meistrell, who lived in Redondo Beach, is survived by Patty, his wife of 62 years; sons Robbie, Ronnie and Randy; nine grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
Continuous Surf – Any Shape and Size SOLANA BEACH, CALIF. (June 3, 2013) - American Wave Machines (AWM), the technology leader in out of ocean surf recently completed installation and commissioning of the latest PerfectSwell® wave generating invention in East [...]
Continuous Surf – Any Shape and Size
SOLANA BEACH, CALIF. (June 3, 2013) - American Wave Machines (AWM), the technology leader in out of ocean surf recently completed installation and commissioning of the latest PerfectSwell® wave generating invention in East Durham, New York.
Adding to the PerfectSwell® suite of innovations, including the patented reflecting wave generator, the new software based invention creates surf by sequenced control of multiple wave generating chambers. Virtually any wave shape and direction can be generated continuously including point breaks, peaks, beach breaks, barrels, and multiple rider waves. The recently patented invention is applicable to all pneumatic systems including linear and circular wave pools.
Additional patent pending innovations include a mobile wave control application designed to run on mobile devices. The mobile app will enable operators, coaches, and surfers to call and control waves and personalized playlists. A media option allows photo and video capture of the surf session within the app.
“We’re stoked our customers have bigger and better waves in their pools than they thought possible. The capabilities of this system exceeded our predictions” said Bruce McFarland, founder and president of AWM. “Not only does this demonstrate the scalability of PerfectSwell®, it demonstrates wave quality and quantity necessary for successful surf parks..”
The PerfectSwell® systems currently under construction are focused on surfing and standard wave pool recreation and are engineered for waves up to 8 feet. Still larger wave systems are within the technical capability.
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM) designs, engineers, manufactures and sells world class wave pools, wave systems and surf centers. Founded in 2001 by California surfer Bruce McFarland, the company is committed to delivering authentic surfing experiences in a safe and controlled environment. SurfStream® is the world’s first standing wave machine that delivers a stationary surfing experience (on real surfboards) scalable to various spaces. PerfectSwell® is the first air-powered system to create an authentic surfing experience through natural-like ocean waves. From the Caribbean to Sweden, American Wave Machines has developed more than 15 small and large-scale installations exclusively for surf parks, waterparks, resorts, malls and research institutions. www.americanwavemachines.com
PRESS RELEASE Body Glove Signs Contract with Wave Pool SAC to be Distributor at La Ola Movistar Wave Machine in Peru Redondo Beach, CA [April 24, 2013] - Body Glove International is excited to announce they have signed a contract with Wave [...]
Body Glove Signs Contract with Wave Pool SAC to be Distributor at La Ola Movistar Wave Machine in Peru
Redondo Beach, CA [April 24, 2013] - Body Glove International is excited to announce they have signed a contract with Wave Pool SAC, to be an authorized distributor of Body Glove products.
Wave Pool SAC began operations in October of 2010 as the operator of “La Ola Movistar” surf arena in the Boulevard de Asia Outdoor Mall. Under the direction of Guillermo Gonzales it features the largest standing wave machine in the world designed and built by American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM). The venue puts Peru at the forefront offering a perfect place for athletes, fans and the general public to practice the sport of surfing in a family setting with restaurant, bar, and entertainment facilities.
Body Glove CEO and Chairman of the Board of AWM, Robbie Meistrell, first met Guillermo along with professional surfers Cheyne Magnusson and Anthony Walsh on a trip to the surf arena. “I was so impressed with Guillermo as a businessman and as a professional surfer, I wanted to find a way to bring him into the Body Glove family,” states Meistrell, “I think this arrangement will be beneficial to both companies and can really increase our brand presence in South America.”
About Body Glove:
Founded in 1953, Body Glove is a leading, worldwide water sports brand specializing in wetsuits, swimwear, clothing, footwear, accessories, and technology accessories. The company sponsors one of the most respected surf and wakeboard teams in the industry with such powerhouse names as pro surfers Jamie O’Brien, Cheyne Magnusson, Anthony Walsh, Alex Gray and Holly Beck and wake boarders Rusty Malinoski, Harley Clifford, Bob Soven and Jeff McKee. Body Glove and Jean-Michel Cousteau and his Ocean Futures Society have formed a legendary alliance to help preserve and protect the ocean while providing ocean and diving geared equipment to water enthusiasts around the globe. Some of the proceeds from the sale of those products go directly to Ocean Futures Society. Through Reef Check, SIMA’s environmental fund, and the Surfrider Foundation, Body Glove also works to preserve the purity of the waters it loves. Body Glove products are sold in the U.S. by a network of independent retailers. Body Glove is also sold in approximately 50 countries internationally.
American Wave Machines, Inc. designs, engineers, manufactures and sells world class wave pools, wave systems and surf centers. Founded in 2001 by California surfer Bruce McFarland, the company is committed to delivering authentic surfing experiences in a safe and controlled environment that values sustainability, integrity, and sportsmanship. SurfStream® is the world’s first standing wave machine that delivers a stationary surfing experience (on real surfboards) scalable to various spaces. PerfectSwell™ is the first air-powered system to create an authentic surfing experience through natural-like ocean waves. From the Caribbean to Sweden, American Wave Machines has developed more than 15 small and large-scale installations exclusively for surf parks, waterparks, resorts, malls and research institutions.
For daily updates visit www.facebook.com/americanwavemachines
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE American Wave Machines Brings World Class Surfing Experiences to Water Parks Across the U.S. Company expands U.S. footprint with SurfStream® installation in South Dakota SOLANA BEACH, CALIF. (April 10, 2013) – American Wave Machines, the company behind [...]
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
American Wave Machines Brings World Class Surfing Experiences to Water Parks Across the U.S.
Company expands U.S. footprint with SurfStream® installation in South Dakota
SOLANA BEACH, CALIF. (April 10, 2013) – American Wave Machines, the company behind the highest-quality, scalable wave technology systems – SurfStream® and PerfectSwell™ – announced today a new sale to a cutting-edge water park in the U.S. Rippin’ Rapids Resort & Adventure Sports in South Dakota is one of the first parks in the nation to install American Wave Machines’ breakthrough wave systems.
“We’re excited to bring surfing to people located in areas across the country that traditionally don’t have ocean access,” said Bruce McFarland, founder and president of American Wave Machines, Inc. “Our breakthrough patented technology and proprietary innovation delivers high quality surf experiences – even if you’re in South Dakota.”
Rippin’ Rapids Resort & Adventure Sports
Rippin’ Rapids Resort & Adventure Sports opens in Rapid City, SD in the spring of 2014, and will feature SurfStream® – the world’s first standing wave machine that delivers a world class stationary surfing experience on real surfboards. Rippin’ Rapids will be the second U.S. venue for American Wave Machines (the first is located in Nashua, New Hampshire opening summer 2013).
About American Wave Machines, Inc.
American Wave Machines, Inc. designs, engineers, manufactures and sells world class wave pools, wave systems, and surf centers that offer authentic surfing experiences. Founded in 2001 by California surfer Bruce McFarland, the company is committed to delivering ideal conditions for surfing in a safe and controlled environment any time of the year anywhere in the world. SurfStream® is the world’s first standing wave machine that delivers a stationary surfing experience (on real surfboards) scalable to various spaces. PerfectSwell™ is the first air-powered system to create naturally occurring ocean-like waves for an authentic surfing experience. From the Caribbean to Sweden, American Wave Machines has developed more than 15 small and large-scale installations exclusively for surf parks, waterparks, resorts, malls and research institutions.
By: Tawny Maya McCray UT San Diego Published Feb 20, 2013 (Updated Feb 21, 2013) A Solana Beach company founded by the great-nephew of San Diego surf legend Charles Wright has created what it says is the world’s largest standing [...]
UT San Diego
A Solana Beach company founded by the great-nephew of San Diego surf legend Charles Wright has created what it says is the world’s largest standing wave machine — producing waves with a 5-foot barrel and a 28-foot face — that will be making its debut this spring in the United States.
Another of the machines will be debuting in Canada’s first indoor surf park this summer.
The company — American Wave Machines, founded by engineer and recreational surfer Bruce McFarland — developed its SurfStream technology in the mid-2000s.
The first SurfStream debuted in 2009 at a resort in Turks & Caicos.
In the years since, several more of the machines, which can be engineered to any size and shape specification, have opened at surf parks, water parks, hotels and resorts around the world, McFarland said.
The patented surf machine allows for authentic surfing on real surfboards with fins, with a water temperature that averages around 82 degrees.
That warm water is likely to be a strong pull when the first SurfStream in the United States opens this spring in Nashua, N.H.
The machine will be the centerpiece of a park called Surf’s Up New Hampshire, an expansion of SkyVenture NH, a massive indoor sky diving venue.
The SurfStream will be indoors in a facility that features a retractable glass roof, glass walls for spectator viewing, surfside lounging and a cafe, McFarland said. Surf’s Up will be the first multisport venue with surfing and sky diving.
When the owners polled their sky diving customers, “they were very enthusiastic about being able to surf after flying,” McFarland said.
McFarland said all the SurfStream machines share a design scheme: The basic platform is a training wave where you can body-board or learn to stand up.
“It’s very easy. It’s a small wave and it’s very stable,” he said. “Level two is what we call the standing wave, it’s kind of like a rapid in a river. The wave jumps up about twice as high and it’s more turbulent and a lot more powerful. You can also have white-water kayaking on that wave.”
The most advanced wave, McFarland said, is a barreling wave that breaks either continuously left or continuously right. The barrel is created by moving modular pieces of different sizes and shapes.
The changes in the waves are created by adjusting a spoiler at the bottom of the machine.
McFarland said the machine is great for learning how to surf and for practicing maneuvers, such as aerials and 360s.
“You can practice the same maneuver as many times as you need to to perfect it,” he said. “It is using real surfboards with fins, so the skills are transferable to ocean surfing.”
American Wave Machines also offers a technology called Perfect Swell, which is essentially a wave pool that you can surf in.
PerfectSwell is an air-powered system that uses computer controls to modulate wave shape, ride duration, frequency and energy efficiency. The waves range from about 2 feet to 7½ feet.
McFarland, who in the 1990s developed sheet-flow wave simulators at Belmont Park and The Wave Waterpark in Vista, said his company’s goal is to open a SurfStream or PerfectSwell in every major city in the U.S.
He said they are working with some developers in California, but nothing is scheduled yet.
Canada’s surf park, called Oasis Surf, will be set in a contemporary surf retail center with a California beach-themed bar and restaurant. It will also include a surf shop featuring surf apparel and custom surfboards.
“(The owner) is creating a place (for customers) to go any time of year,” McFarland said. “In the winter, when it’s so cold up there, it’ll be a pretty warm place where you can go and get in the water and hang out.”
View the article at UTSanDiego.com
By: KIMBERLY HOUGHTON Union Leader Correspondent Published Feb 6, 2013 at 9:24 pm (Updated Feb 6, 2013) NASHUA – This fall, the nation’s largest standing wave machine is expected to attract expert and novice surfers to Nashua. Currently under construction, [...]
Union Leader Correspondent
NASHUA – This fall, the nation’s largest standing wave machine is expected to attract expert and novice surfers to Nashua.
Currently under construction, Surf’s Up New Hampshire is being built at the existing SkyVenture New Hampshire site at 3 Poisson Ave.
“We can already teach anyone to fly, now we can teach anyone to surf,” said Rob Greer, who owns SkyVenture with his wife, Laurie. “SurfStream® is a tremendous value proposition with broad appeal. That’s what convinced us to invest, and that’s essential for our bottom line.”
American Wave Machines Inc., the leader in artificial wave technology for surf parks, announced this week that SurfSteam® is expected to begin operations this spring, possibly by April.
Surfers will be able to experience a 5-foot barreling wave with 32-feet of face to carve on in an all-season indoor multi-sport venue, according to Bruce McFarland, founder and CEO of American Wave Machines Inc.
“SurfStream is the most fun water ride there is,” said McFarland, praising the enormous system chosen by the Greers for the indoor facility. “It is very cold to surf outside in New Hampshire. The water inside is going to be in the low 80s, and so is the air.”
McFarland expects that people will travel a far distance to try the new SurfStream technology, including experienced, hard-core surfers as well as individuals who have never stepped foot onto a surfboard.
“Regardless of what is going on outside, people can walk around in their trunks and bikinis and be completely comfortable in and out of the water,” said McFarland, adding an open air roof system is being built to allow for sunshine when the weather is nicer.
SurfStream is a gel-coated fiberglass modular system that can be built in different shapes and sizes to produce different size waves. In basic mode, the machine can be used by inexperienced customers who are trying to surf for the first time.
However, it also has the capability of producing barreling waves for professional surfers, according to McFarland. He said the machines range in price from $350,000 for a small model to a few million dollars for the larger systems like the one being built in Nashua.
Learning to surf in the ocean can be challenging because it takes a lot of effort just to get standing on a board. With the SurfStream, McFarland said people can often stand and ride on a surfboard fairly quickly, often during the first session.
“The system allows that training and skill development – it can be a thrill ride,” he added.
Nashua is an ideal location for a new indoor surf park, according to McFarland, who said it is close enough to Boston to attract a large number of potential clients.
Furthermore, many daring skydivers are often willing and excited to try something new like surfing. The Greers have already received a tremendous amount of feedback from existing clients ready to begin a new adventure in the water, he said.
SkyVenture, and now Surf’s Up New Hampshire, are located on Poisson Avenue off the Daniel Webster Highway behind Best Buy.
Originally published in the San Diego Business Journal on December 31, 2012 TECH: American Wave Machines Can Offer Custom Rides By: Brad Graves There is now an app for making waves. American Wave Machines of Solana Beach designs pools with technology that creates [...]
Originally published in the San Diego Business Journal on December 31, 2012
TECH: American Wave Machines Can Offer Custom Rides
By: Brad Graves
American Wave Machines of Solana Beach designs pools with technology that creates waves big enough to surf on. They can bring the familiar sport to places that are nowhere near the ocean.
Among the company’s latest innovations is a way to modify those waves with an Apple Inc. iPhone or iPad.
Standing before a miniature, tabletop wave pool at the company’s headquarters — just a few steps from the Belly Up Tavern — company founder and President Bruce McFarland demonstrated the variety of waves he can turn out by changing the settings on his phone.
Then, he invited a reporter to try out the controls, on a console with a tablet-sized computer screen.
By manipulating the shape of the wave on the screen, a person can modify the wave emitted by the machine. Press a button, the air-operated system makes some noise and, voila, the wave breaks. McFarland sizes up the result. “You made a mushy wave on the right side of the pool,” he said.
The app will work the same way on the full-size wave machines that McFarland and his company engineer.
American Wave Machines was founded in 2000 in McFarland’s home. Its machines are now up and running in Peru, Sweden and the Caribbean region.
“We made it through the recession with international business,” said McFarland.
American Wave Machines holds seven patents, and it has applied for several more in the United States and overseas.
One of its more ambitious projects is a wave pool at the Russian resort city of Sochi, the city that will host the 2014 Winter Olympics. The 35,000-square-foot pool will be part of the Sheksna Resort, and will offer a 10-second ride.
Another buyer is the owner of an amusement park in Nashua, N.H., 40 miles north of Boston. The customer is putting the wave machine indoors, in a space with a retractable roof. The attraction will complement other rides at the park, including technology that lets people “skydive” in place.
Depending on the technology, American Wave Machine projects can cost between $500,000 and $15 million. And the company can not only supply a park with equipment. McFarland says it can also help formulate business plans.
Third-party contractors build the wave machines to company specifications. The wave machines come in two styles.
The SurfStream is more compact and reminiscent of a treadmill. It can produce a small wave for beginners or a barreling wave for advanced surfers. Detachable modules get the wave to break to the left or to the right, depending on the rider’s preference. The waves continue to churn for as long as the machine is running.
By contrast, the PerfectSwell machine sprawls out over a large area. It sends waves across the surface of a pool at regular intervals, and those waves peter out at water’s edge.
Unlike other products, the wave machines accommodate regular, off-the-rack surfboards with fins. “It’s beyond a simulator,” McFarland said.
Several market forces affect the people who buy water play equipment.
Financing a water park has been a challenge during the economic downturn, said Aleatha Ezra, director of park member development for the World Waterpark Association in Overland Park, Kansas.
Making Waves Overseas
International development, however, has been strong, she said. Asia has “a burgeoning market,” Ezra said, while Europe and the Middle East are also strong.
American Wave Machines can claim one other innovation: It built a wave machine that was part of a float in the 2012 Tournament of Roses parade in Pasadena.
Natural Balance Pet Foods Inc. of Pacoima sponsored the float, and the wave machine wasn’t really the focal point. A surfing bulldog stole the show.
It was the longest and heaviest float ever entered in the Rose Parade, McFarland said.
Going forward, McFarland is enthusiastic about his wave machines’ potential.
“There’s room for at least one of these in every major city,” he said.
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), the leader in artificial wave technology for surf parks, announces three technological breakthroughs for PerfectSwell™, an innovative approach to generating large waves with the emphasis on wave quality and surfing. PerfectSwell is the next [...]
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), the leader in artificial wave technology for surf parks, announces three technological breakthroughs for PerfectSwell™, an innovative approach to generating large waves with the emphasis on wave quality and surfing. PerfectSwell is the next generation of artificial wave pools with its patent pending PerfectSwell Wave App™, patented Reflecting Wave Generator and Phased Array Control System, providing the opportunity for surfing outside of the ocean. Production of PerfectSwell is underway in Sochi, Russia, site of the 2014 Olympics. The 35,000 square foot PerfectSwell wave pool will open at the Sheksna Resort, nominated as Russia’s Leading Spa Resort by World Travel Awards.
AWM’s PerfectSwell Wave App™ allows surfers to control the session by calling up their favorite waves from the lineup or from shore with their iPad or iPhone. Wave direction, size and intensity can be modified from an iPhone, allowing surfers to have the perfect session every time. Coaches and trainers can manipulate the surf for the skill level and physical location of trainees in the pool. Surfers can record the ride with a built-in media option.
No longer having to wait for the perfect wave, rigorous conditioning and training can take place in a PerfectSwell pool. AWM’s proprietary PerfectSwell Reflecting Wave Generator creates circular particle motion waves like the ocean, capable of producing 10 barreling waves per minute. The PerfectSwell Phased Array Control system controls chamber firing patterns and sequences creating any wave breaking characteristic from mushy to pitching to timed aerial closeouts.
“PerfectSwell is the most versatile system with the most innovative technology providing the best surfing experience, “ says Bruce McFarland, President of AWM. “PerfectSwell creates an infinite variety of waves. Point, reef and beach breaks can be replicated in PerfectSwell surf pools and waves can be adjusted and customized without need for special bottom contours.”
About American Wave Machines, Inc.
AWM is the creator of wave technology for surf parks, hotel/resorts, recreation, and research applications. SurfStream®, the world’s first standing wave machine, delivers surfing capability in a compact space. PerfectSwell technology is a new approach to generating large waves with the emphasis on the surfing experience. With no moving parts in the water, sophisticated computer controls modulate wave shape, ride duration, frequency and energy efficiency. www.americanwavemachines.com
First dedicated indoor surf park in US developed by leading wave machine company to open at SkyVenture New Hampshire in 2013 American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), the leading wave technology innovation company, announced the debut of the world’s largest standing [...]
First dedicated indoor surf park in US developed by leading wave machine company to open at SkyVenture New Hampshire in 2013
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), the leading wave technology innovation company, announced the debut of the world’s largest standing wave surfing machine, the SurfStream® model SS5032, in Nashua, New Hampshire. This will be the first multi-sport venue with surfing and skydiving.Called Surf’s Up New Hampshire, it’s part of an expansion of SkyVenture NH, a profitable massive indoor skydiving venue. The all-season indoor SurfStream® will be connected to the skydiving facility and features a retractable glass roof for seasonal open air operation, glass walls for enhanced spectator viewing, surfside lounging, and a café.
With programmable controls and modular inserts, the SurfStream® model SS5032 creates multiple wave types in one machine. For experienced surfers the signature wave is the 5’ barreling wave with 28’ of face to carve on. This set of wave modules can be assembled in both right and left breaks accommodating goofy and regular foot riders. For broad appeal, the system also features training and intermediate waves which operate at lower power. Due to this versatility, owners Laurie and Rob Greer have developed a robust pay-for-surf revenue model including interscholastic surf team packages to help develop local high school surf teams.
“We can already teach anyone to fly, now we can teach anyone to surf.” said Rob Greer, owner of SkyVenture NH. “SurfStream® is a tremendous value proposition with broad appeal. That’s what convinced us to invest and that’s essential for our bottom line.”
Bruce McFarland, founder and CEO of AWM said “Laurie and Rob are visionaries. Their expertise in action sports facility marketing and operations, not to mention their passion, has contributed greatly to the success of this project. They really do believe in the development of extreme sport talent.”
About American Wave Machines, Inc.
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM) is the powerhouse creator of artificial wave technology for applications in recreation, action sports, and hotel/resorts. Its patented SurfStream®, the world’s first standing wave machine, is a technology breakthrough that delivers authentic surf and wave riding capabilities. The company also offers PerfectSwell™ surf pools for resorts and outdoor surf parks. For more information, visit www.americanwavemachines.com.
About SkyVenture New Hampshire
Located in Nashua, New Hampshire, SkyVenture NH features a state of the art vertical wind tunnel where customers experience the FREEDOM OF FLIGHT! In addition to individual flights, group events and parties are also available. For more information, visit www.skyventurenh.com.
First surf retail center will be online in Virginia Beach, Virginia in 2013 American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), world leader in artificial wave technology for the emerging surf parks market, announces their selection to carry out the conceptual design and [...]
First surf retail center will be online in Virginia Beach, Virginia in 2013
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), world leader in artificial wave technology for the emerging surf parks market, announces their selection to carry out the conceptual design and pre-development work and technology supply for the Juice Box Surf owners group in Virginia Beach, VA.Juice Box Surf Center will be a mixed use surf park business utilizing AWM products and technology for indoor surfing, exhibitions, contests, training, surf camps, special events and soft and hard good retail. Juice Box Surf Center combines a full service surf shop, board manufacturing, and surf team with full time surfing available to the public on the largest SurfStream® designed to date. Riders will have the ability to surf indoors in winter and outside in summer. The guest experience includes surfing, shopping, spectating, food, and live music.
Juice Box Surf will feature AWM’s SurfStream® Model SS5032 with programmable controls and modular inserts that allow multiple wave types in one machine. For experienced surfers the signature wave is the standing 6′ barrel with 30′ of face to carve on. This set of wave modules can be assembled in both right and left breaks accommodating goofy and regular foot riders. For broad appeal, the system also has training and intermediate waves which operate at lower power so that the wave size can progress along with the riders’ skill.
“We’re stoked to be working with American Wave Machines,” said owners James Simonin and George Smith. “This is going to expand the surf market, coastal and non-coastal, combining the actual experience of surfing in a core setting with relevant merchandising. Juice Box Surf is an island for surfing that people can escape to with great waves, great food, live music and no worries. Together with AWM we have developed a robust and replicable model and can see this expanding.”
“Virginia Beach has deep roots in surfing, so this is a great opportunity for my company to work with visionary guys,” said Bruce McFarland, President of AWM. “SurfStream® is creating an entirely new business model revolutionizing the way surfing is experienced. We’re ramping up to deploy systems worldwide including the resurgent U.S. market. It’s a business that makes sense not only for surfers but for the new active public that seek authentic, even extreme experiences for their recreation dollars.”
About American Wave Machines, Inc.
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM) is the creator of wave technology for surf parks, hotel/resorts, recreation, and research applications. SurfStream®, the world’s first standing wave machine, is a technology breakthrough that delivers authentic surf and wave riding capabilities in a compact space. For more information, visit www.americanwavemachines.com
About Juice Box Surf
Host to the East Coast Surfing Championship, the longest running surf competition in the United States, Virginia Beach is the location of Juice Box Surf. Featuring custom surfboards designed and built in-house and world renowned surf product lines, Juice Box Surf is a “CORE” focused shop driven by pure enthusiasm backed up by decades of surf culture experience. For more information, visit www.juiceboxsurf.com
A Former TRW Engineer and California’s First Family of Surfing Team Up to Bring Surfing on Shore by Kevin Cody Easy Reader News- The Drop Zone, May 2012 Download PDF of The Drop Zone Open publication – Free publishing – [...]
A Former TRW Engineer and California’s First Family of Surfing Team Up to Bring Surfing on Shore
PerfectSwell® Surf Pool Opening Summer 2014 at Sheksna Resort SOLANA BEACH, Calif., May 8, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), world leader in artificial wave technology for the emerging surf parks market, announces their selection as supplier [...]
PerfectSwell® Surf Pool Opening Summer 2014 at Sheksna Resort
SOLANA BEACH, Calif., May 8, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), world leader in artificial wave technology for the emerging surf parks market, announces their selection as supplier of a 35,000 square foot PerfectSwell® Model 1672 wave pool for the Sheksna Resort, nominated as Russia’s Leading Spa Resort by World Travel Awards.
PerfectSwell® is an entirely new approach to generating large waves in pools with the emphasis on wave quality and the surfing experience. With no moving parts in the water, sophisticated computer controls modulate wave shape, ride duration, frequency and energy efficiency. Analogous to a phased array design, PerfectSwell® wave size is unlimited. Three simultaneously barreling waves across the width of the pool can be generated at intervals as short as six seconds.
The system includes innovative sanitation and a green heating system extending the operating season with no additional energy usage. “For my resort, I want a pool that will cater to active families and allow them to learn to surf. The design is great for contests, events, and shows,” said owner Victor Lipukhin. “AWM has provided excellent project support working with my local requirements.”
“This is a great opportunity for my company to work with a visionary client focused on his customers’ quality of experience,” said Bruce McFarland, President of AWM. “PerfectSwell® completely changes the economics of surf parks. We’re ramping up to deploy systems worldwide including in the resurgent U.S. market.”
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM) designs, engineers, manufactures and sells world class wave pools, wave systems and surf centers. Founded in 2000 by California surfer Bruce McFarland, the company is committed to delivering authentic surfing experiences in a safe and controlled environment. SurfStream® is the world’s first standing wave machine that delivers a stationary surfing experience (on real surfboards) scalable to various spaces. PerfectSwell® is the first air-powered system to create an authentic surfing experience through natural-like ocean waves. From the Caribbean to Sweden, American Wave Machines has developed more than 15 small and large-scale installations exclusively for surf parks, waterparks, resorts, malls and research institutions. www.AmericanWaveMachines.com
About Sheksna Resort
Residing on 14 hectares of landscaped parkland in one of the most picturesque and ecologically clean places on the Black Sea coast, Sheksna resort sits atop a hillside with magnificent views of the sea and mountains. The resort offers a range of amenities geared for families with European standards of service and comfort. www.sheksna.ru
by Lilian Cox The Coast News SOLANA BEACH — Surfer Bruce McFarland has achieved much success as the founder of American Wave Machines where he has developed wave technology for applications in both research and recreation. Moreover, he’s followed in the [...]
by Lilian Cox
The Coast News
SOLANA BEACH — Surfer Bruce McFarland has achieved much success as the founder of American Wave Machines where he has developed wave technology for applications in both research and recreation. Moreover, he’s followed in the family business.
Great uncle Charlie Wright promoted surfing in San Diego in the beginning of the last century after learning the sport from friend Duke Kahanamoku, the “Father of Modern Surfing.” Wright, a San Diego lifeguard, was able to replicate the design of Kahanamoku’s surfboard for popular use.
Today, McFarland recalls recognizing the genius of Uncle Sonny as a 10-year-old.
“Uncle Sonny made an early form of a diving hookah (air supply device used in free diving) when he lived in the Philippines,” he said. “He had a pool that was green, and said my brother and I could swim in it if we used his hooka to dive and scrub the pool with a brush. We had never seen a diving apparatus. We were stoked.”
Growing up in Manhattan Beach, McFarland began devising his own gear including skim boards, skate decks, surfboards and bikes using parts. After high school, he earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from UC Santa Barbara as well as a master’s specializing in fluid dynamics and experimental methods. He did post-graduate work in structural dynamics at UCLA.
His first job after graduation was as a staff engineer with TRW Space and Technology in Redondo Beach. A job offer with Structural Dynamics Research Corp. in Del Mar brought McFarland and his family to Solana Beach in 1989.
For a while the family lived in a VW van while he kept his options open, hoping to find a career fit that would lead to developing surf machines. That happened in 1991 when he met an inventor of sheet flow technology who needed help developing a ride. Recognizing a ground floor opportunity, McFarland co-founded Wave Loch Tool & Die in La Jolla.
Subsequently, McFarland was inspired to start his own company after watching a video of beachgoers at the Waimea Rivermouth riding surfboards on a standing wave.
“I knew that it could be recreated in a pumped water system,” he said. “A guy living in Hawaii already had a related patent. I licensed it.”
In 1999, McFarland founded American Wave Machines, or AWM, in Solana Beach.
“The rest has been a nonstop pursuit of making waves,” he said. “My wife, Marie, the kids and the extended family have supported it all the way.”
AWM began doing research and development of standing wave apparatuses and was issued five patents. In the fall of 2004, on ABC’s “Don Polec’s World,” McFarland introduced SurfStream, the first hydrofoil standing wave machine. Manufacturing and sales began in 2006. Products started shipping in 2008.
Today, McFarland touts that SurfStream delivers the ultimate surfing experience — “the long ride.”
In January, pro surfers Cheyne Magnusson and Anthony Walsh, representing Body Glove, provided a demonstration at the Ola Movistar Surf Arena in Peru.
Body Glove CEO Robbie Meistrell is on the AWM board of directors.
“Body Glove looked far and wide for the most authentic wave technology,” Meistrell said. “Bruce and his company share the same vision as Body Glove, to bring the passion we share for surfing to the world.”
AWM offers a second product line: PerfectSwell and WindSwell wave generators, which are used at facilities such as the University of Texas for ocean energy research related to harnessing wave energy.
The technology is more popularly known for recreation applications at waterparks, surfparks, hotel resorts and sponsored wave-riding exhibitions.
AWM is also riding the wave of the fast-growing market niche for surfing dogs. At this year’s Tournament of Roses Parade, stoked canines, hanging 20, demonstrated SurfStream on a float sponsored by Dick Van Patten’s Natural Balance Pet Foods.
Central Florida Power Couple Todd and Lauren Holland Visit Sweden to Test Out the Latest in Standing Wave Technology by Allison Arteaga Eastern Surf Magazine Most couples looking for a winter getaway this time of year are probably headed straight [...]
Central Florida Power Couple Todd and Lauren Holland Visit Sweden to Test Out the Latest in Standing Wave Technology
by Allison Arteaga
Eastern Surf Magazine
Most couples looking for a winter getaway this time of year are probably headed straight for the tropics — someplace warm and sandy where they can defrost and sip embarrassing fruity cocktails complete with mini umbrellas. But the Cocoa Beach, FL-based Hollands are in no way a typical couple. Todd, a former WCT warhorse, and Lauren, a former East Coast women’s surfing champion, opted instead to jet off to Sweden this February to compete in the Hangloose Surfstream Open.
The contest was put on by the Swedish Surfing Association and made use of the latest in artificial wave technology developed by American Wave Machines, a California-based company that has been working closely with the Hollands to develop high-performance standing waves that work with real surfboards. The event was held during a snowstorm, but all the competitors stayed toasty indoors, and Lauren took first in the Women’s division while Todd put on a show in Men’s. Both left stoked by the experience and took some time to chat with EasternSurf.com about their Scandinavian adventures and the future of artificial waves.
ESM: So how did you two end up partnering with American Wave Machines?
Lauren Holland: Three years ago Ron Jon Surf Shop flew me out to the grand opening of Beaches Turks & Caicos to go showcase a brand new surf machine. It’s a little tiny knee-high wave, and Todd and I had seen YouTube footage of it, so we sat down and thought, “Wouldn’t that be cool to actually bring a surfboard and surf it in the machine?” So we designed a little tiny surfboard to fit in my luggage, and when I went out there, I got to meet the developer of the machine. He was real impressed with the board and saw that I actually brought a surfing style to the machine, which is what his real goal is: to create a standing wave that allows a real surfboard with fins.
American Wave Machines now uses me to showcase grand openings of their venues, and this time they invited Todd to go along with me to an event in Sweden, because he’s been designing new surfboards for the machine but actually had never had a chance to ride it. So this time he got to come and bring his professional surf style to the machine, and he brought his surfboards for the other riders to check out.
ESM: Was it cool getting to visit Sweden?
LH: Yeah, this was Todd’s first time coming to Sweden, and it was the first time either one of us had seen snow in probably 20-some years, so that was pretty cool. And we climbed up a mountain. Well, I’m not sure if it really was a mountain, but everything over there looked like mountains to us, because we’re from Florida. But we hiked up there and found their old town that was built in 1752. It overlooked the town center, so we really got to see how water surrounds these people’s culture.
Todd Holland: It was about a three-mile hike in the snow [laughs].
LH: It was a blast though. And to see a surf-stoked culture in such an out-of-place environment was kind of surreal. But those people honestly do love surfing and everything about it. They’re all about promoting surfing and introducing it to the youth. They’re developing a following out there, and the wave machine brought people from all over to showcase what they’ve learned to do over the year and half that they’ve it.
TH: One thing that was really cool about the machine was that, obviously, we were in Sweden, so when we landed, all we saw was snow everywhere. That doesn’t really make you want to go jump in the ocean. If you were going to go surfing out there you might only last an hour. They actually did try to get us to go surfing the last morning we were there, but it got cancelled because the ice came in on the ocean. But with the machine, you’re in an enclosed space, so even though there was two feet of snow outside, people in those extreme weather conditions can surf year-round and really work on their skills.
ESM: Could you tell us a bit more about the machine? How does it compare to a real wave?
TH: Well, you’re not going 100 yards down the beach when you’re riding the wave, but the way it’s designed, you can still work on your positioning as if it was a real ocean wave. You can move out onto the shoulder or surf it more in the pocket. It’s big enough that you’re able to move four or five feet to change your positioning on the wave to be in a more critical or less critical spot. There are so many maneuvers you can do on it that are so similar to surfing that I think it could be a really good training tool for actual ocean surfing.
LH: You can practice a trick over and over again in a controlled environment, really learn how to stick each maneuver, and then translate it into ocean waves. Todd looked like a kid in a candy store when they brought out the high-performance barrel for us. It’s a right, open-faced little tiny barrel, and he had so much fun he didn’t want to get off. It’s addicting, and I’d personally like to see one here in Florida for the flat spells.
TH: The other good thing about the machine is that the transition from the last surf we had there to when we got back and went surfing in the ocean on our regular boards was nothing. There’s not that much you have to change about your surfing other than reading the ocean to catch your wave, so that’s a real positive part of it.
ESM: How about the special boards you two have been designing for this machine?
TH: As more machines get built and this gets more popular, I’m hoping to learn more about it. After going over there and surfing on it, I’ve learned how far I can go with the width of the board, and I can possibly change some fin placements to make it an even better training tool for regular ocean waves.
LH: Overall though, there’s not too much that’s different about the boards. It’s basically a surfboard that’s a foot shorter because you take away the paddling power that’s necessary in normal surfboards. The fin placements are very similar, and the board design is very similar. If the machine was bigger, then you could take your actual surfboard that you use in the ocean and put it in the machine. There’s one in Montreal that’s opening in August, and that’s what the goal is, for us to be able to fly up there with our everyday surfboards and put them in the machine.
ESM: So are you guys sold? Do you think these machines have the potential to be the next big thing?
LH: Well, the company that sent us out there, American Wave Machines, not only produces standing waves, but they also make wave pools, and they’re always trying to create technology that caters to the surfer. They use our input to help develop better, higher-performance waves. This is the closest you can get to actually being in the ocean. I’ve tried other machines that were very similar, but without fins it’s really not surfing.
So with these fins, and with us showcasing what we can do on the wave, hopefully we’ll attract more people. It could spark interest in surfing in places where there has never been interest before because there isn’t an ocean. That’s something I’d like to do, and it’s really cool that they have Todd on board trying to develop real surfboards for it. There are good things to come with a bit more financing, and there is a lot of interest, so hopefully we’ll see more of them built.
by Diane Mastrull Philadelphia Inquirer For those who awaken thinking the New Year’s holiday holds no parade of relevance but the Mummers’ march, an engineer for a Burlington County small business has this to share: A dog will surf on [...]
by Diane Mastrull
For those who awaken thinking the New Year’s holiday holds no parade of relevance but the Mummers’ march, an engineer for a Burlington County small business has this to share:
A dog will surf on what is being billed as the world’s longest and heaviest float – Guinness Book certification pending – in the 123d Tournament of Roses Parade airing from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday on NBC10.
But forget the dog. Sea Box Inc. in Cinnaminson wants you to pay attention to the technology behind the wave.
It’s the creation of American Wave Machines Inc., of Solana Beach, Calif., whose founder, Bruce McFarland, is the mind behind some of the most creative and difficult projects produced at Sea Box, a manufacturer of customized shipping containers used from circuses to war zones.
And Sea Box has played a role in helping McFarland, a surfing enthusiast, develop and improve on his wave technology since 1999.
Back then, Sea Box owner Jim Brennan helped McFarland design a large mobile wave machine. The solution to moving it around the world was to use shipping containers as the basic structure – about six or eight of them, each 40 feet long, connected together to hold the water.
At the time, Sea Box was much smaller, both in sales and physical space. So the construction work went to a company in South Carolina. Brennan was put in charge of ideas and sales.
Thus was McFarland introduced to the world of shipping containers and Brennan introduced to a design engineer he decided he could not do without: “I thought he was brilliant.”
So Brennan offered the California-based McFarland a job at Sea Box, allowing him to work from home and e-mail his shipping-container designs to New Jersey.
By 2005, McFarland needed Sea Box’s help again. He had designed a surf machine that worked with deeper water and made a more natural wave, and needed a full-scale prototype to market it to hotels, resorts, and water parks.
Again he went to Brennan, who, McFarland said, was “excited to build anything that you could make out of a shipping container.”
What emerged is what American Wave Machines markets as the Surfstream. It came to life on land Brennan first had graded and then covered with sand behind Sea Box’s former factory in Cinnaminson.
There, Sea Box employees cut old shipping containers into shapes McFarland designed, “bent a bunch of metal,” added three huge pumps, and set four or five container footprints into a vinyl above-ground pool measuring 35 by 65 feet in width and length and 4 feet deep.
“We turned it on; it worked great,” McFarland recalled during a recent visit with his wife and business partner, Marie, to Sea Box to attend the company Christmas party.
Since then, American Wave Machines has sold permanent versions around the world. But as a privately held company, it will not disclose its sales figures.
McFarland has continued to design projects for Sea Box as he has worked on expanding his wave-machine business, confident demand will expand.
“Surfing is a well-known thing around the world, but few people are near enough an ocean to do it,” McFarland said.
In California, they are. Which brings us to the Rose Parade and a pet-food company that appears to be hell-bent on making a bigger splash (pun intended) each year it enters a float.
This year, the Natural Balance Pet Foods Inc. float is 116 feet long and more than 100,000 pounds, what with the nearly 7,000 gallons of water it will be toting, said Ron Davis, the Pacoima-based company’s dog trainer.
Wearing a wet suit, he will be in the water during the parade, to make sure the star, Tillman the bulldog, and friends “are stable on their boards right before the wave comes.”
McFarland’s wave, that is. Something that Davis, the ultimate surfer dude, marveled over last week not because of its size – no more than two feet high, on the theory that parade-watchers would not be amused to see a dog wipe out – but because of the technical sophistication behind it.
“What they’ve built in the rear of the float . . . it’s like a giant science project,” Davis said. “To me, it’s amazing because I push a button and I get a wave.”
At Sea Box, there is disappointment the company lost out on actually constructing the float’s wave machine. Rather than building it in New Jersey and shipping it across the country, “they decided they could do it cheaper with a float-maker locally,” Brennan said.
No hard feelings, though. He said he expects that Sea Box will get plenty of future business making steel component parts for McFarland’s wave machines. (The main structures are made of concrete and fiberglass, not Sea Box’s specialty.)
Granted there will be fur rather than feathers in the Rose Parade, but Davis assures Philadelphia’s Mummers faithful they will not be disappointed if they tune in to see surfing dogs.
“The end-all goal,” he said, “is to make people crack up, have a great day, and make people be wowed.”
AWM Making Waves for Dick Van Patten’s Natural Balance Pet Foods, Inc. 2012 Tournament of Roses Parade Float
Tillman the bulldog will be surfing down Orange Grove Boulevard on an American Wave Machines system developed specifically for the Rose Parade Solana Beach, Calif. – November 21, 2011–American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), the leading wave technology innovation company, announced [...]
Tillman the bulldog will be surfing down Orange Grove Boulevard on an American Wave Machines system developed specifically for the Rose Parade
Solana Beach, Calif. – November 21, 2011–American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), the leading wave technology innovation company, announced the successful implementation of the world’s first wave machine for the 2012 Tournament of Roses® Parade Float, sponsored by Dick Van Patten’s Natural Balance Pet Foods, Inc.
Over 100 dogs turned out at Fiesta Floats for the casting call to show off their surfing skills in a 70 foot long wave pool developed by AWM. The winners will be surfing on the float for the prestigious 123rd Rose Parade on January 2, 2012 in Pasadena, CA. The float, built by Fiesta Floats and wave generator by American Wave Machines will break the Guinness World Record as the World’s Heaviest and Longest Float.
“We’ve been involved in a lot of wave technology applications, but this has to be one of most unique. I grew up surfing in Manhattan Beach, California and always watched the Rose Parade. I never imagined that dogs would be surfing down Orange Grove Boulevard, let alone that my company would develop the system,” said AWM Founder and President, Bruce McFarland. “The team at Fiesta Floats and Natural Balance have been great to work with.”
“Being a Southern California surfer, I was stoked to find American Wave Machines for this project, a company with California roots dedicated to creating authentic surfing experiences,” said Ron Davis of Natural Balance, Inc. “The wave worked perfectly and Tillman and Friends love it.”
Solana Beach, Calif. – August 25, 2011- American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), the leading wave technology innovation company, announced the appointment of Body Glove International CEO, Robbie Meistrell, to the Board of Directors. The appointment of a surf industry leader [...]
Solana Beach, Calif. – August 25, 2011- American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), the leading wave technology innovation company, announced the appointment of Body Glove International CEO, Robbie Meistrell, to the Board of Directors. The appointment of a surf industry leader affirms AWM’s commitment to delivering an authentic surfing experience in AWM surf machine and surf pool installations.
Body Glove is a heritage rich business and brand originating in 1953 when twin brothers Bill and Bob (Robbie’s father) Meistrell developed the first functional wetsuit with a dream of a life in the water. Robbie, who became president of BGI in 1983, has led the company from a small domestic market dealing in wetsuits, to the wilder shores of international trade and licensing of watersports products. Under Robbie’s leadership, Body Glove has become one of the world’s most well known surf brands.
In 1986 BGI acquired the US Pro Surfing Tour from Pipeline Masters Champion Joey Buran. The next year Robbie went on to secure sponsorship from Budweiser. The Bud Pro Surf Tour launched a hugely successful era of pro surfing in the 90′s. Robbie understands how sponsors, events, surfers, and spectators all contribute to success. With more SurfStream® installations coming online, Robbie’s experience in this domain will bring a unique perspective to the board.
“We’re fortunate to have Robbie working with us and are looking forward to building new partnerships and relationships with brands, clients, and surfers worldwide. He brings a keen understanding of the international action sports industry and how surfing fits in that space.” said Bruce McFarland, President of AWM, “Robbie, his cousin Billy and I all grew up in the South Bay surfing and diving. Working with Robbie brings everything full circle.”
By Ethan Stewart ESPN Action Sports The wave pool arms race has just escalated. One hundred kilometers south of Peru’s capitol city of Lima, in a massive outdoor mall facility, the California-based American Wave Machines recently unveiled a wave park [...]
By Ethan Stewart
ESPN Action Sports
The wave pool arms race has just escalated. One hundred kilometers south of Peru’s capitol city of Lima, in a massive outdoor mall facility, the California-based American Wave Machines recently unveiled a wave park of epic proportions.
Being touted as the “biggest standing wave in the world”, the Ola Movistar surf arena, with its multiple wave options and ability to pump out 4-to-5-foot barreling rights and lefts, had its official opening earlier this winter — a fact that was largely overlooked by the surf universe. Two other fake wave Shangri-Las, Kelly Slater’s as-yet-unseen Wave Company (KSWC) and Spain’s Wavegarden, also captivated the masses this winter with their high-profile promises of ocean-free stoke factories.
However, with ringing endorsements starting to come in from folks like former World Champion Sofia Mulanovich and the Peruvian National Surf Team (who use the park as a training facility), the only artificial surf spot in South America is starting to steal the spotlight.”The park has been packed and people are really taking to it,” explained Bruce McFarland, founder of American Wave Machines. “From total beginners to some of Peru’s best surfers, we can generate a wave for everybody that truly replicates the shape of what we ride in the ocean.”
Interestingly enough, Slater’s purported designs and the Wavegarden’s long synthetic peelers are “traveling waves.” That is to say, the wave actually peels off down the line, you paddle in to it, and, like you would in real surf, you physically travel forward as you ride the wave. But the new Peruvian playground works more like the old flow-rider parks that came into popularity in the late 1990s — the wave stands still and constantly pitches out over itself using the same water while also providing a small shoulder section in front of you for endless cutbacks and roundhouses. In short, the wave never ends.
According to McFarland, however, unlike the flow-riders of old, which required special, decidedly un-surflike boards to ride, his companies patented “Surfstream” technology, which allows for an experience more in sync with actual, real world wave-sliding. A deeper pool bottom with contours and a pneumatic air pump that blasts out circular bursts into the water creates a wedging wave shape virtually identical to what you would find in nature, allowing riders to shred the man-made gnar on actual thrusters. “The key in all of this, no matter what technology you are using, is the profile of the wave you create and ours truly is the shape of a wave in the ocean,” says McFarland.
Despite the recent uptick in wave park buzz, the concept of man-made waves in a place that has no ocean is nothing new. Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon, Rick Kane’s Arizona surf antics in the movie “North Shore,” and the 1985 ASP contest in Allentown, Penn. come immediately to mind.
Even more intriguing, as McFarland admitted, is that “In a lot of ways, that original technology was the most accurate [to simulating real world surfing].” So why then, if everyone loves surfing so much and the best breaks the world over are jammed up with the wave hunting masses on any given day, hasn’t the wave park revolution caught on? (Even Japan’s Seagaia Ocean Dome, widely considered the best wave park of all time and located right in the middle of a major league surf culture, ultimately shut its doors.)
The reason, it seems, is the money. Surf parks aren’t cheap and finding the right business model to sustain them has proven to be a heck of a lot harder than you would think. How do you rent them out, what do you charge, what type of amenities to surround them with and what type of wave (i.e. small, slow crumblers for beginners, fast, pitching pits for experts, standing waves or traveling waves) is most marketable?
For McFarland and his American Wave Machines, who already have six different parks open around the world since incorporating in 2000 and “several more” in the works, the answer seems to be a little bit of everything. Not only does their Surfstream technology offer four different types of waves in pools of all different sizes, but AWM also has a patent on a traveling-wave technology — akin to the Wavegarden — but has yet to find a deep-pocketed enough investor to help them build it.
“The reality is, machine surfing is here to stay,” summed up McFarland. “The technology is out there to make a truly incredible artificial surfing experience but you have to find the right buyer that is willing to go to the next level.” Right now, for good or bad, at a huge outdoor shopping mall in Peru complete with 10 discotheques and two million annual visitors, what exactly that next level might look like is becoming a bit more clear.
February 4, 2011 – Blooloop.com “If everybody had an ocean, Across the U.S.A., Then everybody’d be surfin’, Like californ-I-A….” Well what can you do if you don’t have an ocean and endless summers? You can easily get some “baggies” and [...]
February 4, 2011 – Blooloop.com
“If everybody had an ocean, Across the U.S.A., Then everybody’d be surfin’, Like californ-I-A….”
Well what can you do if you don’t have an ocean and endless summers? You can easily get some “baggies” and “Huarachi sandals” too, and it’s a matter of personal choice whether you feel you can get away with the “bushy, bushy blonde hairdo”, but once you’ve got the look then catching that wave can be a bit more challenging, especially on a rainy day in Manchester. Blooloop looks at the new breed of surf simulators.
Surfing has its own culture and enthusiast tribe. The image of beautiful people in beautiful places living the dream inspires us to shake off our real lives, if only for a day, and grab a board. We can’t all be Kelly Slater, 10 time ASP world champion recently voted one of GQ’s 25 ‘Coolest Athletes of All Time’ (see image right), but over the last decade there has been a surge in interest in extreme sports including surfing, as we spend our leisure time engaging in experiences that help reinforce our values and self image.
Surfing is now big business: the Surf Industry Manufacturers’ Association (SIMA) estimates in its most recent survey that the surfing industry in the US was worth $7.2bn in 2008. The baby boomer surf dudes have taken their sport to the boardroom , creating strong brands like Animal, Quiksilver and Rip Curl that have staked their place on the high street offering a promise of a cooler you with every purchase.
With strong brands and potential for huge revenues, it was only a matter of time before China got into surfing. In 2009 the first international Surfing China summit was held in Hangzhou where the Silver Dragon tidal bore on the Qiantang River was first ridden 800 centuries ago. Surfing China was founded in 2008 to promote the sport of surfing and the related lifestyle industry in China. Mr. Chen Xiaoping, Deputy Mayor of Hangzhou Municipal Government said “We are expecting surfing on the Qiantang River will bring the City of Hangzhou a wonderful, exciting and fashionable experience. At the same time, it also can improve city exposure and boost city tourism and develop other related industries.”
With its new generation of affluent thrill seekers and untapped potential along its Pacific coast, China could become the final frontier, with Hainan being tipped for a surge in tourism development. However, China’s waves will never rival those in Hawaii or California and concerns about water pollution, a vast inland population and a cultural antipathy to beach sports may mean that the Chinese will ultimately prefer to catch their waves away from the sea.
Innovation in simulation
Little wonder that the scarcity of perfect waves and our busy lives have led to a demand for an accessible, reliable surf experience away from the ocean. Surfers with their “go for it” attitude and passion for the sport are becoming creative in seeking that holy grail. Nothing can beat the real thing but when you can’t catch a perfect wave then surf simulators can fill the void and are now seen in theme parks, cruise ships, shopping malls as well as at dedicated surf parks and extreme leisure zones.
Blooloop talks to Bruce McFarland about making waves
One surfer who is intent to bring their sport out of the sea and to the masses is Bruce McFarland. His approach to offering a boarding experience is very different and Blooloop talks tohim about how to make waves.
Bruce McFarland (American Wave Machines, Inc. [AWM]) created SurfStream®, the world’s first true standing wave machine that delivers an authentic surf experience enabling surfers and body boarders of all abilities riding adjustable waves on real boards. SurfStream® has been installed all over the world at surf parks, water parks, hotel/resorts and retail locations. In August 2010, AWM signed a strategic partnership agreement with Polin Waterparks and Pool Systems.
How did you get started?
I spent my teens surfing and making surfboards then went to engineering school. Those things came together in my first venture developing sheet flow surf simulators. The standing waves were a revelation first shown to me in context of a potential waterpark product by inventor Ken Hill. The business was started with backyard R&D and shed based office. Sales began after showing photo and video of our prototype at our first booth at IAAPA 2004. Our first customer, Sandals/Beaches Resorts immediately recognized that SurfStream® was the best fit for their customers.
There are other surf simulators around. What makes yours unique?
Well, it’s more a surf machine than a surf simulator. One can actually surf on it. That means using a surfboard and not a simulated surfboard. Also, surf in the ocean has many types and sizes of waves; SurfStream® typically works in four different wave modes covering beginning to advanced surfing and body boarding. No simulator does that. Only SurfStream® delivers both the authentic quality experience and the provenance of being developed by avid ocean surfers.
What does Surf Stream offer an operator?
The operator has the flexibility to operate SurfStream® in three primary business modes:
- A waterpark attraction with open lines and constant throughput as they do at Pirates Cove, Beaches TCI Resort and Spa. There are two entry points and up to 5 to 10 riders allowed simultaneously. Groups can also ride together.
- Pay per use mode. For example a 20 minute session can be sold to 10 riders at a time. Sessions can be scheduled ahead by an appointment desk, or over the web with our web interface software.
- Events and exhibitions. These can be scheduled during the day, or planned ahead as an entry cover charge party with music and libations.
How have you made the ride extreme enough for professionals but safe enough for younger kids?
Our patented modular wave system and fully variable stream conditions guarantee that the waves can be optimized not only for skill levels, but also adjusted for lower power usage when minimum operating costs are desired. We’ve found that for small kids, slowing the wave down helps them learn and speeding the wave up helps the bigger riders. This is a simple keypad button push which activates our preset programs.
Isn’t surfing all about getting in the sea?
It is if you have the opportunity and we hope that people who surf for the first time on a SurfStream® will have an opportunity to transfer their skills to surfing in the ocean. But beyond that SurfStream® is a sports facility and attraction. It is fun and rewarding for anyone. It’s also a training opportunity. The possibility of such a long ride is rarely found in the ocean. Balance and repetition can enhance personal fitness and health.
Is the current level of interest in surfing a passing fad or something longer term?
Some suggest that surfing has documented participation for over 2,000 years starting with reed surf boats ridden by Peruvians. Regardless, the sport has grown to nearing a saturation point of primary surf spots in developed countries and has spread outwards to every coastline, many large lakes, and in rivers from Amazon to Zambezi. It is so much fun that I can’t imagine that any fad in interest wouldn’t be replaced by people already waiting in the wings for shorter lines.
Are you seeing any key trends in the “surf simulator” industry?
We are seeing the growth of the SurfStream® based business in whatever opportunities entrepreneurs can exploit. We are seeing the SurfStream® added as upgrades to parks in separate pay schemes and planned into new parks all over the world. The other trend we are seeing is desire for larger SurfStream®s with more waves and new shapes.
China is being tipped as a growth market for everything including extreme sports. Are you seeing any demand from Asia?
We did our first installation in Taiwan. They had 20,000 visitors on opening day and the lines were 100’s long. They also have a surf culture and some of their own videos made on SurfStream® can be seen on youtube. After that AWM was invited to the first China Surfing Summit. The government indicated that it valued the sport and sought support to bring it to China. While there is some coastline with surf only machine and wave pool based surfing would reach the interior.
What’s your target market?
Our target operators are waterparks, hotels and resorts, and surf/sport parks. The small footprint allows indoor placement, so there is no geographical limitation. We are currently as far North as Sundsvall Sweden where the sun barely rises in the winter and as far South as Peru which is our first in the Southern Hemisphere.
Where have you installed SurfStream® and what has the response been like?
I mentioned a range of types of installations above. The response is uniformly enthusiastic. We literally have be told “thanks for inventing this” and “Before this resort had SurfStream® my son would read almost a book a day while on vacation, now he is riding the wave all day”.
How important is it to get your product endorsed by “faces” in the surfing community?
If its primary function were for competitive surf training or surf contests, then this would be critical. Right now endorsements are coming naturally when the facilities are built near surf populations and the industry gets a chance to use it and participate in the business. Our business model is “open” meaning that there is opportunity for a wide range of participation from sponsorship to gear supply to training camps. I had one ex champion say before his first ride on the biggest barrel we have made so far “I’m a little bit scared”. I didn’t seek that, but it’s an endorsement of the power you feel in the air when you a so close to a real barrelling wave.
AWM recently announced their partnership with Polin. What are the benefits of the partnership?
AWM and Polin share the same core business values: technology, innovation, quality and integrity. Beyond that, the benefits are a worldwide network providing SurfStream® sales into waterparks, installation support, and super high quality components for SurfStream®.
Sohret Pakis, Marketing Manager, Polin Waterparks & Pool Systems says:
As of August 2010, Polin became a global distributor of SurfStream® outside US. Since AWM offers a unique surf machine system that can offer many waves with one machine, and since Polin has a very widespread network all around the World with over 50 distributors globally, this agreement has been a perfect fit.
Polin introduced AWM personally to its dealers in January 2011 during Polin’s Dealer Convention in Antalya, Turkey. Bruce McFarland made a presentation that was greeted with excitement by our dealers worldwide. Plus, AWM and Polin Co. also have a manufacturing agreement, with Polin producing the fiberglass parts of the product. This arrangement will allow AWM and Polin to deliver SurfStream® unique patented technology with competitive pricing and fast turnaround, also improving service and expanding product offerings for AWM and Polin customers. Moreover, this alliance will enable both companies to share best practices in lean manufacturing, quality systems, and product development. Furthermore, the agreement will position AWM and Polin to capture market share in new regions and industries looking to integrate high-quality, advanced technology, unique artificial wave/surf products into their facilities.
AWM and Polin are working together to assist customers with the development of dedicated surf parks and surf zones within waterparks and resorts. The combination of AWM’s unique technology with Polin’s unmatched business and technological expertise in composites manufacturing and strong partner network across the globe will bring added value to our partners and customers.
Finally, a word of caution…..
So whether we make it to the ocean or not, maybe we should finally note these words of wisdom from Kelly Slater, regarded by many as the greatest surfer of all time, about the perils of catching not just a wave but also the surfing bug: “It’s like the mafia. Once you’re in – you’re in. There’s no getting out.”
Header and image of Kelly Slater kind courtesy of surfline.com
Quiksilver revenue data source: Quiksilver annual reports
February 2011 – FUNWORLD Magazine To anyone in the amusement industry, the term “wave machine” is usually associated with surf generators used at waterparks. But to the scientific community, it means something quite different, as American Wave Machines (AWM) of [...]
February 2011 – FUNWORLD Magazine
To anyone in the amusement industry, the term “wave machine” is usually associated with surf generators used at waterparks. But to the scientific community, it means something quite different, as American Wave Machines (AWM) of Solana Beach, California, is well aware.
AWM was recently contacted by the Ocean Energy Research Lab at the University of Texas at Brownsville about securing one of its wave generators for use in a large wave tank system. The university lab is involved with research into harnessing energy from offshore ocean wave swells. The lab wanted a wave generator that produces controllable wave heights and frequencies in a wave tank 15 meters (49 feet) long, 1 meter (3.3 feet) wide, and 1 meter deep.
“We get a lot of attention from scientific people because of studies going on around the world in capturing waves for energy generation,” says Bruce McFarland, founder of American Wave Machines, “and when they are looking for wave machines, our name immediately comes up.”
The Ocean Energy Research Lab is investigating technology for a maintenance- and-corrosion-free, hurricane resistant wave energy converter. The lab will use the AWM wave generator to simulate ocean conditions for testing small-scale prototype wave energy converters by simulating deep-water and transitional-water waves of varying heights and endurance. Ocean Energy needed a wave generator that could continuously provide reliable, repeatable characteristics.
“The availability of this wave generator will significantly facilitate our research along this line,” says Dr. Yingchen Yang, director of the Ocean Energy Research Lab. “It allows us to systematically examine and improve the design parameters of the wave energy converter in a timely and cost-effective manner. With this help, we are more confident we can reach our ultimate goal—to make ocean waves become a competitive renewable energy source.”
Though this scientific application is a departure from AWM’s amusement industry business, McFarland doesn’t see it as being really unusual. “I guess it’s because we still think our core business is making waves in general and not letting ourselves be limited,” he says. “In fact, we have another job we’re doing for the Navy in making waves over sediments to see how it affects the sediments. It’s an even bigger job and includes our wave generator and a special tank.”
Though the underlying technology is the same for the wave generators used in amusements and those used for scientific research, McFarland explains that his company’s focus is different. “From our core business of making waves, if it’s for amusements, it has all of the safety components wrapped into it, and if it’s for science, it’s about the specifics of the waves sizes themselves.”
As for AWM’s waterpark business, the company continues to promote its two signature products—SurfStream, a standing wave machine, and PerfectSwell, a wave generator for wave pools and custom surf pools.
McFarland says AWM has recently experienced a shift toward more outdoor waterpark business: “We still have more indoor business, but it’s not as lopsided as it was—we’re seeing more and more outdoors.”
Grand Opening Event Sponsored by Movistar and Quiksilver Solana Beach, Calif. – January 27, 2011 American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), the leading wave technology innovation company, announced the debut of the world’s first surf arena featuring the AWM SurfStream® model [...]
Grand Opening Event Sponsored by Movistar and Quiksilver
Solana Beach, Calif. – January 27, 2011
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), the leading wave technology innovation company, announced the debut of the world’s first surf arena featuring the AWM SurfStream® model SS5024 at the grand opening of the ‘Ola Movistar’ surf arena in the Boulevard de Asia outdoor mall, near Lima, Peru.
On site at the Quiksilver and Movistar sponsored event were members of the Peruvian National Surfing team and 1,500 paying customers.
“It is a stationary wave, it’s different; but at the same time it’s super fun and does feel a lot like the ocean,” said ASP World Champion Surfer, Sofia Mulanovich.
“With Peru’s rich surfing culture, the standards were high for the new venue’s authenticity and sustainability. The SS5024 is a multi-purpose system that will satisfy the skilled surfers of Peru but also meet the needs of developing and first time riders,” said Bruce McFarland, President of AWM. “It’s been a great experience working with the team at Boulevard de Asia. They are truly visionary in being first to market in South America with innovative technology like SurfStream.”
Guillermo Gonzales, Peru Surf Federation President and Arena Operator noted, “As one of the largest recreation centers in the world, this surf arena puts Peru at the forefront of the region, offering a perfect place for athletes, fans and the general public to have guaranteed training, where they can not only practice the sport of surfing, but they can also share it with family.”
Corporate partner Movistar embraced the vision and chose to get involved with the debut event. “As well as being a new exclusive venue with modern lounge areas, the ‘Movistar Wave’ makes it possible for everyone to practice surfing, what is developing into the flagship sport of our country. The wave will help spur the development of young surf talent,” said, Fiorella Espejo, PR and Marketing Director for Movistar.
With programmable controls and modular inserts, the SurfStream® model SS5024 creates multiple wave types in one machine. For experienced surfers the signature wave is the single 5’ barreling wave with 20’ of face to carve on. This set of wave modules can be assembled in both right and left breaks accommodating goofy and regular foot riders. For broad appeal, the system also has training and intermediate waves which operate at lower power.
Other sponsors at the event included Skull Candy and Burn.
About American Wave Machines, Inc.
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM) is the powerhouse creator of artificial wave technology for applications in the hotel/resort, recreation, and action sports industries. Its patented SurfStream®, the world’s first standing wave machine, is a technology breakthrough that delivers authentic surf and wave riding capabilities. The company also offers PerfectSwell™ wave generators for wave pools and custom surf pool design and equipment for large surf pools.
About Boulevard de Asia
Located 97.5 km south of Lima, Peru in the Asia District, Boulevard de Asia receives over 2 million visitors per year at its shopping mall and nearby family entertainment outlets. Open since 2003, the commercial zone has become a premier entertainment destination in Peru. For more information, visit www.boulevardasia.com.
at QuiksilverTM and Red Bull sponsored event Solana Beach, CA. – September 7, 2010 American Wave Machines, Inc., an innovator in artificial wave technology, today announced the successful commissioning of the first modular surfing system delivering multiple wave types including [...]
at QuiksilverTM and Red Bull sponsored event
Solana Beach, CA. – September 7, 2010
American Wave Machines, Inc., an innovator in artificial wave technology, today announced the successful commissioning of the first modular surfing system delivering multiple wave types including a left and right breaking barrel option. Surfers are lining up to ride real surfboards with fins on the first barreling standing wave in Europe.
The machine debuted at the Himlabadet Municipal Aquatic Sports and Spa Facility in Sundsvall, Sweden and is another first for AWM. The locals in Sundsvall came out in full-force to ride SurfStream at the opening day event, sponsored by QuiksilverTM and Red Bull.
The event featured a live demonstration of the newly patented barreling wave technology and patent pending adjustable gated stream delivery system. The installation of the 16′ x 4′ SurfStream (model 4016) paves the way for larger systems and establishes a value benchmark in the industry.
The modular system can be configured into four different waves; a wide wave, for beginner stand-up surf training; a left barrel; a right barrel; and a wide standing hydraulic jump wave.
As early adopters of innovative technology, Himlabadet has received positive responses from the riders.
“We rode the SurfStream® with a 4’2″ twin fin and a 5’0″ thruster. The riding was awesome,” said Per Öhman, a local Baltic Sea surfer from Sundsvall. “With the modular inserts, we can alternate between frontside and backside surfing in 82 degree water. We’re totally stoked to have a SurfStream® in our home town.”
“It’s been a great experience working with the team at Himlabadet and VinterTeknik to bring this SurfStream on-line. After a long development project, to finally see surfers, snowboarders and wakeboarders, surfing a man-made barreling wave, was fulfillment of a shared vision,” said Bruce McFarland, President of AWM. “We will be working with Himlabadet in the years to come on events, surf camps, contests, and new wave modules as they become available.”
About American Wave Machines, Inc.
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM) develops artificial wave technology for applications in the aquatics, amusement, and resort industries. Its patented SurfStream®, the world’s first standing wave machine, is a technology breakthrough that delivers authentic surf and wave riding capabilities. The company also offers PerfectSwellTM wave generators for wave pools and custom surf pool design and equipment for large surf pools. For more information, visit www.surfstream.com.
By Susan Campriello Hudson-Catskill Newspapers Published in The Daily Mail: Saturday, August 21, 2010 2:14 AM EDT EAST DURHAM — The Riptide Cove Wave Pool, which debuted this summer has been a success, according to park General Manager Ed Kerrigan. [...]
By Susan Campriello
EAST DURHAM — The Riptide Cove Wave Pool, which debuted this summer has been a success, according to park General Manager Ed Kerrigan.
Kerrigan said “99.9 percent” of the feedback has been positive.
“People really love it,” he said, adding that the pool and nice weather have drawn more people to the park than in years past. “It has been a great addition to the park.”
The 16,000-square-foot pool is the first commercial pool built by American Wave Machines, Inc. with PerfectSwell, a pneumatic system that generates waves that behave like wind-generated ocean swells, according to a company press release.
The company advertises that the system alternatively reduces rip currents and energy buildup while creating breaking waves that have the same profile advance as ocean waves.
AWM developed the PerfectSwell in cooperation with Flometrics Inc., according to the release.
Kerrigan said air pushed through a series of valves into different chambers creates an endless combination of different types of waves.
The pool’s maximum depth is four feet and the tallest waves reach a height of two feet, he said.
Kerrigan said the shallow depth helps keep visitors safe: older technology for wave pools require pool depths of at least eight feet.
“Because it is only four feet deep it is much safer than most pools,” he said.
The pool’s floor is also lined with vinyl to decrease skin scrapes common with concrete pool floors. This, too, has won rave reviews from visitors, he said.
And the 21 lifeguards on duty at the pool — five guards are on duty at all times — received additional training beyond that required for other attractions at the park through the American Red Cross and taught by Cairo Ambulance Chief Reay Mahler, he said.
The addition created 30 new jobs, Kerrigan said, adding that the park hires all local employees.
Kerrigan said several local contractors, including Kurt and Mert Excavation, Borweigan Excavation and Holdridge Electricians as well as GNH Lumber, were used for the project. The full project, which will include the currently unfinished bathrooms and locker rooms, will cost “well over $1 million,” according to Kerrigan. Work began in September of 2008, he said.
Kerrigan said he plans to add some slides and increase food services in the wave pool area. The park’s entranceway will be reconstructed to accommodate the number of people who come to the park.
The park closes this year on September 6.
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), an innovator in artificial wave technology, announced today that it has installed their first commercial wave pool at Zoom Flume Waterpark in East Durham, New York. In keeping with their core mission of innovative artificial [...]
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), an innovator in artificial wave technology, announced today that it has installed their first commercial wave pool at Zoom Flume Waterpark in East Durham, New York. In keeping with their core mission of innovative artificial wave development, this is the first installation of an AWM proprietary pneumatic wave system in the world.
With the launch of the Riptide Cove Wave Pool built with AWM PerfectSwell technology, the unlikely sight and sound of waves breaking in the scenic northern Catskill Mountains has become reality at Zoom Flume Waterpark.
Developed in cooperation with Flometrics Inc. of Carlsbad, CA, PerfectSwell is the first pneumatic wave generating system that creates waves that behave like wind generated swells in the ocean. While traditional wave pools create surge waves similar to tidal bores, PerfectSwell alternatively reduces rip currents and energy buildup within the pool, while creating breaking waves with the same profile advance as ocean waves. With programmable controls, Zoom Flume operators will be able to vary the wave profiles, allowing guests to experience the dynamic of ocean waves.
“We developed PerfectSwell wave technology because we wanted to deliver the feeling of a real ocean wave, something not available with current offerings,” said Bruce McFarland, president of AWM. “Working with Flometrics, we have achieved that.”
“Design and flexibility were key factors in selecting AWM,” said Glenn Aragona, General Manager and Owner of Zoom Flume, “AWM invited us into the design and specification process and we were able to build a terrific wave pool.”
About American Wave Machines, Inc. American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM) develops artificial wave technology that replicates the experience of real ocean surfing. Its patented SurfStream™, the world’s first standing wave machine, is a technology breakthrough that delivers real surfing and wave riding capabilities. The company also offers PerfectSwell™ wave generators. AWM surf technology is available for waterparks, surfparks, hotel resorts, and sponsored wave-riding exhibitions. For more information, visit www.surfstream.com.
American Wave Machines, Inc. Is Selected by University of Texas at Brownsville to Develop Wave Making Technology for Ocean Energy Research Lab AWM wave generator will be designed and built for energy harvesting research American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), an [...]
American Wave Machines, Inc. Is Selected by University of Texas at Brownsville to Develop Wave Making Technology for Ocean Energy Research Lab
AWM wave generator will be designed and built for energy harvesting research
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), an innovator in artificial wave technology, today announced that it is developing a wave generator for the Ocean Energy Research Lab at the University of Texas at Brownsville (UTB). While this is a departure from amusement industry applications, it is aligned with the core focus of AWM which is innovation in artificial wave technology. The wave generator for the University of Texas will be the central component of a large wave tank system. It will be capable of generating waves with controllable wave heights and frequencies in a tank measuring fifteen meters long, one meter wide, and one meter deep. Upon completion, the wave tank will become a primary facility for ocean energy research at UTB.
Ocean waves hold enormous energy. Yet, to date, ocean wave energy is highly under-utilized due to the lack of reliable and cost-effective means of harnessing this energy. The Ocean Energy Research Lab at UTB is currently pursuing a novel technology to enable a corrosion-free, maintenance-free, and hurricane-proof wave energy converter. The AWM wave generator will be used to simulate a typical ocean environment in the lab for testing bench-scale prototype wave energy converters.
The wave generator will be able to accurately simulate deep water and transitional water regular waves of variable wave height and period. This is the most common type of offshore swell wave that research and industry are interested in harvesting energy from. AWM’s simple and rugged design will give the Ocean Energy Research Lab wave generator long lasting and repeatable characteristics that a research tool demands.
“The availability of this wave generator will significantly facilitate our research along this line,” said Dr. Yingchen Yang, Director of the Ocean Energy Research Lab. “It allows us to systematically examine and improve the design parameters of the wave energy converter in a timely and cost-effective manner. With this help, we are more confident that we can reach our ultimate goal – to make ocean waves become a competitive renewable energy source.”
Bruce McFarland, CEO of AWM, stated, “We were pleased to be selected by the University of Texas to participate in their outstanding research effort. The application of wave technology for energy harvesting is intriguing and we have some innovative ideas that will allow the researchers to be precise in their analysis. We look forward to the progress made in this field and participating in its future.”
About American Wave Machines, Inc.
American Wave Machines, Inc. is a leader in artificial wave technology for all applications and industries. Its patented SurfStream®, the world’s first standing wave machine, is a technology breakthrough that delivers authentic surf and wave riding capabilities to the amusement industry including waterparks, hotel/resorts, and action sports venues. PerfectSwell™ wave generators for wave pools and custom surf pool design and equipment is another innovative offering. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Cabrera Firm, APC and the Law Offices of Manuel de la Cerra Announce Local Wave Machine Company’s Successful Invalidation of Competitor’s Patents The Cabrera Firm, APC and the Law Offices of Manuel de la Cerra, announced today that the [...]
The Cabrera Firm, APC and the Law Offices of Manuel de la Cerra Announce Local Wave Machine Company’s Successful Invalidation of Competitor’s Patents
The Cabrera Firm, APC and the Law Offices of Manuel de la Cerra, announced today that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has invalidated each of the 27 patent claims asserted by Wave Loch Inc. in its patent infringement claim against American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM).
“This was a great victory for American Wave Machines as it confirms our belief that Wave Loch’s patents were largely invalid and allows American Wave Machines to freely compete based on the wave quality and value of its wave machine products”
AWM is a Solana Beach-based innovative wave technology company with an extensive and growing patent portfolio. In 2008, Wave Loch sued AWM claiming infringement of three patents, despite the fact that AWM offers an authentic surfing machine as opposed to Wave Loch’s dated thin sheet water flow. AWM denied infringement and aggressively sought reexamination of the patents at issue which it believes are invalid.
“This was a great victory for American Wave Machines as it confirms our belief that Wave Loch’s patents were largely invalid and allows American Wave Machines to freely compete based on the wave quality and value of its wave machine products,” said Gil Cabrera, counsel for AWM.
Using a small and efficient team, AWM was able to defend this patent infringement action with minimal cost and distraction to the company’s management. From its initiation to stay, the case took approximately nine months.
The USPTO issued a final rejection finding all of the patent claims that Wave Loch had asserted against AWM invalid based on prior art dating back to 1967.
“I couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome. This is a complete unequivocal victory and vindication for AWM,” said Manuel de la Cerra, patent counsel for AWM responsible for the prosecution of the reexamination requests as well as AWM’s broad patent portfolio. “At this point, Wave Loch has nothing valid left in these patents to assert against AWM in the pending infringement suit. The Patent Office’s final rejection of all of the asserted claims confirms what we have known all along, Wave Loch’s technology is just a re-hash of what has been known in the art for decades. American Wave Machines’ ‘standing wave’ technology is the true innovation in the industry, and has been recognized as such by being awarded several patents.”
Solana Beach based, AWM is represented by The Cabrera Firm, in association with the Law Offices of Manuel de la Cerra. Both law firms are based in San Diego.
Wave Loch, Inc. is based in San Diego and represented by Knobbe, Martens, Olsen & Bear LLP.
You can surf in a lake. Or in a river. Or in a pool. That’s right, American Wave Machines (AWM) has unleashed a brand new technology, allowing for the first free-standing wave machine that creates artificial lefts, rights, and even [...]
You can surf in a lake. Or in a river. Or in a pool. That’s right, American Wave Machines (AWM) has unleashed a brand new technology, allowing for the first free-standing wave machine that creates artificial lefts, rights, and even barrels in the comfort of a pool.
“You’re in a standing wave in one place. It’s got its own kind of feeling,” said CEO Bruce McFarland. “The more lateral speed you’ve got, the faster you can cut back and the more spray you get. It becomes kind of addicting, because you want to get to where you can turn a little bit harder.”
Sure, there are already locations where blue foam and blasted water produce experiences that simulate surfing. However, this company claims they’ve taken it further. Denise Herich, PR Representative for AWM, says, “The main difference is it’s more of a real, deep water, authentic surfing experience versus standing on a thin sheet of water. With these machines, you can actually use a real surfboard [fins and all], and the experience directly translates to surfing the ocean or a river.”
East Coast competitive surfer Lauren McClean was asked to give one of their other models a try, and after learning on a foam board, she whipped out a real board she had made for the wave. “It’s about the appearance of surfing. It looked just like it and it felt like it once you got enough speed,” she said. She wishes she had one near her home, because it is perfect when no real waves are rolling in. “That would definitely cure the surfer blues,” she said.
The newest synthetic wave will be unveiled at the Himlabadet Pool Facility in Sundsvall, Sweden, set to open next summer. The company asserts that its SurfStream will manufacture the largest waves created using AWM machinery.
Themed with natural elements such as forest, heat, fire, and water, the facility will offer adventure-seekers of all ages the opportunity to test their dexterity on a climbing wall, whirlpools, and of course, a man-made wave.
The machine works by creating a deep cushion of water where surfers can carve on an endless wave. No paddling required. The current design for the Swedish attraction entails a 16-foot-wide wave that can be up to 4-feet-high. “All of our installations have a user control of speed and water depth, so it can be customized for different groups of people,” McFarland explained. “For body boarding, you need a standing wave that breaks, so we can make a constantly reforming wave. It breaks then comes to a green face, and then whitewater, and then a green face,” he said.
The customizability of the apparatus allows surfers of all skill levels to participate. According to McFarland, it is extremely easy for beginners to learn to stand up on a board in such a controlled environment. The company maintains that the skills learned on their chlorine creation will carry over to real-world surfing. Only time will tell, but if this is so could the next generation of surfers be pool-trained groms who’ve hardly seen the sea?
Sundsvall Arena Selects SurfStream® by American Wave Machines for its New Indoor Adventure Pool Facility in Sweden First Patented Standing Wave Surf Machine in Europe Provides Authentic Surf American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), an innovator in artificial wave technology, today [...]
Sundsvall Arena Selects SurfStream® by American Wave Machines for its New Indoor Adventure Pool Facility in Sweden
First Patented Standing Wave Surf Machine in Europe Provides Authentic Surf
American Wave Machines, Inc. (AWM), an innovator in artificial wave technology, today announced that the first standing wave surf machine in Europe will debut at the Himlabadet Pool Facility in Sundsvall, Sweden. The Facility and its SurfStream® are scheduled to open next summer. This SurfStream will be capable of the largest waves so far using AWM technology.
The all-season indoor Facility is being designed with a northern Swedish theme creating an oasis of forest, heat, fire, and water elements, natural to the environment. Emphasizing adventure and action for all ages, it will boast water slides, whirlpools, a climbing wall, children’s pool and in keeping with the theme of nature, a SurfStream that delivers an authentic surfing experience.
SurfStream is the first and only commercially available patented surf machine that creates true standing waves.SurfStream delivers authentic surf by creating a deep cushion of water where riders can use real surfboards with fins to carve on an endless wave. As a result, the skills acquired riding SurfStream waves translate perfectly to ocean or river surfing. With wave adjustability, real surfing capability, and designs to meet any footprint, SurfStream meets the varying requirements of a broad demographic.
“Design and flexibility were key factors in selecting SurfStream,” said Hasse Bergqvist, arena manager at Himlabadet.“Since SurfStream is so versatile and can create any kind of wave, including left breaks, right breaks, even full-blown barrels, it’s perfect for learning to surf. We’re looking forward to introducing surfing to the active family clientele in Sundsvall.”
“It’s been a great experience working with the team at Sundsvall Arena to create authentic bodyboarding and surfing for visitors and guests at the Himlabadet Pool Facility,” said Bruce McFarland, president of AWM. “Because to the versatility of SurfStream and AWM’s engineering expertise, we’ve come up with a high-powered, multipurpose system that will meet the needs of a varied demographic, young and old, experienced surfers or not.”
On 27th May, 2009, Surfing China – the 1st international summit was held in Hangzhou. More than one hundred people from China and abroad got together to discuss how to develop the surfing industry in China. It was presented by [...]
On 27th May, 2009, Surfing China – the 1st international summit was held in Hangzhou. More than one hundred people from China and abroad got together to discuss how to develop the surfing industry in China. It was presented by the Water Sports Administration Centre and Administration of Sports and organized by Wabsono /GSM.
Mr. Chen Xiaoping, Deputy Mayor of Hangzhou Municipal Government addressed the summit “We are expecting surfing on the Qiantang River will bring the City of Hangzhou a wonderful, exciting and fashionable experience. At the same time, it also can improve city exposure and boost city tourism and develop other related industries.” Mr. Zhao Rongfu, the director of Hangzhou Sports Bureau, said,” The ancient Chinese rode the river in canoes 8000 years ago. Since the Tang Dynasty, it has been one of the sports events in the tidal bore watching festival.”