Wahine Kai Surf Club – California, USA – Wahine Kai is Hawaiian for ‘Women of the Sea’, and that’s exactly what this Californian-based club is. The group was created in 2004 as a way to promote women’s surfing and encourage more females to participate.
know that a fellow WK member in the line-up will
What’s the best thing about being in a female
be there for us if we need help. Surfing can be a
only surf club? When you take men out of the
dangerous sport and it’s a comfort to know that
equation it allows women to focus on being sup-
someone is looking out for you if you take a huge
portive of one another. We can be open and honest
spill over the falls or get taken out by the set wave.
about the trials and tribulations, rejoice about the
Friendship is made when a fellow WK member
achievements and accomplishments and let our
is there to cheer you on, give you a high five or
hair down with the ease and comfort of knowing
just a simple smile after you have a nice ride on a
that you are amongst friends.
wave. The lulls between sets also leave a lot of time for members to chat and make bonds and friend-
For more info go to www.wahinekai.org
ships out on the water. What would you like to say to anyone wanting to learn to surf? You can do it! I have members ranging from 18 to 70 years old, from all walks of ERIK OSTLING
life. We have one member who is an astronaut and a member who is a consultant in the fish industry. So, regardless of your age, body shape, career, or any other obstacle that you might think will get in your way of learning to surf, you can overcome it.
Jennifer, how many members does your club
Which led to the creation of Wahine Kai. During
have? We have over 200 members in Wahine Kai,
the first year I organised all the events myself and
with over 120 members in the Orange County
ran the club out of my living room. During the sec-
and Los Angeles Chapter, over 50 members in the
ond year, I formed a board of directors who helped
North San Diego Chapter that started last year, and
me grow the club and attract new members. I will
over 30 members in the Maine Chapter.
never forget our first meeting because about 10 of
the women that came are still members today – 12
How did the club come about?
I founded Wahine Kai (Women of the Sea) in 2004 as a way to promote women’s surfing and
Have you seen an increase in the group because
encourage more females to experience the sport
women’s surfing is getting more press cover-
surrounded by supportive and empowering wom-
age? Yes, every time we get local media coverage
en. When I started surfing in high school there
in the newspaper or on the local TV station we get
were no other women in the line-up and it was a
new members. But most of our members come
difficult experience. When I moved to Huntington
from word of mouth. When a female surfer meets
Beach, California, from Maine 10 years later, I
a Wahine Kai member and finds out about all of
really thought that I would find a surf community
the cool trips and events we have as well as the
that was accepting of women surfers, because
amazing friendships that our members have with
Surf City is the mecca of surfing, but I was wrong.
one another, they are always drawn into wanting
I kept meeting women who said that it was hard
to learn how to surf or enter a line-up filled with
men. They were looking for like-minded women
What do you love about women’s surfing? The
that they could surf with and to feel empowered
camaraderie. When the members of Wahine Kai
enough to try a new spot or go out on a bigger day.
paddle out together we trust one another and
62 SurfGirl Magazine
SurfGirl Magazine 63