Archive for the ‘CHECK IT’ Category

February 14th, 2012 | By | 4,427 Comments

Costa Rica Surf Trip: Part 1 Planning my girls surf trip to the School of the World, Costa Rica

The winter has me wanting to take a trip to somewhere tropical! Okay, I shouldn’t complain since I live in Orange County where it’s 75 degrees year round, but I’d love to go somewhere remote with black sand beaches, rainforests, and ocean water that you can surf without wearing a wetsuit. Costa Rica was the perfect solution to my checklist, but how do I even begin planning my Costa Rican all girls surf trip? Enter School of the World, a unique combination of boutique hotel, surf camp, language school, photography workshop, and yoga retreat. Since travelers visit here from all over the world, it’d be a great way to meet some new and interesting people as well.

SOTW is ran by my friends Zach McDuffie and Natazha Aiken McDuffie (Natazha is an international model and Zach is the founder School of the World and a learning vacation expert). They both were so passionate about Costa Rica, and provided me with such great tips of places to go and things to do, I knew instantly this was where I wanted to stay. Zach and Natazha are experts on traveling. They run a blog popular blog about learning vacations, The Learning Experience,  and are developing a travel show about the best vacation schools, workshops, retreats, and fantasy camps in the world. Get a glimpse into what it’s all about in the video below…

Learning Experience Trailer from Z McDuffie on Vimeo

So I will be spending my vacation in Costa Rica for one week, chronicling my time there and of course providing you with style tips and fashion must haves for your next tropical vacation.

Want to win a stay at the School of the World?
ENTER HERE!

 

Read Part 2 Here

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February 13th, 2012 | By | 4,860 Comments

Best Surf Bags: The Wet Dry Bag – All Sport, All Purpose Cargo – Surf Essentials Volume 1

In this Surf Essentials series we’ll give you the must have products in surf. Our first chapter will describe a bag that every surfer should own: The wet-dry bag.

Why a Wet Dry Bag?

One of the most crucial elements to any surf trek is a legit wet/dry bag or backpack. A long walk back to your car is bad enough and it sucks even more when you’re covered in the urine-filled drippings from your suit. A good wet dry bag will store your wetter, keep you dry, and help you lug all the necessities to and from the beach.

Besides surfing, a wet/dry bag can serve a number of other purposes as well. Since sealed, watertight seams are standard in most all bags you can keep your dry items dry or your wet items from seeping out and into the upholstery of your car. Fill your bag with ice and use it as a makeshift cooler, load with squid and bait and hose it out after fishing, or leave it rolled up on the beach without having to worry about the high tide soaking your phone or wallet.

Finding the Right Bag:

Fortunately for all you dollar menu connoisseurs out there, wet dry bags aren’t all expensive. They come in at a variety of different styles and prices ranging from the super gooch to the most wallet friendly of options. With that said, a solid wet dry bag is definitely worth the investment and the more expensive bags tend to offer better amenities that will let you roll up to the beach in style with all your bases covered.

<-Click here to check out all of our Wet Dry Bags->

HERE ARE THREE BAGS, AT THREE DIFFERENT PRICE POINTS, THAT ARE WORTHY OF MENTION:

1) Section wet dry bag. $130.

Dakine set out to make the best surf bag and, with the Section Wet/Dry Pack, they did just that. This bag’s got it all: A wax pocket, fleece lined sunglass/ipod pockets, waterproof zip pockets, an insulated cooler compartment, plush back & shoulder padding, a retractable bottle opener, and best of all a voluminous waterproof wetsuit compartment that cinches down when not in use. This backpack is perfect for surf trips large and small and is backed by Dakine’s Lifetime Warranty.
<-Click Here to check out a video of all the Section Wet Dry Pack's Features->
<-Click Here to check out the Section Wet Dry Pack->

2) Billabong Leap Frog Wet Sack. $69.50.

Billabong Leap Frog Wet Dry Back Pack

Coming in just under seventy bucks, the Leap Frog Wet Sack from Billabong is sick. This 100% waterproof roll top bag is great for boat trips or anywhere else you need to keep your gear dry and your belongings safe. This bag includes an extra, removable waterproof pocket area at front that’s great for electronics, fins or all your other accessories you want keep dry. The extra large main cargo compartment features super durable, water tight seams and enough space to store nearly 3 fullsuits inside. Get this if you are looking for a rugged, fully waterproof bag at a great price.
<-Click here to Check out the Billabong Leap Frog Wet Sack->

3) Creatures Wetsuit Bag. $20.

Creatures Wet Dry Bag

At a little over the price of 2 burritos this wet dry sack will turn any existing back pack into an inexpensive wet/dry bag option. It’s narrow design fits a single wetsuit and booties and then easily packs away into most backpacks or into the back of your truck. If you are light on cash then this bag is what you need to get the job done.
<-Click Here to check out the Creatures Wetsuit Bag->

Check back for Vol 2 Where We’ll list the Top Ten items to Keep inside Your Surf Bag.

February 3rd, 2012 | By | 6,032 Comments

Featured Photographer: Matt Kurvin (Spring Catalog 2012)

The SWELL Spring 2012 catalog features tons of coastal eye-candy from our new favorite lensman Matt Kurvin. He recently won the People’s Choice Award for Larry “Flame” Moore’s Follow the Light Foundation, sponsored by SWELL.

Since winning the award, Kurvin has published surf photography in almost every major surf periodical including Surfline.com, Surfing Magazine, Surfers Journal and ESPN.

Kurvin’s career path started by moving to almost every major surf center in the USA. Originally from Sarasota, Fl he moved to California in 2001, lived in Encinitas for a few years and moved to Santa Cruz in 2003. That is where he and his wife now reside.

He is currently on the North Shore of Oahu for 2 months . The opportunity for getting great photographs there has paid off during the last couple major swells, and we expect to see much of his worked circulating magazines in the coming months. Next on his global journey is France in April, and mainland Mex in August. His main goal in life is to travel as much as possible.

See more of Matt’s work here

Get your free Swell catalog

 

January 26th, 2012 | By | 2,017 Comments

Pilates for Surfers A Quick, 20 Minute Surf Workout


Not quite as dedicated to chiseling the ideal performance surfing physique as Fanning? Fret not. Fellow SWELL-ites (SWELL-ans, SWELL-ers) Billy and Dave were nice enough to help demonstrate a few Pilates exercises that will help improve your strength and balance in the water, while only setting you back from diving into lineup for about 20 minutes.

The main goals for the session include…
1) Increasing overall performance:
* Improved muscle strength and endurance in the upper body, including the shoulder extensors, flexors and internal rotators, elbow extensors and flexors, and scapulae stabilizers
*Strengthen the core to increase balance
*Improve strength and flexibility of lateral flexors and rotators needed for more advanced maneuvers

2) Preventing injuries related to the high-impact nature of surfing (knee/ankle injuries) and overuse of certain muscle groups (shoulder/rotator cuff injuries)
*Practice proper recruitment of the rotator cuff muscles, scapulae stabilizers and upper back extensors.
*Practice proper foot and knee alignment, as well as strengthen the muscles around the knee/ankle joints to decrease the chance of knee and ankle injury
*Improve posture through correct recruitment of abdominals

3) Correct muscle imbalances that inherently developed through surfing
*Improve flexibility of hip extensors and lower back, as well as strengthening the abdominals to relieve lower back pain
*Promote balanced strength around the joints of the extremities and trunk.
*Strengthen the lower body to correct a weaker lower body in relation to a strong upper body.
*Increase pectoral and internal shoulder rotator strength to balance out the overuse of posterior deltoid, trapezius and upper back extensors

Naysayers be forewarned- this WILL be a challenging (ie, non-girly) 20 minutes. Enjoy!

Have questions about any of the exercises? Leave your comment below!