I could be wrong, but it seemed like some time in the early 80’s Tom Curren exploded on to the scene and everyone especially contest judges and the surf media fell to the spell of his rhythmic style. It became the bench mark of what good surfing was supposed to be and look like, and in there somewhere that started to go for women too. Men’s and women’s contests were running at the same time as each other and the cry was why don’t they surf like the men. They looked different because they were, but the over whelming push was to have them surfing to a men’s level and looking the same as the men on a wave. Standardize the riding because we don’t want the women’s contest to embarrass us, the officials said, and it has been going on ever since. There is no doubt the women are ripping these days, but it seems like they are out for acceptance of their fathers and contest judges. That is one very small segment of surfing life, the competitor. The water-loving women needs to be aware of this regimentation and think for herself and be allowed to show her confidence to step outside this dogma and be herself.
This is surely a turn off to any girl starting as a surfer who just wants to enjoy herself and themselves in the chance to express themselves in the ocean on a board and chose her own personal dance to blend with the variables at hand. The very idea that you aren’t doing it right unless you look like a boy seems to be dropping away and a new well of women have emerged seeking the joys of seeking a feminine ride. This is often done on longer equipment that doesn’t need to be aggressively pumped to attain speed and allows for a more effortless rhythm which also translates to a less corrupted style and allows the personality of the rider to shine through.
It would be wonderful to see more women pick up on this as it can be a very beneficial ointment to the rigours of life, to step out on your own and truly own your style and the way you would like to ride. As this is one of the few ways a woman or a man can feel real freedom in the world, no shackles, your way all the way to the sand, no right way or wrong way, just blend with the liquid sway.