Flat Water in Big Wave Season

The whole North Shore is brimming with excitement over the swells that have been coming in these last few days (Big Wave season is coming!!!)

Haleiwa is called, “The Surfing Capital of the World”, and with good reason.  Seven miles of coastline offer awesome surf — and in the winter those waves can reach to 30 foot faces!  Last year alone the waves averaged 10ft.  It’s no wonder that many tourists are intimidated to come up to the North Shore to stand up paddle during big wave season!!

So here’s a post to calm your fears:  Rainbow Watersports enjoys calm waters YEAR ROUND!!  We are so fortunate to be in one of the few locations on the North Shore that does not get waves.  Occasionally the water may get a bit choppy, and if that’s the case, we know how to avoid rough water and remain safe.

So come on out and enjoy stand up paddling on CALM WATERS during BIG WAVE season!!

The Rainbow Watersports Van: A North Shore Icon

This post is dedicated to The Rainbow Watersports’ Van — the center hub for stand up paddling fun.  Why a post on The Rainbow Watersports’ Van?  Because it has quickly become a beloved structure of the North Shore.  Paddlers and non-paddlers alike love to pose near “the rainbow van”.   It brings a smile to everyone’s face.  (Sure, some may be laughing at the cancerous rust that is quickly eating away at it, but the smiles are still there!)  We like to think it brings an element of North Shore beachy fun to the community.

Let me tell you a bit about The Rainbow Van:

Our faithful 1979 Dodge has been with us since the beginning of the school.  It began its motor-life more than 30 years ago as a service vehicle for Hawaiian Electric Company, then transitioned to a transporter of clay.  It has now settled into a semi-retirement as The Rainbow Van, and is finally living the life!  Every day it relaxes at the beach, taking in the rays (and salt air) and enjoying the views.  Sure, that salt air is quickly corroding its body, but somehow or other, THE VAN still chugs its way to and from the beach each day.

SUPSURF is proudly displayed on its license plate, and a playful stand up paddle scene enwraps the van, echoing Rainbow Watersports’ emphasis on FUN.  Because really, stand up paddling is all about having a fun time, right?  Local artist Jaime Swim painted the van, and since then she has been becoming well known in the North Shore community.  You’ll find her artwork at the Waialua Bakery as well as local art galleries.  Just like any big fan, the van would like to take credit for her growing fame.

Here’s Jamie back in the day, covering up THE VAN’s monster-green outside with a splash of color:

There have been many, many days when we thought that surely The Rainbow Van won’t last another week, but it continues to chug away.  There have been even more days when we thought for sure the walls, which somehow remain though unattached to the top of the van, or, in some spots, the bottom, would burst outward, like a cartoon car!  But somehow the doors continue to open and close, and the holes in the floor and roof continue to “self-clean” The Rainbow Van during a rainstorm.   It must love its life!

And others love it too.  When I have mentioned to paddlers that we will soon be retiring The Rainbow Van for good, their reaction is, “No!  Keep it!  It is so fun!”  And so we’re keeping it…for now.  Truth is, there is a replacement van for it that’s being doctored to hold the same character and display for Rainbow Watersports’ love for stand up paddling, but don’t tell The Rainbow Van that — it might fall apart before we’re ready!!

The Rainbow Van’s popularity amongst paddlers and non-paddlers alike have caused it to have its own Facebook page — (don’t worry I won’t let it get to its head.)  Check it out and become a fan!!

Can Pregnant Women Stand Up Paddle?

“I am pregnant.  Can I stand up paddle?”

We get this question quite a bit from large bellied stand up paddle hopefuls, and the answer is YES!

In fact, stand up paddling is an excellent choice of fitness for women who are expecting.  If you are just looking at coming out for a one-time experience, rest assured that stand up paddling is a low-impact sport, eliiminating the bumps and jostles that could be bothersome to that growing body.  If you do fall (as a low percentage of our paddlers sometimes do) you splash into water, so risk of injury is very slim.

If you are pregnant and thinking of stand up paddling as your long-term sport,  it is an excellent choice.  There are so few choices for tightening those core muscles when you are pregnant (so few, that I can’t even think of any other!), and stand up paddling does the trick — and does it well.  Stand up paddling also strengthens virtually every other muscle in your body, from your feet to your hands, with legs, butt, abs and arms in between!

 Rainbow Watersports owner Heidi finishing 7 mile race at 5 months pregnant 7-4-11

Rainbow Watersports owner Heidi finishing 7 mile race at 5 months pregnant 7-4-11

SUP Race in Haleiwa

June 4th 2011 – a race in our backyard! We were excited to be in water we were all familiar with, and race on the same course we trained on.  Again, it was a 4-mile race, this time out to the open ocean and back.

This time, head instructors Heidi, Nate, Jodi, and Wendy all competed, as well as a first-time racing debut by Jodi’s husband Ricky.  Team Rainbow was ALL IN!

With some mishaps at first (oops!  Locked a paddle in the car!) we were in too much of a rush to all don on our Rainbow jerseys, but we wish we had, since Jodi ended up snagging the 1st place position, Wendy came in 3rd, and Heidi came in 4th.  On the men’s side, Nate came in the top 10 for men, and got to compete in the coveted money race, with a potential $1000 prize, and Ricky had the most impressive finish—racing neck to neck with another competitor up the finish line.

Even our kiddos got to join in on the fun during the kid relays, and were super-stoked on the gold medallions and goodie bags (what kid wouldn’t be?)

The stoke is ON!  Team Rainbow rocks again!

Stand Up Paddle Fitness Classes Featured in LIVESTRONG.COM!

Nate Burgoyne and Jodi Kealoha, two of our instructors, were interviewed for an article for Lance Armstrong’s LIVESTRONG.COM, a leader in health and fitness websites.  We are honored to be recognized by LIVESTRONG, (even though it says we’re in Maui — Oahu’s close enough, I guess!)

Much of the article discusses our SUP FIT classes — stand up paddle fitness.  If you haven’t checked it out yet, you’re in for a great workout on the water!  Go to www.SUP-FIT.com for more information.

Here’s the LIVESTRONG article:  Give It a Try: Stand Up Paddling  Check it out!

Rainbow Watersports Team Compete in Battle of the Paddle

heidi coming in blog 2Battle of the Paddle 2011 ROCKED! Conditions in Waikiki were (mostly) good, with a bit less wave action and shallow reef, but we were still out in the water having fun, and that’s what counts. Three of our head instructors who teach our stand up paddle lessons competed in the Battle of the Paddle.

The Open-Age 4 mile race was first, with our head instructor Heidi joining in. Not being completely sure if she could finish the race (at 3 ½ mo. pregnant), she was stoked to come in 3rd in her division, but even more excited about beating her time from last year – on a smaller board!

Next up was the grueling Elite Race, a 5 mile race lacing in and out of waves with intermittent sprints on the beach between each lap. The paddlers lined up along the shore – about 100 in all. It was a sight to see. In the midst were our head instructors Nate Burgoyne and Jodi Kealoha.

Just to finish the race is a feat in and of itself, and both of them performed amazingly, despite going over reef in knee-deep water.

Jodi also joined in on the surf relays, with her team coming in 3rd – with some $$ to boot.

Congrats to Team Rainbow!DCIM100SPORT nate jodi and heidi for blog 2

What to do when it rains on Oahu?

oahu-rain-paddlingSo, you arrive in paradise, dreaming of sunbathing on warm, sandy beaches, and the sky is pouring rain!!! What is there to do when it rains on Oahu?!?

Go stand up paddling.

Stand up paddling just may be the ticket. In fact, rain creates some of the most beautiful paddling experiences. Why? Because it clears the water of practically all other people, turns the already lush vegetation bright green, and makes a cool “klinck-klick” sound as it hits the water, like rice being poured into a glass jar. An added benefit is how refreshing it feels after building up some body heat from working your stand up paddling muscles. And lastly, here in the “Rainbow State”, with rain almost always comes a rainbow.

Personally, paddling in the rain is one of my favorite times to paddle.

Here’s something else to keep in mind: Oahu’s a small island, that’s true. It’s also an island of weather deceipt: while it may be raining in Honolulu, it is dry and sunny up here in Haleiwa, or on the east coast. Don’t just stay in your hotel room waiting for the rain to pass — it may be beautiful only a short drive away! Call us and we’ll give you the weather update up here.

Of course, we won’t paddle in an electrical or hard storm, but if it’s raining outside, now’s the time to give us a call and experience stand up paddling!

Battle of the Paddle Training

Stand up paddle race season is coming up, and we are so excited!

First race of the season is one of the biggest: Battle of the Paddle.

Two of our instructors, Nate and Heidi Burgoyne competed last year, with Heidi receiving 2nd in her division, and Nate competing in the elite division. He ended up paddling a 100lb, broken board for 1/2 the race!!

Nate, Heidi and Jodi are training for it this year. Wish us luck, or join us in the line up!

Spring time stand up paddling on Oahu!

Wow, it’s spring time conditions out here! Cool That means calm winds, and smooth water. The water is super clear and the winds are light. Shana and Jason came stand up paddling with us before they moved to the mainland.

We all had a blast, and they said they wished they had come out sooner. They’re excited to share the pictures of their adventure with their friends back home.

A New Look for Our Website

We are totally stoked on our new website and logo! And, with the coming of our new website comes our new online shop and several other awesome features that we are really excited about. If you haven’t seen our new site yet, check it out and let us know what you think! The RWA Blog is a new part of the website. We will be posting great information and fun stories in the blog so you can check in and enjoy. Be sure to sign up for our newsletter on our homepage to get notified when we have new stuff on our blog! Here’s to an awesome year of stand up paddling! Aloha!