Grant “Twiggy” Baker is generally known as a man who surfs extraordinarily large waves. He’s got three Big Wave world titles under his belt, he’s topped the podium at Maverick’s, Puerto Escondido, and Nazare (just to name a few), and he’s known as one of the godfathers of big wave surfing. All those awards, of course, have come while riding on top of a surfboard, but Twig is not a one-trick pony. Twig rides waves because it’s fun—the craft is but a vessel for the fun. That’s why he just joined up with the Slyde Handboards team, marking the first time in history a professional surfer became a team rider for a bodysurfing/handboarding company.
Twig, who just won both Ride of the Year and Biggest Paddle of the Year WSL Big Wave Awards, could not be happier. “I’m a firm believer that there’s a time and a place for all water sports,” he said. “Over the years I’ve given almost all a try.”
Handboarding isn’t all that new, but Slyde took it to a new level. In days of old, bodysurfers would routinely (still do, as a matter of fact) take anything their hand could hold—flip flops, lunch tray, scraps of old skateboards—and use it to help them merrily get tubed far more than regular surfers could ever hope for. Slyde took that idea and ran with it, creating beautiful little surfboards for your hands.
“This is a very big day for me personally as well as the sport of bodysurfing/handboarding at large,” said Slyde founder Steve Watts. “Twiggy was the perfect fit for Slyde in that he believes the ocean should be enjoyed and respected like we do. He grew up bodysurfing and believes in riding everything — let the waves determine your board of choice.”
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