• Heather Davis

Beyond the Waves: Perseverance & Surfing

Updated: Mar 6


I don’t need easy; I just need possible.” – Bethany Hamilton

If it’s development of grit and perseverance you’re after, make surfing your passion.

The act of surfing requires a lot of effort before a potential payoff. There is a lot of energy expended and many instances of disappointment. Surfers somehow must figure out how to return to their boards despite sometimes devastating wipeouts.

Through the power of the ocean and its persistent waves, grit can be developed and then honed over time. Grit is the ability to persevere long-term, staying motivated on our goals over months or years despite obstacles in our path.

Grit comes from being undeterred. People with grit just focus. They know where they want to go and they stay at it.” – Timothy Shriver

People with grit understand clearly the relationship between hard work and reward. Studies have suggested that the development of a work ethic and perseverance in one area allows then a greater likelihood of success through a range of difficult circumstances.

That’s why, surfer or not, we can all appreciate and find beauty and inspiration in stories of triumph and defeat in well-waved surfboards. That’s the idea behind Beach Boards I.


Hidden in these beaten up beauties in Paradise Cove / Malibu, California are tales of personal victory; of thousands of Pacific waves.

It’s not just the boards with the dings. Wipeouts in the water and in life can be humbling. They teach. But it’s the process of getting back out in the water again that is most important.

That’s what Bethany did. After the 2003 shark attack that left surfer Bethany Hamilton with one less arm than she entered the water with, she learned to surf again, getting back on her board within a mere month of the attack. She then returned to professional surfing, now an encouraging example of perseverance.

How can the rest of us give up when our stories of staying down rarely even include sharks or missing limbs? What’s our excuse for not getting back in the water?



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