Summer is here in full swing and if there are a few of you out there who have never tried surfing, but always wanted to give it a shot, here are a few tips for first time surfers.

Get in shape
Start working on those arms, and get your balance intact. It will be a lot easier the first time you’re out on the water if you’re physically fit. So, work on your core strengthening (so pivotal for balancing on the board), and get ready for the continuous pushups you’ll have to do whenever you try and catch a wave. Oh yeah, being a good swimmer helps, too.

Equipment is very important
A beginner surfer needs a soft top long board. The bigger the board; the better. Larger boards will give you greater stability (less side to side rocking) when attempting to stand. Also, soft boards won’t hurt as much if you fall and it happens to crash against you. They’re very versatile, paddle fast, stable, and simply the best choice. No matter how athletic you are, a smaller board is a complete waste of time for a beginner.

Wear a wet suit or rash guard long t-shirt
You’ll want to wear a wet suit to keep you warm since most surfing waters are chilly. Wet suits also act as a rash guard for your skin since you will rub up against your surfboard. Similarly, a rash guard acts as a barrier for the upper half of your body to keep your arms and torso from rubbing against the board.

Get the surf “stance” down
Before you even get in the water, practice pushing up from your board and getting into your surf stance. Bend your knees and keep your arms out, focus on an unmoving object in front of you and keep your feet firmly planted. Once you’ve got it on dry ground, see how easy it is to try that in moving water!

Surf the white water
A fact: women generally learn to surf faster than men. Why? Women will pick the larger boards and are cool surfing the white water of small waves, while men will select small boards and go for the big waves but catch nothing. Surfing the white water of small waves is a good place to start as you practice the mechanics of standing up and balancing.

Keep trying and don’t give up
Your arms may be sore, and you may be tired of falling off your board, but keep trying and keep getting up. You’ll be stoked once you finally catch that wave!

Be safe and watch your board
Be careful of your board, as it is generally the greatest danger to your safety and others around you. When you fall, the board with its knife like fins is going to go flying into the air with a 20 foot trajectory from the leash. So, protect your head and face, and watch out every time you hit the water.

Don’t overdo it your first time out
Surfing will work out your back, neck, and shoulders, and paddling will exercise new muscles, too. So, when your muscles and back feel tired, give it a rest. Notice any signs of pain and discomfort in your back, and if you feel any tingling, it’s time to call it a day.

Take a Lesson
If all else fails, find a surfing school or an experienced surfer/teacher. They’ll get you to know the basics and fine tune your surfing skills.

Most importantly, have fun! Good luck! Continue reading

Mark your calendars: Saturday, JUNE 30th from 11:30a – 2:30p. Where: Becker Surfboards Hermosa Beach Store location (301 Pier Ave. Hermosa Beach, CA. 90254)

American musician, songwriter, surfer, long-time close friend of Jack Johnson, and Billabong spokesperson Donavon Frankenreiter will be signing posters and CDs and performing a LIVE acoustic set next Saturday, June 30th11:30am – 2:30pm at our Hermosa Beach store.

We’re stoked to host this talented dude since we all know Frankenreiter’s ability to command a crowd is undeniable. Plus, we can’t wait to hear him perform tunes from his fifth and just recently released album, Start Livin’. “Start Livin’ is basically a love album,” says Frankenreiter. “Most of the songs are about my wife and our two boys, and the life that we’ve built together in Hawaii.” Awwwww….

To create his fifth full-length album Start Livin’, Hawaii-based Donavon Frankenreiter holed up in a Southern California studio for seven days with his longtime bassist Matt Grundy – and no one else. The follow-up to 2010′s Glow, Start Livin’ is a nine-track selection of folk-infused songs that sweetly reflect the simplicity of their recording. Start Livin’ bears all the intimacy of an impromptu back-porch performance and the tenderness of a treasured love letter.

While love songs serve as the album’s centerpiece, Frankenreiter also explores non-romantic love. For instance, “Same Lullaby” makes a sweetly hopeful plea for world peace. The album’s most somber moment, “A.I.” pays tearful tribute to Frankenreiter’s dear friend and pro surfer Andy Irons, who passed away in November 2010. “I’d never been that close to someone who passed away before. The song’s about me telling Andy that I just wish I could see him one more time,” says Frankenreiter of “A.I.”.

Still, the essence of Start Livin’ is most fully captured in its album-opening title track. “Start Livin’” is a feel-good, uptempo call to “celebrate tonight.” “To me the most beautiful thing about this record is it really reflects who I am today,” says Frankenreiter. “Start Livin’ means stop worrying about where you’ve been, where you’re going-just start embracing what you have around you. Start loving what you have right now.”

True that! We look forward to hearing Donavon perform, plus there will be FREE Chipotle burritos and you can register to win a Pro trip to Central America with Donavan, and they’ll be loads of Billabong prizes and giveaways!

Hope to see you there! Continue reading

One more month until the 2012 U.S. Open of Surfing comes back to HB! Are you guys ready for the music, art, free swag, crowds, and the best in skating and surfing?

Festivities will run from July 28 to August 5 on the south side of the Huntington Beach, CA Pier.

If you’ve never been, nearly 300,000 people come to town along the 14-acre stretch of sand for the massive event, which includes the big surf competition, skate and BMX areas, retail shops on the sand, and about 60 vendor booths.

The US Open Music Stage, one of the most popular events of the festival, will host a soon-to-be-announced lineup of bands that will surely rival last year’s MGMT performance. Plus, check out one-of-a-kind retail and brand experiences, public skate courses, movie premieres, 100 interactive exhibits, autograph signings, DJs and giveaways.

Of course, the real draw is the surfing and skating! Anchored by the world’s largest professional surfing competition, the US Open is a pivotal point on the ASP World Tour for both the men and women.

For the men, a win at the US Open – a North America ASP Men’s Prime event – will earn them valuable points. And for the women, the US Open of Surfing® marks the final stop on the 2012 ASP World Title Tour. With everything on the line and a close race for the World Title, the US Open will potentially crown a women’s World Champion in Surf City this summer.

Will Kelly Slater again dominate, just coming off a win at the Volcom Fiji Pro, to take a second consecutive U.S. Open title? What about Carissa Moore, the 2011 Women’s World Champion? It will be exciting to watch if they can repeat last year’s wins.

All events are free and open to the public and can be viewed live daily at www.usopenofsurfing.com. With more than 3.6 million webcast viewers last year, the webcast broke viewership records and expects to deliver content to even more viewers worldwide this year.

For more info, check out US Open of Surfing page on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/usopenofsurfing) or follow on Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/usopenofsurf). Continue reading

Next month, we’ll be able to download (for free!) Daze At Sea, a new film collaboration from Billabong and What Youth. What Youth documents youth on the run with a surfboard, making films, a quarterly magazine, and daily digital pieces on whatyouth.com.

For eight months, Billabong has had its best young surfing stars all over the world, catching waves in France, South America, Hawaii, Indonesia and all over Australia east to west.

Daze At Sea documents that stretch of international sessions, which was shot and directed by What Youth contributor Victor Pakpour. 20-year old filmmaker Pakpour left high school and went directly into the arms of Billabong, where they’ve been buying him international plane tickets for the last two years. He’s filmed in Indonesia, Australia, Hawaii — pretty much anywhere the Billabong team hangs a fin out.

Pakpour’s latest film documents youth on the run captured raw and cut to good sounds. The main faces belong to Jack Freestone, Ryan Callinan, Peterson Crisanto and Ian Gentil, with assorted friends and cameos.

Daze At Sea is due for a July 15 delivery, but check the What Youth site in the meantime. They’ll be running fresh pieces and previews from the film as a collaboration with Daze At Sea, starting with this exclusive trailer shot in the What Youth studios.

For more information on the film, check out http://www.dazeatsea.com/.

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Billabong is gearing up for their 6th Annual Design for Humanity, a fashion, music, and art benefit, which will take place on July 25, 2012 at Paramount Studios in Hollywood. Once again, it promises to be one massive block party that you won’t want to miss.

There will be two concert stages, a bikini runway fashion show, art show auctions, food trucks, multiple bars, live t-shirt screen printing, street performers, tons of BARS, and live art installations. Design For Humanity is Billabong’s charitable initiative which began as an opportunity for Billabong’s marketing, art, and design teams to come together and give back to a non-profit close to the heart of our industry.

Today, Design For Humanity has become an opportunity not only for Billabong but for their retailers, athletes, celebrities, artists, and ultimately you, to be part of one night of celebrating, and be motivated by a cause.

This year, proceeds will be donated to Cultivate Foundation, which is committed to creating a more sustainable and healthful food supply and to raising awareness concerning food issues. This is realized through the support of family farmers and their communities, educators and programs that teach younger generations about food matters, along with support for ranchers and farmers who are working to develop more sustainable practices.

Over the last several years, the Cultivate Foundation has contributed more than $2 million to help fund initiatives that support sustainable agriculture, family farming, culinary education, and innovation that promotes better food.

Tickets for Design for Humanity go on-sale to the public Thursday, June 14th, or sign up for the insider e-list at http://www.billabonggirls-usa.com/event/21/design-for-humanity to get a jump on the public.

For more information, go to www.designforhumanity.com.

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