What the heck is the Huntington Hop
A breakdown of what the Huntington Hop is, if you should do it, what does it achieve, why are the pro's doing it and why it's so bad for your surfing.
The Huntington Hop. What is it? Should you do it? Why do the pro's do it?
Is it just me or is it one of the ugliest things in surfing?
WHAT THE HECK IS IT
If it doesn't make you cringe or think what the hell are they doing, I'm going to explain why you should not copy the pro's here.
The only reason the pro's do this is when the wave is dying out and they need to link it into the inside section for a weak finishing turn. They are repeatedly stamping down on the nose and wiggling to try and manufacture speed.
But if we look at this from an OMBE lens, all it's doing is going back foot heavy to front foot heavy. Stamp on the back foot to lift the nose, losing speed, then stamp on the nose to try and gain speed and push down the wave. Seems really backwards in thinking.
WHY YOU SHOULDN'T DO IT
Other than being a really ugly part of surfing, it is a terrible habit. This is not how you want to manufacture speed.
I won't go into the mechanics of the shortboard thruster and generating speed here but yes this will help generate speed, but it's a false method.
What you should be doing is cutting back to the power source, using your power zones. If you know the wave is going to die out like this, cut back earlier into the power source and stay with it. If you see the section in front dying out and going over deep water, cut back asap into the white wash and try to find the power source while you wait for it to reform.
You won't be losing out on any sections, the pocket will reform and you'll be right there waiting, instead of hopping along on the shoulder.
THE LESSON IN THIS
This is a big lesson in your surfing. Hoping is a waste of time.
You might as well be patting the cat. You aren't in a pro level surf competition where a foam climb at the end of a weak wave is going to add 0.2 points to your wave.
Nor is it going to make you feel anything amazing or be a big part of your development as a surfer.
Like wiggling on a surf skate, it works, but why do you want to do it? It doesn't make you a better surfer or look good.
IF YOU FIND YOURSELF DOING THIS
Don't stress. Just be aware of it every time.
If you've been hopping, look back to your inside, are you out on the shoulder? Could you have cut back into the power source or white wash where it will reform?
By asking that question and observing the wave, or other surfers doing it, you are developing one of the most important parts of your surfing, awareness.
This will drastically help you in reading the ocean and being aware of where you should be on a wave. Understanding how to effectively use your board and tap into power zones.
The above clip made me laugh, it's pretty accurate to how the OMBE team and myself feel about hopping.