Behind the Brand: Naish Hawaii was founded in 1979 in Kailua, Hawaii. Rick Naish first came to Oahu's North Shore to surf in 1956 together with the likes of Pat Curren and Butch Van Arsdalen. After several more trips from La Jolla to surf in Hawaii, Rick then moved his family there in 1968. While living in Kailua, Naish got into Hobie Cat sailing (multiple state champion and 1972 National champion) until the sport of windsurfing came along. Rick, his wife Carol, and sons Robby and Randy soon became the first family of the sport. Rick began shaping in 1976, the same year his son Robby won his first windsurfing title. The Naish brand became the world's most sought after windsurfing label, as Robby would go on to win 23 titles (Kelly who?). More than three decades after winning his first title, Robby continues to be a driving force in both windsurfing and kiteboarding. The Naish brand has continued to grow over the years, and now includes windsurfing, kiteboarding, surfing, and SUP product lines, all designed in Hawaii. Since 1981, the designer cementing much of that legacy has been Harold Iggy, a man who sits down near the trunk of the shaper's tree, next to peers like Dewey Weber and Dale Velzy. At 67, Iggy is still windsurfing, riding SUP, or surfing every day.
About his Most Popular Models: Iggy says the trend of SUP boards going shorter has had a dramatic effect on design. "Our 9'3" basically resembles a blown up shortboard, which is creating a whole new progressive direction for SUP surfing." While that's undoubtedly an area he and his team love exploring, their longboard-style SUP boards remain the most popular. "The 11'6" longboard works for beginners and advanced, in everything from no surf to medium surf." As for his racing boards, Iggy and his racers like Dave Kalama are pumped on their new non-rudder 14' class boards, and their Unlimited class.
Taking the Pulse: "Variety keeps things interesting," says Iggy. "If you look in my shaping room right now there is a 7'4" windsurfer, a 9'0" gun windsurfer, two performance longboards, and a 17' SUP race board. It's all fun and exciting. There isn't one thing that is more fun than the others, although the SUP in general has a lot of guys pretty excited at the moment."Shop Talk
What's the most important thing to remember when ordering an SUP board? "Don't go too progressive and order something that's too small when considering an SUP. A bigger board is better a lot of the time, especially for guys that don't ride all that often or that well…but even for good guys."
What are the three most important boards in your personal quiver? "The first would be my 7' hybrid surfboard, which is fun in almost anything. That would be followed by my 9'6" SUP and my 12' Glide SUP, which is a flat-water board. That way I would have something for every kind of condition."