All in all a lot of fun

I am so glad that George Greenough and a host of others started exploring mat riding.

And that Paul Gross and Dale Solomonson have continued to create outstanding mats to ride.

Even though I rode the rental mats in Huntington when I was a little kid I never would have looked at mats as an advanced surfing tool.

But they are, just that.

You see waves are always changing shape.

To have a vehicle those shape can be changed, as you surf it, is quite an advantage.

Also the volume of air in the mat can be adjusted between waves. This lets you determine the basic volume of air in the mat and adjustments can be made for factors like the water temp and the size of surf that day.

Of course the absolute shape of the mat is determined by it's creator "At the factory", so to speak.

But since the mat is surfed under inflated, that is not filled to capacity, the absolute shape of the mat is not used.

By squeezing the forward corners you shift air from the outside rail to the inside.

So the inside rail forms to its absolute shape but the outside rail and the back of the mat flattens out to allow very clean release.

The shape of the rail, since the mat is filled with air, constantly adjusts to the wave surface.

This is a huge plus in either off shore or on shore wind conditions.

The result, with a decent wave is for the mat to take off like a shot.

Other types of mat manipulation including subtle shifts of weight, change of the riders' center of gravity etc allow for turns, stalls, and the odd sideways slide.

All in all a lot of fun.


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