There is no bigger name in the sport of Bodyboarding than that of Mike Stewart, so his recent visit to the UK was big news for Bodyboarders like myself. Mike has been at the forefront of Bodyboarding for over 3 decades and is credited with giving so much to the sport including the invention of tricks, leadership and worldwide promotion.
Mike was visiting the UK with the Australian rider Tom Rigby to promote the 2014 range of Science boards and to touch base with UK riders and to explore the waves we have too offer. I was lucky enough to travel down to Newquay with two pals and get involved in the first day of the tour hosted by The Bodyboard Depot.
From the moment Mike arrived he was instantly mobbed by the waiting fans and seemed a little humbled by the experience, a true professional, he smiled politely as he was pushed various items to sign and babies to hold! The conditions on the day were pretty poor, but full credit to Mike and Tom who both suited up and headed out to give a masterclass in duckdiving and paddling power and spent half an hour, out in the mess at Tolcarne beach.
From Tolcarne , we all made our way back to The Depot where the crowd waited patiently to meet the visitors and get their varyious souvenirs signed, anything from miniature boards, to lonely single flippers, through to vintage boards and magazines. Every fan was given a chance to shake hands with both riders and enough time for a quick chat.
For those that didn’t have to rush back to school or work, we were then able to get involved in a Question and Answer session with Mike, where he revealed insights into the forthcoming board range and how he came to surf at Jaws for the first time. It was a privilege to be involved in the day, it was just a shame that we couldn’t travel onto the other UK spots with them both
It is with delight though that The Bodyboard Depot have recently released a video of the day called Handshakes and Shakas, that has been filmed and edited by Sam Buckle and captures perfectly the essence of the occasion. I won’t spoil it any more, but take a look at the short film below to get a taster of the day.